Via WPLG 10, the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) “changed its model for Florida significantly, forecasting that the state will have 1,363 deaths from COVID-19 by Aug. 4, far lower than the 4,748 projected earlier this week”:

And that’s a great segue into what this post is really about, which is that the IHME models that we’ve used to make multi-trillion-dollar policy decisions are, in the technical sense, s*it. But don’t take our word for it. Here’s the prestigious medical news website STATE with the takedown:

Influential Covid-19 model uses flawed methods and shouldn’t guide U.S. policies, critics say

This is an amazing line:

“That it is being used for policy decisions and its results interpreted wrongly is a travesty unfolding before our eyes.”

What did we do to ourselves?

“Couple months late to come to this objective reality,” however;

Here are the money paragraphs: “No epidemiologic basis”:

According to a critique by researchers at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Imperial College London, published this week in Annals of Internal Medicine, the IHME projections are based “on a statistical model with no epidemiologic basis.”

“Statistical model” refers to putting U.S. data onto the graph of other countries’ Covid-19 deaths over time under the assumption that the U.S. epidemic will mimic that in those countries. But countries’ countermeasures differ significantly. As the epidemic curve in the U.S. changes due to countermeasures that were weaker or later than, say, China’s, the IHME modelers adjust the curve to match the new reality.

But those charts were so “fancy” and easy to use:

Looking forward to EVERY media site following up on this now: