I put as much faith in the COVID-19 count as I do the number the views this blog receives. Both are inaccurate although they both give you a sense of how things are trending.
If I take a peek at blog’s stats, it’ll say a post has 25 views. Yet, if over 400 people subscribe and receive the post in their email and read it, those numbers never show up. If they forward the email to others, those numbers don’t show. I can think of a few more ways actual views don’t get counted, but overall, I can always tell which posts are trending over others, even though I know the actual view count is way off.
With COVID-19, I heard a health care worker in NYC being asked if she thought the actual count was higher than reported. She answered, ‘By 10s of thousands.’
I bring this up because I got a call last night that someone we knew is having a challenging experience in the hospital with COVID-19. I know for a fact this person is not on the Delaware County list of folks with the disease. Because of the rush to the hospital with almost immediate treatment, word hasn’t gotten back to the county that this is a case to add to the count, if it ever will.
Just like I don’t know how WordPress counts blog views, I don’t know how anyone counts COVID-19 cases. Obviously, if you get a COVID-19 test, they register and report the results. But what about all the emergency cases the hospitals are dealing with?
The lady interviewed said, ‘Perfectly healthy people are coming to the hospital with routine injuries like a twisted ankle and we take a chest X-ray and find they have the virus.’ Are they counted? What about people who die that never had a COVID-19 test? I doubt if their corpse is being tested to see if they died of the virus.
The COVID-19 numbers are scary enough without even knowing if the numbers we’re seeing are close to being accurate or not. Regardless, they are still good for following the trends of where the bad outbreaks are and how, when numbers trend downward, we can begin to see the light of getting out of this pandemic.