US Passes 200,000 Dead from COVID

Yet another grim milestone.

The United States has lost its 200,000th person to COVID-19 yesterday, at least according to the Worldometer metrics:

Sadly, while we had something of a lull in the death rate as a result of the lockdowns, we’ve been pretty steadily losing a thousand people a day in recent weeks.

We have both the most deaths and the most cases of any country in the world. Granting that we’re among the largest countries and that the Chinese are almost certainly radically under-reporting, we’re simply doing a horrible job managing the pandemic.

  • We’re 11th in cases per million. All 10 countries above us are in the developing world.
  • We’re also 11th in deaths per million. The 10 above us are either developing countries are very tiny ones.

There’s really no metric by which we’re not botching this.

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FILED UNDER: COVID-19
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. EddieInCA says:

    “It’s one person coming in from China. We have it under control. It’s going to be just fine,” Trump told CNBC’s Joe Kernen from the World Economic Forum in Davos.

    January 20, 2020

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  2. Bob@Youngstown says:
  3. CSK says:

    @EddieInCA: @Bob@Youngstown:

    Trump actually said we needed to develop a herd mentality, not herd immunity.

    http://www.cnn.com/2020/09/16/politics/donald-trump-covid-19-coronavirus-abc-townhall/index.html

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  4. Joe says:

    @CSK:
    We have all the herd mentality we need, thank you.

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  5. CSK says:

    @Joe:
    Tell Donald that.

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  6. wr says:

    But if we hadn’t tested, no one would have died.

    Or maybe if we hadn’t worn masks.

    Anyway, a lot of them lived in “blue states” — you know, the ones that didn’t vote for Trump–, so they deserved it.

    Four more years!!!!

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  7. Gustopher says:

    I’m expecting that the fires and the smoke on the west coast are going to help with the west coast outbreaks. Except for the people who had to evacuate, of course.

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  8. Monala says:

    Actually, Belgium, Spain and the UK are still above us in deaths per million, but we will surpass the UK in a day or two. Belgium was hit especially hard early on, so they’re like NY vs the other states, with a death rate so high few will catch up, even though they’re almost flat now. Spain, on the other hand, is dealing with their own resurgence of cases and deaths right now, so we might not catch up to them either.

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  9. Kathy says:

    India is hell-bent on surpassing the US for both total cases and deaths.

    I’m seriously worried about that.

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  10. Monala says:

    Pod Save America@PodSaveAmerica
    TRUMP on COVID “If you take the blue states out, we’re at a level I don’t think anybody in the world would be at.”

    That’s both horrible and inaccurate.

    Glenn Kessler@GlennKesslerWP
    Top 15 states: 8 run by Democrats, 7 run by Republicans

    Glenn Kessler@GlennKesslerWP

    ….and when you sort by deaths per 1 million people, ten of the top 20 are run by Ds and ten are run by Rs (though first R state does not show up till #7).

    Tammy Duckworth@SenDuckworth

    In Trump’s twisted mind—“if you take the blue states out,” very few Americans died on 9/11 too.

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  11. Nightcrawler says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    Conservatives wouldn’t care even if the fatality rate were confirmed at 10%, or even 15% or 20%, because to them, “80%/90% survive”!

    Hey, ~95% of breast cancer patients survive at least 5 years. Anyone want some breast cancer?

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  12. JKB says:

    A novel virus but still only 3.5 times the 60,000 deaths attributed to seasonal influenza for the 6-month 2017-2018 season. But no one ever comments on those deaths. The CDC doesn’t even provide testing except for juveniles.

    So a bad result, but once you factor in that we didn’t have known therapeutics or vaccines for the SARS 2.0 virus, while we do for the seasonal influenza, not as bad. We could also add in that the financial incentive right now it to list COVID-19 as a factor in death for hospitals, so some are probably listed that wouldn’t make the cut for seasonal influenza (ILI) disease estimates.

    CDC estimates that influenza has resulted in between 9 million – 45 million illnesses, between 140,000 – 810,000 hospitalizations and between 12,000 – 61,000 deaths annually since 2010.

    To apply critical thought, you need to look for comparables. But yes, influenza in the US is seasonal (excluding epidemic novel influenzas), so is only tracked over 6 months, which is where we are with the Novel Coronavirus, which will continue to take lives past the 6 month period, but indications are already that SARS 2.0 death risk is declining as therapeutics are proven.

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  13. @JKB: You’re right! Why are we complaining about 200,000 deaths.

    How silly.

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  14. JohnMcC says:

    Just for a comparison with our thousand deaths per day casualty figure, I looked up the losses at Normandy on 6 June 44. According to the National D-Day Memorial Foundation, 4,414 Allied military deaths occurred at that time and place.

    We’ve often seen a comparison to 9/11’s terrorist attack: X number of 9/11s. Howabout TWO D-Day invasion death counts every week.

    Our current administration is not impressed at all. And their fanboys… probably would explain that they all had heart disease anyway. Or that seasonal flu could have carried them all off. Or some such shit. And the whole time, thinking they love America. Oh yeah!

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  15. gVOR08 says:

    For future reference WIKI lists U. S. deaths in WWII as 419,400.

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  16. Kathy says:

    Oh, great. First it was no worse than the flu, now it’s “only 3.5 times as bad as the flu.”

    Two things:

    1) Deaths from flu are vastly overestimated.

    2) You know what would help keep down deaths from flu even more? Face masks. They should be mandatory for flu season.

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  17. gVOR08 says:

    @wr:

    Anyway, a lot of them lived in “blue states” — you know, the ones that didn’t vote for Trump–, so they deserved it.

    And on top of that, they’re mostly olds who were going to die anyway and the working poor who are mostly people of color. I wonder how our response would have changed had it remained a resort and international traveler affliction.

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  18. gVOR08 says:

    @Kathy:

    2) You know what would help keep down deaths from flu even more? Face masks. They should be mandatory for flu season.

    Worked in the Southern Hemisphere.

    In Australia, only 85 new laboratory-confirmed influenza cases were recorded in the last 2 weeks of June, compared with 22,047 confirmed cases in that time period in 2019

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  19. Gustopher says:

    @JKB:

    We could also add in that the financial incentive right now it to list COVID-19 as a factor in death for hospitals, so some are probably listed that wouldn’t make the cut for seasonal influenza (ILI) disease estimates.

    Do you have a source for that? Where does this financial incentive come from? It from George Soros?

    Parson my skepticism, but it is well known that you repeat hateful and disgusting lies. When my brother repeats this claim, he is quite certain that it is Soros.

    (Is it wrong for me to tell my brother that I pull in 20 grand a year from Soros for going to rallies and that I then use that money to fund abortions? and that the Soros money is untaxed while I get a tax deduction for the donations to planned parenthood’s abortion fund? I’m thinking it’s a little wrong, but if feels so right)

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  20. James Joyner says:

    @JKB:

    To apply critical thought, you need to look for comparables.

    Which is why I referenced the rest of the planet‘s response to the same pandemic.

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  21. James Joyner says:

    @Monala:

    Actually, Belgium, Spain and the UK are still above us in deaths per million,

    When I did the sort at the time of writing the post, the UK was just behind the US; they’re now just ahead (614 vs 610). Belgium is tiny. It’s probably too cheeky to dismiss Spain as “developing,” as their nominal GDP/capita ranks 29th but it’s still less than half ours.

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  22. Jen says:

    @JKB:

    A novel virus but still only 3.5 times the 60,000 deaths attributed to seasonal influenza for the 6-month 2017-2018 season. But no one ever comments on those deaths. The CDC doesn’t even provide testing except for juveniles.

    First, please read the link at Kathy’s post, “Comparing flu deaths to Covid-19 is like comparing apples to oranges.”

    Most flu deaths are estimates. From this piece, which is also worth reading:

    There is considerably more uncertainty about how many deaths are caused by the flu than public discussion might suggest. Determining this number is not as simple as counting up death certificates listing influenza as the cause.

    Many deaths have multiple causes. The flu can cause other illnesses, such as pneumonia, which in turn can cause death. The CDC thus includes “influenza-associated deaths” in its estimate of the toll of the flu. Conventionally, statistics often group together deaths from influenza and pneumonia. Furthermore, many estimates try to account for under-reporting of flu deaths: Not everyone who dies of an influenza-associated illness has been tested for the flu.

    In short, the number of flu deaths as reported by the CDC and often cited in public discussions — between 24,000 and 62,000 deaths for this past season — is a rough estimate of how many people had the flu and died of illnesses that were likely associated with it, whether or not directly caused.

    Covid-19 has likely caused more deaths than the 200K number indicates. Downplaying this makes you look silly and not serious.

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  23. de stijl says:

    @Gustopher:

    Ssh!

    Man, you are spilling all the secrets.

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  24. JKB says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: @Steven L. Taylor:

    I’m sorry if you find it hard to accept that as a human you are still subject to the reality of nature on earth. You grew up in the anomaly of our transition to modernity where we beat back the old demographic control of mortality with advances in disease control. But we seem to be at an end of the low hanging fruit of that transition, that only advanced in earnest out to most of the world since WWII.

    We are doing a fair job with SARS 2.0, but still their is the time lag from virus appearance to developing treatments.

    A century ago, the president’s son, arguably a beneficiary of the finest medicine in the US at that time, died from a blister that became infected.

    It’s a hard reality, but ultimately, we are subject to the real world even as we’ve made great stride in the “man against nature” efforts.

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  25. Mcnico says:

    @Bob@Youngstown: If I may ask, what semi-rural NE Ohio county do you live in?

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  26. de stijl says:

    A week ago it was the population of Tallahassee.

    Now it is Grand Rapids. We’re climbing the charts.

    200000 lost.

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  27. Grewgills says:

    @Kathy:
    I don’t know that the annual flu deaths are really vastly overestimated. I’d be more inclined to believe that their statistical estimates are reasonably accurate.
    That said the article’s point that in those comparisons we are comparing confirmed cases with statistical estimates and that is not reasonable. We should either compare confirmed cases/deaths with confirmed cases/deaths, or statistical estimates with statistical estimates.

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