Coronavirus Special Coverage

A collection of news posted throughout the week for those that want signal, not noise.

  • Previous coverage - all of our posts in this ongoing series.
  • Coronavirus status page - learn how to prepare for possible spread to your area. Scenarios, shopping lists, background info and everything else you need, all in one place.

COVID-19: key developments for Friday, June 5, 2020

There are over 6.8 million global cases.  The US has over 1.95 million cases. Cases have grown by over 28,000 in the US since yesterday, with over 1,200 deaths in that same period. There have been nearly 400,000 deaths around the world.

Encephalopathies associated with COVID-19 are real and they are scary. This thing occasionally attacks the brain (or makes the body release cytokines that cause brain inflammation). It’s not as surprising as it sounds—many pathogens you wouldn’t think to attack the brain actually can. What’s surprising in this analysis of case studies is just how profoundly the CNS systems were affected. We don’t know for sure of the virus was crossing the blood brain barrier or if some other process was at play in causing the encephalopathies. We’ll need more data to find out. Autopsies on another set of patients showed prominent brain involvement.

Cases in Florida are rising again:

Jobs are on the rebound and the stock market was happy about that today. The US gained 2.5 million jobs in May. The US unemployment rate is about 13.3% We need to temper our optimism as time goes on, and continue measures to keep people afloat in the event of a second wave of both cases and job losses in the coming months.

There’s a running tally of over 2,600 Sheriff staff and county inmates who have been positive for COVID-19. Almost 5,000 inmates are currently quarantined.

Americans are misusing bleach in attempts to fight the virus. Do not gargle with bleach, people. Caustic ingestion is extremely lethal, and it’s a horrible way to die. A CDC survey reveals a number of really dangerous practices people are engaging in with chemicals like bleach. There has also been a large increase in calls to poison control centers because of these practices.

Countries with rising new infections include the US, Brazil, Peru, Mexico, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Russia, Egypt, Iran, and others:

Read more about global hot spots here.

Also of concern is the fact that we’re plateauing at a very high rate of case growth and daily deaths.

I keep seeing people arguing that it’s not the hydroxychloroquine that’s helping people, it’s the zinc it’s paired with. It doesn’t look like either is helping people:

Serology studies in Wuhan and Hong Kong show very low community seroprevalence. Tens of thousands of people submitted samples in those locations, and the seroprevalence is less than 5% in both places. There’s a higher attack rate in health care workers (HCW). A study in China showed an attack rate of nearly 20% in HCW and noted similarly high attack rates in HCW world-wide.