Are We Getting Better at Treating COVID-19?

Facts matter: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter. Support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to our print magazine.

I received this email earlier today from reader BL:

Just read your article about what’s going on with deaths vs. case rates. My wife, a nurse of 35 years, adds that there are a couple other contributing factors causing deaths to drop while cases increase.

First is, healthcare doctors and nurses are much better at treating Covid patients. In the beginning, it was shooting from the hip. Now, they’ve developed and shared strategies to help patients live through this and even recover much faster, including med combos, turning patients on the stomachs and other such things. Secondly, the public is much more aware so we recognize a potential symptom, get tested and treated much faster than we did a few months ago.

There’s been info floating around also from doctors around the world that the virus is weakening. Although not confirmed medically yet, doctors in Italy and, I think, India are swearing that it’s not as potent. Viruses can and do often mutate into something else, and if it makes itself weaker, it can’t “fix” itself, so it’s stuck being less deadly. Again, not proven, but there are doctors convinced of it.

Better treatment probably doesn’t explain 100 percent of the divergence between cases rising and deaths falling, but it might explain a lot (and the younger age profile of recent cases might explain the rest). This is anecdotal, of course, but I thought it was an interesting observation, and one that was worth passing along since I haven’t seen it widely reported. I would be interested to hear more about this.

WE'RE TAKING A SHORT BREAK…

from the big banner at the top of our pages asking for the donations that make Mother Jones' nonprofit journalism possible. But we still have upwards of $300,000 to raise by June 30, whether we get there is going to come down to the wire, and we can't afford to come up short.

If you value the reporting you get from Mother Jones and you can right now, please join your fellow readers who pitch in from time to time to keep our democracy-advancing, justice-seeking journalism charging hard (and to help us avoid a real budget crunch as June 30 approaches and our fiscal year ends).

payment methods

WE'RE TAKING A SHORT BREAK…

from the big banner at the top of our pages asking for the donations that make Mother Jones' nonprofit journalism possible. But we still have upwards of $300,000 to raise by June 30, whether we get there is going to come down to the wire, and we can't afford to come up short.

If you value the reporting you get from Mother Jones and you can right now, please join your fellow readers who pitch in from time to time to keep our democracy-advancing, justice-seeking journalism charging hard (and to help us avoid a real budget crunch as June 30 approaches and our fiscal year ends).

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate