How useful is "cases" as a statistic?

WEDNESDAY, JULY 8, 2020

Consider what Redlener said:
How strange a statistic is "cases?" Consider what Dr. Irwin Redlener said to Brian Williams last night.

(We can't give you a link. As we type on Wednesday afternoon, the slacker channel has produced transcripts only through last Thursday's night's TV shows.)

Redlener strikes us as one of the best of the many capable medical specialists currently being glimpsed on cable TV. Here's part of what he said in reply to Donald Trump's recent crazy claims concerning our triumph over the virus:
REDLENER (7/7/20): Anthony Fauci said, just two weeks ago, that we can expect to see 100,000 new, confirmed, tested cases every day, which means that's about a tenth of what the real number is because not everybody gets tested. So we could be seeing a million new cases a day within the next few weeks.
Redlener joined Dr. Fauci's recent prediction—100,000 new confirmed cases per day—with Dr. Redfield's earlier statement that the actual number of cases to date may be as much as ten times the current recorded amount.

On that basis, Redlener says we may soon be experiencing one million new infections per day, with 100,000 of those new infections/new cases being confirmed through testing.

Will that actually happen? Will a million additional people be getting infected each day?

We have no idea. But again, just consider how strange a statistic "cases" is! Think of it like this:

Why do we use this statistic at all if the number we're recording and reporting may be off by as much as a factor of ten? Can we make valid comparisons over time if we're missing this many actual cases? Can we make valid comparisons from one state to another? From one part of some state to another part of that state?

If the number of cases we record depends so heavily on 1) the volume of testing being conducted, and 2) the public's interest in being tested, then what are we really recording and reporting?

Deaths are easy, "cases" are hard! If the number we're recording each day may be off by a factor of ten, how valuable is "cases" as a statistic?

We don't know the answer to that question. Also, no one is going to ask!

(Redlener shared time with two non-medical guests as Brian hopscotched around. This is the way "discussion" works in our current version of Short Attention Span Theater.)

27 comments:

  1. Trump has been right about coronavirus all along. Like when he said ""Whatever happens, we're totally prepared" in February.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who wouldn't want a prescient genius like that to lead their country?

      Delete
    2. Case in point:

      The United States just reached 3 million reported COVID-19 cases.

      Here's how fast each million has come:

      0 to 1 million cases: 98 days
      1 to 2 million cases: 43 days
      2 to 3 million cases: 28 days.

      Delete
    3. Trump is right. We will be fully open by Easter.

      Delete
    4. Hello everyone. I was heartbroken because i had very small penis, not nice to satisfy a woman, i had so many relationship called off because of my situation, i have used so many product which i found online but none could offer me the help i searched for. i saw some few comments about this specialist called Dr OLU and decided to email him on drolusolutionhome@gmail.com
      so I decided to give his herbal product a try. i emailed him and he got back to me, he gave me some comforting words with his herbal pills for Penis t, Enlargement Within 5 day of it, i began to feel the enlargement of my penis, ” and now it just 2 weeks of using his products my penis is about 10 inches longer and am so happy..feel free to contact DR OLU on (drolusolutionhome@gmail.com) or whatsapp him on this number +2348140654426  


      How can i ever stop saying thank you to Dr  olu   






















      Hello everyone. I was heartbroken because i had very small penis, not nice to satisfy a woman, i had so many relationship called off because of my situation, i have used so many product which i found online but none could offer me the help i searched for. i saw some few comments about this specialist called Dr OLU and decided to email him on drolusolutionhome@gmail.com
      so I decided to give his herbal product a try. i emailed him and he got back to me, he gave me some comforting words with his herbal pills for Penis t, Enlargement Within 5 day of it, i began to feel the enlargement of my penis, ” and now it just 2 weeks of using his products my penis is about 10 inches longer and am so happy..feel free to contact DR OLU on (drolusolutionhome@gmail.com) or whatsapp him on this number +2348140654426  


      How can i ever stop saying thank you to Dr  olu   

      Delete
    5. SAVE YOUR RELATIONSHIP AND GET YOUR BOYFRIEND/GIRLFRIEND BACK VISIT: website: https://doctor0lovespell.wixsite.com/mysite-2
      My love life has changed for better since the interference of the most powerful spell caster on earth called Dr.LOVE0 in my relationship, My testimony today is in regard of the help that Dr.LOVE0 render me when my lover departed from me. am from UAE and it gives me joy today in writing this testimony as a way of showing my appreciation to Dr.LOVE0 and at the same time i am use this opportunity to advise those that are finding stress and pains in their relationship or marriages to contact Dr.LOVE0 who is the best spell caster in the world through these contact details via email: (doctor0lovespell@gmail. com) or visit his website: https://doctor0lovespell.wixsite.com/mysite-2  or contact his FB page: https://www.facebook.com/Lovespellthatworkfastusa  also check his blogs: https://doctorlovespell0.blogspot.com/ Because Dr.LOVE0 is the only one that can restore your marriage or relationship with love. He can also help to win lottery spell

      Delete
    6. A GREAT SPELL CASTER (DR. EMU) THAT HELP ME BRING BACK MY EX GIRLFRIEND.
      Am so happy to testify about a great spell caster that helped me when all hope was lost for me to unite with my ex-girlfriend that I love so much. I had a girlfriend that love me so much but something terrible happen to our relationship one afternoon when her friend that was always trying to get to me was trying to force me to make love to her just because she was been jealous of her friend that i was dating and on the scene my girlfriend just walk in and she thought we had something special doing together, i tried to explain things to her that her friend always do this whenever she is not with me and i always refuse her but i never told her because i did not want the both of them to be enemies to each other but she never believed me. She broke up with me and I tried times without numbers to make her believe me but she never believed me until one day i heard about the DR. EMU and I emailed him and he replied to me so kindly and helped me get back my lovely relationship that was already gone for two months.
      Email him at: Emutemple@gmail.com
      Call or Whats-app him: +2347012841542

      Delete
  2. "If the number we're recording each day may be off by a factor of ten, how valuable is "cases" as a statistic?"

    If the amount that it is "off" by stays the same, all you need to do is adjust the actual count to have a relatively accurate measure. If the reasons why the actual count is inaccurate stay the same, then you can compare the fluctuations in the number of cases and it will tell you important things.

    One reason we care about cases is to keep track of whether we have enough hospital beds for the people who may need them. We should be using the number to decide on measures such as opening or shutting down businesses. For those who travel, it tells us the prevalence of the virus in different areas. It may be used to allocate money and other resources to areas with greater need. When reported on the news, it tells us whether the virus is waxing or waning in our own locality.

    No one is asking about this because it would be a waste or time and money to do a complete census and 100% testing with so large a population. So we use the reported number as an estimate. Estimation is a procedure most people are familiar with -- so why would they need to ask about it?

    "Cases" is not, strictly speaking, a statistic, the way statisticians use the term. It is a count, a value. A statistic is any quantity computed from values. So, the average number of cases would be a statistic. Cases itself is not a statistic.

    Somerby would have learned that on day one in a stats class. That may be why he doesn't know the answer to his questions about data. He never thinks about what the data represent, what they mean to real people out in the world. He thinks "accuracy" or "correctness" is the only important attribute of numbers. Statisticians think about variability, change, error and bias, as meaningful aspects of groups of numbers.

    No matter how good we were at counting cases, there would always be some measurement error. Statisticians don't throw out the data because of it -- they try to measure or estimate the amount of error, and they talk about confidence in their estimates. Somerby would think about numbers differently if he had ever taken a stats class.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For deadrat -- the statistics that deal with variability and comparison of means were invented by psychologists for dealing with human variability. They were adopted by other fields such as biology, medicine (and epidemiology), neuroscience and economics. Thank Galton.

      Delete
    2. A brief trip through the intertubes will reveal the contributions of Galton to biostatistics or anthropometry, only some of which field would fall under the rubric of psychology. Statistical methods however predate the work of 19th century biostatisticians. I'm thinking of astronomy and statistical mechanics.

      But thanks for sharing.

      Delete
    3. Thanks for sharing deadrat, I read the same thing on Wikipedia.

      Delete
  3. Somerby has been ignoring the controversy over a letter complaining about the suppression of right wing views as a limitation on the free expression of ideas. When he gets around to it, I expect he will side with the letter signers and not with those who want to see greater responsibility in the selection of what appears in the mainstream press:

    https://digbysblog.net/2020/07/the-problem-with-the-letter/

    That would be consistent with his views on Cotton's op-ed and the firing of Bennett from the NY Times.

    ReplyDelete
  4. "REDLENER (7/7/20): Anthony Fauci said, just two weeks ago, that we can expect to see 100,000 new, confirmed, tested cases every day, which means that's about a tenth of what the real number is because not everybody gets tested. So we could be seeing a million new cases a day within the next few weeks."

    That's bullshit. Daily "cases", a completely meaningless statistic, does not indicate new infections.

    "Cases" reported today include people infected 3 weeks ago, as well as those infected yesterday. Multiplying it by 10 makes no sense.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. “New case” means a person who has not previously been confirmed to have the virus. It has nothing to do with when the person was infected.

      Delete
  5. The estimate of cases being ten times the data is not scientific and is meaningless.

    The reason why you need to have an accurate account of cases and deaths is to know the case fatality rate, and to know how to prepare for the consequences.

    This corona virus has a high case fatality rate as compared to the flu estimates. The flu number is an estimate because they only collect data on children, for adults the flu number is supposition. Due to methodology, corona cases and deaths are under-reported and flu numbers are over-estimated.

    The case fatality rate in the US is over 4%, up to 15% for older age groups. This is with social distancing and masks, but an unprepared health care system and no vaccine or significant treatment.

    Currently, deaths are now spiking (they lag new cases), yesterday the US had the highest deaths in a month (993, a 162% increase over the previous day).

    It is ghoulish how Republicans play politics with this virus.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Actually that 10 times estimate is based on scientific studies in various countries. By testing a random sample of people for antibodies, one can estimate what fraction of the population ever had the disease. Comparing that figure with the known cases provides the multiple.

      In some studies the multiple came out around 20. This tells us that far more people have had the disease than were specifically tested as positive. It also tells us that most of these people had few, if any, symptoms. It isn't known why the disease is so devastating to some while it's completely innocuous to many others.

      Delete
    2. Redlener was talking about undetected cases as a function of too little testing. They may be asymptomatic now, but that doesn’t mean they won’t develop symptoms eventually. Or they may very well have symptoms, but won’t or can’t get a test.

      Delete
    3. UTTER NONSENSE

      David those "studies" were not scientific. They were not peer reviewed, many not even published, due to their faulty methodology. One study suggested that the multiple was 50! These were ill advised non scientific surveys that were MEANINGLESS. Even if done scientifically, the best a study like that could show during an ongoing pandemic is a snapshot of one possible model. Again, meaningless.

      The data shows that the case fatality rate is between 4% and 15%. Even considering the supposition that the infection rate is ten times the data, that still has this corona virus at 4 to 15 times as deadly as the flu. It gets worse though, as deaths year over year indicate that Covid 19 deaths are under reported.

      I agree, it is repulsive how Republicans have tried to politicize Covid 19 mitigation. There have been studies that show that Republicans lack the ability to empathize, due to various causes - genetics, child abuse, brain damage, let's recognize their faults without being too punitive.

      Delete
  6. Packers and Movers Chennai Give Safe and Reliable ***Household Shifting Services in Chennai with Reasonable ###Packers and Movers Price Quotation. We Provide Household Shifting, Office Relocation, ✔ ✔ ✔ Local and Domestic Transportation Services, Affordable and Reliable Shifting Service Charges @ Packers And Movers Chennai

    ReplyDelete
  7. I was married for 13 years. My marriage has been deteriorating for some time so it was bound to unravel. I was her loyal, faithful supportive and trusting Husband. She had an additional wild side that went out of control. The last incident was when I found out that she was having an affair 2 weeks before our 14th wedding anniversary. Out of the blue my wife just sprung the divorce talk on me. I was so hurt and being a man, I thought I could cope with being single. It was so hard to move on so i had to reach out for help online. Our marriage and family therapists thought that "something" was not right about my wife. I went online and i found out about Dr Ogweshan and his good spell work reviews. I contacted him and explained my situation to him and he told me not worry that my wife will come back to me after 3 days. 3 days later in the morning around 09:34am I was totally shocked on how my wife called me telling me how much she missed me. His spell worked on me so fast and my wife has been so loving, Natural and I'm having a happy marriage after using his love spell. If you are in a loveless and unhappy marriage that cannot be salvaged, believe me...There is light at the end of this tunnel. You can reach him on his contact details. Email: drogweshan@gmail.com  Whatsapp: +2347050670365  

    ReplyDelete

  8. I ,Cassandra Sanchez. Would love to say a big thank to you Dr Nana . i thought i have lost my 5 years relationship with my Ex until i met with him. Today my boyfriend is back to me happily with the powerful spell of Dr.Nana. Finally my happiness is back forever.He has been my love, weakness and everything, i couldn't imagine my life without him, thanks a lot Dr. Nana, i will forever be grateful to you.Please endeavor to contact Dr.Nana via his email: nanakwakuspiritualist@gmail.com or call and chat him on whatsApp
    +2349029905501 visit website https://lovespellsite.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete

  9. Herbal Penis Enlargement product is 100% guarantee to Enlarge and get a better ERECTION ,
    the reason why most people are finding it difficult
    to enlarge Penis is because they bedlieve on medical
    report, drugs and medical treatment which is not
    helpful for Penis Enlargemaent . Natural roots/herbs are the best remedy which can easily Enlarge your Penis permanently
    Contact Dr AIZONOFE via Email : draizonofeherb@gmail. com or via WhatsApp : +2348136785562 for Natural root and herbal remedies put together to help you get Enlarge and Erect healthy.
    Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  10. EFFECTIVE LOVE SPELL TO GET EX HUSBAND/BOYFRIEND OR EX WIFE/GIRLFRIEND AND CURE HERPES AND INFERTILITY THAT WORKS WITHIN 24 HOURS.

    Contact Dr. Odunga at odungaspelltemple@gmail.com OR Whats App/CALL +2348167159012

    I got my ex husband back to me and also got fertile and gave birth to twin girls after 12 years of marriage.
    When I came online last year, I saw a testimony about Doctor ODUNGA and how he has been helping people with marriage issues and I decided to contact him. We spoke on email at odungaspelltemple@gmail.com and later he gave me his WhatsApp number which is +2348167159012. He assured me he would help me get my ex husband back after 3 years of no contact. Doctor Odunga is the best spell caster I must say. My husband called me after 24 hours of contact. The third day, I received natural herbs for fertility and after using it, I became fertile and conceived. I and my husband reconnected, had sex and I was pregnant. Presently I am happy to say I am the mother of twin girls and this is ALL THANKS TO DOCTOR ODUNGA. I came online to say this If you need help, I believe you are saved with this man.

    Contact his email at odungaspelltemple@gmail.com

    OR Whats App/Call +2348167159012 and you too will give a testimony too to help others

    ReplyDelete
  11. I visited my doctor for a second opinion to verify that I am currently experiencing genital warts on both sides of my inner labia caused by HSV which I was not aware I had until the genital warts appeared. I discovered them about 2 months ago and it saddened me to find the warts because I felt it meant I had contracted an STD,I never applied medical drugs or therapies,because I prefer going natural routes first if any are available. At first, I was not sure I’d be able to use anything since the labia is such a sensitive area but I remembered that I had been reviewing series of testimonies on how herbal doctor razor had been curing people of Genital warts, And I had Them on the bottoms of my feet so I decided to try doctor razor herbs. Thankfully, Doctor razor herbal medication seems to be getting rid of the genital warts. When I first began applying it I noticed some slight aching feelings in my vaginal area that I had never felt before. I no longer feel the aches though. I AM SO GRATEFUL TO BE COMPLETELY CURED OF THIS VIRUS.However, I don’t feel the shame anymore and am so grateful to Mother Nature and Doctor Razor for helping a sister out. Reach him on Email : drrazorherbalhome@gmail.com Whatsapp/Call his cell phone on +2349065420442. Visit Doctor Razor's Website : https://drrazorherbalhome.wixsite.com/drrazorherbalhome

    ReplyDelete
  12. Going through a divorce case is very heart broken when you love your partner with the whole of your heart.. My husband left me for a total stranger and I could not imagine what the hell was happening because everything looks like a dream to me. I was lost and confused about my life without any way to get a solution to make my husband see reasons with me that I love him so much. I was very depressed and desperate to win back my husband and I searched on GOOGLE for help about my situation and I got recommended to Lord Zakuza who is a powerful spell caster for he has so many magnificent testimonies and reviews on the internet from different people all over the world. I got in touch with him and I poured out my sorrowful heart to him and he encouraged and promised to help me out. He gave me some instructions of which a adhered to and within 48 hours of contacting Lord Zakuza my attorney called me to get me informed that the divorce case has been cancelled and I got a call from my husband 30 minutes after I finished speaking to my attorney. My husband and I are so much in Love with endless care and happiness and I so much thank Lord Zakuza for doing this for me and I know people out there might also need their partner or lovers back or want to get pregnant for your partner or husband. So, you can Text & WhatsApp Lord Zakuza on +1 (740) 573-9483 or email him via: ( Lordzakuza7@gmail.com ) for a change of story in your love life. Cheers!!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. LOTTO, lottery,jackpot.
    Hello all my viewers, I am very happy for sharing this great testimonies,The best thing that has ever happened in my life is how I win the lottery euro million mega jackpot. I am a Woman who believe that one day I will win the lottery. finally my dreams came through when I email believelovespelltemple@gmail.com and tell him I need the lottery numbers. I have spend so much money on ticket just to make sure I win. But I never know that winning was so easy until the day I meant the spell caster online which so many people has talked about that he is very great in casting lottery spell, . so I decide to give it a try.I contacted this great Dr Believe and he did a spell and he gave me the winning lottery numbers. But believe me when the draws were out I was among winners. I win 30,000 million Dollar. Dr Believe truly you are the best, all thanks to you forever


    ReplyDelete