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Batten down the hatches...

by Frank Schnittger Sat Mar 28th, 2020 at 12:25:46 PM EST

The number of new confirmed cases of Covid-19 surged by 302 yesterday, the highest daily increase so far. There are now a total of 2,121 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Ireland and 22 deaths to date. Update [2020-3-28 20:11:29 by Frank Schnittger]: 294 new cases and 14 new deaths today. Update [2020-3-29 18:27:1 by Frank Schnittger]: 200 new cases and 10 new deaths 29/3 - the first significant reduction in new cases in the series...[end update] The total number of cases has been doubling roughly every 4/5 days, which is somewhat better than was forecast at the start of the outbreak. Up to last Wednesday, 419 patients had been hospitalised with the disease and 59 of these had been admitted to ICU.

Given the shortage of ICU beds hospitals are now operating at close to capacity and the government has just issued its strictest restrictions  yet, basically saying everyone should stay at home for the next two weeks except for the purposes of buying essential food or medical supplies or a much more tightly defined list of essential work.

It is a lockdown in all but name, and pretty much the last shot in the governments locker - one last attempt to "flatten the curve" and, if possible, suppress the disease. Compliance, so far, seems to be high. The first death of a healthcare worker is adding to the sombre mood, although the situation doesn't seem to be quite as chaotic as in the UK's NHS, h/t  ThatBritGuy.

Given the delays in testing people and obtaining the test results, the rate of positive tests appearing now probably reflects what was happening in the community just over a week ago. An increasing number of positive tests results relate to what is called "community transmission" where no obvious vector (a previously identified positive case) or foreign travel can be identified. This is making contact tracing a less effective tool for containing the pandemic.

The measures announced yesterday appear to be an attempt to trap the virus in the homes of whoever has contracted it, in the hope that at least those vectors will be eliminated over the next two weeks. It is a last, desperate, throw of the dice. People can't be kept in complete lock-down indefinitely, and the economic costs are piling up.

Meanwhile, the situation elsewhere seems almost completely out of control, with the USA, UK, and Netherlands - countries slow to get their act together - moving rapidly up the new infections and mortality table, despite a lack of testing and alleged failures to properly record the cause of death as being related to Covid-19 in many cases. Italy's case/mortality rate is still increasing beyond 10%, with Spain not far behind, giving a preview of what failure looks like when even relatively good health systems are overwhelmed.

Time to batten down the hatches. The storm is coming...

There appear to be rapid advances in testing technology which should make more accurate diagnosis, treatment, recording and timely contact tracing more feasible in the future. They have come too late to stem the tide of mass outbreaks, unfortunately, but could make testing at ports and airports more feasible in future.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Mar 28th, 2020 at 12:52:05 PM EST
one week ago U.S. approves Abbott coronavirus test; company set to ship 150,000

I suppose, this second wave of promotion is intended by editorial managers to convey gov expectations of improvement in reporting accuracy of health care utilization currently "estimated as a range".

by Cat on Sat Mar 28th, 2020 at 02:49:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Abbott ID NOW CoV-2 molecular point-of-care test for novel coronavirus

Abbott has received emergency use authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the fastest available molecular point-of-care test for the detection of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), delivering positive results in as little as five minutes and negative results in 13 minutes.

What makes this test so different is where it can be used: outside the four walls of a traditional hospital such as in the physicians' office or urgent care clinics.

The new Abbott ID NOW COVID-19 test runs on Abbott's ID NOWTM platform--a lightweight box (6.6 pounds and the size of a small toaster) that can sit in a variety of locations.

Because of its small size, it can be used in more non-traditional places where people can have their results in a matter of minutes, bringing an alternate testing technology to combat the novel coronavirus.

We're ramping up production to deliver 50,000 ID NOW COVID-19 tests per day, beginning next week, to the U.S. healthcare system.

This comes on the heels of our announcement last week of the availability of the Abbott RealTime SARS-CoV-2 EUA test under FDA EUA, which runs on m2000 RealTime molecular system for centralized lab environments. Combined with ID NOW, Abbott expects to produce about 5 million tests in April.

How It Works: Portable Coronavirus Teating

Formerly AlereTM i. New and Improved Speed, Performance and Efficiency. Plus a new name.

Reviews: "The Alere I is constantly being sent in for service. The touch pad stops working at regular intervals. The mechanical parts of the machine break often. I have the machine for free if I buy test kits. If I had purchased the machine outright I would have been fuming mad."

by Oui on Sat Mar 28th, 2020 at 03:48:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ALERT: Please do not share the guidance on social media, as it contains some information that may be distressing to the public if not presented in a sensitive way with appropriate opportunity for discussion and explanation.

[From an earlier post - Oui]

by Oui on Sat Mar 28th, 2020 at 03:18:47 PM EST
by Oui on Sat Mar 28th, 2020 at 05:01:45 PM EST
There were 14 new deaths today (average age 81) bringing the total to 36. 294 new cases were confirmed - a slight decline on yesterday's 302 cases.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Mar 28th, 2020 at 06:45:34 PM EST
Covid-19 patients in UK intensive care have 50% survival rate
wut: "The high death rate raises questions about how effective critical care will be in saving the lives of people struck down by the disease."
wut: "'The truth is that quite a lot of these individuals [in critical care] are going to die anyway and there is a fear that we are just ventilating them for the sake of it, for the sake of doing something for them, even though it won't be effective. That's a worry,' one doctor said."
by Cat on Sun Mar 29th, 2020 at 04:14:30 AM EST
British exceptionalism backfires in style as Johnson tests positive for coronavirus
The UK government's 360-degree turn on coronavirus was metaphorically completed yesterday when prime minister Boris Johnson, his health minster, Matt Hancock, and his chief medical officer, Chris Whitty, revealed they had all tested positive for the virus and would be self-isolating.

Johnson began the month as a Covid-19 sceptic, playing down the threat, telling Britons they should "be going about their business as usual" and even boasting about shaking hands with people at a hospital that was treating coronavirus patients.

His stance was viewed internationally as "confused, dangerous, flippant", particularly when the pandemic was already out of control in Italy and Spain, killing thousands.

While the rest of Europe went into lockdown, Johnson delayed introducing containment measures in the UK, while trumpeting a controversial "herd immunity" strategy, a policy that went against the received wisdom but ensured minimal disruption to the economy.

That was until a report by researchers at Imperial College in London suggested the strategy would "likely result in hundreds of thousands of deaths" - potentially 250,000 - and completely overwhelm the health system.


The PM now finds himself trapped in an office and study in Downing Street, cut off from staff, unable to receive guests and reduced to having his meals left outside the door. A startling contrast to his gung-ho - "I'm not gonna stop shaking hands" - attitude of three weeks ago.

Another example of British exceptionalism backfiring in grand style, some might say, and a bad omen for Brexit, the UK's other social-distancing project.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Mar 29th, 2020 at 10:37:52 PM EST
Coronavirus forecast to cut UK economic output by 15%

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Mon Mar 30th, 2020 at 01:30:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Mon Mar 30th, 2020 at 12:35:58 PM EST
"People can't be kept in complete lock-down indefinitely..."


by asdf on Mon Mar 30th, 2020 at 05:34:57 PM EST
by Oui on Mon Mar 30th, 2020 at 05:46:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]

At this rate, the number of deaths in the UK will shoot up past France (4503 deaths in hospitals, 471 in the last 24 hours). Lax decisions on lockdown and social distancing will continue to have a deadly effect over several weeks.

by Bernard on Thu Apr 2nd, 2020 at 07:51:15 PM EST
8.7% death rate.  

Italy has now reached 12.1% which is where the UK will be in a week or so with the US following along shortly.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Fri Apr 3rd, 2020 at 03:02:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In France, 500 hospital deaths per day for the past four days. Peak death. Tentative sigh of relief.

Horrified at the 500+ deaths per day in the UK, still climbing steeply. Trying not to think about the US curve : zombie apocolypse.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Fri Apr 3rd, 2020 at 01:14:10 PM EST
Although yesterday the stat was 1355 deaths in France because they added in all the nursing home deaths from previous days they hadn't been including in their stats. But I agree with you, the curve may be flattening in most European countries who have locked down, while still increasing in other countries that were slow to lock down- UK, Sweden, Netherlands...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Apr 3rd, 2020 at 01:40:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Florida, other states allowing church services during coronavirus pandemic.

Ought to be good to cull out the population.

Florida is among several states issuing orders for people to avoid leaving their homes but granting certain exemptions for religious services over concerns that forcing houses of worship to close would violate the constitutional right to religious freedom.

Total horsepucky but that's the way aggressively ignorant god-bothering fools flow.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Fri Apr 3rd, 2020 at 03:33:21 PM EST
Next step : the gun lobby will insist that their right to bear arms in public is superior to the lockdown constraints.

So, only gun nuts and religious nuts on the streets. Time to write up a scenario for Netflix.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Apr 6th, 2020 at 04:17:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
To be called the Democrats Disease because it will differentially kill off the elderly and freedom loving, gun toting, religious nuts who, like Trump, think its sissy to take precautions or wear a mask.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Apr 6th, 2020 at 04:23:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Actually, data is slowly accumulating that most "vulnerable" is indigent Americans --one easilyg can flesh out characteristics by age, sex, race, private or public custodial housing. Some muni and state politicians have been agitating governors to publish complete data sets, ostensibly to curb discriminatory actions. CDC reporting detail has only, very recently come to public attention beside bereavement for the "grands" in glass retirement "homes".

by Cat on Mon Apr 6th, 2020 at 09:16:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
One of half dozen so far bubbling so far ...

Gov. Edwards: Data to be released will show 70% of COVID-19 deaths in La. are African American

Did I mention lately? 71% of Americans oppose reparation for US descendants of slaves, because dead an buried. Also, FUIGM now.

by Cat on Mon Apr 6th, 2020 at 10:59:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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