Coronavirus Special Coverage

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

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Key developments for Wednesday, September 30, 2020

There are over 34.1 million global cases.  There have been over 1 million total deaths—this horrible milestone was passed this week. There are over 7.4 million cases in the US. There have been over 211,000 deaths in the US. Over 850 have died in the US since yesterday. India gained over 86,000 new cases in the last 24 hours and has been gaining at this rate for the last week.

Hospitals are overflowing in Israel, and parking lot hospital beds are popping up in Haifa. 770 additional beds have been created in this manner. Israel is on its second lockdown and is seeing an alarming rise in severe COVID cases. Many Israeli hospitals are at capacity, making the makeshift underground beds a necessity.

United is going to make rapid COVID tests available to passengers on certain flights. The program will be rolled out first on San Francisco to Hawaii flights to help meet Hawaiian entrance requirements.

The WHO anticipated over 2 million global deaths from COVID-19:

A large serostudy shows low seroprevalence in the US—less than 10% on average in the adult population. The prevalence of antibodies varies pretty wildly from region to region, however. What’s clear is that we are nowhere close to herd immunity. It’s unclear how accurate this whole picture is, though, given that antibodies wane after about four months.

COVID-19 is now a big problem in more rural communities. Attack rate in metro areas was predominate at the start of the pandemic, but now attack rate in small metro areas and non-metro areas is leading.

DeSantis opens Florida and blocks COVID restrictions. Florida bars are subsequently packed:

The Johnson and Johnson vaccine is moving to large phase 3 trial with over 60,000 participants. It created neutralizing antibodies in over 98% of participants with just one shot in previous trials.

Grocers are stockpiling goods in anticipation of wintertime needs during the pandemic.

COVID-19 cases are rising in half of US states. This is not unanticipated as we noted a few weeks ago that 31 US states had an R > 1 and we know to watch for lagging indicators. It’s helpful to know that R, the reproductive number of the virus, is not the only important factor involved. SARS-CoV-2 spreads stochastically (having a more random pattern of spread than linear), and contagion tends to be more driven by superspreader events than the kind of homogenous person-to-person spread you’d imagine when thinking about R alone. Here’s a good primer that explains this, and why test-trace-isolate is still the best way to halt spread.

Genetic risk factors for severe COVID-19 might have come from Neanderthal genes?


  • 4 Comments

    • EzlyAmuzzed

      I’m a FL resident that lives 2 blocks from our city’s nightlife. The night our governor opened up the state, the restaurants and bars filled up so much that it was hard to even drive past those areas, and no masks to be seen. As an avid reader of this blog you know I’m staying away from everyone! Plus I have 86% more Neadrathol DNA than others lol

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    • CedarBloom

      Every year, 1.35 million people are killed on roadways around the world. Every day, almost 3,700 people are killed globally in road traffic crashes involving cars, buses, motorcycles, bicycles, trucks, or pedestrians. (WHO, 2018)

      *Why is the Economy not shut down to force cultural and infastructural shifts away from individual automobiles and towards public transportation, walking, cycling, etc?

      Approximately 3.1 million children die from undernutrition each year (UNICEF, 2018a)

      *The billions of dollars spent to develop vaccines for Covid are not being used to get food to where it is needed most. Why?

      @cosmicpixle please be mindful of the headlines you write and picture you draw by connecting dots that can be connected many different ways. Is 1 million global deaths by Covid a “horrible milestone” worthy of striking fear into the hearts of Americans? Or is about 655,000 Americans dying from heart disease every year a more realistic call to action? Considering chances of developing heart disease increase with lifestyle choices such as physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, overweight & obesity, excessive alcohol use, smoking, and largely preventable health conditions such as high blood pressure… “fast food” should be shutdown (not small businesses), soda pulled from the shelves, and government subsidized gym memberships given to all citizens (instead of high fructose corn syrup and cane/beet sugar crop subsidies). In addition wide scale public health campaigns to educate our populace in how to cultivate active lifestyles as well as prepare fresh, whole foods grown in nutrient rich soils.

      If social isolation, economic shutdown, statewide lockdowns, revocation of freedom of assembly, and forced quarantines are “for the health and safety of the public” doesn’t it seem kinda backwards given the info cited above for conditions that have already been present for many years…? For protection against a virus (illness), why is our government/media/peers/ThePrepared not providing as many tools to live the healthiest life possible, as are being provided to live in fearful isolation?

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