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Alex_Krycek

Comparing Corona Virus Success Stories with Abysmal Failures

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5 hours ago, Danijel Gorupec said:

New Zealand is one striking example of a whole class of countries that claim (rightfully) success in fighting the virus. At least they won the initial battle (as I doubt the war is over).

I think, the question is if during that time they managed to establish effective work procedures, organize tracking teams, educate population, increase hospital capacity... If they did, then the initial strong reaction was a good investment. If not, then I they are again at the beginning.... I mean, they cannot remain an island in the ocean forever :)

I chose NZ because it was well documented (see the length of the wiki article).

I don't believe any country could pretty much eliminate cv without "establish effective work procedures, organize tracking teams, educate population." No need for a major expansion of hospital capacity in NZ though.

Cynically, there's one very good reason it's unlikely NZ leaders will allow a resurgence.

From 13th April:

Quote

 

There are 20 new coronavirus cases in New Zealand as Jacinda Ardern reveals all Government ministers and public sector chief executives will take a 20 per cent pay cut.

Ardern said the pay cut, which will last for six months, was about the Government taking leadership and also reflected what was happening in the private sector.

 

 

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I think now with more information at the very least one can look at the responses based on different parameters. The first is how fast plans were developed and/or put in place. These would point to overall outbreak response readiness. Here only few countries distinguished themselves. The second is what type of responses were put in place once local numbers have been detected. Looking at outcomes is a bit difficult here, as the spread throughout the world was uneven. Some areas did not react faster, but due to lack of cases had much better outcomes who put similar restrictions in place. 

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2 hours ago, Carrock said:

II don't believe any country could pretty much eliminate cv without "establish effective work procedures, organize tracking teams, educate population." No need for a major expansion of hospital capacity in NZ though.

 

New Zealand probably did it right. On the other hand, my country (Croatia) also has a good statistics, but I suspect we only did it by locking people inside their homes. I don't see improvements in infrastructure and I don't see why yoyo effect would not happen to us... So I guess it can depend from country to country.

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1 hour ago, Danijel Gorupec said:

New Zealand probably did it right. On the other hand, my country (Croatia) also has a good statistics, but I suspect we only did it by locking people inside their homes. I don't see improvements in infrastructure and I don't see why yoyo effect would not happen to us... So I guess it can depend from country to country.

Croatia went in for extreme lockdown but it also seems to be doing a lot of testing and presumably contact tracing etc.

IMO the most important thing NZ and Croatia have in common is they first treated Covid as a serious problem less than a month after their index case.

So many other countries seem to have decided to wait and see if the predictions by WHO etc of a major epidemic were correct before doing anything.

(CharonY's comment also relevant and helpful.)

 

 

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Seems China isn't just building islands in the South China Sea to increase their territorial limits.
Seems they are not just scrapping the contract they had with Hong Kong that granted them independent governance until 2047.
Seems they are not just threatening Australia for suggesting an independent investigation into the origins of SARS-COV2 to prevent future outbreaks, by cutting trade.
Seems they are not just threatening Canada for detaining the Huawei CFO for possible extradition, by cutting trade and imprisoning Canadian nationals.
Seems they are not just engaging in internet IP theft, Political influencing and dissemination of disinformation.
Seems they also withheld the genetic decoding of the new virus for at least a week, and then stalled for at least two more weeks before giving the WHO pertinent information    "all at a time when the outbreak arguably might have been dramatically slowed"

https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/world/china-delayed-releasing-coronavirus-info-frustrating-who/ar-BB14UB71?ocid=msedgntp 

Seems President Trump is right about at least one thing, during the whole of his Presidency

s

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18 minutes ago, MigL said:

Seems China isn't just building islands in the South China Sea to increase their territorial limits.
Seems they are not just scrapping the contract they had with Hong Kong that granted them independent governance until 2047.
Seems they are not just threatening Australia for suggesting an independent investigation into the origins of SARS-COV2 to prevent future outbreaks, by cutting trade.
Seems they are not just threatening Canada for detaining the Huawei CFO for possible extradition, by cutting trade and imprisoning Canadian nationals.
Seems they are not just engaging in internet IP theft, Political influencing and dissemination of disinformation.
Seems they also withheld the genetic decoding of the new virus for at least a week, and then stalled for at least two more weeks before giving the WHO pertinent information    "all at a time when the outbreak arguably might have been dramatically slowed"

https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/world/china-delayed-releasing-coronavirus-info-frustrating-who/ar-BB14UB71?ocid=msedgntp 

Seems President Trump is right about at least one thing, during the whole of his Presidency

s

Hallelujah! He got something right. 

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15 minutes ago, MigL said:

Seems President Trump is right about at least one thing, during the whole of his Presidency

Well, he flip flopped on China quite a bit, praising their strongarm responses (including some favourable views on the Tiananmen massacre), Now he is strongly against China because of his own mishandling of the COVID-19 situation. And I will re-iterate, folks had much more munition to blame China if they had actually had started implementing measures to stop it once it was out of the bag. But only a handful of countries actually did. Don't get me wrong, the information policy in China is abhorrent and it is clear that autocratic regimes are not good partners to combat such international crises. However, their failures should not be used to detract from own failures. It means that one needs to up ones own pandemic game and that the role of international agencies have to be strengthened and not diminished.

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19 hours ago, MigL said:

Seems China isn't just building islands in the South China Sea to increase their territorial limits.
Seems they are not just scrapping the contract they had with Hong Kong that granted them independent governance until 2047.
Seems they are not just threatening Australia for suggesting an independent investigation into the origins of SARS-COV2 to prevent future outbreaks, by cutting trade.
Seems they are not just threatening Canada for detaining the Huawei CFO for possible extradition, by cutting trade and imprisoning Canadian nationals.
Seems they are not just engaging in internet IP theft, Political influencing and dissemination of disinformation.
Seems they also withheld the genetic decoding of the new virus for at least a week, and then stalled for at least two more weeks before giving the WHO pertinent information    "all at a time when the outbreak arguably might have been dramatically slowed"

https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/world/china-delayed-releasing-coronavirus-info-frustrating-who/ar-BB14UB71?ocid=msedgntp 

Imagine that, a government trying to improve it's situation while hiding it's failures.

19 hours ago, MigL said:

Seems President Trump is right about at least one thing, during the whole of his Presidency

Yes, he found the perfect place to hide his failures...

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Posted (edited)

But when is he going to improve the situation ?
( November, I hope )

Edited by MigL

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2020/06/08/shutdowns-prevented-60-million-coronavirus-infections-us-study-finds/

Quote

Shutdown orders prevented about 60 million novel coronavirus infections in the United States and 285 million in China, according to a research study published Monday that examined how stay-at-home orders and other restrictions limited the spread of the contagion.

A separate study from epidemiologists at Imperial College London estimated the shutdowns saved about 3.1 million lives in 11 European countries, including 500,000 in the United Kingdom, and dropped infection rates by an average of 82 percent, sufficient to drive the contagion well below epidemic levels.

The two reports, published simultaneously Monday in the journal Nature, used completely different methods to reach similar conclusions. They suggest that the aggressive and unprecedented shutdowns, which caused massive economic disruptions and job losses, were effective at halting the exponential spread of the novel coronavirus.

 

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I think one could make a short update here. While most countries stumbled at the beginning, with different outcomes arguably also dependent on how lucky they got with initial infections, we can also start to see consequences if shutdown was not or only partially enacted. The US has re-openened without pushing the levels down sufficiently and we start seeing new cases surpassing the numbers in March. Of course, those numbers were most likely too low as too few tests were available. Nonetheless, in other countries the numbers were pushed way down.

Other countries in denial include Brazil as well as other South American countries were reports indicate that numbers are continuing to rise. India is in a similar spot and who knows what is happening in Russia (excess deaths seem to paint a different picture as what is being reported).

Considering recent reports that immunity only lasts for a relatively short amount of time, it could mean that vaccinations, once available, would need to be timed in an unprecedented manner, otherwise there will be plenty of pockets where new outbreaks can start and spread.

Good times.

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14 minutes ago, CharonY said:

I think one could make a short update here. While most countries stumbled at the beginning, with different outcomes arguably also dependent on how lucky they got with initial infections, we can also start to see consequences if shutdown was not or only partially enacted. The US has re-openened without pushing the levels down sufficiently and we start seeing new cases surpassing the numbers in March. Of course, those numbers were most likely too low as too few tests were available. Nonetheless, in other countries the numbers were pushed way down.

Other countries in denial include Brazil as well as other South American countries were reports indicate that numbers are continuing to rise. India is in a similar spot and who knows what is happening in Russia (excess deaths seem to paint a different picture as what is being reported).

Considering recent reports that immunity only lasts for a relatively short amount of time, it could mean that vaccinations, once available, would need to be timed in an unprecedented manner, otherwise there will be plenty of pockets where new outbreaks can start and spread.

Good times.

Is the short immunity due to pretty rapid frequency of mutation?

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3 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

Is the short immunity due to pretty rapid frequency of mutation?

No, that study was just looking at antibody levels of patients. Especially when they are asymptomatic they vanish (i.e. they become seronegative).

But even symptomatic folks had a drastic reduction of antibody levels within two months. It is theoretically possible that vaccine-induced immunization could be more effective, but it certainly is making folks more cautious.

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5 minutes ago, CharonY said:

No, that study was just looking at antibody levels of patients. Especially when they are asymptomatic they vanish (i.e. they become seronegative).

Right, ok. What causes that? Is that an effect of the virus nullifying it?

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It is generally a immunological effect that is not due the disease per se (there are exceptions and certain diseases can effectively wipe out your adaptive memory, but this is not one of those). Roughly speaking it is the reaction of your body to the antigen that determines how long your body remembers it. However, there are a lot of unknowns regarding what precisely makes a response long-lasting. 

It is not my area of specialization so I cannot really say how far the research in the area has progressed, but from discussions it appears to me that the field is still wide open in that regard.

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7 minutes ago, CharonY said:

It is generally a immunological effect that is not due the disease per se (there are exceptions and certain diseases can effectively wipe out your adaptive memory, but this is not one of those). Roughly speaking it is the reaction of your body to the antigen that determines how long your body remembers it. However, there are a lot of unknowns regarding what precisely makes a response long-lasting. 

It is not my area of specialization so I cannot really say how far the research in the area has progressed, but from discussions it appears to me that the field is still wide open in that regard.

Thanks.

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8 hours ago, CharonY said:

But even symptomatic folks had a drastic reduction of antibody levels within two months. It is theoretically possible that vaccine-induced immunization could be more effective, but it certainly is making folks more cautious.

This is what is worrying me. We know that about one third of all common colds are caused by some corona virus (I thought I read somewhere that there are 3 main Corona stems that can cause common cold). Assuming that people in Western (and Northern) countries get a cold a few times per year, a gross estimate tells me that people get the common cold at least once in 3 years of the same corona virus. So no long lasting immunity. So wouldn't that mean that a vaccine also is effective for at most 3 years (probably less)? 

Add to this another statistic: that the common cold is economically seen the illness that costs the most in terms of ill leaves, less productivity etc. Any pharmaceutical company could earn billions if it could find a vaccine against the common cold. But we have none.

So no, I do not bet on finding an effective vaccine. When we find one, but it is only effective for say 2 months, then it is only useful for special risk groups (elderly, people with other conditions that might be dangerous with COVID-19, health workers). 

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It should be added that vaccines still might elicit different or stronger responses. But other than actually trying them out there is no way (that I am aware of) to predict the outcome. Theoretically if one could coordinate enough vaccinations worldwide even short term protection may burn the virus out. But looking at those in charge, I have low hopes.

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My Trump supporting family members have already declared they’ll refuse the vaccine even if one becomes available, because freedom... or something. It’s not just the lack of leadership will and competence that’s an obstacle here, but ignorance and acceptance of anti-vax style propaganda 

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Were you adopted ?

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, MigL said:

Were you adopted ?

No. That’d perhaps make it easier to accept, though 

Edited by iNow

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On 7/3/2020 at 12:39 AM, Eise said:

This is what is worrying me. We know that about one third of all common colds are caused by some corona virus (I thought I read somewhere that there are 3 main Corona stems that can cause common cold). Assuming that people in Western (and Northern) countries get a cold a few times per year, a gross estimate tells me that people get the common cold at least once in 3 years of the same corona virus. So no long lasting immunity. So wouldn't that mean that a vaccine also is effective for at most 3 years (probably less)? 

Add to this another statistic: that the common cold is economically seen the illness that costs the most in terms of ill leaves, less productivity etc. Any pharmaceutical company could earn billions if it could find a vaccine against the common cold. But we have none.

So no, I do not bet on finding an effective vaccine. When we find one, but it is only effective for say 2 months, then it is only useful for special risk groups (elderly, people with other conditions that might be dangerous with COVID-19, health workers). 

I should also add that theoretically folks may still have long-term protection if sufficient memory cells are formed, which cannot be easily be tested with simple serological assays (i.e. the rapid tests). What the study calls into question is the usefulness of serological tests to establish how many folks may have been infected without detection as well as the length of immediate protection.

Now, lack of immunity against RNA viruses in general is often the result of their high mutation rate. OTOH, coronaviruses have a proof-reading enzyme that reduces the mutations rates (but are still high compared to DNA viruses). Also, there a bunch of viruses that can cause cold symptoms so it cannot actually be traced back solely to the major human coronavirus strains.

I have looked a bit into some older pre-SARS papers and found one from 1990 (Callow et al. Eipdemiol. Infect) in which 15 volunteers were infected with coronavirus 229E. Here they showed that some volunteers showed slightly increased antibody titres after one year, though it did not protect from re-infection. However, there was lower shedding, indicating a higher level of neutralization and none developed a cold.

So there is some potential there, especially if vaccines result in a stronger response. At the same time, SARS-CoV-2 (and 1 for that matter) obviously elicit quite different responses, including massive inflammatory responses. So there are still a lot of unknowns at play (plus, we do still do not understand all that goes into long-term immunity and the literature is maddening at best).

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One example of what I mean:

Major Study Casts Doubt on COVID-19 Herd Immunity After Patient Antibodies Disappear

From the article:

Quote

 

Population-wide immunity to the novel coronavirus could be "unachievable" with antibodies to the virus disappearing after just a few weeks in some patients, according to a major new Spanish study.

<snip>

The Spanish government teamed up with some of the country's leading epidemiologists to discover what percentage of the population had developed antibodies that could provide immunity from the coronavirus.

The study found that just 5 percent of those tested across the country maintained antibodies to the virus, in findings published by the medical journal The Lancet.

The study also found that 14 percent of people who had tested positive for coronavirus antibodies in the first round of testing no longer tested positive in subsequent tests carried out weeks later.

 

 

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This is not really different from the other findings, and despite what I wrote earlier, a reduction in titers does not automatically mean lack of immunity per se and the authors of the actual report did not make comments to this effect. But it does mean that protective titers drop relatively fast and unless there is rapid recruitment from memory cells.

In addition, some earlier studies found the presence of T cells in infected patients (but in a very small cohort), which is in principle good news. But as usual, the situation is still fluid and highlights the need for efficacy tests (which are going to be difficult) before one can rely on them.

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