COVID-19: All key metrics show retreat of Omicron wave

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Don't be alarmed by the 50% day-on-day jump in the number of new COVID-19 cases in Hungary, as the Tuesday morning figures (for Monday) are always the lowest for the week. The day-on-day and week-on-week comparisons show mixed results, but the overall picture suggests the fifth wave in the coronavirus pandemic caused by the rapidly spreading Omicron variant is petering out. Everybody's happy. Except those who are already dead or dying.
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If you want to compare the current pandemic wave with the one a year ago, go ahead. The table above offers the key metrics for you: new cases, hosplitalisations, number of ventilated Covid patients, and deaths (if you scroll down). If you don't want to compare the data, that's also fine, just look at the numbers and curves and columns for this year alone.

Based on 7-day averages, hospitalisations continue to grow at a diminishing rate, while the week-on-week growth rate of the 7-day average of the number of Covid patients on ventilator has dropped for the first time since this metric started to worsen on 28 January.

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Highlights of of today's data release:

  • new cases +50% d/d, -36% w/w;
  • 7-day average of new cases -9% d/d, -34% w/w;
  • Covid patients in hospital -125 (-2.4%) d/d, +58 (+1.1%) w/w;
  • Covid patients on ventilator -4% d/d, +5.2% w/w;
  • Covid deaths -27% d/d, -4% w/w.

And now, a few charts on the key changes that do not require much explanation, except that the number of Covid deaths is still extremely high considering that about 39% of the population received three doses of COVID-19 vaccines and about 62% had two shots, while a year ago only about 70,000 people had been protected by two doses.

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The following chart basically shows the same data as the two above; it's a four-in-one graph.

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How to read the following chart?
On the two charts below the 0% line is important. When the curves are under 0% there’s a decline, when they go over 0% it’s an increase.

More importantly, when a value is north of 0% but the curve descends, it means an increase at a slowing rate, rather than a decrease. If the curve is above 0% and ascending, it is an increase at an accelerating rate. When we are under 0% and the curve goes lower, it translates into an accelerating decrease, and when it goes up it marks a decelerating decrease.

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42,851 people have died of coronavirus-related diseases since the outbreak in the spring of 2020. That is the official figure. The actual number is way bigger.

Hungary is fourth in the world (third if we exclude Bosnia and Herzegovina with a small 1.6-million population) in terms of Covid deaths per one million population, behind Peru and Bulgaria.

The aggregate figure of Covid deaths between 1 August and 14 February is slightly lower in 2021/22 (12,824) than in 2020/21 (13,240).

Note that excess mortality statistics (released by the Central Statistical Office, KSH) paint a more accurate picture of the severity of the coronavirus pandemic than the numbers published by the coronavirus task force, but due to constant revisions the final (or close to final) mortality data will not be available for the period under review at least until late March.

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If you were wondering how were were doing in terms of coronavirus-related mortality, here are the daily deaths figures and their accumulation for the period between 1 January and 15 February in 2021 and this year.

The following chart shows the number of Covid deaths as a percentage of the number of Covid patients on ventilator (daily figures). The ascending trend is clear, albeit it's at least not steep.

The following charts show daily readings, with the one on the right zooming in on this year along.

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Cover photo: Getty Images

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