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General Discussion/Q&A on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

lovetravellingoz

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And the predominant age group being infected and showing up as new cases is in the USA 18-29 age group.Not nearly as likely to end up in ICU


Young people may have a lower risk of suffering severe symptoms or even death, but they are still perfectly capable of infecting older people, and other people who are high risk.

Bottom line is that more and more people suffering from Covid 19 are being admitted to ICU wards in Texas. This is what the data shows. Those with knowledge in Texas believe that this is only going to get worse in the near future.

The situation is grim. That it is not as grim as NYC at its worst I doubt is a comfort to anyone. Well virtually anyone.
 

RooFlyer

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The stories from the United States show the total ignorance of people in charge who ignore science and imperil others.

And as we're seeing in this pandemic it is killing people.
But its not just the United States, is it? UK, Spain, Germany and hey! hello Sweden! Sweden mortality rate 538/million; UK 552/million, France 458/million, Spain 607/million, USA 402/million. Source.

I'm not endorsing what the USA/Trump has done, but the continual demonisation of that country just skews perception of the global pandemic.
 

Must...Fly!

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But its not just the United States, is it? UK, Spain, Germany and hey! hello Sweden! Sweden mortality rate 538/million; UK 552/million, France 458/million, Spain 607/million, USA 402/million. Source.

I'm not endorsing what the USA/Trump has done, but the continual demonisation of that country just skews perception of the global pandemic.
Absolutely, but there is a clear & obvious reason for the attempt to skew the American experience vs other nations.
 

lovetravellingoz

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And also why Texas is being demonised.
Answer = They were not being demonised. They just happen to be going through a surge at present which is analogous to the question asked about Victoria. Their greater number of cases and icu patients are more because they did less to control the virus. Like Victoria they are having a renewed spike.

The original post was:

So the recent cases would be more influencing possible deaths in two or more weeks. (Which is why for example deaths in Texas may start to jump in a week or so, and their ICU's are already filling up now after the large increase in cases there in recent weeks.)

Texas is just a current example with more data to illustrate of what can happen and demonstrates surge in cases followed, by surge in ICU and then most likely surge in deaths.

Now Victoria has less data to plot curves, but that same pattern is there at present.

VIC HOSPITALISED
Cases in Hospital

...DATE .................................................................................................................................................................HOSPITAL.....................................ICU.........................VENT

Fri 26 Jun610
Sat 27 Jun510
Sun 28 Jun710
Mon 29 Jun91
Tue 30 Jun91
Wed 1 Jul152
Thu 2 Jul204
Fri 3 Jul236
Sat 4 Jul253
Sun 5 Jul263
Mon 6 Jul315
Tue 7 Jul359
 
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p--and--t

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Not sure if this has been reported before. but I have just been shown an except from Nature Magazine which quotes findings from a study conducted in China. Some of the language was a bit technical but the gist is reasonably evident. I have made "my precis" of a longer piece.

37 Asymptomatic Patients
3 had lymphopenia
1 had thrombocytopenia
6 had elevated alanine aminotransferase
11 had increased C-reactive protein levels

CT scans showed
11 had focal ground-glass opacities
10 had stripe shadows &/or diffuse consolidation
16 had no abnormalities on admission, however 5 of those developed focal ground-glass opacities or stripe shadows within 5 days after admission.

Conclusion: Just because you are asymptomatic, doesn't mean you won't develop long term, if not permanent, lung damage. Initial tests might be clear, but damage can occur after initial testing/diagnosis.

Neutralising antibodies in a high proportion of patients recovering from covid-19 started to decrease within 2-3 months of infection. In a study of eight convalescing patients 4 showed signs of decreasing anti-bodies within 6-7 weeks from initial infection.

Conclusion: Immunity passports may not be viable if immunity can be lost within 6-7 weeks to 2-3 months from infection. Long term social distancing, hygiene, isolation of high risk groups and widespread testing are supported. Given the short(ish) period of time that patients can become sero-negative, timely widespread testing, whether symptomatic or not, is required to determine true infection rates.

My own separate pondering is - how effective could a vaccine be if immunity could be lost within 6 weeks of it being administered. I have no idea, but someone in the medical field might be able to enlighten me as to whether the length of immunity generated by a vaccine is different to the immunity generated by actually having the disease.
 

lovetravellingoz

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My own separate pondering is - how effective could a vaccine be if immunity could be lost within 6 weeks of it being administered. I have no idea, but someone in the medical field might be able to enlighten me as to whether the length of immunity generated by a vaccine is different to the immunity generated by actually having the disease.
I am only a rank amateur. However from what I know there are many different approaches to developing a vaccine amongst the 120 odd candidates. Now if they are effective, then because of the different approaches how long they are effective for may vary.

Some have suggested that provided that they are successful that you will need to be vaccinated with two or more different vaccines in order to gain both an immediate, and then a longer duration benefit.

It’s unlikely the first vaccines will be 100% effective, and the protection they give may wear off after a time. Shattock said it was quite possible that the Oxford University/Astra Zeneca prototype, which is ahead of the field as the first in large human trials, and the Imperial vaccine could be used together.

“That’s not a surprise. If you use two different approaches – one to prime the immune system, and change to another to boost it, it often gives you a better response. One of the uncertainties about the AstraZeneca vaccine is whether it could be used for reboosting the immune system if you need an annual or five-yearly booster,” he said
.

Read more 'I'm cautiously optimistic': Imperial's Robin Shattock on his coronavirus vaccine
 

Pushka

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I am only a rank amateur. However from what I know there are many different approaches to developing a vaccine amongst the 120 odd candidates. Now if they are effective, then because of the different approaches how long they are effective for may vary.

Some have suggested that provided that they are successful that you will need to be vaccinated with two or more different vaccines in order to gain both an immediate, and then a longer duration benefit.

It’s unlikely the first vaccines will be 100% effective, and the protection they give may wear off after a time. Shattock said it was quite possible that the Oxford University/Astra Zeneca prototype, which is ahead of the field as the first in large human trials, and the Imperial vaccine could be used together.

“That’s not a surprise. If you use two different approaches – one to prime the immune system, and change to another to boost it, it often gives you a better response. One of the uncertainties about the AstraZeneca vaccine is whether it could be used for reboosting the immune system if you need an annual or five-yearly booster,” he said
.

Read more 'I'm cautiously optimistic': Imperial's Robin Shattock on his coronavirus vaccine
But even the flu shot wanes after four months and needs updating each year so I don't think this is a show stopper. I was told to have a booster flu and the stronger one, in August after the first one in March.

I think that if we have multiple vaccines that work in different ways is brilliant.

Not sure if this has been reported before. but I have just been shown an except from Nature Magazine which quotes findings from a study conducted in China. Some of the language was a bit technical but the gist is reasonably evident. I have made "my precis" of a longer piece.

37 Asymptomatic Patients
3 had lymphopenia
1 had thrombocytopenia
6 had elevated alanine aminotransferase
11 had increased C-reactive protein levels

CT scans showed
11 had focal ground-glass opacities
10 had stripe shadows &/or diffuse consolidation
16 had no abnormalities on admission, however 5 of those developed focal ground-glass opacities or stripe shadows within 5 days after admission.

Conclusion: Just because you are asymptomatic, doesn't mean you won't develop long term, if not permanent, lung damage. Initial tests might be clear, but damage can occur after initial testing/diagnosis.

Neutralising antibodies in a high proportion of patients recovering from covid-19 started to decrease within 2-3 months of infection. In a study of eight convalescing patients 4 showed signs of decreasing anti-bodies within 6-7 weeks from initial infection.

Conclusion: Immunity passports may not be viable if immunity can be lost within 6-7 weeks to 2-3 months from infection. Long term social distancing, hygiene, isolation of high risk groups and widespread testing are supported. Given the short(ish) period of time that patients can become sero-negative, timely widespread testing, whether symptomatic or not, is required to determine true infection rates.

My own separate pondering is - how effective could a vaccine be if immunity could be lost within 6 weeks of it being administered. I have no idea, but someone in the medical field might be able to enlighten me as to whether the length of immunity generated by a vaccine is different to the immunity generated by actually having the disease.
Many people who develop Covid also show APS whoch is a blood clotting disorder but that wanes after a few weeks. Its also too soon to say these changes in bloods are permanent as they can be immune and inflammatory markers. Once the immune system settles, then those markers likewise settle. With auto immune issues even those markers can improve with immune modifying drugs and sometimes they just improve on their own.

There are quite a few immunisations that only last 3 months or more I think? Maybe Cholera? Not sure.
 
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nutwood

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But even the flu shot wanes after four months and needs updating each year so I don't think this is a show stopper. I was told to have a booster flu and the stronger one, in August after the first one in March.

I think that if we have multiple vaccines that work in different ways is brilliant.
Does the flu shot wear off or is it a case of the beasties continually evolving and yesterday's vaccine doesn't work on today's flu?
 

Pushka

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Does the flu shot wear off or is it a case of the beasties continually evolving and yesterday's vaccine doesn't work on today's flu?
It wears off. The same immunization would be given again if personal health situation warranted it and flu season still rampant and initial shot had early.
 

drron

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Does the flu shot wear off or is it a case of the beasties continually evolving and yesterday's vaccine doesn't work on today's flu?
Both.
But the Bee tells you who gives the best advice.
 

drron

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So some more on treatment.First the guidelines as they are now in the US.

Second some medics were worried that people with Inflammatory bowel disease would be more prone to Covid due to their Immune system problems.Turns out that Infliximab can treat both.

And a very encouraging developement that could be the best treatment for severe Covid but a long way to go yet.They have identified the 3 most potent blocking antibodies to Covid 19 and hopefully will be able then manufacture them and use as specific treatment for Covid.They do need to use spellchecker though.
 

nutwood

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I have to say, I think SA is being far more sensible over their borders. I'm planning my travels for next week. I apply for a permit to cross the NSW border; on-line application, nothing required to be uploaded, e.mail came through within 90 seconds, granting me permission to cross from Victoria to NSW. Very user friendly but possibly explains why out of 30,000 vehicles, only 12 have been turned back.
In contrast, I apply on-line for SA. I fill out a form, not dissimilar to NSW, but it has space to explain exactly why I wish to cross the border, it requires me to upload supporting documents and then I get a nice e.mail from SAPOL, telling me they'll let me know in 72 hours, but if I'm in a hurry, take my supporting documents and try my luck at the border.
Having gone down the "try my luck" path previously, it wasn't quick but it was very professional. My paper-work was good, forms were filled out and I was sent on my way. I like that SA have provided an on-line way to smooth the path prior to setting out, but if you're in a hurry, you are still able to make your case at the border.
 

VPS

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I have to say, I think SA is being far more sensible over their borders. I'm planning my travels for next week. I apply for a permit to cross the NSW border; on-line application, nothing required to be uploaded, e.mail came through within 90 seconds, granting me permission to cross from Victoria to NSW. Very user friendly but possibly explains why out of 30,000 vehicles, only 12 have been turned back.
In contrast, I apply on-line for SA. I fill out a form, not dissimilar to NSW, but it has space to explain exactly why I wish to cross the border, it requires me to upload supporting documents and then I get a nice e.mail from SAPOL, telling me they'll let me know in 72 hours, but if I'm in a hurry, take my supporting documents and try my luck at the border.
Having gone down the "try my luck" path previously, it wasn't quick but it was very professional. My paper-work was good, forms were filled out and I was sent on my way. I like that SA have provided an on-line way to smooth the path prior to setting out, but if you're in a hurry, you are still able to make your case at the border.
Us SA people are a lot smarter than we are given credit for sometimes 😜
 

p--and--t

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Covid deaths in AU - 106 - many of which were people with one or more serious comorbidities and shortened life expectancy.

To a counterpoint of all the bad news that people seem to gather around like bees to flowers, I have seen online the following:

The road toll in AU has dropped 14.5% on the same six months last year, is currently the lowest its been in more than 10 years despite population increase. Not confirmed but coincidentally related to the covid restrictions limiting/reducing travel. Around 80 deaths less than for the same time last year.

The rate of the population exhibiting flu-like symptoms is at all time low levels. Even already into July half way through winter the rate being reported is 0.5% where the 5 year average is around 2.2% of the population i.e. an 80% drop in infection. If that were to result in an 80% drop in vulnerable people dying from the flu, that equates to (in very rough figures) 1,500 less deaths being recorded as due to the flu on an annualised basis.

Over the last 5 years on average more than 1,000 people in AU died from heart disease per month (stats only until 31Mar). However in the first three months of this year the number of deaths recorded as due to heart disease had dropped by around 100 per month from the average.

The number of deaths from stroke, aneurysms and stenosis was lower for 12 of the first 13 weeks of this year than historical averages.

Then conversely the number of deaths recorded with cause dementia has increased significantly over historical averages? My gut feel any relevance to covid is unlikely?

Not in any way attempting to diminish of the seriousness of mental health, but the death rate from mental health has generally been increasing each year regardless of covid and there are some studies that report there is a direct relationship with unemployment levels, so this needs increased attention with the current state of the economy. Additional funds and additional focus already in place on this issue as a result of covid "may" be beneficial for future years if the attention of authorities and awareness of this tragedy is maintained beyond the pandemic.
 
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nutwood

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Covid deaths in AU - 106 - many of which were people with one or more serious comorbidities and shortened life expectancy.

To a counterpoint of all the bad news that people seem to gather around like bees to flowers, I have seen online the following:

The road toll in AU has dropped 14.5% on the same six months last year, is currently the lowest its been in more than 10 years despite population increase. Not confirmed but coincidentally related to the covid restrictions limiting/reducing travel. Around 80 deaths less than for the same time last year.

The rate of the population exhibiting flu-like symptoms is at all time low levels. Even already into July half way through winter the rate being reported is 0.5% where the 5 year average is around 2.2% of the population i.e. an 80% drop in infection. If that were to result in an 80% drop in vulnerable people dying from the flu, that equates to (in very rough figures) 1,500 less deaths being recorded as due to the flu on an annualised basis.

Over the last 5 years on average more than 1,000 people in AU died from heart disease per month (stats only until 31Mar). However in the first three months of this year the number of deaths recorded as due to heart disease had dropped by around 100 per month from the average.

The number of deaths from stroke, aneurysms and stenosis was lower for 12 of the first 13 weeks of this year than historical averages.

Then conversely the number of deaths recorded with cause dementia has increased significantly over historical averages? My gut feel any relevance to covid is unlikely?

Not in any way attempting to diminish of the seriousness of mental health, but the death rate from mental health has generally been increasing each year regardless of covid and there are some studies that report there is a direct relationship with unemployment levels, so this needs increased attention with the current state of the economy. Additional funds and additional focus already in place on this issue as a result of covid "may" be beneficial for future years if the attention of authorities and awareness of this tragedy is maintained beyond the pandemic.
Really interesting figures that could be the basis for a good philosophical argument.
Basically, shutting down the economy and making everyone stay home with their family is a really good thing. Unfortunately, this needs to be paid for, but on the upside, given current interest rates, the Government could simply keep printing money. Providing the people who actually do something useful keep producing food, the rest of us can stay in bed.
So where's the catch?
 

lovetravellingoz

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Then conversely the number of deaths recorded with cause dementia has increased significantly over historical averages? My gut feel any relevance to covid is unlikely?
Personally I am not surprised that it is up.

Dementia patients normally thrive best if they have regular routines. Covid19 is very disruptive to them. Even simple things like the layout of dining rooms, who sits where has been changed.

Visitations will have been down radically due to lengthy complete lockdowns, and even when not locked down duration and number of people at once. Everyone needs human interaction. Dementia patients even more so. They get less at present.

Dementia patients need various therapies. Less of these have been possible of late. ie Musicians coming in etc.


PS. People with autism also struggle with the disruption that Covid 19 . I know my daughter has mentioned a number of times that the patients that she sees with dementia and autism are compared to last year a lot more agitated when in the hospital. That is, they come in a lot more disturbed/agitated.
 

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