The virologist Silvestri on Coronavirus: “The great retreat continues”


3 ‘of reading
Senigallia 23/05/2020
– The professor. Guido Silvestri, an internationally renowned Senigali virologist and professor at Emory University in Atlanta, takes stock of the data confirming the continuous decline in new infections from Covid-19. “The retreat of COVID-19 continues undaunted, which makes us very happy. We are on the 49th consecutive day when the total number of intensive care unit admissions for COVID-19 in Italy drops – from 640 to 595, then another 45 units , and we are now at 14.6% of the peak value -said Professor Silvestri- And it is important that the number of total hospital admissions also drop (from 9,269 to 8,957, therefore 312 units) and active cases (from 60,960 to 59,322 We are now at day EIGHTEEN since the reopening of May 4, and the dreaded return of the virus does not even see its shadow. At this point I start to be curious to know how these data explain what those who said on May 4: ” it’s early for the reopening “+” the seasonality of the virus is a fantasy “+” the heat won’t help “, etc. But they are very intelligent and prepared people, so they will always have the answer ready 🙂

According to some articles, the Swedish data on COVID-19 are scary, and in the Scandinavian country a genuine humanitarian disaster is being consummated. I prefer to look at the numbers, which you see in the table below (the numbers, you know, are very obstinate). Mortality per 100,000 inhabitants of Sweden remains much lower than Italy, UK, France, Belgium and Spain (see table below). Not to mention my Georgia, where we had the closure to rose water, and Florida, where, despite a very minimal lockdown, per capita mortality is less than a fifth of Italy. Then on the health policy choices of the Swedish government and the Governors of Georgia and Florida you can discuss as much as you want, but at least on this page we do it starting from the numbers, the real ones. Precise, for the avoidance of misunderstandings and exploitation, that I do not show these data to argue that the closings are useless – and in fact I could have added to the table the data of Denmark, Finland and Norway, all countries with the hardest “lockdown” of Sweden and mortality much less per capita. I show these data to say that (i) the “lockdowns” are not a miraculous panacea against COVID-19, but only a type of intervention that works partially and variably and has serious side effects, especially if prolonged for several weeks, and (ii) there are other important factors that regulate COVID-19 mortality, starting from the rapid tracking and isolation of cases and contacts, prevention of infections at hospital and RSA level, preparation of the health system, quality of therapy, seasonality and environmental factors.

Tab. 1: Mortality from COVID-19 per 100,000 inhabitants as of May 22, 2020:
Belgium 80.16
Spain 59.52
UK 54.08
Italy 53.82
France 42.12
Sweden 37.84
Georgia 16.79
Florida 10.20

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