New COVID Death Projections: First Comes the Fire

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Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at The University of Washington has updated and extended its COVID-19 projections out to April First. IHME’s estimates of deaths have been revised upward. IHME now projects cumulative confirmed deaths from COVID-19 in the US to be as follows:

By January 1: 348,311
By February 1: 437,944
By March 1: 500,318
By April 1: 538,893

Over this time frame, they expect the new vaccines to make almost no difference: their impact will come later. The usual caveats apply: a strong turn towards masks and distancing could make a dramatic positive difference, while an abandonment of any further restraint could make an ever larger negative difference.

These are staggering numbers: 90,000 deaths in January alone. In this model, we will see as many deaths in the next four months as we have seen in the past 8. To put this in perspective, confirmed COVID-19 deaths in the United States will exceed total US combat deaths in World War II and the Civil War combined by early April.

Mask. Distance. Take the vaccine as soon as it comes to you.

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