Games with Models, April 27 Data

Despite a slight uptick in the number of hospitalizations (which, remember, comes with a two-day lag compared with the other statistics), today was a very positive day for Rhode Island’s COVID-19 report.

The number of cases increased to 7,708, but that 269-person increase was the smallest since April 7 (reported on April 8).  The number of deaths increased to 233, but those that actually occurred yesterday numbered only 3, which is the lowest since April 5 (reported April 6).

These numbers have a substantial effect on my hospitalization projections.  Perhaps most notable is that even my original methodology, which was greatly overestimating future cases, now puts April 21 as the peak, even thought the state revised its numbers to drop that day’s total from 280 to 278.

Unless this takes a bad surprise turn, this means that the numbers I projected on April 16, despite being much more optimistic than those of the experts, were still too high.  In her interview with WPRI’s Ted Nesi, Democrat Governor Gina Raimondo twice referenced the scary models that led to her drastic decisions.

While she does raise a fair point when she notes that the numbers would likely be higher if we hadn’t locked things down, she shouldn’t get away with simply asserting that her models would have been accurate but for them.  Don’t forget a few2things:

  1. Although she shared a line chart showing hospitalizations, the governor never gave the public a full view of the models that she was using in her decision making.
  2. The IHME projections, which the governor attacked as being too optimistic, claimed to take into account the policies she had implemented.
  3. The governor continued to make decisions based on unrealistic projections even after it was clear her numbers were off.

This all assumes, of course, that we’re not in the midst of a sort of pandemic Indian Summer.  If not, the following charts show what my model is projecting now.  (See here for the original methodology and here for the modification.)



  • Cases:
    • Projection for 4/27: 7,701
    • Actual for 4/27: 7,708
    • Projection for 4/28: 7,949
  • Hospitalizations:
    • Projection for 4/27: 247 (original method = 286)
    • Actual for 4/27: 266
    • Projection for 2/28: 258 (original method = 277)
  • Deaths:
    • Projection for 4/27: 234
    • Actual for 4/27: 233
    • Projection for 4/28: 240

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