COVID-19 Update

Coronavirus info and quantification:

UPDATED 1/24: Thursday’s numbers, with an early Monday update.

New cases, world per capita.

The number of new cases reported across the world on Thursday was 3.6m, about 7% higher than the same day last week, and again the highest ever recorded. 57 major countries (population five million or more) were in the red zone (at least 143 cases per million population per day). Israel topped all nations at 7346. France reported 425,000 new cases, its third consecutive day above 400,000.

Fatalities, world per capita

Across the globe, 9,192 fatalities were reported on Thursday. That total is about 12% higher than the same day last week. 21 major countries were in the red zone (3 per million per day). The top two were Bulgaria (13) and Slovakia (11).

21 major countries were in the red zone in both categories (cases and fatalities). They are ordered below based on the number of consecutive days they have appeared on the list: The USA, Greece, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Italy, UK, Bolivia, Ukraine, Russia, Portugal, Canada, Spain, France, Argentina, Serbia, Colombia, Peru, Paraguay and Finland.

Vaccinations, world.

Five major countries have managed to vaccinate more than 85% of the population fully as of Monday, with the UAE leading the world.

UAE 95%
Portugal 89
Chile 89
China 88
Cuba 86

The same five countries have administered at least one dose to more than 90% of their population, with the UAE now the first country to achieve complete inoculation (more than 99%) with at least a first shot:

UAE 99+%
Portugal 93
Cuba 93
Chile 92
China 91

Three major countries have administered booster shots at least 55% of the population:

Chile 65%
Denmark 59
Israel 55

Testing rates, USA

The most current 7-day average of positive testing percentage was 27.1% positive (red zone = 10.0%) as of January 21st. It is now declining slowly.

All 50 states were still in the red zone. The lowest was Vermont at 12.8%. 25 states were at 30% or more, down from 27 last week, as follows:

(+ or – indicates the change from last week)

Washington 79% +
Oklahoma 45 +
Mississippi 44 –
Alabama 42 +
Idaho 41 +
Nevada 40 –
Tennessee 39 –
Utah 38 +
South Dakota 38 +
Indiana 36 +
Nebraska 36 +
Texas 35 –
Arizona 35 +
Arkansas 35 +
Iowa 34 +
Georgia 33 –
Missouri 33
Kansas 33 +
Kentucky 32 +
North Carolina 32 +
Florida 32 –
Michigan 32 –
Pennsylvania 31 –
Virginia 31 –
Montana 30 +

Vaccination rates, USA.

  • 63% of the population in the USA has been fully vaccinated as of Monday (74% of adults, 88% of seniors). Vermont reports the highest percentage (79%) fully vaccinated, while Idaho is the lowest (48%).
  • 75% of Americans have received at least one dose (87% of adults, 95% of seniors). New Hampshire reports that they have given at least one dose to 95% of residents, making them the most successful state by that criterion. Idaho trails the pack at 54%.

New cases, USA

45 states, DC and Puerto Rico filed reports on Thursday. All of those states, plus DC and PR, states were in the red zone, which starts at 143 cases per million population per day. The highest rate was in Hawaii at 4175 per million, followed closely by North Dakota. The country’s rate was more than 2000 per million, about 14 times the red line, with 692,000 new cases reported. That’s 22% lower than last Thursday. That is the seventh consecutive day in which the case numbers have been lower than the corresponding day of the previous week.

The hospitalization numbers run some days behind real time. On January 19th, the total number of Americans hospitalized with COVID (144k) was almost identical to what it had been seven days earlier, although that apparent stability masks an assortment of steep inclines and steep declines. As of January 13th, hospital ICU units were at 82% capacity, up 2 points from the previous week, which in turn was up three points from the week before that.

The following table represents the USA’s daily “new cases” total in thousands. Red backgrounds indicate an increase versus the same day of the previous week. Red numerals indicate an increase over the weekly average from the previous week. An asterisk indicates that the data are incomplete.

5 Weeks Ago 4 Weeks Ago 3 Weeks Ago 2 Weeks Ago Last Week This Week
Monday 99 154 254 450 674 614
Tuesday 126 196 340 595 750 592
Wednesday 142 237 477 714 880 711
Thursday 160 283 589 803 892 692
Friday 171 298 583 873 872
Saturday 158 254 501 789 760
Sunday 135 207 416 714 681
AVERAGE 139 233 451 705 787

Fatalities, USA.

The NY Times summary of fatalities reports that the 7-day average of deaths is 2,029 per day through Thursday, about 8% higher than it was last week at this time. The Thursday single-day summary, however, was more alarming – 2,672 fatalities, 16% higher than last Thursday. The country was still in the red zone, and 31 of the 45 reporting states (69%), plus PR, were in the red zone on Thursday, which means they had at least 3 fatalities per million population in a single day. The highest by far was Connecticut at 68 per million, which is 22 times the red line, more than five times as high as the highest major country in the world, and two and a half times as high as the next highest state (Pennsylvania at 25).

Since every state is in the red zone for testing percentage, and every reporting state is in the red zone for new cases, therefore at least 31 states are in the triple red zone, perhaps as many as 36 because of the states that failed to report, with all of the others in the double red zone.

ADDED 12/19: Most of the World’s Vaccines Likely Won’t Prevent Infection From Omicron.” “All vaccines still seem to provide a significant degree of protection against serious illness from Omicron, which is the most crucial goal. But only the Pfizer and Moderna shots, when reinforced by a booster, appear to have initial success at stopping infections, and these vaccines are unavailable in most of the world.”

ADDED 12/2: “Population-level evidence suggests that the Omicron variant is associated with substantial ability to evade immunity from prior infection.” South Africa has the world’s fastest-growing caseload, though the figures are small compared to those in many other countries. In the first half of November, it was averaging about 260 reported new cases a day. On Tuesday, the figure was over 4,300, the highest in months. It jumped to more than 8,600 on Wednesday, and to more than 11,500 on Thursday.

ADDED 11/26: “Scientists in South Africa on Thursday identified a concerning new coronavirus variant with mutations that one scientist said marked a ‘big jump in evolution,’ prompting several countries to quickly limit travel from the region.”

ADDED 11/18: The journal Science has published an analysis suggesting that the Wuhan market and infected animals seem to be the likely source of COVID-19, as was originally suspected. They have, however, identified a likely new zoological culprit – not bats or pangolins, but “raccoon dogs.”

“Most early symptomatic cases were linked to Hunan Market — specifically to the western section (1) where raccoon dogs were caged (2) provides strong evidence of a live-animal market origin of the pandemic.”

ADDED 11/13: COVID-19 is widespread and asymptomatic in non-human species. Preliminary evidence suggests that transmission from some non-human species to human, with intervening mutations, is possible. That means the disease could circulate and mutate among the animals, then get passed back to humans in another previously unseen variant.

ADDED 11/9: The partisan gap in Covid’s death toll has grown faster over the past month than at any previous point.”

ADDED 11/4: Pfizer says its Covid pill with HIV drug cuts the risk of hospitalization or death by 89%.”

ADDED 10/6: Idaho did a systematic study of the relationship between vaccines and COVID. 89% of cases, 90% of hospitalizations and 88% of deaths were not fully vaccinated.

ADDED 7/23: Variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 are now responsible for all cases in the United States. The original strain is no longer detected among variants circulating throughout the country.”

ADDED 7/12: 97% of all Covid-19 hospitalizations in the United States, and 99% of deaths are now occurring among unvaccinated individuals.

ADDED 7/11: Delta spreads 225% faster than original virus

ADDED 5/31: COVID-19 cases and deaths are way down from the December-February peak, but the rate of infection is the same as it was in December for the unvaccinated.

ADDED 3/25: India reports novel COVID-19 variant, daily deaths at year’s high. “New ‘double mutant variant’ detected, says health ministry amid concerns over highest single-day tally of new infections and deaths.”

ADDED 3/20: Europe has fallen far behind the USA and UK in vaccinations. Where did they go wrong? This is something President Trump’s administration got right. “The bloc shopped for vaccines like a customer. The United States basically went into business with the drugmakers, spending much more heavily to accelerate vaccine development, testing and production.”

ADDED 1/27: The new strain in Brazil is not only more transmissible than the original strain, but it is also more severe. Worse still, people who have had the first strain don’t seem to be immune to the new one!

ADDED 12/11: FDA authorizes the first coronavirus vaccine

ADDED 11/15: Doctors Are Calling It Quits Under Stress of the Pandemic. Another horrible irony of the pandemic – as we need more doctors, we have fewer. “About 8 percent of the doctors reported closing their offices in recent months, which the foundation estimated could equal some 16,000 practices. Another 4 percent said they planned to shutter within the next year.”

ADDED 10/19: China becomes the first major economy to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic

ADDED 10/14: Proposal to let coronavirus spread naturally through US population interests White House and alarms medical establishment.” The math surrounding that strategy is terrifying. Scientists say that herd immunity requires about 2/3 of the population to have the antibodies. That’s 220 million people. In the USA in recent months, about 1.4% of the people who get the virus do not survive it. In other words, achieving herd immunity without a vaccine will require about three million Americans to die … and that’s IF IT WORKS!

ADDED 10/8: Infections fell 75% after mask mandates and bar closures in Arizona, study shows

ADDED 7/15: President Trump says the U.S. would have half the number of coronavirus cases if it did half the testing.

UPDATED 6/19: This can’t be good: “The antibodies our bodies develop against COVID-19 can fade away in just two to three months.”

ADDED 5/21: Black Americans are dying of Covid-19 at three times the rate of white people

UPDATED 5/9: In a bizarre irony, hospitals are making mass lay-offs in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic. The institutions are suffering financially because they have had to eliminate all the most profitable parts of their business in order to treat corona victims. In all, 1.4 million health care workers lost their jobs in April, 135,000 of those in hospitals.

ADDED 3/28: The data reveal that covid-19 is much more dangerous for men. The data are consistent from country to country.

March 9:

March 4: A lot of people will have this, and it’s very mild. They will get better very rapidly. They don’t even see a doctor. They don’t even call a doctor.”

Feb 26: “We have thousands or hundreds of thousands of people that get better, just by, you know, even going to work. Some of them go to work, but they get better.”

Feb 26: We’re going to be pretty soon at only five people. And we could be at just one or two people over the next short period of time..”

Feb 26: We’re going down, not up. We’re going very substantially down, not up..”

Feb 26: The 15 within a couple of days is going to be down to close to zero.”

Feb 25:

Feb 24:


The Dow was at 27,960 that day. One month later it was at 18,592.

Jan 24:

Jan 22: We have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s going to be just fine.”