Reich Lab Issues Weekly Projections from COVID-19 Forecast Hub (through August 22)

University of Massachusetts Biostatistics faculty Nicholas Reich

Nicholas Reich

July 29, 2020

Nicholas Reich, director of the UMass Influenza Forecasting Center of Excellence and associate professor of biostatistics in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences, has released the COVID-19 Forecast Hub's updated projections, four weeks out, for number of COVID-19 deaths nationally and by state. 

“This week, we are trying something a bit different and providing a web-based report that summarizes some of the key findings from our modeling,” Reich says. “We expect that these reports will become more detailed as the weeks go on.”

The new forecast for cumulative U.S. deaths by Aug. 22 is 173,300, with between 6,900 and 7,500 deaths each week for the next four weeks. However, Reich notes that for the week ending Aug. 22, the ensemble forecast shows substantial uncertainty, with observed deaths between 5,000 and 10,000 deemed possible.

This week’s ensemble model, curated by Reich and his team, combined forecasts from 31 models produced by teams of highly respected infectious-disease forecasters from prominent institutions.

Reich’s new report includes tables, which can be sorted and searched, that show total deaths nationwide and by state as of July 25, as well as the rate of reported deaths standardized per 100,000 people.

“Looking at the rates allows for easier comparison across states, where you can see which states have had or are predicted to have proportionally higher rates in comparison to other states,” Reich says. “These tables calculate an average daily number of deaths per 100,000 population across the last two weeks (ending July 25) and forecast for the following two weeks (ending Aug. 8).”

For more information, follow Reich on Twitter @reichlab.