The expected number of coronavirus deaths in South Carolina has dropped more than half from researchers’ expectations a week ago, and they say social distancing is the cause.
Using data on available hospital beds, the number of people infected and the safety restrictions issued, researchers at the University of Washington have created a model to predict when the new coronavirus will be the deadliest in all states of the country and the severity of its impact. .
On March 30, they predicted that SC would experience 32 deaths per day at the peak of COVID-19 and a loss of more than 1,000 lives in early June.
But as of April 6, the researcher’s updated model predicts that fewer than 500 people will die from the virus in early August, with a maximum death rate of 14 per day.
Researchers still expect COVID-19 to peak in South Carolina in late April, but with far fewer deaths than they initially feared, thanks to measures such as social distancing.
They also said that there should be many hospital and intensive care beds open to those who need them. Previous projections have shown that South Carolina is cutting it near the available intensive care beds, but there are currently no shortages predicted.
University researchers cited recent data from Italy and Spain, which have already reached their COVID-19 peaks, for changes in their projection. Data from European countries show a strong correlation between social isolation, closures and falling death rates.
The latest projections for South Carolina were updated before Monday evening and restrictions have been tightened since.
Public health officials say 2,232 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed and 48 died on Monday
“Our current data shows us that social estrangement and staying at home help fight the spread of disease and ultimately save lives,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell during the interview. a press conference on Monday.
Governor Henry McMaster has so far taken a less restrictive approach than most states to slow the spread, resisting calls for a state-wide safe haven order, instead taking action progressive. But on Monday, he changed positions, issuing a mandatory order to stay at home, except at work or in an essential business.
“We asked, we urged, we suggested … but last week showed that it was not enough,” he said.
Meanwhile, the heads of state announced plans to increase the number of available hospital beds by 3,000, bringing the total to 9,000, according to the state.
Projections from the Ministry of Health and Environmental Control forecast 8,000 cases by May 2.
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