When the COVID curve flattens - What happens next?

'What might we expect in the coming weeks? What questions should we be asking as we consider the restart of our economy? Ultimately, I have more questions than answers.'

I would like to share this article I read in Medium - my exact same thoughts.

Photos: Unsplash | Source: Medium

The Curve Seems to be Flattening

The number of new daily COVID-19 cases seems to have plateaued in some countries. In other countries, some new daily cases appear to be declining. This is good news.

The bad news is that we still have new cases/day. A helpful analogy to consider is the number of daily cases as the speed of a car. We are no longer accelerating, but the gas pedal is still floored as we fly down the highway at 140 miles/hour.

Nevertheless, this is good news. Based on an article in medium.com I read, there are 4 signs in the data we should look for:

  1. Decrease in rate of growth of daily cases

  2. Decrease in absolute number of daily cases

  3. Decrease in rate of growth of daily deaths and absolute number of daily deaths

  4. Decrease in hospital admissions and ventilator utilization

What Should We Expect Next?

My expectation is that we will see a gradual downslope in daily cases similar to the curve in Italy. Our current data suggests a peak in national daily cases on Apr. 4. We might expect, therefore, to still be registering close to 20,000 new daily cases during the week of Apr. 27. This is not great news.

Now is not the time to let up. The worst-case scenario would be to liberate the nation — to return to normalcy for a period — only to face a second wave of cases and force a country into quarantine a second time. A second round of quarantines would reset the clock and have wasted our collective efforts over the last month to slow the spread of the virus.

In my opinion, we are not yet ready to re-start the economy en masse. We need to reduce the number of new cases to a number manageable enough to contact trace. We need more tests. We need a system to monitor travellers. Hospitals need to get back on solid footing and be available to care for all of the non-COVID patients that have been placed on the back-burner.

Let us commit to reducing the number of cases to a point where we can contain new cases through widespread testing and contact tracing. This is our best chance to get it right.

Questions we should be asking ourselves and our leaders:

  1. What is the local strategy for monitoring and quarantining suspected cases?

  2. What is the strategy for testing and surveillance of travelers from other states and countries?

  3. At what point can our local hospitals resume non-crisis standards of care? When can your doctor start to see non-urgent visits again?

  4. What will clinical studies show regarding the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine, remdesivir, and other treatments?

  5. Do people truly develop immunity after infection? If so, can we develop an accurate serologic test that can identify those who are safe to re-enter society?

I feel that inching slowly once the curve flattens is the way to go - for real estate businesses or investors like me, getting back in business by engaging through a solid digital marketing strategy will pick up some new leads and prospects without contributing to another surge. Make use of all the virtual technology out there to market and sell - it is best to still limit face to face human interactions even when the curve flattens - that is unless we are certain that there's a drug for cure and prevention out in the market.

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