R-Naught

May 08, 2020
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We hope this email finds you doing well at the end of the week.

Early on in this pandemic, we wrote to you with a few new terms that we suggested would become part of our everyday vocabulary: Social Distancing and Flattening the Curve. It's hard to believe that this was less than two months ago, as it feels like a lifetime...

We come to you today with another term that you are about to become very familiar with, and that is R-Naught. You will likely begin seeing and hearing about this quite often going forward, as it is a significant metric that the states are all looking at. Known as the "basic reproductive number", it measures how many people are infected by a disease by a single person. You'll see it shown as R0, or also as Rt, which is a nuanced difference of the R-Naught equation which is the virus' actual rate of transmission of a given period of time (which is t).

Perfectly simple, right??? Got it? Good...

I've included three references that should really help with this. The first is a 9 minute talk from the Khan Academy that does a great job of explaining the term. The second is an article that has been out there for a month, and was written by an author in Hong Kong as the virus was at its height overseas. Finally, is a great page that a local doctor mentioned to me three weeks back and I've been referring to daily. It is a quick, visual way to understand where the Rt numbers are trending.


Khan Academy: R-Naught

Easing Coronavirus Lockdowns

Rt Covid-19

We hope that these resources help you in understanding this term that we'll be watching closely, in the hope that we keep seeing the number decrease over time.

Have a great Mother's Day weekend, and please let us know if there is anything that we can be doing for you.