What Can We Learn from Manaus?

In the Amazonian capital of Manaus, COVID-19 seems to be running out of people to infect, MIT Technology Review reports.
 
The shift from a peak of 79 deaths one May day to 2–3 deaths per day this month suggests the Brazilian city has reached some form of herd immunity—“a sign that government failed to control an outbreak…” tweeted Florian Krammer of Mt. Sinai Hospital.
 
A new Lancet Global Health study reinforces that point, finding that Brazilian government’s response likely played a key role in the “remarkable inequality” of its outbreak, which saw COVID-19 spread among the Amazon’s poor and indigenous populations.
 
The Manaus outbreak does offer a useful snapshot of virus’s “attack rate,” Tech Review notes. In the US, if two-thirds of the population become infected as they have in Manaus, that could amount to 500,000 lives lost—most of them elderly.

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