Coronavirus Deaths: The Animated Series

Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonder and Home.

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8 Responses

  1. J_A says:

    The UK’s Office of National Statistics has published a comparison of weekly deaths in England and Wales in 2020 vs the minimum-maximum range since 2010.

    Last week close to 17,000 people died, in total, from every cause. The range for that particular week between 2010 and 2019 is between 8,500 and 12,000.

    Two weeks ago, weekly death were at around 12,000, solidly in the middle of the range

    The maximum number ever, before last week, in the whole 2010-2020 range, was just over 16,000, Last week was the deadliest week in ten years

  2. Rich says:

    Left out the “regular flu”, that Martin guy.
    How else does one get to 61,000 or 79,000 total regular flu deaths in the 13-week long regular flu season of 2017-18 ??Report

    • Brandon Berg in reply to Rich says:

      It’s right in the middle, at 153, “Influenza&Pneumonia.” The daily death counts for other diseases are just yearly deaths divided by 365. There’s no accounting for seasonal variation.Report

  3. Oscar Gordon says:

    A lot of those remain suspected, not confirmed, thanks to our inability to test. We almost need an * on those numbers that lists the number of deaths confirmed with a positive test.Report

    • The best (because simplest) statistic continues to be excess deaths above the norm. No more quibbling about people who had the pre-existing condition of not being an Olympic decathlete.Report

    • Kazzy in reply to Oscar Gordon says:

      Yea there was about a 500 jump in there on 4/6. NYC has already said they are changing their method of counting. It isn’t apples to oranges. Our data collection is limited. Changing methods may yield a better approach, but you can’t compare numbers collected with different methods.

      ETA: NYC went from counting “Confirmed deaths” to “Presumed deaths”. Maybe the latter is a better measure but it meant a 2K jump in one day from deaths spanning a month. That’s just bad math.Report

  4. Ozzy! says:

    This is more and more becoming a data and comparability exercise, so I will note that comparing effectively static figures for other dealth causes to a new and high growth metric will always *look* like it creates a narrative story (the cute timescale animation helps too).

    If someone showed this data to me without the immediacy of the situation, my first question would be: what were the actual daily deaths for the other items on this list so the benchmark is aligned with Covid and how many of the ‘other’ death causes were cannibalized by Covid?Report

    • Swami in reply to Ozzy! says:

      Good point. Since over 95% of CV deaths have between 1 and 3+ critical risk factors including heart disease and cancer and chronic lung disease and diabetes, I think we are likely moving people to some extent between categories.

      I am not trying to make light of additional fatalities. But I think this may be better at sensationalism than analysis.

      I will say that I prefer this over the absurd stats that the major TV stations are citing on a daily basis. It is absolutely meaningless to post the absolute number of cases and deaths by county, state or country each day without the next step of looking at trends over time and per million, etc.

      I still predict that all in total deaths due to communicable diseases will be up slightly for 2020 in the US.Report