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HeyMike

I wish the countries would just hand out the hydroxychloroquine and zinc and end this pandemic already.

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From an on line Senior's website which I'm a Member  https://www.yourlifechoices.com.au/health/covid19/glasses-cut-covid-infections-study? This although not conclusive I found interesting as

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Salty Dog
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Hygiene Theater Is a Huge Waste of Time

People are power scrubbing their way to a false sense of security.

JULY 27, 2020 | Derek Thompson

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As a covid-19 summer surge sweeps the country, deep cleans are all the rage.

National restaurants such as Applebee’s are deputizing sanitation czars to oversee the constant scrubbing of window ledges, menus, and high chairs. The gym chain Planet Fitness is boasting in ads that “there’s no surface we won’t sanitize, no machine we won’t scrub.” New York City is shutting down its subway system every night, for the first time in its 116-year history, to blast the seats, walls, and poles with a variety of antiseptic weaponry, including electrostatic disinfectant sprays. And in Wauchula, Florida, the local government gave one resident permission to spray the town with hydrogen peroxide as he saw fit. “I think every city in the damn United States needs to be doing it," he said.

To some American companies and Florida men, COVID-19 is apparently a war that will be won through antimicrobial blasting, to ensure that pathogens are banished from every square inch of America’s surface area.

But what if this is all just a huge waste of time?

In May, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its guidelines to clarify that while COVID-19 spreads easily among speakers and sneezers in close encounters, touching a surface “isn’t thought to be the main way the virus spreads.” Other scientists have reached a more forceful conclusion. “Surface transmission of COVID-19 is not justified at all by the science,” Emanuel Goldman, a microbiology professor at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, told me. He also emphasized the primacy of airborne person-to-person transmission.

There is a historical echo here. After 9/11, physical security became a national obsession, especially in airports, where the Transportation Security Administration patted down the crotches of innumerable grandmothers for possible explosives. My colleague Jim Fallows repeatedly referred to this wasteful bonanza as “security theater.”

COVID-19 has reawakened America’s spirit of misdirected anxiety, inspiring businesses and families to obsess over risk-reduction rituals that make us feel safer but don’t actually do much to reduce risk—even as more dangerous activities are still allowed. This is hygiene theater.

Scientists still don’t have a perfect grip on COVID-19—they don’t know where exactly it came from, how exactly to treat it, or how long immunity lasts.

But in the past few months, scientists have converged on a theory of how this disease travels: via air. The disease typically spreads among people through large droplets expelled in sneezes and coughs, or through smaller aerosolized droplets, as from conversations, during which saliva spray can linger in the air.

Surface transmission—from touching doorknobs, mail, food-delivery packages, and subways poles—seems quite rare. (Quite rare isn’t the same as impossible: The scientists I spoke with constantly repeated the phrase “people should still wash their hands.”) The difference may be a simple matter of time. In the hours that can elapse between, say, Person 1 coughing on her hand and using it to push open a door and Person 2 touching the same door and rubbing his eye, the virus particles from the initial cough may have sufficiently deteriorated.

The fact that surface areas—or “fomites,” in medical jargon—are less likely to convey the virus might seem counterintuitive to people who have internalized certain notions of grimy germs, or who read many news articles in March about the danger of COVID-19-contaminated food. Backing up those scary stories were several U.S. studies that found that COVID-19 particles could survive on surfaces for many hours and even days.

But in a July article in the medical journal The Lancet, Goldman excoriated those conclusions. All those studies that made COVID-19 seem likely to live for days on metal and paper bags were based on unrealistically strong concentrations of the virus. As he explained to me, as many as 100 people would need to sneeze on the same area of a table to mimic some of their experimental conditions. The studies “stacked the deck to get a result that bears no resemblance to the real world," Goldman said.

As a thousand internet commenters know by heart, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. But with hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of scientists around the world tracing COVID-19’s chains of transmission, the extreme infrequency of evidence may indeed be evidence of extreme infrequency.

A good case study of how the coronavirus spreads, and does not spread, is the famous March outbreak in a mixed-use skyscraper in Seoul, South Korea. On one side of the 11th floor of the building, about half the members of a chatty call center got sick. But less than 1 percent of the remainder of the building contracted COVID-19, even though more than 1,000 workers and residents shared elevators and were surely touching the same buttons within minutes of one another. “The call-center case is a great example,” says Donald Schaffner, a food-microbiology professor who studies disease contamination at Rutgers University. “You had clear airborne transmission with many, many opportunities for mass fomite transmission in the same place. But we just didn’t see it.” Schaffner told me, “In the entire peer-reviewed COVID-19 literature, I’ve found maybe one truly plausible report, in Singapore, of fomite transmission. And even there, it is not a slam-dunk case. ”

The scientists I spoke with emphasized that people should still wash their hands, avoid touching their face when they’ve recently been in public areas, and even use gloves in certain high-contact jobs. They also said deep cleans were perfectly justified in hospitals. But they pointed out that the excesses of hygiene theater have negative consequences.

For one thing, an obsession with contaminated surfaces distracts from more effective ways to combat COVID-19. “People have prevention fatigue,” Goldman told me. “They’re exhausted by all the information we’re throwing at them. We have to communicate priorities clearly; otherwise, they’ll be overloaded.”

Hygiene theater can take limited resources away from more important goals. Goldman shared with me an email he had received from a New Jersey teacher after his Lancet article came out. She said her local schools had considered shutting one day each week for “deep cleaning.” At a time when returning to school will require herculean efforts from teachers and extraordinary ingenuity from administrators to keep kids safely distanced, setting aside entire days to clean surfaces would be a pitiful waste of time and scarce local tax revenue.

New York City’s decision to spend lavishly on power scrubbing its subways shows how absurd hygiene theater can be, in practice. As the city’s transit authority considers reduced service and layoffs to offset declines in ticket revenue, it is on pace to spend more than $100 million this year on new cleaning practices and disinfectants. Money that could be spent on distributing masks, or on PSA campaigns about distancing, or actual subway service, is being poured into antiseptic experiments that might be entirely unnecessary. Worst of all, these cleaning sessions shut down trains for hours in the early morning, hurting countless late-night workers and early-morning commuters.

As long as people wear masks and don’t lick one another, New York’s subway-germ panic seems irrational. In Japan, ridership has returned to normal, and outbreaks traced to its famously crowded public transit system have been so scarce that the Japanese virologist Hitoshi Oshitani concluded, in an email to The Atlantic, that “transmission on the train is not common.” Like airline travelers forced to wait forever in line so that septuagenarians can get a patdown for underwear bombs, New Yorkers are being inconvenienced in the interest of eliminating a vanishingly small risk.

Finally, and most important, hygiene theater builds a false sense of security, which can ironically lead to more infections. Many bars, indoor restaurants, and gyms, where patrons are huffing and puffing one another’s stale air, shouldn’t be open at all. They should be shut down and bailed out by the government until the pandemic is under control. No amount of soap and bleach changes this calculation.

Instead, many of these establishments are boasting about their cleaning practices while inviting strangers into unventilated indoor spaces to share one another’s microbial exhalations. This logic is warped. It completely misrepresents the nature of an airborne threat. It’s as if an oceanside town stalked by a frenzy of ravenous sharks urged people to return to the beach by saying, We care about your health and safety, so we’ve reinforced the boardwalk with concrete. Lovely. Now people can sturdily walk into the ocean and be separated from their limbs.

By funneling our anxieties into empty cleaning rituals, we lose focus on the more common modes of COVID-19 transmission and the most crucial policies to stop this plague. “My point is not to relax, but rather to focus on what matters and what works,” Goldman said. “Masks, social distancing, and moving activities outdoors. That’s it. That’s how we protect ourselves. That’s how we beat this thing.”

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/07/scourge-hygiene-theater/614599

 

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What Happens When Flu Meets Covid-19?

How seasonal viruses interact with the coronavirus is unknown—it may lessen or sharpen the pandemic—so flu vaccinations are vital.

The Guardian | Debora MacKenzie

Optimists had hoped Covid-19 might not withstand the blistering heat of a British summer. However those hopes have faded: the virus staged a recent resurgence in Iran amid actual blistering temperatures, and has had no trouble persisting in sultry Singapore.

But what happens to Covid-19, and us, when the rain and chill – and flu and sniffles – of autumn set in? Especially, how will the annual winter flu epidemic play out amid a Covid-19 pandemic?

One thing is a given. “We can expect waves of Covid in the fall,” says virologist Ab Osterhaus of the Research Centre for Emerging Infections and Zoonoses in Hanover. By then, he hopes, we might be better at treating severe cases, and more countries might be able to test, trace and quarantine all cases and their contacts, and contain the virus, better than they can now.

The biggest worry in the UK is that hospitals can struggle to cope with the winter flu season. This year they will have to cope with Covid-19 as well, which shows no sign of going away by then, and could even surge if it turns out that cold temperatures, or the circulation of other autumn and winter viruses, boost its spread.

The first problem will be figuring out which virus a patient has. Flu, Covid-19 and other seasonal respiratory diseases are virtually indistinguishable on the basis of symptoms, warns Barbara Rath of the University of Nottingham: even the loss of taste and smell many people get with Covid-19 is not unique. We need more and better diagnostic tests, she says, because the difference matters: medical staff need full protective gear to manage a Covid patient, but they can be vaccinated for flu.

The real unknown is what Covid-19 does around other viruses. Every autumn there is a predictable series of outbreaks of respiratory viruses. It starts with rhinovirus, the main cause of the common cold, which breaks out every September as young children go to school and swap mucus. As no parent needs to be told, children are to sniffles what mosquitoes are to malaria.

The rhinovirus subsides as most children are exposed and their immune systems activate. Then another virus breaks out: respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV. Every year in October or November, this causes mild colds in people of all ages, but sometimes severe lung infections in the youngest and oldest of us. RSV is so common that virtually all two-year-olds have already had it, and it sends more babies to hospital with pneumonia than any other virus.

Then RSV subsides, and the annual flu epidemic sets in, anywhere from early winter to spring, driven mainly by transmission among children, but taking its main toll among the elderly: some 8,000 on average die yearly of flu in the UK. This predictable parade of infections almost seems a spiteful campaign by viruses to keep people, especially families with young kids, sick for as long as possible.

But it is just a product of a little-understood phenomenon called “viral interference”: while one of these viruses holds sway in a person, or the population, for some reason the others can’t get a toehold. In September 2009, the swine flu pandemic that went on to sweep the world should have invaded Europe from the Americas. But the annual rhinovirus epidemic actually kept it at bay. The highly contagious new flu took over only when rhinovirus subsided, bumping RSV down the queue: RSV moved in only after that first wave of flu subsided.

The question now is where Covid-19 is going to fit amid this viral jostling. Not every virus takes turns like this, says Ian MacKay of the University of Queensland. Sometimes you can be infected by two at once. So which kind is Covid-19?

We do know it can infect someone alongside flu: the first Covid-19 case to die outside China was a 44-year-old man in the Philippines, who also had flu. We don’t know for sure that having flu at the same time makes Covid worse, but the fact that the Filipino victim was fairly young is worrying, says Florian Krammer of Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. “We assume the outcome of co-infection is not great.”

Doctors at the Tongji Hospital in Wuhan report that in January and February this year, as Covid-19 took hold in the city while flu was still circulating, many Covid-19 patients had both viruses. Co-infection didn’t seem to change their chances of survival compared to people with Covid only, but they had more heart damage, and more and earlier runaway inflammation, the over-reaction of the immune system that kills many late-stage Covid patients.

Elsewhere, however, we have had few chances to find out how often that happens. Last March, Covid-19 hit Europe as flu season was winding down, while lockdown stopped Australians from spreading flu as well as Covid and snuffed out the incipient flu season. But with little lockdown expected this autumn in the northern hemisphere, seasonal viruses and Covid will collide head-on.

If there is significant viral interference, optimists hope the child-driven autumn epidemics might keep Covid-19 at bay, as they do each other. But those viruses are transmitted mostly by children, while it appears that Covid is mostly spread by adults: the viruses might just spread in parallel, in separate populations of children and adults. That might mean more sick people in total, with severe cases competing for a fast-dwindling supply of hospital beds.

Or the fact that Covid seems to infect a different type of cell from the others might mean there is no interference, allowing co-infection with rhinovirus, RSV and flu, possibly making more people more seriously ill. “We need to hope for the best, but prepare for the worst,” says Osterhaus.

And that basically means preparing for flu, because it is the only one of these viruses for which we have a specific antiviral drug and a vaccine, despite years of intensive efforts to develop a vaccine for RSV. “That means, get your flu shot,” says Krammer.

Because flu viruses constantly evolve, though, a flu shot is something you have to get every year. Every February virologists try to predict which viruses will circulate the following winter, and companies put vaccine viruses on to grow in chicken eggs, in a process (dating from the 1940s) that takes six months.

Then those who want to avoid flu get vaccinated in the autumn just before the virus hits. If the scientists guessed right, it is at best 70% effective – but that’s better than nothing.

In the UK this is normally recommended for the pregnant, people over 65, schoolchildren and people at greater risk from flu because of underlying conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure or lung disease – pretty much the same conditions that increase your risk from Covid-19. “This year,” says Krammer, “it should be everybody,” as Covid-19 could increase the risk for everyone.

This is partly because people who normally don’t get a flu vaccination because they are not in those high-risk groups might end up severely ill after all, because they caught Covid-19 at the same time – and of the two we can only prevent flu. Moreover, every year people who don’t officially need the flu vaccine end up in hospital anyway with some complication, typically pneumonia, that will further burden health services. Worse, they are then more likely to catch Covid-19 as well, while in hospital.

But the manufacturing process for next winter’s flu vaccine is under way and while manufacturers say they will make as many doses as possible available, they expect demand to exceed supply, as countries face a winter of flu and Covid-19. Health secretary Matt Hancock announced “the biggest flu vaccination programme in history” this week, amid reports that the NHS has bought millions more vaccine doses than the 25 million it offered last year. But it is not clear how many more will be available.

NHS England alerted doctors in May to make sure they lay in their full allotment of vaccine and make extra efforts to ensure the usual people are fully vaccinated, to take as much pressure as possible off health services next winter – although getting people vaccinated might be harder as PPE is still required for Covid-19.

The NHS is also hoping every healthcare worker will be vaccinated. But there have so far been no plans for expanding vaccination to more people, beyond calls from Labour leader Keir Starmer for free flu vaccination for everyone over 50. That is reportedly being considered, but would require 10 million more doses of vaccine.

Tamiflu, the antiviral drug that is vital for treating severe flu and saved lives in the 2009 pandemic, would also be useful to take pressure off hospitals, says Krammer. But stocks of the drug in Europe are thought to be low.

The nightmare scenario would be if this year’s flu was not the normal seasonal type, closely related to the flu we saw last year and the year before to which we all have some immunity. Every now and then a totally novel flu virus emerges that few have any immunity to – this is when flu is called pandemic. Not only would the flu vaccine we are brewing now not work against it, a new one cannot be made in much less than six months.

As for severity, the 2009 pandemic resulted in little more death than an ordinary, albeit bad, flu year – although deaths were in people in their 40s rather than people in their 80s as usual. But this was because that virus happened to be carrying surface proteins that everyone born before 1957 was immune to, as they were similar to the flu that circulated then. We needn’t be that lucky again.

Last month scientists in China warned that a swine flu there showed worrying signs of adapting to spread among people. It hasn’t yet – but that is a reminder that flu pandemics can happen any time.

The prospect of a flu pandemic hitting amid an existing Covid-19 pandemic is chilling. Death rates could be high and hospitals everywhere would be overwhelmed.

But there is, possibly, some very good news on that front. The only way around having to constantly make new vaccine for every flu season and for any pandemic flu that emerges is to develop a vaccine that works for every strain of flu, by targeting bits of the virus that all flu has in common.

Then we could be vaccinated once or twice as we are for other diseases, and remain immune regardless of what flu strikes. We could even stockpile universal vaccine if a bad pandemic strain hits and more people decide to be vaccinated.

In fact development of a “universal” flu vaccine like this has been ticking along in scientific research labs for years. But none has ever had the expensive full-blown trials of safety and effectiveness in several thousand people required to put it on the market.

That, say the researchers, is because usually only a big vaccine manufacturing company can mount such a trial. But companies must make a profit, and there has been little interest in universal flu vaccine. For one thing, it would mean replacing the current vaccine that people must buy every year with one they would need only once or a few times in their lives.

But finally the first full-blown trial of a universal vaccine candidate is happening, funded by the European Investment Bank. On 1 July Biondvax, an Israeli company, reported that it had finished tests on the 12,400 people who took its universal vaccine last year, and final results are expected by the end of the year. If they are good, says the company’s chief scientist, Tammy Ben-Yedidia, Biondvax is already geared up to make 20m doses a year, and can readily build manufacturing plants.

So we may not have this problem next year. But for Covid-19’s first real flu season this winter, we can only hope enough people get the existing vaccine to stave off trouble, for them and for healthcare systems everywhere.

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/what-happens-when-flu-meets-covid-19

 

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Headshot
Posted (edited)
On 8/5/2020 at 7:10 AM, HeyMike said:

I wish the countries would just hand out the hydroxychloroquine and zinc and end this pandemic already.

Vitamin D is important too

Edited by Headshot
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HeyMike

More and more doctors in America are praising hydroxychloroquine. The doctors tell of their patients being cured from the virus in just a few days by taking hcq. It seems to me that governments want this virus to continue ... maybe it is a good money maker. 

I asked my doctor for a prescription for hcq (as a precaution against the virus) ... he said he can not give a prescription for it because of the controversy about it. Insanity.   

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Dafey
9 hours ago, HeyMike said:

More and more doctors in America are praising hydroxychloroquine.

Do you have a source for that?

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Irenicus
On 8/4/2020 at 6:59 PM, SkyMan said:

Texas has had 8,806 COVID deaths since it dipped into double digit deaths four months ago.

Listed recovery rate is shite as well.

And those that do recover have to deal with all kinds of long-term issues.

106617251-1594821015526-2020715_new_deaths_curve_Texas.png.dcde66c0f402f587cbefcdd6bb0ad268.png

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HeyMike
18 minutes ago, Dafey said:

Do you have a source for that?

I can give you a bunch of sources, but I will just give you 1 of the summit with a bunch of doctors and scientists who gave a talk at the summit. If you would like more, I will give them. 

 

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Dafey

 

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‘America’s Frontline Doctors’ website goes dark as platforms scramble to scrub misinformation

The latest salvo in the battle to control online information is a group calling itself “America’s Frontline Doctors.” After its video making false claims about the coronavirus pandemic ricocheted across social media platforms yesterday, tech giants including Facebook, Twitter, Google, and others scrambled to stop the content from further going viral. It was removed from most major platforms, even as copies continued to reappear and spread all over again, leading to the familiar game of whack-a-mole that so often ensues when undesirable content proliferates.

The video, featuring what purported to be a press conference from a group of doctors, contained what the platforms said were violations of their policies on COVID-19 misinformation. (Among the misleading or false assertions made in the video: that we don’t need to wear masks and that the Trump-touted drug hydroxychloroquine is a “cure” for COVID-19.)

But it’s not just social media platforms that struggle with how to handle misinformation during a public health crisis. Companies that power personal websites are also finding themselves on the front lines, so to speak. Up until this morning, America’s Frontline Doctors had a website, easily discoverable on search engines such as Google, where anyone could find the information the group’s members are looking to peddle. But after news of the video spread on Tuesday, the website suddenly became unreachable. Squarespace, which hosts the website, now presents visitors with a message saying it has “expired.”

https://www.fastcompany.com/90533570/americas-frontline-doctors-website-goes-dark-as-platforms-scramble-to-scrub-misinformation

 

Guess I'll continue to listen to the well known scientists and doctors that I trust.

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HeyMike
15 hours ago, Dafey said:

 

Guess I'll continue to listen to the well known scientists and doctors that I trust.

That is all anyone should do. Do your own research and make your own conclusions. I heard that there is talk about making hcq over-the-counter in America... just a matter of time.

The video is long, but just like in politics, people listen to what people say or write about a candidate, rather than actually listening to what the candidate says themselves. 

If one is inclined.... watch the video.

A funny thing 1 of the doctor's said was that she would like to test Fauci's urine. She says she will bet anything there will be traces of hcq in it.

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SkyMan

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HeyMike

I would like to know how many of the 160k people in America who have died from covid were given a HCQ (regimen) early on when diagnosed; and what were the doses that the people took for the virus.  

 

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cogon88

IT IS NOW well-known that, although covid-19 can strike even the very young, older folk face the greatest risk. In hard-hit rich countries, about 60% of all deaths from the disease are among people aged 80 and over. America, however, is an exception. Data released on June 16th by the Centres for Disease Control (CDC) show that the country’s death toll skews significantly younger. There, people in their 80s account for less than half of all covid-19 deaths; people in their 40s, 50s and 60s, meanwhile, account for a significantly larger share of those who die. The median covid-19 sufferer in America is a 48-year-old; in Italy it is a 63-year-old.

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jaybee747
21 hours ago, cogon88 said:

IT IS NOW well-known that, although covid-19 can strike even the very young, older folk face the greatest risk. In hard-hit rich countries, about 60% of all deaths from the disease are among people aged 80 and over. America, however, is an exception. Data released on June 16th by the Centres for Disease Control (CDC) show that the country’s death toll skews significantly younger. There, people in their 80s account for less than half of all covid-19 deaths; people in their 40s, 50s and 60s, meanwhile, account for a significantly larger share of those who die. The median covid-19 sufferer in America is a 48-year-old; in Italy it is a 63-year-old.

Not sure what is exactly "covid-19 sufferer" but according to this CDC study, the median covid death age in the US is 78, here is the link - https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6928e1.htm?s_cid=mm6928e1_w#T1_down 

You claim that most people who died are in their 40's, 50's? Please share the link to the study.

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cogon88
9 hours ago, jaybee747 said:

Not sure what is exactly "covid-19 sufferer" but according to this CDC study, the median covid death age in the US is 78, here is the link - https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6928e1.htm?s_cid=mm6928e1_w#T1_down 

You claim that most people who died are in their 40's, 50's? Please share the link to the study.

CDC WEBSITE  Data  in article on https://www.economist.com/graphic-detail/2020/06/24/when-covid-19-deaths-are-analysed-by-age-america-is-an-outlier

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