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WPCNR CORONA VIRUS MONITOR. From the NYS COVID TRACKER. Observation by John F. Bailey. March 27, 2022:

Covid cases in Westchester County declined 3% from the week before over the last 7 days of March, ending the week with 861 persons tested positive for covid, compared to 890 last week, 582 three weeks ago and 754 four weeks ago. 

The 890 two weeks ago March 13 to 19 have spread the disease at a spread rate of  each person infected with covid 14 days ago spreading it to 1 other person, figured by dividing 861 through last week divided by 890, producing a 0.97 Spread rate 1:1.

In the middle of last week WPCNR calculated with 60, 66, 138, and 151 new covid cases through the first four days of the week totaling 415 cases or 104 new cases a day, if infections continued at 104 new cases a day the last three days of the week, the week would conclude with 727 cases. Westchester County finished the week with 169 new positives Thursday, 162 Friday and down to 115 Saturday, 446 more or 111 cases a day which produced  a total of 861 new cases for the week.

 Now, it is important to realize that not all positives infect on schedule within  a week some take longer, but the 1 to 1 ratio means  Covid did not go down dramatically, nor rise .  The worry that lurks on my part is if the county continues this trend of within 150 cases below 1,000, and socialization continues the way it is going, the disease is going to grow and spread again. But now it is definitely in a holding pattern.

Westchester is the leader in the Mid-Hudson Region of 7 counties with 123 infections a day, 861 for the week a 2-1/2 % infection rate of all tested. Orange County is averaging 40 a day, 284 for the week. Rockland County averaged 31 a day, 247 for the week. Ulster County  averaged 26 a day, 180 for the week. Dutchess County  had 22 new covid infections daily, 149 for the week. Sullivan , 35 new cases for the week; Putnam County had 69 new covid cases for the week.

The Mid Hudson Region and Nassau and Suffolk Counties had 615 cases of Covid while New York City (all 5 boroughs) reported 1,024. The 9 surrounding counties are trailing New York City in new cases by a 2 to 1 margin.

This brings up another worry on my part that not enough people are being tested.

In what is a big number of new positives for a week when the number tests actually administered averaged 4,975 per day each day March 20 to 26. The total tests for last week was 34,831, and 861 were positives for an infection rate of 2%.

 If you tested 10,000 you might find 1,722 infections (2%).  Now if you are seeing 2 % infections on very low (below 5,000 tests), this means higher levels of tests could reveal double the number of infections.

The optimistic way of interpreting these low testing quantities if people are not getting sick, not feeling sick and not getting tested so they do not go and get tested.

However mandatory testing has declined. The only place I am checked for symptoms is at my health care provider.  Masks are off in restaurants and bars. The count  of those vaccinated in the county is only 90% with at least one covid shot. Many are not getting their boosters as County Executive George Latimer said last week.

My  pessimistic view is people may if they have sniffles, a slight fever, or under the weather do not want to get tested and be positive so they do not get tested. If you feel sick with fever or lose ability to taste or smell, or even a slight cold, you should test. Why?

You do not want to be a carrier of mild covid and give it to someone else.  Others may believe they have covid but do not want to test because they do not want to quarantine.

Schools must test their students as much as possible despite the inconvenience because the infections in schools now that masks are not mandated any more by the state is a worry.

The highest number of positives last week in Westchester ended Saturday was 169 on Thursday when the second highest number of persons was tested, 6,351, a 2.7% infection rate. The highest number of tests were administered on Wednesday, the day before when 151 were found to test positive for covid, 2.2% infection rate.

This needs me, a dumb reporter to think that just maybe there are a lot more positives out there based on the infection rates and the 1 to 1 Spread rate of new infections two weeks ago keep covid cases out there and mingling.

HuffPost UK yesterday had an article cautioning that thinking the pandemic is over is not wise :

“Despite mandatory self-isolation, testing rules and face mask mandates being lifted in England in recent weeks, the pandemic still rages on.

In the past seven days, there have been more than 600,000 positive Covid cases across the UK, many among people in their 30s, with the highest rates seen among 0-18-year-olds.”

“If ‘post-pandemic’ means long Covid falling off the radar then it is not helpful, High community infection rates, which we still have, can still result in a massive burden of long Covid. That is real life and sometimes [a] devastating change to many people.”

Dr Julian Tang, a clinical virologist at the University of Leicester  said

“The idea of a pandemic being over in any one country is fickle. You could declare the pandemic over in your own country / population / region until a returning traveller or foreign tourist introduces a new variant that causes surges in new Covid-19 cases, bypassing any previous immunity, much like what Omicron is doing now across multiple well-vaccinated populations, globally. Just forget about using this term,” says Dr Tang, “Just focus on what needs to be done locally to protect people from getting severely ill – even if we cannot entirely stop them from getting infected.

“We should learn to live with Covid-19 on a daily basis instead of getting ahead of ourselves, which, as we have seen with this virus over the past two years, rarely helps.”

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