8bitagent » Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:05 am wrote:Why wasnt there apocalyptic end time paranoia and worst-case-pandemic insanity in the media in 2009?
WHO says coronavirus death rate is 3.4% globally, higher than previously thought
PUBLISHED TUE, MAR 3 20204:28 PM ESTUPDATED 2 HOURS AGO
Berkeley Lovelace Jr.
World health officials said Tuesday the case fatality rate for COVID-19 is 3.4% globally, higher than previous estimates of about 2%.
“Globally, about 3.4% of reported COVID-19 cases have died,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a press briefing at the agency’s headquarters in Geneva. In comparison, seasonal flu generally kills far fewer than 1% of those infected, he said.
The World Health Organization had said last week that the mortality rate of COVID-19 can differ, ranging from 0.7% to up to 4%, depending on the quality of the health-care system where it’s treated. Early in the outbreak, scientists had concluded the death rate was around 2.3%.
During a press briefing Monday, WHO officials said they don’t know how COVID-19 behaves, saying it’s not like influenza. They added that while much is known about the seasonal flu, such as how it’s transmitted and what treatments work to suppress the disease, that same information is still in question when it comes to the coronavirus.
“This is a unique virus, with unique features. This virus is not influenza,” Tedros said Monday. “We are in uncharted territory.”
Dr. Mike Ryan, executive director of WHO’s health emergencies program, said Monday that the coronavirus isn’t transmitting the same exact way as the flu and health officials have been given a “glimmer, a chink of light” that the virus could be contained.
“Here we have a disease for which we have no vaccine, no treatment, we don’t fully understand transmission, we don’t fully understand case mortality, but what we have been genuinely heartened by is that unlike influenza, where countries have fought back, where they’ve put in place strong measures, we’ve remarkably seen that the virus is suppressed,” Ryan said.
https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/03/who-say ... ought.html
Belligerent Savant » Tue Mar 03, 2020 8:06 pm wrote:
Any children afflicted yet? By my count it's been zero so far, which is interesting.
Coronavirus News: 4 NY schools closed after Westchester Co. man tests positive
WESTCHESTER COUNTY, New York (WABC) -- Four schools in New York have closed after word that a man from Westchester County has tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
The man's positive test result for COVID-19 prompted the closure of Westchester Day School in Mamaroneck, Westchester Torah Academy in White Plains, the Salanter Akiba Riverdale (SAR) Academy and SAR High School in Riverdale, the Bronx.
One of the man's sons attends SAR Academy on 254th Street. SAR High School a few blocks north on West 259th Street is also temporarily closed because the child may have had contact with other students.
The closures are being done as a precaution.
Both of these facilities are private Orthodox Jewish schools.
liminalOyster » Tue Mar 03, 2020 8:12 pm wrote:In fairness, that's a scare stat - those under 50 are something like .8 with very high numbers if you're over 80. Plus, "under 50" contains some very unusual class breaks anyways.
Does anyone here remember roughly 1 year ago in February the U.S. military conducting a "training exercise" where they loaded up black helicopters with what looked like sensitive cargo, while some of the trainees wore Hazmat suits. I've been thinking about this weird exercise and the Getty mansion gun trove nearly every day this past year while both incidents become memoryholed
Really, our best bet is banking on seasonal variability, and that's currently a total unknown. Cheers!
Update 10 a.m. EST March 3: Officials with Singapore’s Ministry of Health confirmed two new cases of the 2019 novel coronavirus Tuesday, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 110.
The first case confirmed Tuesday involved a 70-year-old Singaporean man who tested positive for the virus Monday afternoon. Officials said he was being treated Tuesday in an isolation room at Singapore General Hospital.
The second case involved a 33-year-old Singaporean man whose infection appeared to be related to a cluster identified at Wizlearn Technologies Pte Ltd. He was being treated in an isolation room Tuesday at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases, officials said.
BREAKING: The CDC has stopped disclosing the number of Americans tested for coronavirus.
On the left is how the website looked last night. On the right is what it looks like now, with the testing info removed.
The lack of testing is a scandal.
This is the coverup.
Despite its severity, however, there is almost nothing surprising about this pandemic. It has been utterly predictable in nearly every way: from the nature of its emergence, to its rapid international dissemination, to its clear potential to sicken people and kill them. What is surprising is the fact that we are not better prepared for this kind of assault. As the late Nobel Prize-winning molecular biologist Joshua Lederberg put it, in what is perhaps both his most famous and his most ignored warning, viruses pose “the single biggest threat to man’s continued dominance on this planet.” As the world learned in 1918, when influenza killed at least fifty million people, there is no weapon as lethal that is also as widespread.
Moreover, these viral invasions often move in obvious, specific patterns. No one who has ever glanced at a textbook on emerging infectious diseases or, for that matter, read the science section of a newspaper, could have been surprised to learn that bats were the original host of this virus, or that humans almost certainly acquired it from an intermediary species—in this case, probably pangolins, which are thought to be the most heavily trafficked animals on Earth. Pangolins are prized for the supposed medicinal properties of their scales, and they appear to have been sold at the seafood market in Wuhan where the epidemic appears to have started.
Infectious diseases that leap from animals to humans are called zoonoses. They do it all the time. Most people remember the worldwide panic caused by Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, which, in 2002, led to the first pandemic of the millennium—although its global death toll was seven hundred and seventy-four people, fewer than the number of people who die in an average week at the height of an annual flu season in the United States. The SARS virus, which also originated in China, passed to humans through a protein—ACE-2, or angiotensinconverting enzyme—that is found on respiratory cells, which also serve as an entry point for the COVID-19 virus. They are both coronaviruses—named for the halo you see around them under a microscope—are genetically similar, and were isolated in bats. The same was true for MERS, or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, a coronavirus that began in 2012 and spread through Saudi Arabia. MERS was transmitted to humans via camels, but it originated in bats, as did the Ebola virus. Marburg, a deadly hemorrhagic virus that was first described in 1967, originated in Old World fruit bats.
The reason that bats play such a significant role in the transmission of these viruses is not difficult to understand. Bats make up roughly twenty per cent of all mammal species, and many of them have unusually robust immune systems that seem easily able to defend them against powerful viruses. That makes them the perfect viral host; the viruses train themselves on the bats’ immune system, and, in the process, become increasingly able to defend themselves. Yet bats are hardly the only host of viruses that infect humans. In 2004, a highly pathogenic form of avian influenza, H5N1, which occurs naturally in wild waterfowl but can spread easily to domestic poultry, leaped from chickens to humans, setting off a frightening epidemic. In 2009, the new strain of influenza was a form of H1N1, also called swine flu, because it passed to humans through pigs; they serve as a common mixing vessel for viruses, because porcine respiratory cells are similar to ours.
These viruses all pose special threats because they are new, which means that humans have no antibodies to defend against them. The 2009 H1N1 epidemic infected at least 1.4 billion people, most of them before vaccines or treatments for the virus were available. And that was in a year when, by most accounts, the W.H.O. moved as expeditiously as it ever has. That strain of influenza killed as many as two hundred thousand people in the world—but it could have been many times worse. In 1957, for example, the Asian flu pandemic killed more than a million people. In 1968, the Hong Kong flu pandemic killed between one and four million. Maybe we will also be lucky this year. (It ought to be remembered that, even now, the seasonal flu poses a much greater threat to the health of the average American.) Unless COVID-19 proves to be uniquely virulent, it will likely subside within a few months, and the danger it poses will be substantially forgotten, like that of SARS, MERS, avian influenza, and other zoonotic diseases. But it is too soon to know for certain.
At some point, not many years from now, we will have the capacity to instantly sequence viruses and to make and operate diagnostic tests anywhere, not just in a lab. Biology is becoming digital information, and it needn’t be stored only in Cambridge, or Palo Alto, or Paris. It is already possible to transmit and print a DNA sequence using the molecular equivalent of 3-D printers—a process that could enable scientists almost anywhere to construct vaccines. Making this technique readily available should be a national and, in fact, an international priority. There are other possible solutions, such as editing the genes of pigs (and bats) to repulse the viruses that can transfer to humans. This kind of ecological intervention would be scientifically difficult, and ethically questionable. But it will inevitably be discussed, so let’s do it rationally.
Even if this pandemic passes quickly, there will be another one, possibly far more catastrophic, next year, or in ten years’ time, or twenty. All we can know for sure is that if we have any hope of containing it, the time to prepare is now.
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