Listen: Have We Turned the Corner?

Listen: Have We Turned the Corner?

Or is it still risky to be optimistic?

People are getting vaccinated, but it’s not happening quickly enough. Case counts are dropping fast, but a near-record number of people are still sick. Do we have reason for optimism? Or could optimism still get us in trouble?

Alexis Madrigal and Robinson Meyer, staff writers and co-founders of the COVID Tracking Project at The Atlantic, join James Hamblin and Maeve Higgins this week to discuss. Listen to their conversation here:

What follows is a transcript of the episode, edited and condensed for clarity:

James Hamblin: With vaccines rolling out and case numbers going down, there’s good news in the air. Are we at the peak nationally, in terms of cases and hospitalizations?

Alexis Madrigal: I’ll leave it to Rob to put in the caveats. I feel remarkably optimistic right now, at least for the next month or two. The numbers are really dropping. We’re seeing the lowest case numbers that we’ve seen since November and December. We’re seeing hospitalizations way off their peak and dropping really rapidly. We think deaths are going to have a different path, [given] the lag time between when somebody dies and when it’s reported. I think it could be some weeks before we really start to see deaths really come down. But those things have basically already happened by this point.