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Discussion Starter #1
I have been watching the numbers coming out of different countries with interest. Many of them, I suspect, are under reporting the impact, or simply are not testing, so their numbers are quite low.

Russia is one that I have always suspected was not being very transparent, but now it seems it is getting bad enough that they can no longer hide their situation from the world.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/covid-19-russia-spike-cases-1.5533647

I consider myself very fortunate to live in a country that has a strong safety net, and an economy that is resilient enough to weather this crisis. I feel for the citizens of countries like Russia where they get little or no help from the government. I have a feeling Russia's economy is going to take much longer to recover from this pandemic than most G7 countries.

I just hope Putin doesn't do anything stupid to distract his citizens from his failings!

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Discussion Starter #2
It looks like Brazil is in BIG trouble. They have a leader who is still denying covid as a threat, and is instead focusing his efforts on his own political interests.

It is sad to see. I lived in South America for a while, and spent a lot of time in Brazil. It was by far my favorite country down there. The Brazillian people deserve better!

https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/brazil-has-the-most-confirmed-covid-19-cases-in-latin-america-so-what-says-president-bolsonaro-1.5550720

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My spouse and I keep hoping Canada will annex Minnesota.
I lived in Rochester and never felt that way. I love Canada though.😄😘
 

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I’ve spent too much time looking at and talking about the data. The conclusion I’ve come to is I’ve no conclusion.

I’m baffled by the difference in death rates/million between countries and i can find no singular underlying correlation. It may come out that there is one but it’s not obvious to me at this moment.

Just a couple of quick examples. India and Malaysia you would expect to be hit hard because of the very close social contact. But no, they are not. Someone said it because of the young population. Maybe.

But then look at Italy and Spain both hit hard, but Portugal, right next door with a similar climate and population, hit much less hard.

Hong Kong and Singapore have very different rates.

People are criticizing Sweden but their rates are actually very average.

Going back to the concept of India having youthful population I made a table of the 16 oldest populations by country. If there was some correlation to age you should see it there. But no, there is no apparent correlation.

The only thing I can see is when looking at a map of the world it is very roughly the more Westernized cultures that have been hit hard. That may change over time, but it should have been evening out by now.

Even within the USA it has hit the West coast relatively easily compared to the NE Corridor. Within that corridor it hit NYC hard and spread predominantly North to Boston. It hit NJ, but Philadelphia, Baltimore, DC lighter. Being from Philly i and having friends and family there I was concerned. They had a very disjointed response, were far behind on social distancing, very slow to act. And when they did act entire neighborhoods more or less ignored the orders. Yet it was much lighter than NY.

It’s not making any sense to me. Which means, I think, there is something about this virus that we do not understand. Perhaps it is a slight mutation that changes its spread or its lethality. Perhaps there are minor changes in us, we have some regional vulnerabilities it capitalized on.

The bottom line is I’m baffled. And I’ve now read a couple of articles about India drawing the same non conclusions. The BBC and another good source. It did not develop in India as expected and no one has a good answer why. All kinds of theories have been put up, such as that Indians are given a vaccine against TB. But none of it holds up to inspection. So I’m not alone in my bafflement.
 

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Completely agree Hpeer. I've been pondering the same for a while now. The differing morbidity and mortality rates have baffled me from early on. There is something (or many things) about this virus that are confounding.

Within Canada we see similar odd patterns; Ontario/Quebec with high rates, and the rest quite low. And why the difference between these two provinces and NY State? Geographical neighbours. Lots of contact (early on). Similar cultural mores. Similar demographics, yet vastly different infection rates.

There is so much we just don't know.
 

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Data is incomplete and inaccurate. Testing is completely inconsistent and incomplete. Different areas have taken different approaches to things like social distancing.

Where would you find high density of assisted living facilities as opposed to extended families? Things like that.

Many complex factors at play.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I think there are a lot of factors at play when it comes to the statistics, not the least of which is a lack of accurate testing and reporting from some jurisdictions. Take Brazil, for instance: their testing has been producing a extraordinarily high false negative rate, and there are huge portions of their population who have no access to clean water, let alone health care and covid testing. I have no doubt their numbers are far higher than the official stats.

When you look at different parts of Canada and see that British Columbia is doing far better than Ontario and Quebec there are a few considerations. The BC government began taking covid seriously very early on. The importance of distancing, frequent hand washing, and staying home if you don't feel well was stressed through advertising campaigns and press briefings. This likely contributed to the fact that BC had no known "super spreaders". Meanwhile the Quebec Premier was encouraging his citizens to go travel and have fun for spring break. Thousands did just that, and then returned from the USA and Europe and brought covid home with them. To be fair, Quebec and Ontario have their spring break two weeks earlier than BC, so BC was able to learn from that mistake.
I have a feeling that many of the differences in responses, and varying results are related to the political ideologies of governments. It seems to me that many of the more left leaning governments reacted more quickly to protect their populations, while more right wing governments were more concerned with protecting their economies or the stock market.

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I think there are a lot of factors at play when it comes to the statistics, not the least of which is a lack of accurate testing and reporting from some jurisdictions. Take Brazil, for instance: their testing has been producing a extraordinarily high false negative rate, and there are huge portions of their population who have no access to clean water, let alone health care and covid testing. I have no doubt their numbers are far higher than the official stats.

When you look at different parts of Canada and see that British Columbia is doing far better than Ontario and Quebec there are a few considerations. The BC government began taking covid seriously very early on. The importance of distancing, frequent hand washing, and staying home if you don't feel well was stressed through advertising campaigns and press briefings. This likely contributed to the fact that BC had no known "super spreaders". Meanwhile the Quebec Premier was encouraging his citizens to go travel and have fun for spring break. Thousands did just that, and then returned from the USA and Europe and brought covid home with them. To be fair, Quebec and Ontario have their spring break two weeks earlier than BC, so BC was able to learn from that mistake.
I have a feeling that many of the differences in responses, and varying results are related to the political ideologies of governments. It seems to me that many of the more left leaning governments reacted more quickly to protect their populations, while more right wing governments were more concerned with protecting their economies or the stock market.

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While I’m sure many of the Quebec province caught from the US, there probably was already a fair amount there . It appears the eastern spread cane from Europe. I’m sure it spread once there due to the lack of concentration of prevention so a fair amount was community spread.

As was said without concerted testing and tracing its hard to believe in much of the statistics.
 

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