Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Coronavirus dashboard for February 23: vaccinations start to have a dramatic effect


 - by New Deal democrat

Total US coronavirus deaths: 500,310

Total US confirmed infections: 28,190,159

Total US vaccinated (at least 1 dose): 44,138,118
Total US vaccinated (both doses): 19,438,495

The good news is, roughly 9.5% of the US population age 18 or over has received both doses of a vaccine. Over 20% has received at least one dose.

The bad news is that we have reached the milestone of half a million dead. Further, probably at least 40,000,000 people have been infected, since many who have no or mild symptoms don’t ever get tested.

Here’s the graph of the 7 day average of new infections and deaths for the US over the last 12 weeks:

While there has been a decline of over 2/3’s in infections, and 40% in deaths, this only puts us even with the very worst levels of the summer outbreak.

But there is increasingly dramatic evidence that the vaccines are having a real impact. Since the elderly in long term care facilities were the first to be vaccinated, that is where we would first expect to see an impact. And here it is, graphically:

New infections have declined by nearly 90% in these facilities since vaccinations began, and are lower than they have been since at least 8 months ago.

Here is a similar graph from one week ago, showing the percent of all coronavirus cases that arose from long term care facilities:

The share of total cases declined by 50%. But since, over the same time span, *total* cases themselves declined 50%, that means that the total number of cases in long term care facilities declined by roughly 75%!

The situation is similar in bellwether Israel, which has delivered doses equivalent to about 80% of its total population since December. Deaths are down over 60%:

And when those who have been vaccinated are compared with those in similar situations who have not been vaccinated, the outcome is even more dramatic:

The 7 day average of those who were vaccinated declined by about 2/3’s, while the decline among those not vaccinated was only 10%.

There is simply no reasonable doubt that, as matters now stand, the vaccines are going to be very effective, probably by the Fourth of July, in nearly halting deaths due to the virus in the US - and that includes the new variant strains.