Coronavirus, the virologist Silvestri: “The mathematical models have failed” – La Stampa


«Today is the fateful June 8th. What, if we weren’t careful, we would have had 151,000 ICU patients. Instead they are 286. And 20 days after the openings in May, there is no sign of that return of the pandemic that some experts took for granted. This last point is important and must be remembered clearly “according to the virologist Guido Silvestri, who invites us to look at the numbers to take note of the failure of the mathematical models: the data show that they have been” inadequate to predict the real trend of the epidemic », observes the Italian scientist professor in the USA at Emory University in Atlanta.

«Without controversy, because everyone is doing his best – he specifies in his social column ‘Pills of optimism’ – I think it is right for Italian citizens, who have made very hard sacrifices for months, to admit this fact and promise that these models will no longer be used to make political decisions, for example for schools ».

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Even yesterday’s bulletin confirms that “the retreat continues: the total number of ICU patients admitted to Covid-19 in Italy is down, now 7.0% of the peak value. The number of total hospital admissions also decreases (from 5,002 to 4,864, therefore of other 138 units), while the total active cases decrease from 35,877 to 35,262, therefore of another 615 units ».

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“Before May 4 – remembers Silvestri – the authors of the mathematical models on the effects of the phase 2 that was being planned, based on mathematical models, they said to the country:” Know that as soon as it reopens, the cases will certainly go up. A little if we reopen a little, a lot if we reopen a lot ”. In other words, disaster awaited us. While other experts said, “The virus should be seasonal, there is no reason to fear a summer catastrophe.” Well, “things went as we know”. Even looking at the United States, the expert’s conclusions remain the same.

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«Many – he writes – ask me how things are going in Atlanta and Georgia. I would say well, with a situation under control and a total of 51,898 cases and 2,174 deaths, of which yesterday 4. Interesting to note that in Florida, a state with the minimum lockdown, the mortality per 100 thousand inhabitants is even lower (12.6) ».

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Hence, “the data from Georgia and Florida once again demonstrate how epidemiological models, which at the same time postulate a massive positive effect of the ‘lockdowns’ and do not take into account the climatic-seasonal factor, do not explain the trend of the pandemic in universally valid way, and as such they should not be used to guide the choices of politics ».

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