Far More Fevers than Tests, in WV and US


Paul Burke <box1320@...>
 

In the week ending March 21, WV had twice as many patients who went to doctors' offices with fever over 100 and cough or sore throat, as in past years. This compares the same week this year to past flu seasons. An extra 1,800 patients. Future weeks will likely be worse.


As of that date, 3/21, last Saturday, WV had tested 441 people and found 11 cases. As of yesterday, 3/28, WV has tested 2,818 people for Covid19 and found 113 cases. CDC will update data on fevers on Friday.

https://dhhr.wv.gov/COVID-19/Pages/default.aspx

https://covidtracking.com/data/


In that same week ending March 21, the country had three times as many doctor visits with 100F and cough or sore throat, as past flu seasons: 590,000 patients. This was 390,000 more than the 200,000-patient average for the same week in past flu seasons. And these doctor visits exclude other people who stayed home with fevers.


At that point the US had tested 180,000 people and 13% had Covid19. We can estimate about 200,000 out of 590,000, or 34%, had flu, reflecting the prevalence of flu in the past. Who are all the other new fever patients going to doctors? Are the test results representative of all fever patients? Or are test results biased toward healthy outcomes if they are given to health care workers, healthy contacts of sick people and VIPs?


Virginia and Maryland had 14,000 and 11,000 more fever cases in the week ending 3/21 than previous years. New York had 63,000 more, New Jersey 52,000, California and Texas 44,000 each, Pennsylvania 18,000.

   

The numbers of fever patients are based on a CDC sample which shows what percentage of outpatient doctor visits have 100F fever with cough or sore throat. CDC calls it "influenza-like illness" (ILI). They release the data for each state for each week 2010-2020. I ignored states where fewer than 20 doctors reported on their patients, such as DC, but the national total includes all states, properly weighted.

https://gis.cdc.gov/grasp/fluview/fluportaldashboard.html

 

CDC also reports the total primary care doctor visits in many states, and I estimated visits in other states to apply this CDC percentage,

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/ahcd/namcs_summary/2015_namcs_web_tables.pdf

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/physician-visits.htm

 

Here are maps and a table of fever cases,and CDC's graph comparing this year to past years.

https://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/index.htm#ILINet


 globe1234.org/ili.gif

ili-lit.gif

ilirate-lit.gif

  globe1234.org/ilirate.gif  

 

"Influenza-Like Illness" (ILI)

Outpatient Visits with 100F Fever and Cough or Sore Throat

  globe1234.org/ilinet.xlsx

A

B

C

D

E

F

Week Ended 3/21/2020

ILI: Extra Doctor Visits This Week, (D minus E)

Extra ILI Doctor Visits per 1,000 Population

ILI as % of Doctor Visits This Year

Average ILI %, This Week in 2010-2019

Weekly Primary Care Visits

 United States

388,700

1.1

6.4

2.2

9,177,144

Alabama

400

0.1

6.7

3.8

13,201

Arizona

0

0.0

2.2

2.2

206,675

California

44,600

1.1

5.5

2.9

1,675,589

Colorado

800

0.1

6.9

1.6

15,504

Connecticut

500

0.1

7.0

2.2

9,599

Georgia

13,400

1.3

9.1

2.5

202,780

Illinois

13,600

1.1

7.1

2.7

308,465

Kansas

400

0.1

7.2

2.3

7,844

Kentucky

400

0.1

6.0

2.2

12,028

Louisiana

1,300

0.3

13.5

3.1

12,516

Maine

200

0.1

6.8

1.3

3,619

Maryland

1,000

0.2

8.5

2.1

16,277

Massachusetts

9,200

1.3

6.7

1.7

182,260

Michigan

3,200

0.3

3.5

2.1

227,153

Mississippi

200

0.1

6.0

3.5

8,013

Montana

100

0.1

4.6

0.7

2,877

Nebraska

200

0.1

6.4

2.0

5,208

New Jersey

51,500

5.8

13.4

3.0

493,051

New Mexico

200

0.1

5.8

2.7

5,645

New York

63,300

3.3

8.0

2.4

754,557

New York City

incl in state

12.2

2.4

incl. in state

North Carolina

6,500

0.6

5.2

2.2

215,294

Ohio

6,000

0.5

3.3

1.4

319,015

Oklahoma

500

0.1

8.4

3.7

10,653

Oregon

600

0.1

6.8

1.9

11,355

Pennsylvania

17,800

1.4

6.6

2.2

400,015

South Carolina

1,000

0.2

9.8

2.3

13,862

South Dakota

0

0.0

2.9

1.8

2,382

Tennessee

1,000

0.1

7.6

2.0

18,386

Texas

44,300

1.5

8.1

3.6

973,288

Utah

400

0.1

6.3

2.0

8,631

Virginia

14,400

1.7

7.4

2.8

315,827

Washington

9,200

1.2

6.1

1.6

203,310

West Virginia

200

0.1

5.3

1.8

4,825

Wisconsin

700

0.1

6.3

2.1

15,676

 


trends.gif


Paul Burke