In a week, the number of South Africans who have contracted the Covid-19 coronavirus has gone from one to 17 — the number the minister of health announced on Thursday. That seems like a small jump. Statistically, however, it is a big increase.
To understand what this trajectory could mean, the Mail & Guardian Data Desk has run a basic growth rate calculation using two rates — that of the current spread in the country and that of the average rate of infection in the rest of the world (excluding China). The current average infection growth rate is 13% globally — the number of people being infected is growing by 13% each day. So if one person is infected today, 1.13 people in total are infected tomorrow. By day 6, two people could be infected. If 100 people are infected today, 127 in total could be infected tomorrow…..more