20% Chance Of Ebola In USA By October; 277,124 Global Cases By Year-End, Model Predicts

Tyler Durden's picture

"There's nothing to be optimistic about," warns the professor who developed the Global Epidemic and Mobility Model to assess outbreaks, "if the number of cases increases and we are not able to start taming the epidemic, then it will be too late. And then it requires an effort that will be impossible to bring on the ground." As FredHutch reports, the deadly Ebola epidemic raging across West Africa will likely get far worse before it gets better, more than doubling the number of known cases by the end of this month, predicting as many as 10,000 cases of Ebola virus disease could be detected by Sept. 24 – and thousands more after that. “The cat’s already out of the box – way, way out," as the analysis of global mobility and epidemic patterns shows a rougly 25% chance of Ebola detection in the UK by the end of September and 18% it will turn up in the USA. "I hope to be wrong, he concludes, but "the data points are still aligned with the worst-case scenario."


Via FredHutch,

The next three weeks will be crucial to determining whether the Ebola outbreak is tamed or rages out of control, the experts agreed.




WHO officials have predicted as many as 20,000 cases of Ebola and laid out a “road map” for the outbreak response that calls for stopping the outbreak within six to nine months. But that’s only if a “massive” global response is implemented.


The scenario modeled in the new paper suggests that the actual number of cases could far exceed the WHO estimate – and far sooner. Vespignani said he and his colleagues are calibrating the model every couple of weeks to see whether there’s any change. So far, the answer is no.


“The data points are still aligned with the worst-case scenario,” Vespignani said. “It’s a bad feeling. I hope to be wrong.”


That’s a sentiment echoed by Longini, who said that he and other disease modelers are dismayed by what they see.


“There’s nothing to be optimistic about,” he said. “It’s frustrating. It feels like there should be a more concentrated international effort to help these countries.”

The latest counts Monday from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which include WHO and Ministry of Health reports, put the total at 4,061 cases and 2,107 deaths.

The deadly Ebola epidemic raging across West Africa will likely get far worse before it gets better, more than doubling the number of known cases by the end of this month.


That’s the word from disease modelers at Northeastern University and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, who predict as many as 10,000 cases of Ebola virus disease could be detected by Sept. 24 – and thousands more after that.


“The epidemic just continues to spread without any end in sight,” said Dr. Ira Longini, a biostatistician at the the University of Florida and an affiliated member of Fred Hutch’s Vaccine and Infectious Disease and Public Health Sciences divisions. “The cat’s already out of the box – way, way out.”


It’s only a matter of time, they add, before the virus could start spreading to other places, including previously unaffected countries in Africa and developed nations like the United Kingdom -- and the U.S., according to a paper published Sept. 2 in the journal PLOS Currents Outbreaks.


There’s a roughly 25 percent chance Ebola will be detected in the United Kingdom– and as much as an 18 percent chance it will turn up in the U.S. – by the end of September, the analysis of global mobility and epidemic patterns shows. The new paper includes the top 16 countries where Ebola is most likely to spread.


Though concerning, a spread to Western nations is not the biggest threat. At most, there would be a cluster of a few cases imported to the U.S., probably through air travel.




“We are at a crucial point,” Vespiginani said. “If the number of cases increases and we are not able to start taming the epidemic, then it will be too late. And then it requires an effort that will be impossible to bring on the ground.”

*  *  *
As we noted previously, this is anything but "contained"

*  *  *

As another epidemiolgist (and federal advisor) - Dr. Michael T. Osterholm of the University of Minnesotta - warns:

I’ve spent enough time around public health people, in the US and in the field, to understand that they prefer to express themselves conservatively. So when they indulge in apocalyptic language, it is unusual, and notable.


When one of the most senior disease detectives in the US begins talking about “plague,” knowing how emotive that word can be, and another suggests calling out the military, it is time to start paying attention.

There are two possible future chapters to this story that should keep us up at night.

The first possibility is that the Ebola virus spreads from West Africa to megacities in other regions of the developing world. This outbreak is very different from the 19 that have occurred in Africa over the past 40 years. It is much easier to control Ebola infections in isolated villages. But there has been a 300 percent increase in Africa’s population over the last four decades, much of it in large city slums…


The second possibility is one that virologists are loath to discuss openly but are definitely considering in private: that an Ebola virus could mutate to become transmissible through the air… viruses like Ebola are notoriously sloppy in replicating, meaning the virus entering one person may be genetically different from the virus entering the next. The current Ebola virus’s hyper-evolution is unprecedented; there has been more human-to-human transmission in the past four months than most likely occurred in the last 500 to 1,000 years. Each new infection represents trillions of throws of the genetic dice.

And finally, as Wired reports, the professor extrapolates:

In a worst-case hypothetical scenario, should the outbreak continue with recent trends, the case burden could gain an additional 77,181 to 277,124 cases by the end of 2014.

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NoDebt's picture

I thought it was 30,000 by year end last time.

X.inf.capt's picture

population control...


The9thDoctor's picture

This "model" looks like Algore's scissor lift graph on global temperatures. lol

Four chan's picture

everyone knows models are stupid.

Manthong's picture

Everybody who gets Ebola here should puke all over the Georgia Guidestone and then go find a Wall Street banker to spew all over.

0b1knob's picture

Since the government has already brought two American doctors with Ebola back to the US, I would say that we hit the 100% mark for ebola reaching the US over a month ago.

NidStyles's picture

Another damn hockey stick. Like some retard just discovered how to use a regression. 

AnonymousCitizen's picture

But, ironically, the price of hockey sticks has remained flat.

redpill's picture

There's a 99% chance it will rain tomorrow.  If it doesn't, don't come complaining to me, it just means that was the 1%.


Duke of Earl's picture

Conveniently doubling every two months on the chart.  This will place the entire world population as infected by June 2018.

Not Too Important's picture

It has been doubling every 26 days.

"Ebola fomula 2^(x/21). If something doesnt change soon all our problems will be solved in only 320 more days  +/- 90" - previously on ZH from someone that deserves full authorship.


EnslavethechildrenforBen's picture

If EBOLA somehow infects Wall Street Bankers and their "friends", the entire worlds problems would be solved in 48 hours...

Bangalore Equity Trader's picture

Listen. It will fizzle out in 2 months. Just wait, it's not going to be a global epidemic.

Not Too Important's picture

What'll fizzle out is honest reporting of any facts.

A Nanny Moose's picture

You are more likely to be killed by your own government.

Not Too Important's picture

That's exactly what's happening.

InvalidID's picture

The doubling rate was 21 days a month ago. What's changed?

Bindar Dundat's picture

This model is wrong and wildly pessimistic  BUT....


Even at a doubling rate of every 30 days the model cures global overpopulation by March 2016.  


The Zero hedge byline changes to "short enough timeline"

Bangalore Equity Trader's picture

Listen. Your fear-mongering has "NO" place on Zero Hedge!


LostandFound's picture

Time to put my head back under the covers and start sucking my thumb,.......

buttmint's picture

InvalidID...not much has changed, other than math and truth about of dead bodies cannot be hidden by rosy WHO guesstimates for much longer.

If you wish to volunteer, you stand a 50-50% chance of contracting ebola, higher if you snare the task of cleaning ebola spew from clinic walls. SIGN UP TODAY.

I still have a hunch that Conscription will be reinstated.

The whole principle ravaging West Africa is called "fission" which is a term used for transuranic elements. Swapped to humans, it is called "geometric progression," exponential process, or if viewed life-threatening persepctive..... a feckin' PLAGUE!


I still like my purchase of Caterpillar LONG, or KOMATSU...some entity will need huge-ass machines to pile up all the rotting corpses into a huge pyre. Invest in a good weed burner turbocharged with a bottle of O2 into a flame thrower.


Check out Home Depot welding department, $49.97 The rest is Google Search.

unrulian's picture

really? where do you play hockey? 4 hundred for a good stick 20 years ago was 40

balanced's picture

A solid point. Perhaps a more accurate statement would be that the value of hockey sticks has remained flat.

Unfortunately, the value of the fiat with which we buy those sticks has plummeted, hah.

NoDebt's picture

You want to know what a REAL epidemic looks like?  THIS is a real epidemic:

"The 1918 flu pandemic (January 1918 – December 1920) was an unusually deadly influenza pandemic, the first of the two pandemics involving H1N1 influenza virus.[1] It infected 500 million[2] people across the world, including remote Pacific islands and the Arctic, and killed 50 to 100 million of them—three to five percent of the world's population[3]—making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in human history.["

100 MILLION dead worldwide.  Many in the US (soldiers returning from WWI helped it spread faster and further than it would have otherwise).

Forgive me if this little Ebola outbreak doesn't make me hit the panic button just yet.  It's still government agencies telling us all to start freaking out because they want "funding".  Does that tactic sound familiar to anyone?

How about a little of that trademark ZH scepticism on this subject?

NoDecaf's picture

How many of that 270K are modeled to be healthcare workers?

knukles's picture

Before or after seasonal XU-236.0.14afS geometric De-exponential Amplifier adjustments?

NoDecaf's picture

It was a rhetorical question.

Spine01's picture

It was indeed the 1920's flue pandemic that taught scientists how to detect the propagation patterns that could enable us to act before it was too late. The problem here is that we are NOT acting even though all bells are running off.
The models are very simplistic and easy to follow easy propagation models.
The flue pandemic accelerated much more rapidly because the virus propagated through the air.
The problem the author is trying to depict here is that every time the virus moves from one human to another, your have trillions of tries for the virus to try mutations or combinations of genes that could enable to become air borne, every time it doesn't happen, we breath a sight of relief, but every contagion is throwing the dice trillions of times again, and guess what, only one hit is needed for the flue pandemic to repeat itself but this time with the ebola virus. One hit! If you are not at least concerned, then you need a brain scan to check if you are alive

Not Too Important's picture

It's over, guys. 50% dead - over 4 billion people - within 2.5/3 years. The only cure is harvesting whole blood from survivors for transfusions. Skip the AIDS, Hep C and cancer patients, and you're looking at the rich harvesting small children. Not even the trolls here at ZH are on that list. Good luck, guys. Your bosses don't give a fuck about you, either.

This is some seriously sick shit, propagated by the sickest fuckers modern civilization can produce.

And what the GMO Ebola doesn't get, the radiation from Fukushima will eliminate. There are two more reactors with storage pools that are just about to blow into the atmospheric jet stream, and what's left of the wreckage will join the other reactors in leaching into the Northern Pacific.

No one cares anymore. It's just a race to the grave, hopefully us before the rich from their point of view. They won't turn off food stamps until everyone is too sick to bitch.

Or someone with nukes decides to accelerate the process. At some point some sick fuck will simply want to watch the fireworks before he dies.

All oxygen absorbing life on this planet is finished.

If you got 'em, smoke 'em.

RichardENixon's picture

So would you say this is a good time to buy stocks?

buttmint's picture


CLAASIQUE reply...I've cut and pasted it everywhere, to everyone.

You nailed it, eloquently. Whatever the ebola death count stands at today---you get that many arrows UP!

One item that nags my brain.....we all KNOW the USAF has been droning the entirety of West Africa. Say what you want about the US Military--at the top are a brainy bunch. We want THEIR math models and vid coverage of the West Point Riots at Monrovia, Liberia. Made public, today!

NSA/CIA/USAID---time to stand tall with all your recording of everything. We know you have live, real-time up to date footage of ebola. Spew forth!Fire up the popcorn popper!

Not Too Important's picture

.gov has been running the models on the most expensive Crays money can buy, for as long as they've known about hantaviruses.

They know it all, and so we can tell, by the world's feeble response to this, that it's all being done on purpose. This isn't some random biowarfare agent test on a remote African village, like it's usually done after being exposed in the past in the US and restricted (well, who really knows).

balanced's picture

Not Too Important, I want to call you a fatalist, and dismiss your comment, but I would be lying to us both. All I can think to do is remind you of the story of Pandora's Box. When she openned the lid, and all of the evil poured out into the world, one thing remained at the bottom - that being hope.

California Nightmares's picture

What would Hitler do in a situation like this?

Why, he'd phone up Reinhard Heydrich. 

The Butcher of Prague would order his troops to seal off avenues of escape, shoot every individual that appears to be symptomatic, and torch the resulting corpses using gasoline. 

The rate of spread would quickly fall below a "replacment level". 

Setting up more and more tent hospitals might now be doing more harm than good.

Were the Westerners to get the hell out,  Africans might stop this epidemic on their own through the bold application of common sense measures.

August's picture

Long camoflage hazmat suits,

Flagit's picture


To me, the lack of "action" is a pretty big indicator of "action".


Nothing but blue skies over the entire continent of Africa. Only about 4 planes in motion.

Honey Badger's picture

If you look at population growth in the U.S., the only year of decline was 1918.

Matt's picture

So, you want to just sit back, then panic once millions are dying, rather than react early and try to contain it?

Sudden Debt's picture

Relax, it's only africans who are dying.
That will teach them trying to form a african gold backed currency while trying to get rid of the dollar!!

Now where would this labratory virus come from.... From a batcave?

Not Too Important's picture

"Turns out, rural people were "rural, low use (people)" 1951 AEC report "They decried the Cold War assault by their own government, which in a confidential 1951 Atomic Energy Commission memo described them as a rural, “low-use” segment of the population. The memo was written to justify continuing the test program although the commission knew the fallout was dangerous and some in Congress were pressing to move the tests offshore to the Pacific."



Then the urban became 'low use people'. Then Kissinger came along and called us all 'useless eaters'.

And then they released the Ebola Kraken.

They don't give a shit. They have history's most expensive military between them and us, and we paid for it all.

We are a bunch of dumb fuckers as a group, aren't we? With them laughing as they light their cigars with billion dollar US bearer bonds.


Things that go bump's picture

My grandmother lost her first husband and infant daughter in that pandemic. She said that the ground was frozen and they couldn't dig graves. Her father's property was close to the funeral home, and she said they stored the dead of the community in his barn until they could be buried - how's that for creepy. There is a flaw in your logic. The data you quote from the 1918 flu epidemic was compiled after the event. Ebola is just getting started. If it manages to really get established and maintains its present level of virulence at a 50% plus mortality rate, and discounting a widespread mutation that confers immunity (like CCR delta 32, for plague), it will make the Spanish flu look tame.

Earl Slaughter-- Truck Driver.'s picture

I'm thinking that "50%" mortality-rate is misleading: it takes an Ebola victim approximately 15-20 days from the onset of symptoms to finally perish, and up to 20-something days longer than that from the original point of infection.

If I'm not mistaken, the oft-used "50%" is dervied from current deaths/current infections-- the current deaths being those who were alive but infected at least 4-6 weeks ago.  

Shouldn't we be looking at who is infected now and, of these who are infected now, who's alive a month from now? Is or shouldn't that be how the mortality-rate is calculated?

Don't know if I'm right or wrong on this, but I'm curious to know the answer.

Lost Word's picture

Infections number probably those showing symptoms,

soon to die ...

or soon to recover and survive,

therefore relatively accurate ratio.

Infected without showing symptoms is an unknown number,

cannot calculate ratio with an unknown number.

Earl Slaughter-- Truck Driver.'s picture

Somehow "rate of infection" must be balanced against the "infected.".. 


Oh hell... Thanks for your reply, though I can't say I'm all the more knowledgable for it (that's me, a bit dense)--But I gets some more for me to think about tomorrow, after I finish this bottle of wine, in which I drown the world's sorrows...


"Infected without showing symptons..." Damn that unknown!!! Hell, damn the unknown!

(EDIT) Mind the accelerating infection rate. Yes, more "unknowns" to screw the numbers all up. Fuck the wine-- SHOT TIME!!!

Lost Word's picture

1918 Flu Pandemic?

Airborne flu killed 10 to 20 percent of those infected?

Why do you think Governments are trying to create Swine Flu, Bird Flu Pandemics?

They wish for Vaccine profits.

They wish for Genocide.

California Nightmares's picture

1918:  less than three percent

The_Virginian's picture

If and when Ebola goes airborne is the time to panic. It's way deadlier than the flu, even the one of 1918. With comparable transmission...it'll kill billions. 

PTR's picture

Forgiven, NoDebt. My button remains untouched as well, but fingers are standing by.


Abitdodgie's picture

Has anyone seen a picture of someone with ebola in this newest outbreak and not just a man in a plastic bag because it just seems that it is all a bit strange , of course it must be Putins fault when he was throwing babies out of incuebators.