It’s All About the Data

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Bigger Pie Forum | It’s All About the Data | Charles Grayson
 
Guest Contributor Bob Barker along with BPF’s Charles Grayson
The title of this article would not surprise you if you knew that it is authored by a chemist and a chemical engineer.  You see, since our freshman chemistry labs at Ole Miss and Mississippi State many moons ago, we have been taught the importance of the data: Gather the data, analyze the data and draw your conclusions based on the data.  Over the years we have learned to temper the process with our experience and sometimes our intuition.
With the current COVID-19 pandemic, we have all been reminded of the importance of data.  We see the daily number of diagnosed cases, the numbers of hospital beds, the number of ventilators and most of all the number of deaths from the virus.  We are getting a little of the pain that our parents and grandparents must have suffered when they received reports from the battlefields of Europe and the Pacific during World War II.  They worried daily about their loved ones in the midst of so many dying.
The Governor has reported that Mississippi ranks in the top four or five states on a per capita basis in testing for the virus.  Kudos to Dr. Dobbs and the Mississippi State Department of Health, their employees and all the others throughout the state that have played a part in a job well done.  Securing the nasal swab samples is a dangerous job, and running the laboratory test for the virus is a difficult and time consuming analysis.  But we can’t rest on our results to date.  More data is needed, particularly in antibody testing as we prepare to get our economy fully opened up.  At the same time, we also have to be prepared

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