Coronavirus model projects 201,129 deaths in the US for october

(Credit: Johannes Eisele / . / .)

A closely watched model that predicts covid-19 deaths now predicts that there will be more than 201,000 deaths in the United States by October 1.

Projections continue to show that the decline will be difficult, with a sharp increase in the forecast of daily deaths in September and October.

Last week, the model, from the University of Washington Institute for Health Measurement and Assessment (IHME) predicted 170,000 deaths for this same time period. The model was often cited by the White House at the beginning of the pandemic and is one of 19 models currently featured on the website of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Now, the model projects that 201,129 people will die of covid-19 in the U.S. before October 1, with a possible range of 171,551 to 269,395 deaths. Ali Mokdad, one of the creators of the model, said the number of projected deaths have increased for two reasons.

“Increased mobility and premature relaxation of social estrangement led to more infections and we see it in Florida, Arizona and other states. This means more projected deaths, “Mokdad told CNN in an email. “The second part is that we are now projecting to October 1, which means that an increase in this wave will result in our starting point for the second wave (more planting), so the second wave will be higher and we are capturing parts of that. Remember that the second wave begins in late August and early September. “

Daily deaths are expected to decline through June and July and remain relatively stable through August, but the model predicts a sharp increase in deaths through September.

In the model, projected daily deaths nearly double from 743 on September 1 to 1,241 on October 1. The uncertainty of the model increases the more it is projected in time.

To make the model, analysts use cell phone data to show people’s increased mobility. As people move, they are more likely to come into contact with someone who is sick, but exactly how mobility corresponds to infection is not entirely clear. Wearing a mask and physical distancing can reduce the rate of disease transmission.

IHME has also said it looks at other factors in making the model, including the number of people wearing masks, air pollution figures, tests, trends in pneumonia and population density, among other factors.

The IHME model has been criticized for some of its assumptions and predictions. At one point, he projected that the deaths would stop in the summer, many experts at the time considered it unrealistic. Since then, IHME has revised its methodology.

Mokdad said it is important for people to remember to be cautious when interacting with others.

“We all need to wear our masks and stay away from each other to reduce circulation and be in a better place at the start of the second wave,” said Mokdad.