Gu said on Tuesday that his model was based on an epidemiological methodology called SEIS, which stands for sensitive, exposed, infectious and sensitive modeling.
“We are using a very classic epidemiological model,” said Gu, adding that his model was updated daily and that he feared other models would underestimate deaths.
When it comes to death, the coronavirus crisis “could be more serious than people thought,” said Gu. “I want to make sure people understand the facts and the science. “
Of the 12 states in the southeastern United States, the model projections for Georgia are the only ones to assume that statewide social distancing will be relaxed from May 1, to reflect orders from the Governor Brian Kemp to reopen the state. Projections for the state of Georgia show that the highest increase in daily deaths will be between May and August for the region.
Friday, Kemp authorized the reopening of hair and nail salons, hair salons, massage companies and gymnasiums under new safety standards. It allowed restaurants and theaters to reopen with new restrictions on Monday.
Assuming a relaxed social distancing, the model predicts that the number of Covid-19 deaths per day in Georgia will drop from 32 people dying on May 1 to 63 people dying on August 4.
Currently, 995 people have died from Covid-19 in Georgia, according to the model, and it is expected that that number could reach 4,691 by August 4. Projecting the total number of deaths in the state provides a range of estimates from 1,686 deaths at the lowest to 15,620 deaths at the upper extremity.
According to the model, the top five of the 12 states in the Southeast with the highest total number of projected deaths as of August 4 are: Louisiana, Georgia, Florida, Virginia and North Carolina.
While the model assumption for Georgia is that social distancing measures will loosen by May, the model assumes that for all other states, reopening will begin in June.
“But we are considering evolving this because, obviously, many states are now considering reopening – but the problem is, ultimately, nobody knows what’s going to happen,” said Gu.
Overall, the model’s projections are estimates and forecasts with reservations, said Gu. For each state, projections provide a wide range of the number of deaths that could occur – whether people continue to distance themselves socially and other possible factors.
“There is this huge uncertainty that what is going to happen is very likely to be affected by political decisions. If Georgia, for example, orders everyone to wear masks, it could significantly reduce infections, according to some recent studies, “said Gu.
He added that model projections show a peak for Georgia around June and July, which appears to be a direct result of the lifting of the foreclosure measures.
“Our forecast for state reopenings is what we think will happen, but we don’t have data at the moment, so we will have to wait a few weeks to see,” he said. “Small things – small policy changes – can have a huge impact. “
Gu said he plans to continue updating his model and tracking Covid-19 cases and deaths across the country.
Not all Southeastern states to see increases
While most states are expected to see an increase in daily deaths as social distancing measures are relaxed this summer, the large increase in daily deaths from Covid-19 for Georgia has not been found in the forecasts for some other states in the Southeast region – at least during the modeled period, until early August.
Other projections (estimates in large-scale projections):
• Alabama: deaths per day will drop slightly from eight on May 1 to six to August 4, with a total of 844 deaths on August 4.
• Arkansas: deaths per day will remain somewhat stable, going from two on May 1 to one on August 4, with the total number of deaths reaching 183 on August 4.
• Florida: deaths per day will drop from 37 May 1 to August 28 to 4, with the total number of deaths reaching 3,456 on August 4.
• Kentucky: deaths per day will drop from eight May 1 to August 11 to 4, with total deaths reaching 925 as of August 4.
• Louisiana: deaths per day will drop from 52 May 1 to August 29 to 4, with a total of 5,102 deaths on August 4. New Orleans was seen as a hot spot in the coronavirus crisis.
• Mississippi: Daily deaths will remain somewhat stable, going from eight on May 1 to nine on August 4, with the total number of deaths reaching 890 on August 4.
• North Carolina: daily deaths will drop slightly from May 17 to May 1 to August 14 to 4, with a total of 1,500 deaths on August 4.
• South Carolina: daily deaths will remain somewhat stable, dropping from six on May 1 to seven on August 4, with the total number of deaths reaching 669 on August 4.
• Tennessee: the number of deaths per day will drop from five on May 1 to one on August 4, the total number of deaths reaching 444 on August 4.
• Virginia: deaths per day will drop slightly from May 22 to May 1 to August 19 to 4, with the total number of deaths reaching 1,972 to August 4.
• West Virginia: daily deaths will remain somewhat stable, going from two on May 1 to three on August 4, with a total of 240 deaths on August 4.
All screenings were made Tuesday morning and are subject to change.