Indicators of the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak development
(A.B. Alyokhin, B.V. Burkynskyi, A.B. Brutman, A.N. Grabovoi, V.A. Dilenko)
06/05/2020. No 78.
We continue to publish a daily summary of progress indicators IP of the epidemic of the coronavirus COVID-19 in the world and in a number of countries, including Ukraine, as of official statistics as of June 04, 2020.
As we promised, the coronavirus epidemic in France was excluded from our reviews (temporarily) due to significant changes in the data on the number of infected people for more than 2 months, starting from the first of April. Due to the fact that the epidemic in this country is still of great interest to researchers, including us, after updating our database, we are likely to resume monitoring the situation in France.
Over the past day, only Brazil, Iran, Israel, and South Korea haven’t shown positive dynamics of progress (Fig. 1–3). Israel and South Korea in this regard can serve as examples of how difficult it is to leave quarantine without noticeable losses.
In China, the fatality rates I (TC) and I (CC) do not change every day in a row (5.58% and 5.59%, respectively), but the value of the IP progress indicator has grown to the level of 99.92% against 99.91% in previous days.
The coronavirus epidemic in Germany has taken another small step forward. The value of the epidemic progress indicator in this country increased to 95.46% against 95.43%. Today (see below), the epidemic indicators of this country will serve us as a background, emphasizing the particular trends of the coronavirus epidemic in Ukraine.
The coronavirus epidemic in Japan in its development came close to the undoubted leaders of the ranking — China, Germany and South Korea. The IP progress indicator for this country has reached 92.67%.
The overall ranking of epidemics and pandemics in the world is shown in the diagram in Fig. 4. Over the past day, Japan surpassed South Korea, which for a long time ranked second, but due to the growth of new infections, it is gradually rolling back in the development of the coronavirus epidemic. The position of other countries in the ranking remained unchanged.
Diagram 5 shows the dynamics of the actual values of both fatality rates generally accepted in medical statistics and the IP progress indicator we proposed for the coronavirus epidemic in Ukraine. From the perspective of these indicators, the trends in the development of the coronavirus epidemic in Ukraine at first glance may seem quite prosperous. Unfortunately, this is not entirely true, which will be discussed below.
The diagrams in Fig. 6–9 show the dynamics of the actual values of the daily increment of the main indicators of the epidemic of the coronavirus COVID-19 in Ukraine and the trends that best describe the relevant statistics. According to the graphs of these diagrams, one can judge how the coronavirus epidemic is developing in Ukraine to date.
The dynamics of the daily growth rate of new cases of the disease in Ukraine (see Fig. 6) are causing increasing concern, which indicates that efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus are not effective enough. The anti-record set on June 4 (588 new registered cases of infection) is an eloquent confirmation of this.
As we have already noted more than once, the formation of a plateau along the trajectory of this indicator instead of a peak, like in countries that are more successful in curbing the epidemic, is fraught with: (1) a significant lengthening of the life cycle of the epidemic and, as a result, the period of stay of citizens from risk groups in conditions of increased danger; (2) an increase in the load on the medical system and the cost of medical care for patients; (3) an increase in the number of deaths. This is exactly the fee you should expect for a balance between the costs of fighting the epidemic and the loss of the economy from quarantine, announced as the main goal in the new government strategy to contain the epidemic.
In this issue, to compare the development of the coronavirus epidemic COVID-19 in Ukraine with the development of the epidemic in other countries, we publish similar charts on the coronavirus epidemic in Germany (Fig. 10–14), in a country where, despite the huge scale of the disaster, there are obvious achievements in fight with it.
As you can see, in the case of Germany, all the graphs that reflect the dynamics of the main daily indicators have a classic look for the development and curbing of epidemics. This provides convincing evidence that the country has achieved a relatively high level of control over the development of the epidemic by the state, including the phase of gradual quarantine exit. We will leave no comment only on a low fatality rate (see Fig. 10), which largely depends on the methodology for fatal cases accounting. In this regard, analysts still have questions.
More important for us is a comparative analysis of how the process of subordinating the spread of the coronavirus to the human will proceeds in Germany and Ukraine.
First of all, let’s pay our attention to the diagrams presented in Fig. 11. As it is not surprising, but the peak indicators of daily growth in the number of registered infected people differ almost strictly by an order of magnitude. This greatly facilitates the comparative analysis.
As follows from these diagrams, in Germany the classic peak is framed, in Ukraine continues its development, expanding plateau.
Let’s take a mark of 3000 cases for Germany and a similar mark in 300 cases in Ukraine. These values are slightly higher than half the peak trend values for both countries. Exceeding this level in Germany took place within a month (28–30 days). In Ukraine, the development process has been going on for 50 days (expansion of the plateau). Moreover, the peak (according to the statistical trend) value in Germany was reached on the 12–13th day after overcoming the mark in 3000 new cases, and in Ukraine the anti-record was set on the 53rd day after overcoming the mark in 300 new cases. We have already indicated the main consequences of such a development of events.
No less indicative is the diagram presented in Fig. 15, which shows the trajectories of the actual values of the progress indicator IP of coronavirus epidemics in Germany and Ukraine in a logarithmic scale. The abscissa axis shows the time starting on the first day, when the values of the progress indicator in each country acquired a meaningful meaning (i.e., they began to differ from 0 or infinity). As you can see, the pace of progress (movement to completion) of the epidemic in Germany is significantly higher than the pace of progress of the epidemic in Ukraine. Given that the main factor in accelerating progress in the coronavirus COVID-19 epidemic development is quarantine and the level of compliance with its conditions both by the authorities and the population of the respective countries, everyone can make conclusions (forecasts) himself.
Unfortunately, and we have also noted this more than once, the conclusions regarding our behavior in an epidemic made by everyone, including those who make responsible decisions, can have tragic consequences for others. This is the main feature of the coronavirus COVID-19 epidemic and the pandemic as a whole.
A progress indicator (IP) of 1.00 indicates the end of the epidemic in the relevant region, i.e. at the time when there are no new infected, current patients are absent, all previously infected have replenished the lists of recovered and deceased.
Diagram 1 shows the values of the progress indicator IP for all countries of the world, China, countries of the world with the exception of China and a number of other countries. Diagram 2 shows the “leaders” from among the analyzed regions and countries.
Chart 3 displays the “average”.
Chart 4 shows “outsiders.”
The terms “leaders”, “average” and “outsiders” are used solely to differentiate countries and regions by the level of the epidemic progress index IP and spacing them into different diagrams for easy viewing and visual comparison.
At the time of the end of the epidemic, the values of both WHO fatality rates should be equal.
Fatality rates widely used in medical statistics are not able to adequately reflect the dynamics of the epidemic development process. In contrast, the progress indicator IP captures changes in the development of epidemics quite accurately and informatively.
Source of statistics:
Our initiative group and mission:
Our publications on case fatality rates and indicator of progress: