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‘Just like the weather’: Epidemiologist responds to predicted peak leak

Leaked COVID-19 modelling published by The Australian today suggests Victoria’s peak in cases still hasn’t arrived, but an epidemiologist has told Neil Mitchell there’s no doubt things could be a lot worse in Victoria right now.

Professor James McCaw, an infectious diseases epidemiologist at Melbourne University, said there plenty of “good signs” in Victoria’s trends.

“If we hadn’t have had Stage 3 since June, we would have a huge escalation in cases and that’s very clear and you won’t get any argument from epidemiologists about that,” he said.

“It’s the next stage which matters the most.”

The leaked modelling claims Victoria will be recording upwards of 1000 cases per day by the end of next week.

Professor McCaw isn’t so sure.

“It’s just like the weather,” he said.

“If you ask me if it’s going to rain in an hour, I can be pretty confident to give you answer.

“If you ask me if it’s going to rain tomorrow, I’m a little bit uncertain.

“If you ask me if it will it rain in a months time, I’ve got no idea.

“The further we look into the future, the more uncertainty we’ll have – that’s just the limits of knowledge.

“But I think we should expect, with compliance with Stage 4 lockdown, we’ll get the curve down a bit faster than this.”

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