Presumably it will be along the lines of 'Protect and Survive' - putting a Paper Bag over your head and then lying down ?
The British government said today the novel coronavirus will, more likely than not, have a significant impact on the UK and could see up to 20 per cent of people missing work. There are now 39 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the UK and more than 86,000 globally. Over 3,000 people have died; six deaths were confirmed in the US …
No, no - you'll have to paint the inside of your windows white, hide under the kitchen table and put up a sign saying "go away nasty virus".....
Overhyped media sensationalism, if you want my ignorant insignificant humble opinion. People get colds and flu all the time, and sadly a small percentage of those die from those infections. Virii are good at spreading around the world by aeroplanes and other tools we have invented for them.
Oh dear how our memories are short.
I lived in China during the bird flu (1997) and SARS (2003) - the only infectious thing then was fear.
Then it was H1N1 in 2009 - remember that?
Mortality rates were similar :
Chief medical officer in the UK at the time was ranting how they expected loads of deaths (65000 , then downgraded to 1000) Then sat around on a load of vaccines:
Same experts are harping on about doomsday now but hey , don't forget to wash your hands!!
"Except this isn't flu and there isn't a vaccine"
And the population has no natural resistance to it and there is a very large population available to be exposed. At present, it is thought that ~20% of COVID-19 infections result in severe cases requiring hospitalisation versus ~2% for influenza.
The worst part is that the long incubation period makes health services particularly susceptible to spreading the virus amongst staff, resulting in facilities being closed or restricted, leading to indirect deaths.
On a more positive note, it has likely been contained "long enough" - we appear to be over peak flu season in the northern hemisphere so self-detecting it becomes easier and self-isolating more likely. The northern hemisphere health systems are starting to see less demand from traditional flu and respiratory and people self-isolating due to symptoms rather than "soldiering on" and spreading it further. Summer likely gives us an additional 6-9 months to develop a vaccine before the next northern hemisphere flu season.
If we can get to the end of year 1 without a pandemic, vaccines/treatments/information about the virus begin to approach what we know about influenza, at which point the risk becomes easier to judge.
Have we over-reacted? Hopefully. If we do see a pandemic after taking the precautions most countries have, then the extreme steps that were taken will be justified. If we don't see a pandemic, it is very likely we will see communities (South Korea/Italy) and countries (Iran) with significant impacts.
"Except this isn't flu and there isn't a vaccine"
Re flu vaccines:
It is a best guess effort. There are often times where the vaccine is not much good as that years outbreak is to disimilar to the vaccine to have an effect. Hence you have to have an annual one, hoping to get it right for that year.
>Then it was H1N1 in 2009 - remember that?Mortality rates were similar :
Erm, CDC says differently, it's nowhere near this current corona virus, you have to go back to the 1918 Spanish flu epidemic to get a mortality rate even close (estimates range from 1-3%).
"From April 12, 2009 to April 10, 2010, CDC estimated there were 60.8 million cases (range: 43.3-89.3 million), 274,304 hospitalizations (range: 195,086-402,719), and 12,469 deaths (range: 8868-18,306) in the United States due to the (H1N1)pdm09 virus."
@AC - "Oh dear how our memories are short.
I lived in China during the bird flu (1997) and SARS (2003) - the only infectious thing then was fear."
So was I (specifically, Hong Kong), and I remember the Y2K problem too (see icon). Did the disaster scenario fail to materialise because it was never a threat, or because lots of people were taking action (checking and updating computers/washing hands and wearing masks)?
We know that newly-emerging diseases can have high mortality rates; the black death killed maybe 25% of the population of Europe; the 1918 flu pandemic killed 20 - 50 million people, more than all the soldiers and civilians killed in World War I.
COVID-19 has already killed 3131 (up to 3rd March). This is more than 1997 bird flu (6 people in Hong Kong, and 1.3 million chickens killed and incinerated as a precaution); more than SARS 2003 (774 deaths worldwide).
It hasn't reached the level of H1N1 in 2009 (150,000–575,000 fatalities) yet, but those deaths were spread over almost 2 years. There is still a lot we don't understand about COVID-19. The mortality rate appears to be significantly higher than seasonal flu, but is that just because there are many undiagnosed infections? Cases are appearing where there is no traceable contact with known cases, some people have appeared to recover, have no detectable virus, but then fall ill again after release. Coronaviruses usually die out in warm conditions, so this might all disappear as summer approaches, but MERS is also a coronavirus, and MERS was able to spread in some rather warm places.
So, is it really that much of an imposition to follow good medical advice? Wash your hands frequently, and, as I'm in HK, I'll wear a mask when I'm out, not so much for my protection, but it's worth it if I'm a symptomless carrier and it prevents someone else being infected.
Pandemics are difficult to predict. Sometimes they are severe. The fact that they are often not severe - and citing instances when they are not - is a poor argument against preparing for a possibly severe one in this instance.
Certainly some people are overreacting, but mocking them doesn't help either.
"The noun virus has a Latin root, but is one of the few nouns that has no plural in Latin. It occurs only in the singular. The English plural viruses (which adheres to the standard rules for forming plurals) is the only way to make the noun virus plural." Sorry --->
Bah. Points for etymology, but minus several million for unjustified prescriptivism.
There are an infinite number of ways to form a plural of "virus" in English. Here's one: slaijhviels. Unlikely to catch on, I know; but that doesn't mean it's not "a way to make the noun 'virus' plural". Nothing in the conventions of English as a spoken or written language forbids it, and there is no authority for the language generally recognized by a majority of Anglophones.
And that, of course, is the usual problem with prescriptivists. They can formulate a learned argument, but then they try to build it on a foundation of appeal to some imaginary authority, because they can't bear to simply be descriptive and argue a preference.
..... that the anti-virus industry is as useless as we've always thought it was.
If they were any good then AVG, AVAST, McAfee, etc. should have been able to come out with a fix by now. Instead they call it Novel, and just sit there letting it run rampant around the world!
Maybe it's time for all those retired Netware sysadmins to come back to work and polish up their skills to sort out this bug... Hard to believe that this virus is spreading without the help of MS Windows. It would never have happened in Bill Gates day.....
Replace Covid-19 with Ebola and then you'd really see the world change. Unfortunately, with all of these new mutated strains of flu that have been coming out of China for the last 15 years due to overpopulation and consumption of dodgy sources of food (apparently bats in this case?), I'm pretty concerned that it's only a matter of time...
I'm pretty sure there's a vaccine for ebola now... and soon one in trials for Corona.
All good. DON'T PANIC
(what is NOT so good is this "all eggs in one basket" mentality that has strangled the manufacturing industry, due to the supply bottleneck caused by non-strategically placing every egg into China's basket)
What, NOBODY out there ever heard of SECOND SOURCE? Oh, that one's in China, too. GOOD. JOB.
Go check you fucking facts.
They didn't eat bats, it has been found in bats, but they know there is an intermediate carrier, which could easily be a cow or chicken. They are still hunting for this.
The last outbreak if memory serves me correctly was a dog...a pet dog.
And remind me again, who started the world's biggest and most lethal flu outbreak? Oh yes a US serviceman.
@IGotOut - Well, if we're checking facts, then you should know that bats were eaten... the bats weren't in an overcrowded market packed in amongst snakes and fish because they were looking for a good deal on a designer brand. But the cooking process probably prevented anyone being infected by the bat they were actually eating.
And before anyone starts blaming a country for unhygienic conditions in the food supply chain, take a look at chlorinated chicken. There is lots of room for improvement, everywhere.
and despite reported poor quarantine procedures they shipped many back to the UK.
What my are there no rudimentary temperature checks on returning travellers (esp. from Italy and Far East) @ UK airports?? Simple and effective way to identify unwell people for testing.
Italy had temperature checks. We didn't. Italy were the first country in Europe to have a major outbreak, so little good it did them.
According to a government report on preparedness from after the Bird Flu thing, checks at airports and stopping flights at best would delay the outbreak in the UK by one week. That's from modelling, so take with whatever large grain of salt you prefer. However they also say that with our large global connections - we'd likely be one of the first countries to get infections anyway. So they don't expect to do general controls at airports.
1.- Make sure you can't be blamed
2.- Make sure you can claim (some) responsibility for any success fighting it
3.- Check if it's possible to use the disaster in your own interests (without affecting points 1. and 2.)
Every government, management or person in charge will abide by those three rules, which obviously always have the same result: A massive overreaction (rule 1.) served with a flurry of recommendations of all kinds, so that in case one of those proves beneficial you can claim the glory (rule 2.). As for point 3., that goes from simple PR ("Look, I'm the person firmly at the helm, leading this country/company/family safely through the storm") to possibly long-term political/social/economic maneuvering.
TL;DR - Expect more of the same, potentially with added drama as actors try to outshine each other.
So there were 32 million people in work in the UK in 2018. They're warning that 20% of people could be off work at any one time. So let's assume that only 20% of the workforce get the virus altogether, which is conservative based on the 20%-off-work-at-once figure as it assumes everyone gets it in one batch rather than a lot more people spread over longer which is what will actually happen. So let's generalise this and assume that 20% of the whole UK population get it. The UK population is 67.5 million so this means about 13.5 million people get it. Or in fact quite a lot more than this if you make less silly assumptions on how many people need to get infected to have 20% of the workforce off work at any one time.
So, if 13.5 million people infected with 1% mortality then 135,000 people will die in the UK.
In 2018 there were 541,589 deaths in England and Wales, so let's guess Scotland and NI and say 675,000 total (this must be higher than the real number).
So if all that's true, this will bump UK
mortality by about 20% (and in fact more if you don't make the only-20%-get-it assumption). Also many of the high-risk groups are not in the workforce so that may also skew things.
We have some more numbers to work with. 80% of the population could catch it in total. 0.8% of the UK population is 532m, so in a worst case scenario the death rate this year could be about double the normal rate. Of course some of them will be people who were going to die anyway. I haven’t considered that in my calculation.
That's even more terrifying. In particular an increase that large in the death rate implies a huge increase in the seriously-ill rate. The health service will fail: not only the NHS but the health services of all countries.
This will all not be helped in the UK by th fact that we're currently governed by a group of very dim bigots who think that truth is what they want it to be and are in the process of eliminating all the people who tell them it's not, effectively led by a crank who mistook Neuromancer for a utopia and thinks that Gibson's jackpot is something we should strive for (no, not Boris, whose head is full only of choirs of naked women singing the 'Boris is wonderful' song and throwing themselves at him, Cummings).
The death rate will be hard to work out because some people that would have died of other causes would die of Coronavirus first. Particularly as the unreliable figures we've currently got have the lowest death rates being in the 10-18 group (quite surprising that) - and the risk going up quite high for people over 80 - which obviously isn't surprising. But you'd expect death rates to be lower in more organised countries where governments aren't trying to cover things up - as happened in the last big ebola outbreak - where some countries got the death rate below 20%. I think the average death rate for that is 30-40% - the worst outbreak ever was 90%!
According to the worst case assumptions of a government report from after bird flu they were talking about 50% of people getting the new flu/coronavirus (those were the two the report was most worried about) - but about half of those getting it having no symptoms.
Some of the large numbers of people being off sick will be for quarantine, rather than for being ill.
The idea is to slow down the spread so that the disease peaks for 4 months, rather than 1-2. Making treatment more manageable.
What do we "know" about the virus? Virtually nothing, it appears to be widespread, possibly much more so than we've observed and while some people have died, most of the deaths would have been expected had they caught the flu or measles. While the governments are all running around taking a shit in public, they are all busy blaming someone else for the virus transmissions.
Most likely we will know all the facts in about two years, until then you can panic if you want but it doesn't help. Sure, wash your hands and don't wipe your nose on someone else's sleeve - but that's what we should be doing anyway. Nothing new about this.
Flaky news, little bits falling off from time to time, what's true and what's not? We'll figure it out eventually, if we're lucky.
What do we "know" about the virus? Virtually nothing
If only there was some Health Organisation, one for the whole World perhaps, who could co-ordinate all the information about the virus and make it easily available for anyone with half a brain to search for?
Meanwhile in the good ol' US of A Pence has been put in charge and the first thing they did was shut the CDC spokesman down then have a prayer meeting.
Here in my part of the Aussie Outback® an older lady is concerned that her computer may be spreading the virus. She heard about it on the interwebtubes.
Stay safe, friends, as somebody who had pneumonia and a collapsed lung and now 'at risk' according to my Dr, it doesn't sound pleasant to get if you're a susceptible person.
I'll stock up on essentials nonetheless ---->
Over the last few days, I have eaten every anti virus cd I had in my collection, they cover over 99% of all known viruses so I should be okay.
If you include the effects of both Norton and Symantec, if I do get the virus they are guaranteed to slow down.
Been spraying everyone I meet with Dettol too!
If you've eaten both Norton and Symantec one of them's bound to throw a fatal exception some time. You need to take an emergency dose of online virus removal tool - a virus emetic as you might call it. I suggest you eat a Celine Dion CD urgently - as this should purge your system.
A dose of My Heart Will Go On should see you right.
It's worth considering whether a notable ship and a notable hotel were actually quarantines or incubators of infection. There were numerous reports of people supposed to stay in their rooms moving freely around and communicating with others, and the infection spread in both sites. Then a population of asymptomatic potential carriers was released to go home world wide.
Remember Typhoid Mary.
I thought the whole point of quarantines was to keep all the sick and potentially sick in the same place to stop infection of the wider area. Ergo keeping the people on the ship was the primary purpose. That this increased transmission rates on the ship was a known outcome and not the primary purpose of the quarantine.
In the current climate and with fears rising, but more so with the advice, Could we utilise some handwashing stations? Link them to the water supply, with the only concern about provision of hot water but supply with soap, tissues etc. Have on as many streets as possible. Encourage tgose out of work to run then, put signage up. Difficult but not impossible.
So, this is coming from ground zero for the initial cluster of deaths from Covid-19 in the US. The cluster of infections and death are about 3 km away from my apartment and one person is in quarantine about 6 blocks away. The deaths have been in the hospital complex where my cardiologist is. This is very close to home and not something that I am speculating on at a distance. People have been panic buying masks and supplies for about a week. Everyone knows it is circulating in the community and it could come from anywhere and, if you get it, what happens next is basically a guess. This is not a fun time. To add insult to injury, a local tech contractor had active TB and came in contact with 150 others - minimum. This area has a very active tech community with multiple large meetups and events of all kinds. The virus has probably been circulating for over 6 weeks so the number of affected is predicted to skyrocket. Every major employer is advising workers to work from home unless it is absolutely necessary to do otherwise. For the human side, I just coughed while writing this. A strange dry cough that is not normal for me. Am I infected? It is 3 AM and I am visiting my daughter and grandson. What if I have it and infect them? The little one has a lung issue and, if he gets it, he would most probably die. No pressure there, eh? Imagine how I would feel for the rest of my life knowing that I brought the mechanism into the house that would wipe out future generations of my family. Think on that for a moment. The gravitas of the situation is blindingly obvious. I have tried to be stoic and stay calm but there are very real consequences for even the slightest lapse of vigilance. What door knob or elevator button will I touch that could kill me or others? What elevator will I ride in where I breath in the virus? These aren't paranoaic thoughts. People are dying in the next town over at the medical complex I go to. People are being diagnosed with the virus all around me and they have no clear link to Wuhan. What kind of thoughts should I be having? One thing no one is talking about is where the virus could be lurking. They focus on the amount of time it can exist on a surface, but there has been zero discussion on how long it can exist in things like cosmetics, vape liquids, food packaging, etc. Wuhan exports all of those things. Does lipstick have any anti-viral compounds in it? Or is it a nice safe home for a deadly virus? Are packaged wet noodles or other wet and frozen food packages produced and exported from Wuhan by the ton daily capable of hosting the virus? And what authority is to be believed if they say no to all those possible transport mechanisms? Have they done the actual tests? Excuse me for being skeptical but I have my life and the lives of my future generations to protect. This is not VR or AR, it is real and has significant consequences for lapses in judgment and it is going to get far worse before it gets better because it has just begun.
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