Friday, June 19, 2020

Transmission map shows seven states with retraction in covid epidemic

At least seven states in the country present data that indicate a decrease in the percentage of contamination in the pandemic caused by the new coronavirus. The code is part of the data produced by the Covid-19 Analytics project, carried out in partnership by PUC-Rio (Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro) and FGV (Getúlio Vargas Foundation). To reach this number, the researchers consider Rt, which measures the rate of retransmission of the virus. When it is below 1, it means that the average number of people infected is below one, which indicates a reduction in the pace of the epidemic.
Yesterday, seven states presented this rate: Acre, Amazonas, Maranhão, Pará, Pernambuco, Roraima and Tocantins. In addition, Rio de Janeiro was also close to this index and had been showing a value below one in the previous days.
The case of Pernambuco is the one that draws the most attention, with a rate of 0.98. The state has been with Rt below 1 for 1 days —the longest period ever recorded in a Brazilian state. Sergipe has the highest rate: 1.98. Yesterday the government of Pernambuco announced another phase advance in the economic reopening, now with the inclusion of shopping malls and churches for the Metropolitan region of Recife and the state's hinterland —Zona da Mata and Agreste still have upward curves and are not included.
The lowest rate of retransmission is in the Amazon, which registers 0.9 and has been recording increasingly small numbers of cases, especially in Manaus. Tendency to decrease active cases
According to Gabriel Vasconcelos, a researcher at the University of California and the Center for Statistical Data Analysis at PUC-Rio, the data make it clear that in the seven states with Rt below one there is a trend of decreasing active cases. "If that number remains smaller than one, it's good news. In some places, such as Amazonas and Pernambuco, the new cases have already lost strength a few weeks ago. They can deal with issues such as reopening with more peace of mind than others, but they need to follow closely to see the reactions," he says.
Vasconcelos analyzes other states that have improvement rates. "Rio de Janeiro and Pará have not yet peaked in cases, but for deaths it seems so. In Amapá and Acre, deaths also fell, but less in relation to the maximum observed in Rio and Pará", he says.
In national terms, he explains that the indices vary widely, making the scenario heterogeneous between regions. "São Paulo, for example, was the first state where the numbers of cases and deaths began to rise, and to this day it is still not possible to say whether it has reached the maximum of deaths. In others it seems that the peak of deaths has passed, and the duration of the critical part of the epidemic seems to be smaller", he adds.
Even so, the researcher says that the data reveal that the country has not yet gone through the worst phase in terms of contamination. "It seems that, for Brazil as a whole, we are not yet at the peak of cases. On the bright side, the mortality rate is falling. It's already 7% and now it's 4.9%, and the trend is falling."
One behavior that catches the researcher's attention is the variation between the poorest and richest areas of the country —and only now do they reach similar levels. "The richest places were the first to feel the epidemic. It advanced slowly inland, and it may have helped not to drown the capital hospitals as much as if the disease had arrived all over the country at once."
UOL - 18/06/2020 News Item translated automatically
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