A Hypothesis

  • Models

Mr. Node summarizes what he ventured to deduce from the infection, death and reproduction numbers.


Assuming that there are such things as mean incubation times and mean durations of fatal disease beds, the question is how to estimate them. A single glance at the picture for phase 1 for the Netherlands shows that the curves for infections and fatalities both show an identical and exponential shape in the beginning. Mr. Node simply assumes that the time lapse between the two curves corresponds to the duration of fatal diseases. According to the picture, that period of time (call it d-GAP for the time being) is more than two and a half weeks. Node averages this up to 3 weeks, it is ultimately an estimate that can be tested with observations over time. He further assumes that the virus will require a certain incubation period prior to its generating symptoms. Can be tested again. Node estimates the average incubation time (prior to registration as contamination) to be approximately one week. Assuming that the contamination data is mainly based on registered numbers of hospital admissions (often supplemented with test results from those who remain outside the medical circuit), he formulates the hypothesis that the dynamics of the contamination curve are simulated four weeks later by the curve of deaths. That statement can be tested too.

Using the USA timeline for test by prediction

The timelines of the weekly COVID-19 infections and deaths in the USA up to August 7 (week 32) are shown here. To get the lines on a comparable scale, the number of infections has been divided by 14. From week 25 to week 29 the infections show a steadily increasing straight line. If Node’s theorem is correct, such a line should repeat itself in the deaths curve from week 29 to week 33. We are only in week 32. It seems that this recurrence could have been possible had the decline in week 32 not occurred. The only way to continue to consider the theorem would be if an overcompensation to the other side can be noted in week 33. So we wait for another week. And if that compensation does not materialize, Node must come up with something new.