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COVID-19: All the Statistics Are Down — for Now

A ray of sunlight before the coming storm.

(Sunday, January 31st)

Nationally, the coronavirus numbers are looking good with all the major indicators trending down:

  • New cases, down 40 percent
  • Hospitalizations, down 24 percent
  • New tests, down 11 percent
  • Positivity rate, down 5 percent
I saw one item that said it is the vaccinations kicking in — I don't think so. This is just the tailing off of the last holiday surge of cases that came from people traveling and getting together in groups that they should not have been gathering with — indoors. 

The new variants from England and South Africa are spreading via community spread in states and by March are predicted to be the dominant form of the virus here in the United States. That is when the numbers above will once again start going vertical instead of down. Thus, storm clouds on the horizon.

One other note: There is a saying, "We are not safe until everyone is safe." This applies to the United States getting vaccinated and then the rest of the inhabitants of the globe also getting vaccinated. An "America First" strategy won't work with the virus. If it is spreading and mutating around the world, those variants will eventually end up back here in the U.S. 

This is why rejoining the World Heath Organization and other international agreements and alliances is so important. We are all "connected," whether we like it or not. We are one global community, so get used to it. Everyone around the world needs to get vaccinated — not just us. 

Eric Holdeman is a contributing writer for Emergency Management magazine and is the former director of the King County, Wash., Office of Emergency Management.
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