The IHME COVID-19 model, notorious for “projecting” disease stats that look more like an apocalypse model than reality, has been adjusted once again. This time, though, instead of “fixing” it to make hindcasts even worse, they actually revised it such that numbers are now into the merely exaggerated.
I first noticed the model’s issues when examining March 31 “projections.” I chose that date because it had become the present, and thus a useful test of the model’s accuracy.
It failed. It’s death projections weren’t too bad, but the hospital beds needed numbers were insane.
3/31 projected beds: 95,581
3/31 actual beds: 38,743
For giggles, earlier this month (April) they revised the model and the 3/31 prediction (a hindcast, mind you) became…
With this latest, post-Stephen King, revision, 3/31 now hindcasts 41,070 beds needed vs. the actual 38,743 that I estimated. That’s much more reasonable.
The total projected deaths looks more like what I expect, too: 60,415.
Don’t get me wrong. For those that do get COVID-19 and go sour, it’s bad. Very bad. But that’s also true of the seasonal flu (which has already killed more people than COVID-19 is projected to kill). And the people who are particularly vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2 are the same people particularly vulnerable to the flu.
COVID-19 looks less like what most people see as a pandemic, and more like an extended “flu” season (yes, I know influenza and corona viruses aren’t the same thing).
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