That model introduced a new factor called the "social distancing suppression factor" which describes what percentage of infections are prevented due to social distancing: people staying home from work, closing schools, banning air travel, etc.
Using this tool, we've been able to run different scenarios that examine the R0 values of the virus vs. the social distancing suppression factor required to stop the virus from exponentially exploding across the country. This has revealed some fascinating data that speaks to the urgent need for the USA to follow Italy with a nationwide quarantine of everyone.
It is the only way this pandemic can be stopped, it turns out.
For background the R0 value describes how many new people get infected by an infected carrier. Normally the R0 value would encompass social distancing factors itself (i.e. the R0 would change as human behavior changes), but we have introduced the social distancing suppression factor as a separate variable in order to independently test the results of quarantines, air traffic lockdowns and so on.
Here's what the projections now show:
In other words, the higher the R0 value of the virus, the more aggressive the containment strategies must be in order to stop its exponential spread.
Current scientific studies estimate the coronavirus R0 value to be somewhere between 4.5 and 6.6, although these numbers surely vary across the many different strains that have already mutated and spread across the world.
What really shocked me in running these projections is how a very tiny difference in the suppression values can result in long-term differences that describe millions of lives lost or saved. The suppression percentages described above are "tipping points" after which the virus get largely contained and stops its exponential spread. But merely getting close to that tipping point isn't enough. You have to meet or exceed those percentages or the virus continues to replicate beyond your control.
If the coronavirus has an R0 value of 6.0, in other words, the importance of enforcing lockdowns and medical martial law becomes critical. Even a few people breaking quarantine can sustain the exponential spread of the virus.
It's clear that China realized this early on, which is why they resorted to draconian crackdown measures that saw people literally welded into their apartment buildings under armed guard.
The upshot is that until President Trump declares a national emergency and locks down the USA in the same way Italy has just done -- a nationwide quarantine of everyone -- the virus will continue to exponentially spread across America.
In order to break the exponential cycle of the virus spread, Trump would have to:
These efforts might achieve a 90% suppression factor, which would break the cycle of the coronavirus within 3-4 weeks.
In other words, America would have to endure a month of hell to stop the virus in its tracks.
We know this works from a medical standpoint. The question is at what cost to society and human freedom.
For starters, Americans have basic civil liberties that do not exist in China. Declaring medical martial law in America may not go over very well in terms of compliance among the people.
Secondly, the economic consequences would be catastrophic. Imagine shutting down the entire US economy for a full month. What would that do to the stock market? The GDP? How would Americans survive without paychecks for a month?
But if you don't shut down the country, sooner or later your hospitals are overrun with infections and you end up with a national health crisis that gets even worse than just shutting everything down for a month in the early weeks of the pandemic.
So far, it seems that Trump has chosen to kick the coronavirus can down the road and wait for this thing to explode into a nationwide health crisis. According to our calculations, if nothing is done to stop the exponential spread of the virus in the USA, the hospitals will be overrun around the end of May.
It also means that Trump can continue to play his "denial" game for about six more weeks, after which the denial gambit collapses into a national crisis and the Trump administration is probably done for.
Put another way, President Trump has perhaps only a few more weeks to save his presidency and save America from an exploding national crisis, and he must take aggressive quarantine / lockdown actions, not just pump more counterfeit money into the stock market. You can't solve this problem with more Fed pumping. Sooner or later, you have to deal with the actual virus and how to stop it from replicating in the lungs of the American people.
If Trump does nothing, millions will die. Our current projections, now using a 25% social distancing suppression factor, puts the estimated number of deaths in America at 1.1 million by July 4th if Trump does nothing to stop this. This number can be reduced to just 1,322 deaths if Trump takes aggressive action to lock down the USA.
In other words, we can stop this. But decisive, aggressive action must begin very soon, and we must all be willing to live in isolation for about 30 days to break the cycle of the coronavirus.
So the good news is we have a solution for the coronavirus. The bad news is the solution might crater the US economy and cause unimaginable disruptions nationwide, including shortages of food, medicine, water and so on.
The bad news is that if we aren't willing to go through that hell, a far worse nationwide crisis eventually unfolds due to the laws of mathematics and biology, and the US hospital system turns into a hellzone of mass disease and death, during which the mortality rate for the infection will skyrocket to 10% or more, multiplying the casualties even further.
The even worse news is that Trump currently has us on the "catastrophic" track, which begins with denial and ends with disaster.
Stay informed by reading Pandemic.news.
Mike Adams (aka the "Health Ranger") is the founding editor of NaturalNews.com, a best selling author (#1 best selling science book on Amazon.com called "Food Forensics"), an environmental scientist, a patent holder for a cesium radioactive isotope elimination invention, a multiple award winner for outstanding journalism, a science news publisher and influential commentator on topics ranging from science and medicine to culture and politics.
Mike Adams also serves as the lab science director of an internationally accredited (ISO 17025) analytical laboratory known as CWC Labs. There, he was awarded a Certificate of Excellence for achieving extremely high accuracy in the analysis of toxic elements in unknown water samples using ICP-MS instrumentation.
In his laboratory research, Adams has made numerous food safety breakthroughs such as revealing rice protein products imported from Asia to be contaminated with toxic heavy metals like lead, cadmium and tungsten. Adams was the first food science researcher to document high levels of tungsten in superfoods. He also discovered over 11 ppm lead in imported mangosteen powder, and led an industry-wide voluntary agreement to limit heavy metals in rice protein products.
Adams has also helped defend the rights of home gardeners and protect the medical freedom rights of parents. Adams is widely recognized to have made a remarkable global impact on issues like GMOs, vaccines, nutrition therapies, human consciousness.