Why aren't people in Texas, Florida and Arizona dying by the busloads?
I can only imagine how a state like Florida, with it's huge retirement population, is going to deal with this. In Texas, the vast majority of cases are in healthy, working age people, many with no symptoms. In fact, since we shut down a huge part of our medical industry to handle the crunch that never came, tens of thousands of very ill patients had their appointments / treatments postponed for months. These delays have serious consequences.
The managers of Houston hospitals keep making public announcements that they are not under stress, and can readily handle the predicted influx of CV-19 patients. But for some reason, the MSM ignores them, and instead tell us, in an urgent tone, that the number of cases are going up! And they never report the case rate, which has not gone up nearly as much.
Perhaps the number of new cases is due to several reasons:
- massive increase in number of tests
- the virus is actually as contagious as predicted
- illegal border crossings from Mexico, etc.
Maybe the east coast states, whose death rates we will never match (thank God) have less deaths now because the virus was widespread enough to create a herd immunity effect? Some experts are saying the % infected where you live is equivalent to the percent infected on the Princess Cruise ship, and herd immunity actually begins at a much lower percentage infected rate. Some studies are predicting 20-30% infected may be enough before theirs starts to die out.
I seem to recall the epidemiologists were saying from the beginning that CV-19 is highly contagious, and that while we could slow down infection rates, we could not stop 70% of the world population from getting it. They also told us at least 2 million Americans would die, and that we needed to shutdown everything for 14 days to "flatten the curve" to prevent hospitals from being overrun.
It turns out that while a few hospitals in NYC were stressed, none were over run. Everyone who needed treatment got it, and massive treatment centers set up in many large cities (including Houston) were disassembled after we found they were not needed. Also turns out that CV-19 is not nearly as lethal as they were predicting, and unlike the flu, the elderly and were at hundreds of times greater risk than the younger population.
It seems the only thing the epidemiologist told us at the outset that is true is that it is highly contagious. The United States has been solidly in the middle of the pack in the world of nations in infection rates and fatality rates. We have done way more testing than most countries.
Hospitalization rates are back to near normal. They were greatly reducing in anticipation of CV-19, and believe it or not, the "near 100%" hospitalization rates for ICUs and hospitals rooms in general are historically run as close to capacity as possible, as that is how businesses are run most efficiently. So yeah, I guess "hospitalization rates" are climbing - back to normal rates.
ICUs are very expensive to maintain, not just the hardware, but even more so the highly specialized employees that run and work there. Because of that, they run their ICUs very close to 100%, and in large cities that is easier to do because of the population size that makes ICU usage rates more stable. But they are designed to greatly expand the number of ICUs rooms in emergencies and man them properly, though it does put a stress on the employees, but excursions are rare.