March 29, 2020

Analyzing Covid 19 Data

For what it's worth, I made a simple chart for myself based on Johns Hopkins Data. Be warned: it's not very sexy! I don't have a lot of time to make it look slick. I wanted to see data by state. Also, be warned that the data from Johns Hopkins is a little inconsistent. But taken with a grain of salt, here's my chart that breaks the data down by state:

Covid 19 Cases by State

You can find the raw CSV files here:

Johns Hopkin's Data

And, Johns hopkins has a much sexier charts here:

Johns Hopkin's Visual Dashboard (desktop)

John's Hopkin's Visual Dashboard (mobile)

Even though other states' numbers seem trivial compared to New York's, it's a little scary to see how nearly every state's curve is still following exponential growth.

My plan for the next weeks and months is to monitor these graphs. As long as I see exponential growth, my family and I are planning to self isolate to the extreme. For us, this means only go out if absolutely necessary (to get food).

Of course, there's a small voice in my head telling me I'm being way too extreme.

But on the other hand, it's tough to argue with data. Staying at home is way easier than going to a Funeral.

As soon as these charts show a break in exponential growth, that's when I'll start thinking about going back out for things other than food.

I can't imagine the stress on small business owners out there. Even without the corona virus, this type of downturn in the economy is enough to make people panic. However, the way I see it: rebuilding businesses is much easier than resurrecting our parents and grandparents.

From a purely mathematicaly perspective, there's 2 variables that affect these charts: 1. Rate of infection and 2. Rate of recovery.

The bad news: There's nothing we can do to slow the rate of recovery.

The good news (although inconvenient and counter intuitive): There's a bunch of stuff we can do to slow rate of infection:

  • We can stay at home.
  • Wash hands
  • When we do have to go out, we can wear masks (if you already got 'em).
  • Hopefully soon, there will be more opportunity to get Tested.

One more note about Testing and masks. My brother lives in South Korea, so I have direct knowlege of how things are there. The question is: how is South Korea doing so much better at containment than the US?

South Korea's government is a three branch democratic republic similar to the U.S, so this can't be explained by the difference in type of government.

I think the difference between South Korean and the U.S. is two reasons: 1. Much better testing and 2. People wear masks when they have to go out.

I think the testing will be available to American's soon. Korean has already been affected by SARs and MERs. Unfortunately, this is the first time America has had to deal with a virus scare.

As for the masks: I think Americans need to get over the stigma of wearing masks out in public. Of course don't buy and hoard them. In fact, if you don't already own a mask, you probably shouldn't even buy one until health workers have enough. But if you have a dusty, paint covered n95 that you bought from Home Depot 5 years ago in your garage (like nearly every single American does!), by all means, don't feel bad about wearing it out!

Tags: health personal development