Sunday, September 19, 2021

"Face the Nation" gets Covid facts completely wrong on September 19, 2021

From the CBS news show, "Face the Nation" on September 19, 2021:

MARGARET BRENNAN: Good morning, and welcome to FACE THE NATION. On the COVID front the news is still bleak. Nearly 10,000 Americans died last week of the virus. We now total more than 673,000 dead. Children, who are still not eligible for vaccines, account for almost 29% of all cases. And according to the AAP, there were nearly a quarter million new pediatric covid infections last week. We begin with Senior National Correspondent Mark Strassmann in Orlando.


MARK STRASSMANN: Not in COVID America, where the virus now kills around nineteen hundred people a day, the highest average in six months. By any measure, COVID sorrow stalks Florida with a vengeance. More than fifty thousand Floridians already dead. An average of three hundred fifty more every day tops in America.


MARK STRASSMANN: Doctor Vincent Hsu, an infectious disease physician, works at AdventHealth, Orlando. Systemwide AdventHealth has fifty hospitals with seventeen hundred COVID patients. More than half of them in Central Florida. DR. VINCENT HSU: There is still a lot of issues with-- with taking care of these patients, supplies, space, as well as staffing. MARK STRASSMANN: Continuous surges remain a threat? DR. VINCENT HSU: We always have to be prepared for another surge. MARK STRASSMANN: Critics blast the state's leadership for failing to protect the youngest Floridians.


MARK STRASSMANN: This hospital, Orlando's largest, is short hundreds of nurses despite retention bonuses and shift bonuses. And it's a crisis across America's hospitals. Early retirements, resignations, and a rash of sick days, staff burned out by this ongoing COVID siege. Margaret.

As sportscaster Warner Wolf [ perhaps best known as a local news sports anchor in Washington, D.C. and New York City, and for his catchphrase "Let's go to the videotape!" ] would say "Let's go to the videotape."

For CDC data as of CDC | Data as of: September 19, 2021 12:32 PM ET. Posted: September 19, 2021 1:40 PM, the national Covid weekly death rate per 100,000 people is 3.2. Of the states with the highest death rate:

Alabama 10.9 West Virginia 9.1 Idaho 8.6 Georgia 7.9 South Carolina 7.9 Louisiana 7.8 Arkansas 7.1 Texas 7 Wyoming 6.7 Tennessee 6.6 Mississippi 5.5 North Carolina 5.2 Oklahoma 4.7 Nevada 4.6 Montana 4 Hawaii 3.7 Kentucky 3.7 Oregon 3.7 Washington 3.7 Kansas 3.4 Arizona 3.2 Missouri 3.1

Contrary to what Mark Strassman and Margaret Brennan suggested [ By any measure, COVID sorrow stalks Florida with a vengeance ], Florida (at 1.0 is below national average in Covid death rate and ranks slightly better than Connecticut and Minnesota.

Connecticut 1.1 Minnesota 1.1 Florida 1 Michigan 0.9

Separately, in terms of un-normalized Covid deaths (in the last seven days), Florida is not the leader:

Texas 2,025 Georgia 836 North Carolina 540 Alabama 533 Tennessee 451 South Carolina 405 Louisiana 362 Illinois 330 California 326 Ohio 317 Washington 283 Pennsylvania 277 Arizona 232 Florida 224 Arkansas 213 Virginia 210 Missouri 188

CDC | Data as of: September 19, 2021 12:32 PM ET. Posted: September 19, 2021 1:40 PM

If Covid is stalking Florida with a vengeance, Covid is stalking many other states with MORE of a vengeance.

The Strassman/Brennan presentation, asserting "an average of three hundred fifty more [deaths in Florida] every day tops in America," is false

In terms of new Covid cases (not normalized):

Texas 111,980 Florida 76,434 Tennessee 53,455 North Carolina 50,992 Ohio 50,304 California 43,286 Georgia 40,840 Pennsylvania 31,934 South Carolina 31,743 Indiana 26,760 Illinois 25,956 Virginia 24,994 Kentucky 24,165 New York* 23,969 Washington 23,020 Michigan 21,442 Alabama 19,690 Arizona 19,124 Wisconsin 17,900 New Jersey 15,531

In terms of new Covid cases, normalized per 100,000

Tennessee 782.7 West Virginia 762 Alaska 691.1 Guam 636.4 South Carolina 616.5 Wyoming 572.8 Montana 561.1 Kentucky 540.9 North Carolina 486.2 Idaho 483.1 Ohio 430.4 North Dakota 426.1 Iowa 414.3 Alabama 401.6 Mississippi 398.1 Indiana 397.5 Texas 386.2 Georgia 384.7 South Dakota 359.9 Florida 355.9 Oklahoma 353.7

The national average is 7 DAY CASE RATE PER 100,000 299.6

In passing, NJ 101.5 reported the transmission rate (Ro) for New Jersey as 1.08, meaning NJ is currently getting worse, not better.

"Face the Nation" got its facts, and its inference, completely wrong.


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