This post was originally written on Saturday, March 14, 2020 at around noon Central time. Since we wrote this post, we have created an online Coronavirus dashboard that is updated daily. Please refer to it for the latest data. We've kept this post live for reference, but our updated commentary is here.
Hi all, as you may have seen from some of our previous posts, the Plenty team has been doing direct data mining of the U.S. and worldwide COVID-19 data in order to better advise our clients and community.
In that spirit, we wanted to share the latest data in two simple graphs. The intent here is neither to alarm nor reassure, but simply to help you sift through the latest information to make the best decisions for you.
WHAT DO THE GRAPHS SHOW?
The image below is a visualization with two basic bar graphs. The bar graphs are shown by date, one bar for each day in February and March. Note that the scale (vertical) axis of each graph is different.
The top graph, in blue, shows the total cumulative confirmed cases in the U.S. As of Saturday morning, it was about 2,175 cases. Each individual bar builds on the bar from the day before.
The bottom graph, in orange, shows the new cases diagnosed each day. On Friday, 516 cases were diagnosed, which is up from 382 diagnosed cases on Thursday.
Each individual orange bar is unique. In other words, if you add up all the orange bars shown, you get the same as the most recent (highest) blue bar.
WHAT DOES THIS TELL ME?
The blue bars tell you what you already know, which is that the total number of cases continues to grow. The orange bars tell you why there is concern about social contact: yesterday more new cases were diagnosed than any previous day.
In other words, the rate of change is growing. Think of it like this: the Coronavirus car is accelerating. Not only are the number of cases increasing, the rate of the increase is increasing.
Remember that as we have previously posted, the number of actual cases is larger than the number of confirmed cases. No one yet knows exactly how much "larger" it is, but it is likely larger by a factor of at least 2 or 3. This means what you have already probably heard: COVID-19 cases are increasing, and over the next 5-7 days you should expect the numbers to change quite dramatically as the network effects take hold. Now is the time to wash your hands, reduce contact, and get a reasonable set of supplies and food so that you do not have to do so later in the week. If you wait longer, you risk not only imposing unnecessary hardship on yourself, but putting strain on your local resources that need to be open for people who may need medical care.
We'll keep updating things and please reach out with comments and questions. The easiest way is to comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are sending care, love, light, and peace to you.
This post was originally written around 12:00 PM Central on the morning of Saturday, March 14, 2020. Due to how our blog notification system works, many of you may not read this post until Sunday morning. We will be changing that notification schedule going forward, at least for the time being, so we can bring you information and resources in a more timely way.
In any case, as of 6:00 PM Central on Saturday March 14, there have already been more confirmed cases in the U.S. than yesterday. We haven't updated the visualization to reflect that, but what this means is that the trend outlined in this post continued throughout the day on Saturday. In other words, the pace of the increase continues to increase.