Oregon seems to flatten the curve.
Analysis released Friday by Oregon health officials shows that aggressive state outreach measures may have prevented more than 70,000 coronavirus infections since early March, including about 1,500 hospitalizations.
“Our modeling continues to show that our collective efforts are working,” state epidemiologist Dean Sidelinger said in a statement.
The results reinforce the arguments of a choir of public health officials and medical experts, who urged officials in the country to maintain home care orders, warning that a premature reopening could lead to new waves of infection and death.
The report, prepared for the Oregon Health Authority by the Institute for Disease Modeling in Bellevue, Washington, drew on a series of factors for its conclusions, including data on confirmed cases, completed tests, hospitalizations , intensive care unit admissions and statewide deaths.
The authors estimated that up to 8,400 Oregonians were infected in total, four times the 2,177 cases confirmed by health officials.
Without social distancing, the Oregon epidemic “would have continued to grow exponentially, doubling every week,” said the authors. According to the report, confirmed cases reached around 80,000 on April 16, a figure that would have placed Oregon among the hardest-hit states.
The authors cautioned that the projections were for planning purposes and should be considered preliminary, stating that the data for covid-19 cases may differ in a way that was not taken into account.
They also stressed that strict social distancing should continue to reduce the number of active infections and said that testing and contact tracing should be significantly expanded before the state plans to reopen.
“These measures have been used successfully to prevent the epidemic rebound in other countries, such as South Korea,” said the authors, “and provide the clearest evidence to date of successful management in the short and medium term covid-19 ”.