You've just reminded me of a story about Jean Harlow and Dorothy Parker.
Paraphrased: They are both at a cocktail party and Parker overhears Harlow say. " I read in the papers that eventually machines will replace all forms of jobs". Parker says, "I don't think you need to worry about losing your job".
Sorry @JohninDubin perhaps I haven’t made myself clear.
Im not talking of overall cumulative historical daily numbers of cases. What I’m talking about is actual daily cases now.
The UK is testing around 800,000 people every single day, compared to around 40,000 a day in Thailand, as you can see from the attached graph.
With the U.K. testing 800,000 and only finding 50,000 positive cases. It’s fair to say that if we only tested 400,000 we may find 25,000 cases and if we tested 100,000 a day we may find 6,000 cases. It won’t be a linear relationship but you get the gist.
The opposite of course applies to Thailand. If they tested 80,000 a day they may find 15,000 cases. 200,000 test a day may find 25,000 cases and so on. I’m not suggesting that if they did 10 times more tests, they would find 10 times more cases. It doesn’t work like that as we know. What I am saying is both in the past (certainly since April 2021) and to date, the daily snapshot of cases in Thailand is underestimated. Maybe by a factor of 3-5. Also bear in mind Thailand is yet to fully open. The U.K. has been open for some months and we have seen the impact of this. It is also the reason why overall, the impact of Covid in cases and deaths has been many more times worse in the U.K. than Thailand. The country was never locked down to the extent that Thailand was. Was that a right decision? Well not if you were one of the people who died. Was it the right decision to reduce the impact on the economy? Well yes it was. A combination of keeping things moving and supplementing business and employees means they U.K. economy is predicted to return to pre-pandemic growth by the end of this year. The last estimate I saw for Thailand was end of next year.
A key metric with regard to establishing a “safe” country is what’s called the Positivity Rate. This is the number of cases found as a percentage of tests conducted. For the U.K. this is around 6%. For Thailand it is around 20%-25%. This is aimed at stopping exactly what Thailand is doing. Testing relatively small numbers and claiming low Covid infection levels.
Overall, my point is that you can not simply look at cases numbers without also looking at tests taken. If you take this to its limits, if you conduct no test, you will find no Covid cases.