Good to see some solid information, Robert. I work in the travel industry, and it’s total meltdown. Panic everywhere. The cancellations are coming in faster than they can be processed.

Looking at the figures for America, the number of those infected is increasing by a third each day. I’ve been keeping a spreadsheet to track the progress and it’s matching the numbers I projected a few days ago.

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Death rate seems to be running at 4.4%, which looks high to me, but I suspect that there are a lot of cases not showing up in the official figures for one reason or another.

Things aren’t too bad at the moment, and there’s actually quite some time before we reach a million Americans dead on 16 April.

Wikipedia gives the American population at 328 000 000, so if everybody gets it, which they will simply by doing nothing, that gives a theoretical maximum at (say) 1.5% death rate of about five million dead.

I won’t bother trying to predict a date for that because the transmission rate will slow as more and more people are infected, and each infected person will come into contact with fewer healthy targets. My best guess for hitting the five million fatalities is about February next year. After that, everyone left will have some immunity, and the first effective vaccines will begin to arrive some months after that.

I’ve been getting some information from an expatriate in Shanghai about the conditions there, where the authorities have managed to get on top of this thing, and it seems to be working albeit at the cost of total loss of privacy and long prison sentences for (say) running a restaurant.

Definitely no need to panic, but some accommodations need to be made.


Britni Pepper has always enjoyed telling stories. About people, places and pleasures.

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