(Financial News) Since the novel coronavirus nCoV19 was first discovered in the holiday season of 2019 it had been constantly spreading at an increased rate, and it looked like an epidemic could turn into a global pandemic.
That is of course until the 4th of February. On February 4, 2019 things appeared to have peaked in terms of new cases of the novel coronavirus being reported. On that day, the scales tipped at at a whopping 3,925 new cases, according to World Meters who has been tracking the stats since the outbreak of the virus was reported in December of last year.
After peaking on the 4th of February, we have seen an almost steady decline in the amount of new cases until the 11th of February which saw just 1,820 new cases of the coronavirus. In just 7 days it appears that the spreading of this deadly disease was cut in half.
This was a very promising trend and it looked like the virus was being contained. Then something happened yesterday. The numbers went bonkers.
People are returning to work in china
With the end of the Lunar New Years holidays, people started to return to the work. This means they were walking the streets, getting on trains, riding bikes, order coffee and tea, and doing what people do during a normal work day. Prime conditions for spreading the coronavirus, and that is exactly what appeared to have happened
Yesterday we saw 15,407 new cases of the virus. This is literally a 746.5% increase over the previous day and a 292.5% increase over the biggest day of the virus, and this means that today could be even worse and if the growth factor is anything like it has been the last 24 hours leading into today, we could be dealing with a massive pandemic of global proportions if the Chinese authorities do not get this situation under control.
746.5% increase in new cases last 24 hours
Looking at the chart above is quite scary, if the trend was to continue into today and tomorrow that would mean that today we would have 130,420 new cases today and tomorrow there would be 1,104,007 new cases.
These are very scary trends and we can only hope this trend does not continue as the Chinese workforce is returning to work after the end of the Lunar New Year’s holiday.
Other reasons for the increased spread of the virus – not so alarming (according to WHO)
According to Dr. Sylvie Briand, the director of the World Health Organization’s Infections Hazards Management Department, “It’s normal during the course of an outbreak to adapt the case definition.” Basically the WHO is stating that since the definition of what actually is a reported case of the novel coronavirus is changing, that this is going to change what is actually a reported case.
This answer, coming directly from the WHO, does not necessarily agree with the 746.5% day on day increase.
Let us assume for a minute that the 746.5% number is indeed due to the fact that China and epidemiologists and doctors changed their definition to now include a different sub-set of people, does this mean that the problem before February 12 has been under reported?
Does this mean that what we have seen to date is actually 7 times bigger? The discrepancy seems to be too big to be justified by a simple change in definition of what actually is a confirmed case of the coronavirus. Because if this is the case, we could have a massive problem on our hands when the real numbers come trickling in.
This is a developing story, please check back for updates.