As today’s chart shows, Rhode Island revised its hospitalization numbers again. The effect on trends is minimal, but it does make one wonder why. The number of cases isn’t being revised, at least that I’ve noticed; why are hospitalizations and death, going back weeks?
One possibility, especially on the hospitalization front, is that the state is reclassifying people when they test positive for COVID-19. So, to return to my hypothetical teen who broke a limb skateboarding: He enters the hospital on some date and a few days later is tested positive for COVID-19, perhaps having caught it in the hospital or from a visiting parent. It could be he’d now be reclassified as COVID-19 upon his date of entry. But this is speculation.
All in all, today’s data shows good news. The rate of increase in cases continues to slow, although not as much as my model wants to predict. It’s possible that the 14-day infection rate will dip below one tomorrow, but we’ll see.
Another interesting note is that although the reported number of deaths is up by 17 today, the state is only showing a single one yesterday. The rest are revisions back to April 17.
This variability may be entirely justified by the actual flow of data, but it’s making the reporting misleading. In turn, it’s making it very difficult for the public to come to conclusions about what the government is telling — and instructing — us.
- Projection for 5/2: 9,132
- Actual for 5/2: 9,289
- Projection for 5/3: 9,451
- Projection for 5/2: 341
- Actual for 5/2: 333
- Projection for 5/3: 323
- Projection for 5/2: 284
- Actual for 5/2: 296
- Projection for 5/3: 301