New York Has More COVID-19 Cases Than Italy
A startling statistic.
I find it useful to use comparative statistics to provide perspective. So, for example, the fact that we yesterday surpassed four times the 9/11 death toll from this virus is more meaningful than the raw number of 11,907.
Reuters‘ report “New York state overtakes Italy, has coronavirus cases second only to Spain” is similarly startling, if perhaps less useful.
New York state overtook Italy on Tuesday, reporting overall coronavirus cases second in the world only to Spain, according to a Reuters tally.
The U.S. state has 138,836 reported cases compared with Italy at 135,586. Spain has the most cases at 140,510. In total the United States has recorded 380,000 cases and 11,800 deaths.
The United States was prepared this week for what one official called the “peak death week” of the coronavirus.
New York state reported its deadliest day, with 731 new coronavirus deaths for a total of 5,489 fatalities, even as Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Tuesday that hospitalizations appeared to be reaching a plateau.
European countries, including hardest-hit Italy and Spain, have started looking ahead to easing lockdowns after falls in their coronavirus-related fatality rates.
In Spain, the pace of coronavirus deaths ticked up for the first time in five days on Tuesday, but there was still hope the national lockdown might be eased soon.
Italy imposed a nationwide lockdown on March 9 to slow the spread of the virus and Spain followed on March 14. New York state required all residents to stay home except for essential business on March 20 and now more than 94% of Americans are under similar orders.
The WorldoMeters numbers are slightly updated from Reuters’ report from late yesterday:
New York is indeed closing in on Spain:
But, here, the numbers aren’t all that useful.
Most significantly, while the total case numbers are similar, at least for the moment, the death toll has been massively higher in Italy and Spain than in New York. Both numbers will continue to go up but we can hope New York doesn’t catch up.
Still, the comparison is powerful in another sense: New York has far, far fewer people (an estimated 19.4 million) than Italy (60.5 million) or Spain (46.8 million). Even if we acknowledge that roughly half of New York’s cases are in New York City, which is a densely packed urban area, it’s not that much larger than Madrid — but it’s way bigger than Rome.