250,000 people will become infected with coronavirus in the next 10 days

There is a high probability that it is in fact - it is too optimistic. Leading epidemiologists at the University of Lancaster, UK, have made disappointing predictions about how the 2019-nCoV coronavirus outbreak will develop. A report just released says the world is on the verge of a global epidemic.
Scientists analyzed the available data regarding the development of the outbreak of coronavirus, which began in late January 2019 in the Chinese city of Wuhan, and concluded that the Chinese authorities are dealing with a virus that can spread much faster than the authorities’s measures to contain it. And this, in turn, means that the infection will spread from city to city and from continent to continent in a matter of weeks.
The base reproductive number of the 2019-nCoV coronavirus can reach 4, which means that each infected person will infect four more around him.
When it comes to assessing the level of danger of a particular pathogenic organism, as well as the potential consequences of an epidemic, the most important variable is the value of R 0 ("R-zero") of the disease.
According to scientists at Stanford University, the base reproductive number R 0 is defined as the expected number of secondary infections caused by one (typical) infection in a fully susceptible population. It is important to note that R 0 is a dimensionless number, not speed, with a time unit of 1, where τ is the transmittance (that is, the probability of infection by contact between a susceptible and infected person), ¯c is the average speed of contact between an infected and an infected individual , and d is the duration of the infection period.

R 0 ∝ (infection / contact) x (contact / time) x (time / infection)
Or R0 = τc · d

So, for example, the R 0 values ​​for ordinary flu are approximately 0.9 - 2.1, while the R0 values ​​during the epidemic 1918-1920, known as the “Spanish Woman”, or “Spanish Flu”, according to scientists, ranged from 1 , 4 - 2.8, with an average value of 2. For example, the R 0 indicator for the SARS virus was known in Russia as Avian Influenza between 2 and 5, and measles (one of the most infectious common diseases) - from 12 , before 18.
And what about R 0 of the 2019-nCoV virus, which (according to confirmed data) has already claimed the lives of more than forty people in China and which (only according to confirmed data, the actual number of cases seems to be much larger) has already infected 1,354 people?
As you can already understand - you should not take official figures on faith. After all, the epidemic began in China, which, as you know, is not the most transparent country in the world, especially when it comes to issues that can cause widespread panic and, as a result, doubt about the effectiveness of the leading role of the party and government.
Therefore, the best that remains for us is to speculate, and this is exactly what WHO (World Health Organization) made on Thursday , which made a statement on the epidemic of coronavirus. The statement, in particular, states:

<...> The virus is transmitted from person to person, <...> a preliminary assessment of R 0 1.4-2, 5 . . <...> Of the confirmed cases, 25% are reported to be severe. 

Needless to say, although, as virologists say, the rate itself is already 2.5 quite high, and corresponds to the level of the Spanish flu epidemic , during which about half a billion people were infected in 1918, resulting in 50 to 70 deaths million people, the actual number of coronavirus R 0 can ultimately be much higher.
Here is the working hypothesis of Jonathan Reed, a British biostatistics expert at the University of Lancaster, UK, who, together with four colleagues, published an article that estimates the R 0 parameters for a Wuhan coronavirus and says that R 0 2019-nCoV will be between 3.6-4.0, and concludes that the spread of coronavirus is likely to take on the scale of a global pandemic.
In an article entitled “New 2019-nCoV Coronavirus: An Early Assessment of Epidemiological Indicators and an Epidemic Prognosis,” Reed and colleagues write that at R 0 of 3.6 to 4.0 to stop the spread of the epidemic, “using control measures should be prevented "approximately 72-75% of cases of transmission of infection
This is a serious problem because, according to Reed’s estimates, on January 24, only 5.1% of infections were detected in Wuhan , “which indicates a large number of cases, and also reflects the difficulty of identifying cases of this new disease.” In other words, Reed's conclusions are terrifying.
If in the near future there will be no breakthroughs in controlling the spread of infection (and we see that for some reason WHO has not yet announced a global emergency. - Ed.), Then new outbreaks will occur and grow in other cities of China , "And the infection will spread worldwide at an increasing rate."
Reed translates his words into the language of numbers and makes a frightening prediction: after 9 days, or by February 4, 2020 , the number of infected people in only one Wuhan will exceed 250 thousand.
It is important to note that the Reed model claims that Beijing has already been late in its response and that the recently introduced “ travel restrictions to and from Wuhan are unlikely to be effective in stopping the transmission of infection to other cities in China. Reed and his colleagues write that with an effective 99% reduction in travel, by February 4, the spread of the epidemic outside Wuhan could be reduced by only 24.9%.
Impact of restrictions on travel from / to Wuhan on January 23, 2020 on the number of infections in other cities in China
Reed's prediction is consistent with other model studies of travel restrictions, which show that reducing travel only delays the spread of the epidemic in other cities, and does not completely suppress the spread . It is also important to note that the Reed model took into account only air transportation and did not take into account the potential impact of travel restrictions associated with ground transportation.
A little reassuring is the fact that Reed admits that there is a possibility that he is mistaken, mainly due to the use of erroneous input:
“Our results are largely dependent on the assumptions underlying our model, as well as the timing and reports of confirmed cases, and there is significant uncertainty associated with the outbreak at this early stage,” Reed writes.
Nevertheless, even with these caveats, Reed’s work suggests that the main reproductive number of the 2019-nCoV virus is significantly, possibly catastrophically higher than other known coronaviruses: “containment, or control of the spread of this pathogen, can be significantly more complex,” - says the publication.
Even assuming that Reed’s most assumptions are too harsh and pessimistic, the conclusions he makes in his article leave very little hope that the coronavirus epidemic will be contained in the near future:
“We are still in the early days of this outbreak, and there is great uncertainty both in the extent of the outbreak and in the key epidemiological information regarding transmission. However, the rate of increase in the incidence since the outbreak was recognized is much higher than with outbreaks of SARS (bird flu. - Approx.red) or MERS-CoV (swine flu. - Approx.red). This is consistent with our higher estimates of the reproductive number for this outbreak compared with these other emerging coronaviruses, which suggests that containing or controlling this pathogen can be significantly more difficult. ”
Finally, while Reed makes no observations of potential nCoV-related mortality, widespread observation can be made: on Saturday, authorities in Hubei Province in China, whose capital is Wuhan, reported 15 additional deaths from coronavirus, adding another fifteen people to the previously declared 26 victims, resulting in a total number of 41. And if you correlate this with 1,100 confirmed cases of infection for the same period, this means that the mortality rate from 2019-nCoV has grown from about 2.5% to 4%. This means that if the conclusions made by Reed are correct, and if only 250,000 people are infected in Hubei by February 4, then at least 10,000 Chinese will die in the next 2-3 weeks.
It is easy to assume that the beginning of a mass epidemic in Russia and other countries of the former USSR, under such conditions, is only a matter of time. But at least, unlike China, the Russian authorities have time to prepare in order to meet the 2019-nCoV epidemic fully equipped. But, something tells us that nothing will be done. Therefore, we strongly advise people to already begin to prepare for her arrival, because, as the experience of China itself, the same medical masks, antiseptics, etc., as well as basic foodstuffs are the first thing that people sweep from the shelves of pharmacies and shops in in case of emergency. It is better to be ready today, and then laugh at your fears, than not to be ready at all.