back to article Scientists reckon eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio, harder than smallpox – just buckle in for a wait

In what is good news to everyone except possibly the most introverted masochists out there, boffins have decided that it is possible to rid the earth of COVID. In fact, it's probably easier to do than polio, but harder than smallpox, said researchers in the online journal BMJ Global Health. The team of New Zealand public …

  1. Chris G Silver badge

    Perhaps the researchers would like to spend a little time figuring out how to 'democratise', de-politicise and remove the greed factor that males the likes of Pfizer and others hold poorer, developing countries to ransom.

    Other flaws that need addressing are consistent population management practices, education/information and removal of class privilege regarding masks/distancing and assembly numbers.

    The haphazard management of the entire pandemic gives so much fuel to the dissenters and anti vaxxers that it is a joke.

    Some honest reporting from governments would go a long way too.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      While you can blame the companies for profiteering, that is what they are supposed to do. The real problem is misaligned incentives. This is why they prefer developing and selling niche treatments for cancers, heart disease, etc. than probably more vital (depends who you ask) vaccines and antibacterial treatments.

      1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

        Half a solution

        Buy health insurance from companies that develop vaccines.

        At present we have pharma trying to extract the the maximum profit from drugs and health insurance fanning the fire so your choices are cripplingly expensive insurance, cripplingly expensive medical treatment or crippling diseases.

        This has to be turned around so that the companies trying to profit from treatments have to balance that against the cost of insurance payouts for sick leave. I say companies for a reason: a monopoly or cartel is just as bad as what we have now.

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge
          Stop

          Re: Half a solution

          Health insurance companies are rarely involved in the development of medicines. The key is in the name. It doesn't matter because the main point is that it is government policy that sets priorities and incentives and that is was needs changing. Though stopping the pharma lobby from dictating it will certainly remain a problem!

      2. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

        Non-profit AstraZeneca

        > While you can blame the companies for profiteering, that is what they are supposed to do.

        Worth pointing out that AstraZeneca are explicitly selling their vaccine at Cost price.

        To be clear: they intend to not make a profit from it.

        They are doing some price differentiation between rich and poor countries so the rich subsidise the poor, but that's the extent of their variation from Cost Price.

    2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      This example is slightly off topic, but still illustrates the issue of servicing shareholders/owners at the expense of providing a service

      https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/aug/10/predatory-financial-tactics-survival-uk-care-system-at-risk

      In another sector that effects all/most of the lower income brackets here in the UK, the supermarket group Asda was bought on heavily leveraged terms, and the buy has prior form of disposing of real-estate/leasing it back - the same fate may happen imminently to Morrisons.

      In the end we end up paying higher prices for our groceries (and elderly care)

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        @Fruit and Nutcase

        "https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/aug/10/predatory-financial-tactics-survival-uk-care-system-at-risk"

        How does that compare with council run care homes?

    3. jason_derp Silver badge

      @ Chris G

      Get the hell out of here, crazy person! Everything was fine, and it went fine, it's still going fine, and it'll end up fine! We're going to look back at this and go "We were crazy! This was all fine!" Garbagarba blarg blarg blarg! /s

      1. Muscleguy Silver badge

        Nope that was swine flu, we dodged a bullet with swine flu due to a massive effort to kill the pigs, to make a good vaccine (they did) and to get it to people who needed it, they did.

        The effort was so successful you still get idiots saying swine flu was nothing. I had it, it literally knocked me flat didn’t have enough energy to sit in a chair. I’m a hyper fit lifelong distance runner who bounces off the walls with pent up energy if I don’t or can’t run often enough.

        1. Zolko Bronze badge

          idiots saying swine flu was nothing. I had it, it literally knocked me flat

          And you recovered all by yourself ? If so, what's the big deal ? The "idiots" seem to have been right after-all

          It's the same with this Covid : mostly harmless for 99.5% of the population. What's the big deal ?

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Experience is a dear teacher but you seem to be one of those who will learn by no other.

            1. nauved

              "Experience is a dear teacher but you seem to be one of those who will learn by no other."

              Indeed. That's exactly how I have lived my life. About 30 years ago, I fired my oncologist to pursue healing in a different way. One of the best decisions I ever made that likely added years to my life. So yes, I trust my instincts because they have never misled me! :)

          2. DJO Silver badge

            mostly harmless for 99.5% of the population. What's the big deal ?

            For a start that's not true, information about the long term effects is slowly coming out and it's not good.

            Secondly if it is only 99.5% who are seriously affected (which it isn't) that's 35 million people.

            Are you such a sociopath to say 35 million sick or dead people is not important?

            1. James 51

              At the beginning of the pandemic the death rate was at 5%, not 0.5% so you'd need to add a zero on to the end of that number.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            99.5% of the UK would mean "only" 330,000 deaths.

            There have been 131,000 deaths in the UK. Even if there were ZERO cases from now on, that would mean that 40% of the UK population have already had covid.

            I presume you stormed the old television center too?

            By the way, the "95.5%" figure you mention is actually the percentage of covid deaths that are unvaccinated people.

          4. Paul 195
            Flame

            "It's the same with this Covid : mostly harmless for 99.5% of the population. What's the big deal ?"

            Let's frame that 99.5% non-fatality rate in a way that's easier to understand for the idiots out there. That's a 1 in 200 chance of death. 1 in 200 is about the same probability of throwing three doubles in a row in monopoly, and going to jail. Or put it another way, if flying had a similar risk ratio, they'd throw one or two people off every fully-loaded 747 in mid-air.

            Of course, fatality isn't the only risk with Covid-19. It's estimated that between 10% and 20% of people contracting it who survive are left with chronic symptoms that continue for months. Possibly for some of them for years (we don't yet have enough data to know the average likely duration of long Covid).

            So people who don't think Covid-19 is a very serious illness are at best ill-informed.

          5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            "It's the same with this Covid : mostly harmless for 99.5% of the population. What's the big deal ?"

            Last recorded number for UK population: 66.65 million (2019)

            0.5% of 66.65 million = 3.333 million it's not "mostly harmless" for.

            Then again, you pulled that 99.5% out of your arse, so it's definitely wrong and the potential problem is almost certainly vastly worse than your arse pulled number suggests.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              You're out by a factor of 10, but otherwise your point still stands.

          6. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "It's the same with this Covid : mostly harmless for 99.5% of the population. What's the big deal ?"

            Let's compare COVID and Polio shall we?

            If you are infected with Polio, then there is a 70% chance you will be completely asymptomatic. For the majority of those who do develop symptoms, most will have nothing more than gastrointestinal symptoms and a general feeling of illness. Just 0.5% of those infected will do on to develop the flaccid paralysis we always associate with Polio. Of the 0.5% paralysed between 5 and 10% of those will die due to their diaphragm and intercostals being paralysed. This can be mitigated by artificial ventilation, this was the Iron Lung we see so many historical photos of.

            For those who don't die, the recovery can take some considerable time and for others, they may be left with permanent weakness as a result of the infection.

            There are parallels here, we are talking about 99.5% of those infected being relatively unharmed by the disease with 0.5% dying of COVID or being paralysed by Polio. Polio has a lower mortality rate, based on 0.5% being paralysed and between 5 and 10% of those dying, the overall death rates from Polio are between 0.025 and 0.05%, that is COVID had a mortality of around 1 in 200 while Polio has mortality of between 1 in 2000 and 1 in 4000.

            Perhaps we need to go back to the pictures of what 1 in 200 people infected being on a ventilator looks like? Then you might see what the "big deal" is.

            https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/may/26/last-iron-lung-paul-alexander-polio-coronavirus

    4. codejunky Silver badge

      @Chris G

      "Perhaps the researchers would like to spend a little time figuring out how to 'democratise', de-politicise and remove the greed factor that males the likes of Pfizer and others hold poorer, developing countries to ransom."

      Why? That greed is the one thing that developed the vaccine. Also the AZ vaccine was being sold at cost although with the hassle they took from the EU have said they probably wont do it again.

      "The haphazard management of the entire pandemic gives so much fuel to the dissenters and anti vaxxers that it is a joke."

      That is very true. The failure to (correctly) react by the Chinese and the failure of the WHO to label a pandemic for fear of upsetting the Chinese started the ball rolling but dont mask/mask inconsistencies and political goal scoring over the source of the virus and lab funding erodes the trust needed to get people to act.

      "Some honest reporting from governments would go a long way too."

      I think various governments have had their success and failure as none of them knew what to do. The autopsy of what worked and what didnt will be interesting.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @Chris G

        Oh yes. Very good analysis. It was all China and Doctor WHO'S fault. Definitely. And without pinpointing the reason for the outbreak we were completely helpless and powerless to act in a timely manner. Better to weigh up all the conspiracy theories before taking any concrete action. Taiwan was foolish to even try: Linking their border controls and healthcare system to target quarantines etc through big data analysis? Ludicrous. The fools.

        How Taiwan held off Covid-19, until it didn't - Vox YouTube

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: @Chris G

          @AC

          "Oh yes. Very good analysis. It was all China and Doctor WHO'S fault."

          Just to check, you dont think China allowed this to become a pandemic when they covered up infections and prosecuted those who spoke out about the virus before it managed to spread and become a pandemic? As the origin and actively attacking those trying to act China also refused to cooperate with the WHO. You dont think that gives them a large share of the blame?

          And the WHO played down the danger as it was trying not to upset the Chinese, you dont think thats a problem?

          "And without pinpointing the reason for the outbreak we were completely helpless and powerless to act in a timely manner."

          Which is increasingly looking like the lab which is not allowed to be investigated. Something considered a fringe theory while Trump was saying it but became a serious possibility/probability now the presidential race is over. Pinpointing being easier if people are allowed to investigate which the Chinese have made very difficult.

          "Taiwan was foolish to even try: Linking their border controls and healthcare system to target quarantines etc through big data analysis?"

          Why? Who said that? They tried something in an unprecedented situation. How successful it is will surely be determined at some point in the future.

          You sure you dont wanna put your name to your comments? Worth a laugh.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @Chris G

            - "Something considered a fringe theory while Trump was saying it but became a serious possibility/probability now the presidential race is over. "

            So RedPilled. [Insert Pepe meme here]

            - "You sure you dont wanna put your name to your comments?"

            Nah. Just call me AC. Why, you need to dox?

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @Chris G

              @AC

              "So RedPilled."

              Eh what? I am in the UK so if thats a US term I have no idea what you are on about. It is a fact though that a lab leak was considered a fringe theory while Trump was in power but then became plausible under Biden.

              "Nah. Just call me AC. Why, you need to dox?"

              Which AC of the many people who post AC? Dox? Is that what you are doing to me coward?

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: @Chris G

                - "It is a fact though that a lab leak was considered a fringe theory while Trump was in power but then became plausible under Biden."

                Gaslighting? WWG1WGA, Eh?

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: @Chris G

                - "It is a fact though that a lab leak was considered a fringe theory while Trump was in power"

                Enough with your MAGA gaslighting already. The leak was always a possibility. It was the other bits that people rightly poured cold water on:

                The actual story Trump was peddling

                And again the origin didn't matter. It was the response to the situation we need to look at. And the response was lacking across the globe. (Apart from Taiwan.)

                1. gandalfcn Silver badge

                  Re: @Chris G

                  I have found across many platforms that the lab leak fanbois know precious little about SARS-CoVs but all love to bash the Chinese. Said fanbois in the USA are also Trump fanbois and racists, just like the Tangerine Nightmare itself. They probably vote for DeSantis et al as well.

                2. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: @Chris G

                  @AC

                  "Enough with your MAGA gaslighting already. The leak was always a possibility."

                  https://spectatorworld.com/topic/media-u-turn-lab-leak-coronavirus-theory/

                  https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/557783-lindsey-graham-dismissal-of-wuhan-lab-leak-theory-cost-trump-2020-election

                  https://inews.co.uk/news/world/biden-does-u-turn-over-covid-origins-as-report-points-to-wuhan-lab-accident-1023521

                  I will stop adding more links to that for now. Unless you want more.

                  "And again the origin didn't matter. It was the response to the situation we need to look at."

                  On one hand I cant believe you wrote the origin doesnt matter. On the other we both agree its down to the response but the failure to respond was in China. Where they refused to cooperate and covered up the infection. Even after it spread refusing to cooperate even for looking for the supposed animal host transmitting to human from bat. This could have ended in Wuhan. This could have been curbed very quickly even if it was just spreading from Wuhan.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: @Chris G

                    - "I will stop adding more links to that for now. Unless you want more."

                    Sure thing. Go for it. Knock yourself out, buddy!

                    Here's a UK one for you that's not from a site with emphasis on the political slant such as The Hill and your "Daily Mail" and "Spectator":

                    Divisive COVID ‘lab leak’ debate prompts dire warnings from researchers - Nature

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: @Chris G

                      @AC

                      "Here's a UK one for you that's not from a site with emphasis on the political slant such as The Hill and your "Daily Mail" and "Spectator":"

                      Basically the article you link seems to be pointing out that China dont like being questioned or accused even when they are caught out covering up the pandemic. Simply China failed in a cover up of the outbreak and the lab leak possibility was dismissed for political reasons and brought back once the US election was over. Your article doesnt seem to disagree. So whats your problem?

                      1. Anonymous Coward
                        Anonymous Coward

                        Re: @Chris G

                        - "So whats your problem?"

                        Just wondering how you got so pilled/radicalized to arrive at your Covid world view.

                        1. codejunky Silver badge

                          Re: @Chris G

                          @AC

                          "Just wondering how you got so pilled/radicalized to arrive at your Covid world view."

                          In what way? Assuming your the same AC you have accused me of being red pilled and radicalised etc while trying to shift the blame from the source of the infection who have frustrated efforts to deal with it and allowed it to become a global pandemic while accepting but disliking that it could have come from the lab conducting such experiments.

                          Seems maybe your just short of someone to argue with in your life. Or maybe you need a snickers

                      2. Anonymous Coward
                        Anonymous Coward

                        Re: @Chris G

                        - "Basically the article you link seems to be pointing out that China dont like being questioned or accused even when they are caught out covering up the pandemic."

                        - "Or maybe you need a snickers"

                        Is snickers an English slur?

                        If that's all your RedPilled head could understand from that article then there's no point going any further. You have great day. Try not to get lost down your rabbit hole.

                        1. codejunky Silver badge

                          Re: @Chris G

                          @AC

                          "Is snickers an English slur?"

                          It was an amusing advert- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AsQBrbJ9T3M

                          "If that's all your RedPilled head could understand from that article"

                          Then point out something in that article you think I missed. Please, so I have a clue what your problem is. And while you do so feel free to read-

                          https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/08/12/covid-may-have-begun-chinese-scientist-collecting-bat-samples/

                          1. Anonymous Coward
                            Anonymous Coward

                            Re: @Chris G

                            Feel free to carry on yourself with your Gish Gallop. じゃあね

              3. gandalfcn Silver badge

                Re: @Chris G

                "It is a fact though that a lab leak was considered a fringe theory while Trump was in power but then became plausible under Biden". Fun Fact. Fringe theories are always plausible. Biden, being a person with a properly functioning brain, and not prone to racism and bullying, knew the fringe theory had to be addressed. He also knew it had been and still was being looked into, as you would know if you cared to investigate. However, it is still a fringe theory. Tell us, how long did it take to identify the vectors in SARS-CoV-1? The outbreak was in 2002 and it took 14 years to identify the source.

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: @Chris G

                  @gandalfcn

                  "Fun Fact. Fringe theories are always plausible"

                  So credit to Trump and others who instead of dismissing the idea and rubbishing it as his political opponents did insisted on investigation of the origins even if it was the lab.

                  "Biden, being a person with a properly functioning brain"

                  He forgot he was vaccinated thanks to Trump.

                  "knew the fringe theory had to be addressed"

                  Actually not so fringe and yet only considered fringe to fight a political campaign.

                  "Tell us, how long did it take to identify the vectors in SARS-CoV-1? The outbreak was in 2002 and it took 14 years to identify the source."

                  Probably easier if China allowed the WHO to help. Maybe if China didnt block attempts to find out where it came from. Perhaps if China didnt cover up the infection in the first place.

                  1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                    Re: @Chris G

                    "Tell us, how long did it take to identify the vectors in SARS-CoV-1? The outbreak was in 2002 and it took 14 years to identify the source."

                    Probably easier if China allowed the WHO to help. Maybe if China didnt block attempts to find out where it came from. Perhaps if China didnt cover up the infection in the first place.

                    Are getting confused by the similarly named SARS-CoV-1 and SARS-CoV-19?

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: @Chris G

                      @John Brown (no body)

                      "Are getting confused by the similarly named SARS-CoV-1 and SARS-CoV-19"

                      I dont believe so-

                      https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-55355401

          2. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

            Re: Taiwan

            > They tried something in an unprecedented situation.

            And even identified a drug protocol which reduces deaths by two-thirds. Published it on 4th March 2020 iirc. 3 drugs, used in early stage (only).

            Lunatic political gamesters have blocked its use in most Western countries, but Switzerland are using it. Dig up a graph of their (CH's) Case Fatality Rate and note 2 things:

            A. the death rate's absolute value is bizarrely low ; and

            B. a surreal spike in the middle where the death rate triples for 2 weeks then goes back to their low normal. What happened? The political mouth-frothers found out they were using the Taiwan protocol and scweamed and scweamed and scweamed and forced the Govt to ban it. Many unnecessary deaths later, the govt manned up and UNbanned it.

            Pure science: event study. But unethical.

            Most of India is using it; their CFR is _over_stated, but less than half of Australia's. We spend A$7,500/yr per person on healthcare, they spend US$73...

            There's also another drug protocol came out about this time last year, even more effective: 86% reduction. Same political nuts are fighting it too. But Uttar Pradesh is using it with outstanding results, Goa used it to hammer Delta, and so did Mexico City. Indonesia _was_ using it until June when WHO forced them to stop. Have a look at a graph of their daily deaths and see if you can spot June 2021 without looking at the X-axis...

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Taiwan

              If the Swiss are using it it'll be documented, because that's how they work, so show me a plausible link.

            2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: Taiwan

              "Indonesia _was_ using it until June when WHO forced them to stop."

              You seem to have a vastly overinflated idea of what kind of power the WHO has.

          3. gandalfcn Silver badge

            Re: @Chris G

            Is that you again Donald? Why aren't you throwing hissy fits about Fort Detrick?

            "WHO played down the danger " No that was you Donald. "“I wanted to always play it down,” Trump told author Bob Woodward on March 19, days after he declared a national emergency. “I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.”"

          4. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @Chris G

            >>Why? Who said that? They tried something in an unprecedented situation.

            It wasn't unprecedented though, was it. After the 2003 SARS outbreak, where Taiwan was hung out to dry by the rest if the world, they put the necessary planning in place to deal with any future epidemic/pandemic on their own.

      2. gandalfcn Silver badge

        Re: @Chris G

        "I think various governments have had their success and failure as none of them knew what to do." Oh but they did, the problem was they didn't want to upset their core electorate. The same is still happening.

  2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Wishful Thinking is an Almighty Vulnerability for Pirating and Pioneering.

    "There are of course limits to viral evolution, so we can expect the virus to eventually reach peak fitness, and new vaccines can be formulated," wrote the researchers.

    You might like to reconsider and accept to expect there are so such limits to its constant evolution for increased viral infection/virtual affectation.

    One of GCHQ's AWESome Tools .... Advanced IntelAIgent Private Intellectual Property Applications .... Campaigning in Novel NEUKlearer HyperRadioProACTive ITerated Fields for Future Endeavours ....... JOINT AIdVentures ‽ .

    And that question to C and M and Q and where and when there is a Will, there are countless other Majestic Ways to Lead Greater IntelAIgent Games Play Too.

    1. Muscleguy Silver badge

      Re: Wishful Thinking is an Almighty Vulnerability for Pirating and Pioneering.

      40% of the known cold viruses are coronaviruses whose trajectory to being just cold viruses would have looked a lot like Covid except in smaller less mobile populations but remembering that cold viruses killed a lot of the Tierra del Fuegans when they met the West.

    2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Wishful Thinking is an Almighty Vulnerability for Pirating and Pioneering.

      00ps! That first sentence should of course read ......You might like to reconsider and accept to expect there are no such limits to its constant evolution for increased viral infection/virtual affectation. ....... just in case you were persuaded to imagine it otherwise.

      1. JDPower666

        Re: Wishful Thinking is an Almighty Vulnerability for Pirating and Pioneering.

        I mean, it still doesn't make sense, but care to translate the rest of it too?

        1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

          Re: Wishful Thinking is an Almighty Vulnerability for Pirating and Pioneering.

          I mean, it still doesn't make sense, but care to translate the rest of it too? ... JDPower666

          In my defence, JDPower666, I would venture that it still doesn't make sense to you. However, currently at the time of this posting, four out of thirteen would appear to understand and approve it rather than think to offer a pretty useless silent anonymous non-informative downvote.

          I thank you for exercising the simple courtesy of asking a question about something you may have no or very little knowledge of, or may not care for at all, if one thinks one has more than just an inkling of what is revealed, ......... although to honestly be in that latter category has one identified as really belonging to the first category for one certainly has failed spectacularly to grasp the significance of the opportunity presented.

          As for the rest of it, translation is rarely provided and then only if ever required on a strictly need to know basis.Some things are too dangerous to know if one doesn't fully realise the catastrophic impact of the release of certain core nuggets of information and knowledge regarding future intelligence supply from/for Advanced IntelAIgent Providers, thus is it securely zealously guarded and extremely well protected against escape and exfiltration, abuse and misuse.

          It is the sort of stuff which is talked more fully about in the quiet circles of shady dark spaces and deep shadowy places and around the round tables in clubs which provide for those things which are fundamentally missing in life but be now ready to be uncovered and/or invented, discovered and/or recovered and provided by the likes of these sorts of specialist outfitters ...... and presently, in such a phorm, much more identifiable as Ethereal Heavy than Elite Centric, but IT and AI are an Agile Moveable Feast easily made Wonderfully Attractive to many an Addictive Beast and Rabid Rogue Daemon.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Wishful... ...Almighty Pirating and Pioneering.

            IT's so simplistic

            IT kicks and screams

            https://youtu.be/ugVlI_CEpWg

            Enya - River Flows

  3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    Fairly worthless comparison

    The long term viability of a virus will depend upon several factors but mutability (the ability to mutate faster than defence systems), fatality (too fatal and there's no one left to infect), specificity (how many species are affected and can thus act as a reservoir). Thus far SARS-COVID 2 doesn't seem to be anything like as mutable as, say, influenza but the zoonotic(?) origin, the bidirectional transmission to ferrets, cats and dogs suggest the potential for a reservoid is there. Smallpox was good at wiping everyone out, Polio is happy just to maim.

    On the science side: the development both of treatments and vaccines show quite how quickly we can now respond, if we put enough resources at a problem. We could also do the same with malaria, resistant TB and MRSA but there's not enough profit in those, yet.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Fairly worthless comparison

      >same with malaria, resistant TB and MRSA but there's not enough profit in those, yet.

      It's a little more difficult to wipe out a parasite with a huge natural reservoir than a single virus.

      There are many things wrong with the US medical system, but I'm not sure that insurers are demanding that drug companies not work on MRSA so that they can bill patients more for fatal diseases caught in their own hospitals

      1. Oddlegs

        Re: Fairly worthless comparison

        We're getting there. In April Oxford University announced a malaria vaccine with 77% efficacy. If the results hold it'll save far more lives than the covid-19 vaccine ever will

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: Fairly worthless comparison

          >Oxford University announced a malaria vaccine with 77% efficacy.

          But try getting Republican mosquitos to take it

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Fairly worthless comparison

        >> It's a little more difficult to wipe out a parasite with a huge natural reservoir than a single virus.

        Yeah, the human race is tenacious for sure.

        1. Antonius_Prime

          Re: Fairly worthless comparison

          To borrow from Marvel for a moment:

          "He's outta line. But he's right."

      3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        Re: Fairly worthless comparison

        If we can innocuate against plasmodium, we don't need to worry about the mosquitos as much, there's still dengue, zika, red nile, etc.

    2. Zolko Bronze badge

      Re: Fairly worthless comparison

      the development both of treatments and vaccines

      I missed what treatments have been developed, all I ever hear is that vaccines and only vaccines are effective. It seems even that potential treatments are actively forbidden by governements and fraudulently badmouthed by leading scientists.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Fairly worthless comparison

        "t seems even that potential treatments are actively forbidden by governements and fraudulently badmouthed by leading scientists."

        It appears that you've been looking in the wrong places. Perhaps you've been looking at bleach and the like.

        CPAP

        Dexamethasone

        There's a couple of effective treatments to be getting on with. Search for the RECOVERY trial. You'll find at least one more that's been found effective and several to be trialled.

        But have you stopped to think why vaccines are getting the most publicity. There are a couple of reasons. One you might have heard of - it's a well known saying about the relative merits of prevention and cure. The other - well, try to work it out for yourself.

        1. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

          Re: Fairly worthless comparison

          Sorry Doc, there are over 1.2 billion people using one treatment very successfully and more than half a billion using another even more successfully. Based on their numbers and event studies, we could have saved at least two thirds of the lives lost (and, anecdotally, eliminated Long Covid). It really is down to a toxic group of politics-obsessed idiots. See my note above re the Taiwan protocol.

      2. Dr_N Silver badge

        Re: Fairly worthless comparison

        uk.gov are funding research into 'Ivomec sheep & cattle dewormer' (remember the Sunday lunchtime TV ads?) right now. Even though in India it was found not to be an effective treatment last year.

        https://www.bbc.com/news/health-57570377

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Fairly worthless comparison

          The evidence for the efficacy of ivermectin is starting to become overwhelming.

          https://ivmmeta.com/

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Fairly worthless comparison

            The randomised clinical trial will prove it. One way or the other.

    3. gandalfcn Silver badge

      Re: Fairly worthless comparison

      "Giving evidence to MPs on Tuesday, Prof Sir Andrew Pollard said the fact that vaccines did not stop the spread of Covid meant reaching the threshold for overall immunity in the population was “mythical”."

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What do you mean no Apocalypse?

    Thank you for pointing out that it's not the civilization-ending virus that the mainstream media spouts out....

    Had a glance at influenza deaths today - they surpassed Covid back in March 2021 in the UK and are now 10x what Covid is... yet this is vary rarely highlighted anywhere..... BUT remember, HANDS, FACE, SPACE... oh and buy as much toilet paper and hold your breath for 12 months you should be fine.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

      "...influenza deaths... are now 10x what Covid is..."

      Yesterday's Covid figures on the BBC have a 7-day average death rate within 28 days of a positive Covid test as 88 per day. Please provide a link to the figures showing influenza daily deaths in the UK running at >800 per day. I'd really like to see this data. Thanks.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

        I found this one:

        https://www.ons.gov.uk/aboutus/transparencyandgovernance/freedomofinformationfoi/influenzadeathsfrom1999to2021

        Week 5 of 2021 under FOI indicates 5000 deaths involving influenza. That equates to almost 800 a day...

        Another FOI:

        https://www.ons.gov.uk/aboutus/transparencyandgovernance/freedomofinformationfoi/deathsfrominfluenzaandcovid19in2020and2021

        Shows influenza deaths surpassing covid for the same period: 127K vs 100K...

        Hey, maybe an influenza lockdown is needed?

        1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

          Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

          Interesting, though you are comparing "covid deaths despite global lockdown" versus "influenza with little intervention" so I don't think you can conclude that the diseases are similar in severity.

          1. Steve Button

            Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

            Ahh, but you assume lockdowns actually work. I'd like to see some evidence for that? Other than delaying things for a few months, or basically kicking the can down the road (and even then not very much - as most of the working class still have to go to work) I'm not convinced.

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

              @Steve Button

              "Ahh, but you assume lockdowns actually work. I'd like to see some evidence for that"

              I am looking forward to an autopsy of responses to the virus to see what was and not effective. While I can believe targeted lockdowns (particularly of the vulnerable) to be of some use I am not convinced blanket lockdowns or even the country wide lockdowns have solved anything.

              Lockdowns are certainly causing deaths so it would be interesting to see at what level it might have been more harm than good. Also the economic damage inflicted is huge the harder the lockdown.

              1. gandalfcn Silver badge

                Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

                So yu prefer to kill people in the name of mammon

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

                  @gandalfcn

                  "So yu prefer to kill people in the name of mammon"

                  Interesting you take my comment about wanting the fewest deaths as the opposite.

            2. gandalfcn Silver badge

              Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

              I'm not convinced you know very much.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

          Your own link shows that the "deaths due to influenza and pneumonia".. for Week 5 of 2021 were 305. You have mistaken the statistical category used by the ONS of "deaths involving influenza and pneumonia" with "deaths due to influenza and pneumonia".

          This article, also by the ONS:

          https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/bulletins/deathsduetocoronaviruscovid19comparedwithdeathsfrominfluenzaandpneumoniaenglandandwales/deathsoccurringbetween1januaryand31august2020

          compares deaths due to influenza and pneumonia to deaths due to COVID between January and August 2020.

          It states, in one of the "Main Points" in the summary at the start:

          "Influenza and pneumonia was mentioned on more death certificates than COVID-19, however COVID-19 was the underlying cause of death in over three times as many deaths between January and August 2020"

          Influenza and pneumonia are often mentioned on death certificates where they are not the primary cause of death.

          Should I also point out that Week 5 of 2021 is not "now"? I feel I should. I feel I should also point out that the death rate due to Covid in early 2021 peaked at about 1,250 a day in early 2021, when we were in the middle of Lockdown 3. That's nearly 9,000 a week.

        3. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

          " indicates 5000 deaths involving influenza. "

          You missed the "or pneumonia" on the end of that. Many covid patients are suffering pneumonia as a result of the covid.

          1. Steve Button

            Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

            And likewise many patients are suffering from something else (which was going to kill them anyway) and just happen to have caught Covid whilst in hospital, which may or may not have contributed to their eventual demise.

        4. Cuddles Silver badge

          Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

          "Hey, maybe an influenza lockdown is needed?"

          We had one. There wasn't a flu season last year, because measures to prevent one airborne respiratory infection from spreading turn out to also be effective against other airborne respiratory infections. But since covid is so much more infectious than flu, covid continued to circulate while flu was almost entirely stopped in its tracks. Note also that this is not in any way a new idea. Lockdowns to control the spread of flu have been used in previous pandemics, including the only one many people have heard of in 1918.

          As for whether such lockdowns are needed in general, that's a trickier question. How much do you value a human life? If we had regular lockdowns, or even just basic measures like masks and distancing, we could massively reduce the number of deaths from flu. There would of course be economic and societal downsides in return, although given the huge effects of having millions of people off sick every year maybe not as big as many people might think.

          In general, actual mandated lockdowns probably wouldn't bring enough benefits to justify the costs. But some very simple changes in behaviour, like not staggering in to work when ill just to prove how tough and hardworking you are, would have massive health and economic benefits. This is a big part of why comparing things to influenza in an effort to prove they're not really serious is so stupid - influenza is actually really serious. Just because we've got used to it being around doesn't mean it doesn't have a huge impact on things, or that we couldn't handle it a lot better than we usually do.

        5. gandalfcn Silver badge

          Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

          "Unfortunately, we do not hold analysis showing deaths rates for solely influenza from January 1999 to February 2021."

          "Deaths due to Influenza and Pneumonia" vs "Deaths due to Influenza and Pneumonia"

          "The International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Edition (ICD-10) definitions are as follows: coronavirus (COVID-19) (U07.1 and U07.2) and Influenza and Pneumonia (J09-J18).

          A death can be registered with both COVID-19 and Influenza and Pneumonia mentioned on the death certificate. Deaths where both were mentioned have been counted in both categories."

          You need to read what you are citing.

          Thewn your next attempt

          "Deaths due to Influenza and Pneumonia (underlying cause): 21,614"

          "Deaths due to COVID-19 (underlying cause): 92,913"

          So if 'flu caused half of the deaths Cov was 9 times worse.

          Remember, other people can actually read.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

        And another one from the Telegraph which took ONS data and made a nice graph...

        sorry to burst your bubble but feel free to hide in your bunker with your toilet paper.

    2. SkippyBing

      Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

      Honestly if you could remember to wash your HANDS on a regular basis and give me more SPACE that would be great at not spreading other diseases too. If you could hide your FACE I'd also appreciate it, although that has nothing to do with reducing infections.

      1. jason_derp Silver badge

        Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

        "If you could hide your FACE I'd also appreciate it..."

        I'm never not wearing a mask again. I'm that one guy in pictures from Chinese transit now. The masks also, coincidentally I'm sure, make me "deaf". My biggest problem is I need more baseball caps and differeent colored masks so I don't become easily identifiable to people I haven't scheduled an interaction with.

    3. James 51
      Boffin

      Re: What do you mean no Apocalypse?

      Do you think the flu kills 600,000 people in the US every year?

  5. ST Silver badge
    Unhappy

    eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

    I don't quite understand what triggered this wave of optimism about eradicating COVID-19.

    The Polio vaccine is mandatory, at least in the US. So is the Smallpox vaccine. The COVID-19 vaccine is not.

    How can we eradicate COVID-19 when there's a 30% contingent of idiots who refuse to get vaccinated.

    Coincidentally, they are all Trump fans.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Boothy Silver badge

      Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

      I think you're a tad out of date, routine smallpox vaccinations stopped in the USA in the 70s (most of Europe also stopped in the 70s).

      The last natural case was in October 1977, and the WHO classed smallpox as eradicated globally by 1980.

      By the mid 80s, all routine vaccinations had stopped Worldwide for smallpox. No point vaccinating for something that doesn't exist anymore outside of a lab!

      As far as I know, the only people who routinely get smallpox vaccinations now are lab workers, who are identified as having a risk of exposure to smallpox in the lab where they work.

      1. DS999 Silver badge

        Of course they quit smallpox vaccines

        They completed eradicated it. They didn't stop giving the shots until that had been done. I still have the scar on my arm from when I had it was I was a kid.

        I was 14 in 1980 when it was declared eradicated, so if I was born maybe a decade later I would not have had the shot. Unless one of the handful of countries that have or may have samples of smallpox weaponize it, it is pointless to vaccinate against it since it will never circulate again.

        1. VicMortimer

          Re: Of course they quit smallpox vaccines

          If you'd been born just a few years later you probably wouldn't have had it.

          I'm only a few years younger than you, and I've never had a smallpox vaccine. There wasn't much point in it since it was already gone from the US, and I didn't travel internationally for the first time until 1980.

    3. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

      >The Polio vaccine is mandatory, at least in the US. So is the Smallpox vaccine.

      Really? I thought the Smallpox vaccine was heavily restricted and was only handed out to US medics recently when there was a political scare about a terrorist bio-weapons attack (from Al-Queda's secret underground biotechnology labs)

      And the polio vaccine isn't mandatory - pretty much no vaccine is mandatory in the US. Unless you are a soldier, in which case being shot at is also mandatory, so a covid jab probably isn't your biggest worry.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

        At least in a few states polio is mandatory if you go to public school. And I had to get a MMR booster when I started grad school when nobody could find the proof that I'd already been vaccinated (I had, but the paperwork was missing).

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

      "Coincidentally, they are all Trump fans."

      Many are but not all. I could care less about politics. All politicians are corrupt and feed at the same trough so I've opted out because the system is "un-fixable".

      However, I have been self-healing for the last 40 years with natural methods and it seems to work. At 79, I am doctor-, pharma- and "condition"-free. If I get sick, the last place I'd go is a hospital. Instead, I'd be eating a lot of brown rice cream, miso soup, drinking ume-sho-kuzu regularly, using high-quality essential oils and taking appropriate Chinese herbs etc.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

        Please note this is not recommended if you fall and break your hip.

        That needs crystals....

        1. nauved

          Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

          "Please note this is not recommended if you fall and break your hip."

          It seems that you do not comprehend the difference between injury and sickness . . .

          1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

            Of course since Gravity is just a theory, that scientists all disagree on - I don't believe in falls

            1. MarkSitkowski

              Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

              Gravity: Not just a good idea - It's the law

              1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

                Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

                >Gravity: Not just a good idea - It's the law

                But Einstein's theory shows Newtons Law is wrong

                Quantum theory shows Einstein is wrong

                Loop Quantum Gravity shows both of them are wrong

                String theory might show LQG is wrong - but nobody cares because String Theory is self evidently a load of fetid dingo's kidneys

                1. MarkSitkowski

                  Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

                  >Gravity: Not just a good idea - It's the law

                  That truism came from Mythbusters. I trust them more than today's loopy physicists.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

          Indeed. (Homeopathic A&E YouTube)

    5. MarkSitkowski

      Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

      Ever hear of the Darwin Awards?

      Just do what the UK has done, and open up the economy. You don't want a vaccine? Fine. Just mingle with like-minded morons, and the problem will solve itself.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

        Why, will your vaccine not protect you? If not, why did you get it?

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

      How can we eradicate COVID-19 when there's a 30% contingent of idiots who refuse to get vaccinated.

      Please explain what's idiotic about those in demographics that are at very low risk from COVID choosing to wait for long term safety data before committing to take vaccines based on completely new delivery platforms?

      It's worthwhile remembering that none of the vaccines have yet to receive full regulatory approval and are all being administered on an emergency use authorisation basis. Plenty of clinicians and specialists raised their concerns about launching universal vaccination campaigns under these conditions. Their voices were drowned out through political and financial pressure.

      I'm not even sure that eradication will be possible since none of the vaccines confer sterilising immunity - you can still catch COVID - and the ONS in the UK has just released data showing that, for the Delta variant at least, the viral load of those infected is virtually identical, regardless of vaccination status. This means the fully vaccinated may be just as likely to transmit the virus.

      1. DJO Silver badge

        Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

        What you seem to have managed to omit is that vaccinated people who do get infected have far fewer and lesser symptoms, if any.

        Yes you can still catch Covid if you are vaccinated but if you do it'll do far less damage than if you weren't vaccinated.

        Considering the long term problems associated with C19, vaccination is definitely a benefit and not taking it because of some lunatic conspiracy theory is most certainly idiotic.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

          Yes you can still catch Covid if you are vaccinated but if you do it'll do far less damage than if you weren't vaccinated.

          They estimate that fully a third of people that acquire COVID are asymptomatic - they don't even know they have had it. So no, just because you're unvaccinated it does not necessarily mean you will suffer terrible consequences. Far from it. Even the WHO concedes that 80% of infections are mild or asymptomatic.

          https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/question-and-answers-hub/q-a-detail/coronavirus-disease-covid-19-similarities-and-differences-with-influenza

          It's all a balance of risks. 75 years old, morbidly obese with diabetes and congestive heart failure? Yep, sign me up! 12 years old and perfectly healthy? Think I'll pass.

          Considering the long term problems associated with C19, vaccination is definitely a benefit and not taking it because of some lunatic conspiracy theory is most certainly idiotic.

          Idiots, lunatics - out come the ad hominems once again!

          It's a simple fact that we have no long term safety data for these vaccines so any associated long term side effects are also consequently unknown. No mRNA vaccine (Pfizer, Moderna) has ever been approved for use in humans prior to COVID and the animal testing in the past has often thrown very disappointing, read fatal, outcomes. Similarly, adenovirus vector vaccines (Astra Zeneca, J&J) are also highly novel, with the first, an Ebola vaccine, only receiving approval in November 2019.

          Lastly, the differing approaches taken by the health authorities around the world does not inspire confidence. For example, the AZ vaccine is, as yet, completely unapproved in the USA. In Norway its use was permanently halted and in Italy it is reserved solely for the over-60s. Do these regulators fit your definition of idiotic lunatic conspiracy theorists as well?

          For me, hesitancy in the face of all this uncertainty is simply logical. I understand this is an IT site but some of you really ought to adopt less of a binary approach to contentious issues such as mandatory vaccination!

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

            "No mRNA vaccine (Pfizer, Moderna) has ever been approved for use in humans prior to COVID and the animal testing in the past has often thrown very disappointing, read fatal, outcomes."

            And yet, despite many, many millions of doses being administered, it's till a huge headline if someone dies after taking one. The death rate from the vaccines is barely measurable when matched with the death rates from COVID.

            Yes, they are authorised under emergency rulings, but the risk/reward ratio is massively in favour of taking it rather than refusing it. The USA seems to be carrying out a well thought out test of that risk/reward. Many southern and Bible Belt states have very low vaccination rates and are seeing a surge in infections and deaths compared to the states where vaccination rates are high. Of course I'm neither a virologist nor an epidemiologist, so I can only make wild assumptions based on the published data. So, a very few lives have been saved from vaccine caused deaths in those few states with sub-50% vaccination rates while many, many more are dying of COVID-19.

            I wonder how many Fox "News" presenters have been vaccinated? Or told the truth about being vaccinated?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

        Based on currently available data:

        1. The vaccine makes an individual much less likely to catch COVID, including in "very low risk" populations.

        2. The vaccine dramatically lowers the risk of death, serious side effects, or "long COVID", including in "very low risk" populations.

        3. Due to #1, the vaccine helps prevent an individual, including "very low risk" individuals, from spreading COVID to people who are at substantially higher risk.

        Why should a "very low risk" demographic get vaccinated? It protects THEM and it protects those AROUND them.

    7. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

      "The Polio vaccine is mandatory, at least in the US. So is the Smallpox vaccine. The COVID-19 vaccine is not."

      FWIW, if a vaccine is not fully approved, it can't be made mandatory. That's pretty much the same in most countries. I don't think any country as fully approved any of the Covid-19 vaccines other than on an "emergency" basis so far.

      As we learn more about side effects of the existing vaccines, especially over long term trails and monitoring, we'll be able to properly authorise them and sell them with the usual long list of possible side effects to indemnify the manyfactures and, depending on how COVID-19 pans out over the next year or two, either strongly recommend it as required or possibly mandate it.

    8. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio

      "Coincidentally, they are all Trump fans."

      And yet, Trump got vaccinated at the first opportunity. I wonder why he didn't shout that from the rooftops to his supporters, and keep on shouting it?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @"On the science side: the development both of treatments and vaccines show quite how quickly we can now respond,"

    Disagree, a year and a half in and we're still not vaccinated?

    If BioNTech were signed to Sinovac, instead of Pfizer, we'd be vaccinated with a decent vaccine already.

    If Pfizer cannot manufacture in volume, then what are they adding to the process? A fee? Some crypto block chain crap? Meetings with lots of Soy Decaf Lattes? What? It's literally their only job.

    Astra Zeneca, likewise, did you need to stop and have some tea? Did H&S need to come around and test the kettle for earth safety, and put a little sticker on it to say you are allowed to plug it in, and only then after they'd done that, you could have your tea and make some vaccines? Pathetic volumes, pathetic scaling.

    If its one thing we've learned its that China delivers in volume but lacks the expertise, and the west has the expertise but cannot deliver in volume.

    Its not difficult to predict the future: The efficacy of Chinese vaccines is piss poor 51%, the efficacy of US and EU made vaccines is 0% IF YOU DO NOT DELIVER THEM.

    Ten years from now, do you still want to be the worlds major pharmaceutical exporters? THEN MANUFACTURE AND EXPORT!

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Err, do you know what is involved in the manufacture of the different types of vaccine?

      Hint in the question: they are different types with very different processes, and none are as simple as mixing up a new colour of paint.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Well obviously the drug companies should have had vaccine plants, optomised for this particular novel vaccine, built and staffed and sitting idle ready for such a contingency.

        The same way that the NHS should have had 10x as many ICU beds sitting empty waiting for such an outbreak.

        1. Brad16800

          I know right?

          I love sarcasm :)

    2. Boothy Silver badge

      What delivery issue?

      UK is currently at 88.9% with the first jab, and 2nd is at slightly off 74.5%.

      The first jab numbers are only going up slowly now, as the remaining 11% unvaccinated people are most likely going to be those who can't, or don't want, to take the vaccination for some reason.

      The 2nd jab numbers, if they continue at current rate, should hit 90% in around 6 to 8 weeks.

      You don't even need an appointment now, just drop in at a walk-in centre.

      1. adam 40 Silver badge

        .. of adults, but you ignore the festering 15% of the population that is children, spreading it far and wide.

        So OF THE POPULATION we are around 73% first jab and 60% double-jabbed.

        It's still a respectable figure, but with the R of Delta around >=5 you need to have > 80% of the population double-jabbed to suppress it, and have no restrictions.

        1. Ragarath

          As a double jabbed

          Currently sitting at home with COVID, they also actually need to work.

          1. Dante Alighieri
            Boffin

            CPAP

            ...at home

            Not on O2

            Not on CPAP

            Not on ITU

            Not pushing up daisies

            Transmissibility (probably) and bad outcomes are reduced.

          2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: As a double jabbed

            "Currently sitting at home with COVID, they also actually need to work."

            None of the vaccines claim 100% effectiveness. IIRC the Chinese Sinovac is only about 50% effective. The lowest one in use in the UK is the Oxford Astra Zenica jab at about 80% effectiveness. That means that in some people it may not work at all while in others it may not be as effective as hoped and for still other, the majority, it will be very effective.

            Sadly, it appears you may be one of the unlucky ones. On the other hand, you didn't specify if you have any symptoms. Maybe you tested positive but have no symptoms? If so, good for you in staying home and not potentially spreading it.

            1. Anonymous Coward
        2. T. F. M. Reader

          @adam 40: "with the R of Delta around >=5 you need to have > 80% of the population double-jabbed to suppress it

          How does that work in your mind? Using your logic that links the 2 numbers, if the double jab prevents infection then once you reach 50% R cannot be more than 1. If the double jab does not prevent infection then 80% will not matter.

        3. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

          Don’t know why you were downvoted. Government quotes figures are for 18 or over, but try getting them to make that distinction whenever a minister is interviewed.

          Now 16yo’s are cleared to get the vaccine we have a real possibility of them breathlessly reporting over 100% of the country vaccinated.

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Here in NC, US, it's 52% first jab and 44% fully vaccinated. If we could convince people from 12 to 64 to get vaccinated, we'd be in far better shape than we are now - 4,272 new cases yesterday.

      2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        "The 2nd jab numbers, if they continue at current rate, should hit 90% in around 6 to 8 weeks."

        Although, interestingly, cases seem to be back on an upward trend nationally this past week. Where I live, here in NE England, we were at the top of the infections table for a short while, and are consistently still going down now in most areas, not even red on the map now, never mind dark red. Like the NW, it seems high vaccination rates and the recent high infection rates might indicate the vast majority are either vaccinated or have been infected and recovered and so also have a level of protection. We're currently at 83% first dose and 71% second dose in my borough and after being No.1 in the national COVID charts 3 weeks ago, are now down to 247 cases per 100,000 from about 1300 per 100,000 and the lowest rates in the immediate region.

  7. Mike 137 Silver badge

    Meaning what exactly?

    "On a scale of 0 to 3, the median score for COVID-19 was 1.6, compared to polio's 1.5 and smallpox's 2.7."

    It turns out from the paper that each of 17 loosely described factors (e.g. "Relatively low up-front cost of achieving eradication") were subjectively scored 1 to 3 meaning "high", "medium" or "low" and the numbers were then averaged for each disease. The classic mistake of doing math on category labels that look like numbers but aren't really.

    So the results to one decimal place are really quite arbitrary because [a] the math is intrinsically invalid and [b] a different team would be very likely to arrive at different scorings for at least some of the factors, not least because many of them are wide open to subjective interpretation. If they'd restricted themselves to expressing the opinion that Covid manageability falls somewhere between that of polio and smallpox with the caveat that there's a wide margin for error, it would've been good work, but pulling numbers out of a hat by unsound means to a resolution of 1 percent reduces it to the borders of nonsense.

    This is yet another example of the problem that besets risk assessment - superficially convincing results that won't stand up to rigorous scrutiny because they don't actually reflect any stable or concrete reality.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Meaning what exactly?

      So my plan to save money on the LHC by commissioning a poll of 1M people to ask them the mass of the Higgs boson (margin of error 0.01%) wasn't a good idea ?

    2. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: Meaning what exactly?

      This paper isn't about the science. It's basically a funding application to give them resources to come up with some (slightly) less contrived numbers.

      "Give us money and we'll prove this"

    3. scrubber

      Re: Meaning what exactly?

      Using pseudo-scienfic mumbo jumbo and using numbers to make it seem more mathematical and hence valid. Where have I seen that before in the covid debate?

      1. jason_derp Silver badge

        Re: Meaning what exactly?

        "...using numbers to make it seem more mathematical..."

        Run, mathematicians! They're on to you!

  8. elsergiovolador Silver badge

    Appetite

    Given that the virus gives politicians a justification for fulfilling their authoritarian wet dreams, I don't think there is an appetite to completely eradicate the disease.

    Plus given the rampant unabated corruption in the pharmaceutical industry, we are likely going to see frequent vaccination programs. We will be getting less effective and more expensive vaccines to keep us "safe".

    This way government will also get a nice weapon against any political dissent - if they find your political views are a danger to the status quo, you'll get a clotting agent at your next vaccine appointment. "Oh vaccines carry a risk, oopsie daisy".

    1. gandalfcn Silver badge

      Re: Appetite

      Given that the virus gives science deniers, anti-vaxxers and conspiracy theorists various a justification for fulfilling their insane wet dreams, there is no chance to completely eradicate the disease.

      Just like Flat Earth cultists and Creationists.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Appetite

        I'm a Creationist, and know a lot of Creationists. Many of us are vaccinated. Don't confuse belief in something greater than people with being anti-vaxxer, conspiracy theorist, or Flat Earther.

        1. Brad16800

          Re: Appetite

          The earth isn't flat?

  9. scrubber

    We Could, But Should We?

    Like everything to do with covid, there is no-one asking (economists) about the cost benefits of various measures. We had plenty of models showing the possible downsides of no policy or behavioural changes, but none of them were ever close to accurate (always erring on the side of panic) and absolutely zero analysis of the many impacts of lockdown type measures on anything other than covid death rates in the models.

    "public acceptance of infection control measures"

    Sure, lock everyone up and have people going door to door giving out vaccines would be a good start, but does not seem proportionate and the potential downsides may well kill many, many more than covid every could (think mass uprisings and civil wars). Not to mention the more mundane issues of economic impact, mental health issues, and delays in other treatments: how many thousands will die of potentially avoidable diseases because the NHS was completely focussed on covid for 2 years? Plus the fundamental change in balance of power between citizens and the state - which it looks like we're getting anyway.

    1. EvilDrSmith

      Re: We Could, But Should We?

      "how many thousands will die of potentially avoidable diseases because the NHS was completely focussed on covid for 2 years?"

      In July 2020, the Government's own estimate was that lock down had killed 25,000 (actually dead before July) and would kill another 185,000 (missed cancers etc) in years to come. Those were not dead 'of covid' or 'with covid' but specifically 'without covid' / due to lock down effects.

      I can't track down the news story now, so not sure if that was UK or just England. That was also with reference to Lock-down 1. (Looking back at past posting, I discussed this in a post I made in August 2020, where I said UK).

      Lock-downs 2 and 3 presumably have pushed up that number, though there may be more recent assessments that may have revised it down (though logically, the 25,000 actually dead should be a fairly reliable number).

      1. scrubber

        Re: We Could, But Should We?

        One dirty little secret no-one likes to talk about is that government policy is based not on lives, but at least partly on Quality Adjusted Life Years. Given the mean and median age of covid deaths is around 80, the deaths of younger people of avoidable diseases and other reasons would score much higher and so should be avoided with much greater urgency than the covid deaths. But that's not seen anywhere in the press that I can see. And certainly was not government policy, despite it being public policy in choosing treatments, deciding where to put rail crossings and bridges, speed limits, etc.

        1. scrubber
          Facepalm

          Re: We Could, But Should We?

          I take it back, there was a study done early on (using mortality covid rate of 4%) https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/907616/s0650-direct-indirect-impacts-covid-19-excess-deaths-morbidity-sage-48.pdf

          tl;dr: covid costs to March 2021: 530,000 QALY (minus 30k road deaths saved and another 30k from healthier lifestyles during lockdown???)

          Non-covid costs: 565,000 QALY

      2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: We Could, But Should We?

        "the Government's own estimate was that lock down had killed 25,000 (actually dead before July) and would kill another 185,000 (missed cancers etc) in years to come. Those were not dead 'of covid' or 'with covid' but specifically 'without covid' / due to lock down effects."

        Could we please have a citation for that to make sure you're claiming direct effects of lock down and (are there any mechanisms suggested for this) rather than deaths due to treatments not given because hospital and specifically ITU beds were occupied by COVID cases?

        1. EvilDrSmith

          Re: We Could, But Should We?

          "Could we please have a citation for that"

          No.

          Sorry, but as I did mention, I can't find any of the articles that dealt with it, because I didn't save or bookmark them a year ago.

          However, had you asked me a year ago when I first drew attention to this, then the answer would have been yes.

          From memory the direct deaths included heart attack and stroke type events, where the deceased followed government advice to stay at home- protect the NHS, and refused to call for an ambulance, which as a result was only called once they actually dropped down dead and their family ended up calling.

          The predicted deaths are due for example due to the cancellation of cancer screening, again, from memory.

          This one I did save a relevant link for (only for Scotland, mind):

          https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/1262288/Nicola-Sturgeon-news-SNP-latest-coronavirus-Scotland-cancer-screenings-cancelled-COVID19

          Ok, that's that the screening was cancelled, not the predicted death toll as a result, but it's also from March 2020, so before the prediction of lock-down induced deaths was made.

          There have been more-or-less continuous concerns expressed by mental health professions over the last 18 months about how lock-down is having a negative effect on those suffering with mental illness, and the likelihood of increased suicide numbers.

          You may be correct that some deaths occurred due to unavailability of beds due to their being used by Covid patients. However, this would have been a highly newsworthy story. Had it happened, I think we would all know it / remember it (it is the sort of thing that opposition politicians would - rightly - be banging on about for ever more).

          From memory, one hospital in North London did call an emergency 'we're full' type alert, which saw incoming patients diverted to neighbouring hospitals for a few days. That got quite a lot of publicity at the time, despite no patient actually suffering.

          So in summary - no I cannot provide the citation, because it was >1 year ago and I didn't bookmark it, but yes their are clear and credible mechanisms that show how lock down can cause deaths.

          1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

            Re: We Could, But Should We?

            David Spieglehalter and Anthony Masters published an article in the Guardian 'How good are we at predicting the pandemic?':

            https://www.theguardian.com/theobserver/commentisfree/2021/may/09/how-good-are-we-at-predicting-pandemic

            "Perhaps the most famous piece of modelling came from Neil Ferguson’s team at Imperial College London in March 2020, credited with provoking the full national lockdown. Unfortunately, there are repeated claims they estimated 510,000 deaths in Great Britain over two years, but that was a projection under the implausible scenario that nothing was done about the virus. Their model was, if anything, rather optimistic. Even short of a full lockdown, they projected maximum deaths in Great Britain of fewer than 50,000 and the actual total has been far higher.

            In July 2020, a “reasonable worst case scenario” predicted 85,000 UK Covid deaths up to 31 March 2021. This seemed pessimistic at the time but, in part due to the unforeseen “Kent” variant, the truth turned out to be rather worse than the “worst case”, with about 95,000 deaths."

            Link to the 'reasonable worst case scenario numbers:

            https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/spi-m-o-uk-reasonable-worst-case-scenario-weekly-metrics-30-july-2020

            Also on 15th March 2020:

            https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/15/uk-coronavirus-crisis-to-last-until-spring-2021-and-could-see-79m-hospitalised

            "

            “For the public to hear that it could last for 12 months, people are going to be really upset about that and pretty worried about that”, said Paul Hunter, a professor of medicine at the University of East Anglia.

            “A year is entirely plausible. But that figure isn’t well appreciated or understood,” added Hunter, an expert in epidemiology.

            “I think it will dip in the summer, towards the end of June, and come back in November, in the way that usual seasonal flu does. I think it will be around forever, but become less severe over time, as immunity builds up,” he added.

            The admission that the virus will continue to cause problems for another year appears to undermine hopes that the arrival of warmer weather this summer would kill it.

            "

    2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: We Could, But Should We?

      Plus the fundamental change in balance of power between citizens and the state - which it looks like we're getting anyway. ... scrubber

      Would you like to be much more specific and revealingly unambiguous and identify such wielders of power balances by recognisable names, scrubber?

      So that they can be Immaculately Helped .... Virtually Aided and Remotely Abetted. They sure certainly do need ITs AI Assistance rather than Inviting IT and AI to Demonstrate Exercise of Employment and Deployment and Enjoyment of Overwhelming Resistance and Overpowering Opposition?

      If you can realistically and truthfully offer to supply and deliver more than just that, .... Bravo, who would not want it? And how much and in what way does one pay for Constant Interminable Uninterruptible and Uncorruptible Incorrigible Provision would be the capital question to next ask for a perfectly sensible reply easily fully acceptable and mutually beneficial to One and All.

      Anything else would be Fraudulent Snake Oil and an Ultra Toxic Poison for the Crazy Losers and Mad Inmates of the Universal Asylum ....... which is as a Heaven to Some and a Few in Extremis and Hell to Many More than Simply All Others.

    3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: We Could, But Should We?

      I don't suppose there were too many estimates of the environmental consequences either (hint - a very large global death rate would have been environmentally beneficial given that it's the human population that's the big problem). However the political effects of letting a pandemic run its course are not good as soon as people start weighing up the probability that they might not be in the survivors.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: We Could, But Should We?

        "people start weighing up the probability that they might not be in the survivors."

        That's probably the best argument against anti-vaxxers and the various "survivalist" types too. What makes them think they are so special that they will survive in the first place? In many cases, it's their faith, not facts.

  10. jason_derp Silver badge

    What does this translate to the average mind?

    Oh COVID is going to go away eventually? Fuck yeah, time to do nothing about it.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nope, don't believe it.

    I am layman, sure. But from my basic understanding, Polio infected humans. Like some flu's, Covid19 infects animals and humans. How are they going to get rid of the animal part? Covid19, like all the flu's, is with us from now on, it will continue to mutate, and have breakouts.

    1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

      Re: How are they going to get rid of the animal part?

      I presume that legislation will be introduced where all domestic animals will be subject to mandatory vaccination, once enough vaccines have been produced to make this viable. The pharma companies, etc. would no doubt lobby vehemently for this.

      This does, however make direct human contact with wild animals more likely to introduce mutations that would be dangerous to humans.

    2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Nope, don't believe it.

      Infecting animals does not mean that the animals are a sufficient reservoir to maintain a pandemic.

      In the USA armadillos carry leprosy but there isn't an ongoing problem with lepers (perhaps thoughts and prayers cure leprosy)

      1. Man inna barrel Bronze badge

        Re: Nope, don't believe it.

        >In the USA armadillos carry leprosy but there isn't an ongoing problem with lepers

        As far as I know, leprosy is not very infectious, though it is very nasty when you catch it. Also, are armadillos common in the USA?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Nope, don't believe it.

          They are only in the southern part of the U.S. And the reason you keep them as pets is because leprosy is baaaaad.

        2. NXM

          Re: Nope, don't believe it.

          I'd have a pet less heavily defended, like the illo

  12. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "The scientists warned eradication could take years"

    It's a bit like saying science advances one death at a time except this is going to be the anti-vaxers. "Years" seems right.

  13. This post has been deleted by its author

  14. Danny 2 Silver badge

    Trichloroethylene increases risk of Parkinson's five fold

    A couple of months ago I read an article about trichloroethylene that made me email my mate saying, "We're doomed!"

    Our first employer used huge vats of trichloroethylene to clean boards and components and as trainee techs we'd have to clean out the vats. I'm sure most electronic firms did the same at the time, maybe still do.

    Then last month I was so unwell I was admitted to A&E, who diagnosed a potassium deficiency. Ate a banana, then I got better, now I'm unwell again. Ate another banana, still unwell. I've not seen a doctor yet but my symptoms do fit with PD according to Doctor Internet.

    My left hand is now too shaky to hold a cigarette, and everyone - everyone - put that down to my drinking too much. Hopefully I'm a hypochondriac drunk, just thought I should warn you lot.

    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/44645244_Trichloroethylene_and_Parkinson%27s_disease_Dissolving_the_puzzle

    1. Dante Alighieri
      Alien

      Re: Trichloroethylene increases risk of Parkinson's five fold

      ask for a DAT scan (PET alternatives are available but rarely)

      it's a pre-synaptic dopamine radiotracer

      1. Danny 2 Silver badge

        Re: Trichloroethylene increases risk of Parkinson's five fold

        Thank you for the advice Dante. That'll be months from now as first I have to see a GP to get an appointment to see a neurologist, and the NHS is understandably stretched just now.

        Some readers may think I'm over-reacting to my symptoms. Michael J. Fox, the poster boy of Parkinson's, was first diagnosed due to a twitching little finger and a sore shoulder.

  15. Eclectic Man Silver badge

    Virus reservoirs

    It is all very well worrying about the animal reservoirs of the Covid-19 virus, but what about the human reservoirs? South America in particular with Bolsonaro's denial that Covid-19 is particularly dangerous means there is a vast reservoir of humans infected and producing variants. Israel has an excellent record of vaccinating the Israeli population, but denies any responsibility for vaccinating Palestinians in either the West Bank or Gaza, despite controlling their borders. This may be popular with extreme Zionists, but not a good idea to have about 4 million unvaccinated people literally on your borders.

    And as for border controls, we haven't exactly been very effective at that recently now, have we?

    Just glad I've had two jabs and don't need to go out to work any more.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Virus reservoirs

      If you were a Palestinian, would you trust an Israeli with a needle (or vice versa)?

      1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

        Re: Virus reservoirs

        At the risk of severe downvoting, yes.

        Israeli hospitals have treated and continue to treat injured and sick Palestinians. It is in the interests of all, Israelis and Palestinians get some protection from Covid-19 by vaccination, and as Israel controls the borders, the Israelis have the opportunity to expedite the transit of vaccine into the West Bank and Gaza and this could most easily be done under Israeli control supervised by, say, the UN, ICRC or Save The Children*. One of the major problems in getting things into the occupied territories is the insistence of detailed searches which causes delays. If the shipments were organised by the Israelis there would not be any need for time-delaying searching.

        *Decades ago, in Beirut, Lebanon, Save The Children would inform the militias when they were crossing the Green line to provide vaccinations against MMR, Polio etc. they would then turn up, on the day, cross into militia territory and vaccinate everyone's children. Their stance was that they would either vaccinate everyone, or no one, no discrimination on politics or religion. One day one of their personnel was abducted. The head of STC in Lebanon issued a statement to the effect that either their person was released unharmed or Save the Children would pull out of Lebanon completely, and no-one's children would be vaccinated against anything. The man was released unharmed a few days later.

  16. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    So what about an HIV vaccine?

    We're still waiting for an HIV vaccine ... basically creating an effective vaccine is not easy, we've been very lucky that the current COVID-19 vaccines have been created so quickly even if they are not 100% effective. But look at the history of Flu vaccines, they need to evolve every year and it looks like that's happening with COVID-19 too. Fingers crossed, hopefully a fully functional vaccine will get created to eradicate COVID-19 but we'll not know for certain soon.

    1. nauved

      Re: So what about an HIV vaccine?

      "Fingers crossed, hopefully a fully functional vaccine will get created to eradicate COVID-19 but we'll not know for certain soon."

      Maybe if we hadn't ventured into GoF research decades ago, we wouldn't be here now. :)

      I see endless vaccine experimentation on human populations for the foreseeable future. But is the cure worse than the disease? Only time will tell:

      This from the International Journal of Vaccine Theory, Practice, and Research

      https://ijvtpr.com/index.php/IJVTPR/article/view/23

      The PDF is an eye-opener.

    2. IGotOut Silver badge

      Re: So what about an HIV vaccine?

      Although there is no hiv vaccine there is PrEP which massively reduces the risk of transmission / infection.

      The thing is, coronaviruses are relatively "easy" to vaccinate against, whereas HIV by its very nature is extremely difficult.

      There is no big pharma cover up, because they could make a huge amount of money from it if there were a vaccine.

    3. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

      Re: So what about an HIV vaccine?

      As I understand it, HIV is a notoriously difficult virus to vaccinate against. But I also recall an interview (Desert Island disks!) with one of the leads on the Astra Zeneca program, who had spent a career working on HIV vaccines and credited that groundwork for how quickly they got results for a COVID one.

      Also, significantly, managing HIV is so much easier now - one pill a day, and I believe widely affordable even in sub-Saharan Africa. In terms of years off your life, you’re better off with HIV than Diabetes (conclusion from a friends postdoctoral).

      All of which means incentive for an HIV vaccine is lower, because it’s relatively easy to live with.

  17. deadfamous

    NZ breaking wind

    Spike, the toxic protein

    Makes clots and broken platelets

    But The Register in a moment of hilarity

    Discovers NZ cognitive dissonance

    Ivermectin is the answer

    It’s one big cover up

    What’s the matter, Register?

    You lost your balls?

    1. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

      Re: NZ breaking wind

      You lost your mind?

  18. Duncan Macdonald Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Fat chance

    With the number of countries whose health systems for the poor are pathetic (eg India) and the number of countries with ongoing conflicts, the chance of eliminating the disease are near zero.

    Unlike polio and smallpox, the people who recover from covid-19 do not provide permanent visual reminders of the disease - no pockmarked faces or paralysed people. The richer people in places like India can protect themselves and if some of the poor die that does not bother them.

    1. Eclectic Man Silver badge

      Re: Fat chance

      There are some people suffering from quite severe 'long Covid', such as Michael Rosen, the author:

      https://www.theguardian.com/books/2021/aug/07/michael-rosen-sticky-mcstickstick-book-about-covid-recovery-covid

      https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/long-term-effects-of-coronavirus-long-covid/

      https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-57833394

      The issue may be that these people are not so obviously the victims of Covid-19.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That's not the problem we need to solve, globally

    We first and foremost need a vaccine against profound stupidity.

    Alternatively, we could try to get people everywhere at least up to a base level of education but since people with Ivy League educations are talking BS Iit seems that isn't working as it ought to.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: That's not the problem we need to solve, globally

      Given the number of people who voted for Trump, I doubt if even the Four Horsemen could eliminate stupidity from the human race.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: That's not the problem we need to solve, globally

        You could say "nuke them from orbit" if it wasn't for the fact that they are the ones who have the nukes.

        In context, that's even doubly worrying.

  20. mbee

    Covid 19 Horse manure

    Covid 19 is essentially harmless to children unlike say Polio or Small pox. Covid 19 to those without preexisting conditions is less threatening than the yearly flu. There are vaccines. If you take the vaccines you are protected from the virus for most people, around 94 percent. The other 6 percent get the virus but not a serious case of inflammation which is what actually kills you. Many meds have been found to treat the inflammation or prevent it, some of those meds kill the virus as well. The virus is a political tool used to gain power by the left, it is not a pandemic like say polio or Small pox.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. tojb

      Re: Covid 19 Horse manure

      So many problems with this post:

      1) Covid is not harmless to kids, acute symptoms are less but risk of lasting damage is about the same as for adults.

      2) Catching it post-vaccination depends on the effectiveness of the vaccine, but also on the amount of exposure. If you are getting hot guffs of mutant strain every time you step outside then your vaccination is now of much reduced benefit.

      3) "The virus is a political tool used to gain power by the left" sheesh... it is beside the point but maybe the Chinese did let it out on purpose, although it is much more likely due to incompetence and poor hygiene. Something tells me they are not the 'left' that you are talking about anyway, you are imagining Hilary Clinton or lizards or Trump not-secretly in league with the Russians or something. Anyone for pizza?

      1. Eclectic Man Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Covid 19 Horse manure

        From the Guardian a few days ago:

        Rebecca Solnit states that the Republican administration allowed Covid-19 to run in the USA as they thought that it would affect Democratic states more than Republican ones.

        https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/aug/07/republicans-treated-covid-like-bioweapon-turned-against-them

        "Trump’s team reportedly believed that coronavirus would hurt Democratic states – and Democratic governors – worse. But the virus does not discriminate"

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Covid 19 Horse manure

      Harmless? You wish. Statistically it's certainly having less of an impact than on older people, but the delta variant is apparently far less picky when it comes to age, and real life reports are not pretty or reassuring.

      From https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2021/08/04/pediatrician-covid-children-delta/:

      "Throughout the pandemic, I have cared for kids admitted with covid-19 to the children’s hospital in Houston where I am a pediatrician. These children have included newborns with fevers who require a sepsis evaluation, school-age kids whose bodies are ravaged with inflammation associated with covid-19 in children, and tweens and adolescents with covid pneumonia who need oxygen and other respiratory support. I’ve cared for children whose entire families have been devastated by covid — sometimes the child was sick enough to be admitted but had no parent at their bedside because the parents were critically ill at the adult hospital down the street or, worse, had recently died of covid.

      All the while, as both a doctor and mother, I’ve wrestled with a certain dissonance: There is this popular notion that covid doesn’t affect children — and my public health and epidemiologic training reminds me that on a population level, it’s true. The majority of children who contract covid-19 will be asymptomatic or have mild disease. But I contrast this with the reality of being a clinician at the bedside of children critically ill from covid and covid-related illnesses. These two perspectives battle in my brain as I make risk assessments for my own school-age child. One thing that terrifies me as a parent is that we can’t predict why some children get so incredibly sick from covid while others have mild disease; we don’t know why some go on to have lingering debilitation and symptoms for months, and others make quick recoveries.

      What I do know is that in this moment, as the highly contagious delta variant becomes the predominant strain circulating and we enter another covid surge, I am more worried for children than I have ever been.

      So stop the BS, please.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Covid 19 Horse manure

      (had to strip out a post remnant, so reposted)

      1 - there is an increasing amount of kids being taken into hospital with respatory problems because of the Delta variant. While it still doesn't seem to affect most of them much, prevention is better than cure, so protecting them is still a good idea.

      2 - "Many meds have been found to treat the inflammation or prevent it, some of those meds kill the virus as well."

      There are NO reports, worldwide, of medication actually eradicating the virus, only of some that seem to alleviate the most dangerous symptoms.

      3 - "If you take the vaccines you are protected from the virus for most people, around 94 percent. The other 6 percent get the virus but not a serious case of inflammation which is what actually kills you"

      No. Current vaccinations do nothing to stop you from getting the virus, hence the continued need for masks. What the vaccines do is "teach" your immune system how to fight this virus, which in most cases means that someone vaccinated will barely notice an infection, but it has already been shown that even someone vaccinated can an equivalent load of infected nasal particles than a non-vaccinated person and can thus be as contageous, but for a much shorter time and with no other effects.

      Now, as you appear to be going down the usual list, I'm posting this here in advance, so you can save yourself the trouble of doubting the efficacy of masks next.

  21. tojb

    Polio officially remains only in Pakistan

    But somehow I don't think that the taliban are keeping up with their jabs over the border in Afghanistan, look forward to a new epidemic of this horrible disease.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Polio officially remains only in Pakistan

      Preveting poorer nations turn into petri dishes for diseases is in general the one argument that should convince even utterly self serving nations to help poorer nations with healthcare (as ethics rarely seem to make it), but alas :(.

    2. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

      Re: Polio officially remains only in Pakistan

      Worth noting the reason Polio is still there is the scepticism against the vaccines from what you might call the "religious right" - people are told it will sterilise them, it's part of the west's plan to eradicate muslims. Sounds strangely familiar doesn't it?

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There are other "events" besides death to consider

    This from VAERS which has been collecting adverse vaccine events in the US for 30 years:

    https://www.openvaers.com/covid-data/mortality

    https://www.openvaers.com/covid-data

  23. plrndl
    Big Brother

    Till Death Do Us Part

    The medical industry makes vast profits from treatment of illness, NOT from curing it. A patient cured is a customer lost.

    This is the fundamental problem that needs to be addressed before we can expect technology to give us better health.

    Meanwhile, I'm off to the pub. Got to keep my spirits up.

  24. Palerider

    I'm very interested in how these scientists believe that we can eradicate the COVID virus like we did Smallpox and Polio (Poliomyelitis). Smallpox and Polio never learned to infect anything other then humans. Animals do NOT contract either Smallpox or Polio (Poliomyelitis).

    However, based on the available information to date, the risk of animals spreading SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, to people is possible.We are still learning about this virus, but we know that it can spread from people to animals in some situations, especially during close contact.

    So, how do we successfully eradicate a virus that has animal reservoirs to rely on for survival?

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