By Bernard Choi, PhD
Senior Research Scientist
Public Health Agency of Canada
(AMNET founder member since 2003)
Background: Do you want to know how your country is doing in the covid-19 pandemic compared to other countries? Here is a very useful data visualization tool that is developed and maintained by a Television Network in Canada called CTV News. The tool is called “COVID-19 curves: Compare Canada and other key nations”. But in fact you can use the tool to compare any countries in the world. The tool is found here https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/covid-19-curves-compare-canada-and-other-key-nations-1.4881500
The Fact: It is a data visualization tool that allows you to compare up to five countries. For example, your country and four other countries.
The tool lets you compare various countries' coronavirus disease outbreaks on the same time scale, starting from the first day each country reported the 100th case or death, as the starting point, to the date you use the tool.
You can select up to five countries you want to compare in one graph.
You can compare cases or deaths.
You can compare total numbers, daily numbers or 7-day average numbers (to reduce noise).
You can compare raw numbers, or per 100,000 population.
Data is updated by the Canadian CTV News Network.
Data Source: European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) via Our World in Data.
Figure 1 compares daily new cases in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Costa Rica. Daily new cases in these 4 countries are all going up. Not a good sign. Brazil seems arriving at a peak and starting to go down, but it is difficult to say and maybe too early to tell. Please note the numbers are on a linear scale not a log scale so there is no compression of the curves. Here, Italy is included as an example of what your country wants to achieve—flattening the curve. You want your country to inhibit new infections to reduce the number of cases at any given time—known as "flattening the curve"—to allow healthcare services to better manage the same volume of patients.
Figure 1. Comparison of daily new covid-19 cases (7-day average, per 100,000 population) in selected countries since each country’s 100th case, to July 22, 2020
Figure 2 compares daily number of deaths in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Costa Rica. Daily deaths in these 4 countries are all going up. Not a good sign. Brazil seems arriving at a peak after Day 75 and staying at that level for some time, but it is difficult to say. Here, Italy is included as an example of what your country wants to achieve. You want your country to have fewer and fewer covid-19 related deaths until zero deaths.
Figure 2. Comparison of daily covid-19 deaths (7-day average, per 100,000 population) in selected countries since each country’s 100th death, to July 22, 2020
Conclusion: COVID-19 is a pandemic. The window to flatten the curve is closing. Every day counts. Don’t wait, implement interventions, today!
Disclaimer: Views in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily represent the official views of any organizations or governments.
Source: COVID-19 curves: Compare Canada and other key nations