Coronavirus: two scenarios possible as for the evolution of the virus given by the Institut Pasteur

Published by Laurent P. · Published on 2 November 2020 at 15h31 · Updated on 3 November 2020 at 18h01
As coronavirus spreading like wildfire, the Institut Pasteur has come with an estimation for the next couples of weeks. All in all, two scenarios are to be considered on the evolution of the virus.

Coronavirus is evolving in a worrisome manner…  as France – and most of Europe – has decided to go back into lockdown to face the new Covid-19 wave, the Institut Pasteur has come up with an estimation as for the evolution of the epidemic and the likely results of lockdown. An estimation that could be useful to the Scientific Committee to guide the government as for the health decisions to make in the next couples of weeks, as for the ICU occupancy rate for instance.

All in all, two scenarios are to be retained from this estimation, for the forecast within two to three weeks: “a new measure implemented always requires two to three weeks to start being assessed” epidemiologist Simon Cauchemez tells France 3.

The first one – the most optimistic – follows a curve with a peak of 5,710 beds taken in ICU by mid-November. If this new lockdown as a similar – and immediate – impact than the first lockdown, this number could rise up to 6,020 people hospitalized in intensive care units, according to estimations. The second one – more pessimistic – includes an epidemic peak by mid-November with over 6,600 people in ICU. A number that could increase up to 9,100 hospitalizations if the peak is move to a few weeks.

Two likely estimations and a result that will depend on the effects of the lockdown reinstated by the French President in late October. Two estimations also based on the hypothesis this lockdown has an “immediate” impact on the evolution of the epidemic. if this new lockdown “has a late impact, if for a few days, behaviors remain the same than before”, the number of patients in intensive care could be much higher, Simon Cauchemez says.

Given the incubation period of the disease, it is hard to get very clear data when reassessing the health situation. The French government is groping for in the void for now, but the deadline set on December 1 is way to close to get a clear picture of the situation.

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