The Wuhan virus—how are we doing? - Page 86 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

Wandering the information superhighway, he came upon the last refuge of civilization, PoFo, the only forum on the internet ...

Provision of the two UN HDI indicators other than GNP.
Forum rules: No one line posts please.
#15159206
Doug64 wrote:@Rancid, March 2nd is Texas Independence Day, a public holiday in Texas, commemorating the adoption of the Texas Declaration of Independence this date in 1836. So yeah, I can see why the governor made the announcement today.


I see. Didn't know that.

EDIT: My son knew today was Texas independence day.
#15159212
A couple interesting articles on where we're headed, starting with The Atlantic's take on what we have to look forward to over the next year:

The Most Likely Timeline for Life to Return to Normal
The end of the coronavirus pandemic is on the horizon at last, but the timeline for actually getting there feels like it shifts daily, with updates about viral variants, vaccine logistics, and other important variables seeming to push back the finish line or scoot it forward. When will we be able to finally live our lives again?

Pandemics are hard to predict accurately, but we have enough information to make some confident guesses. A useful way to think about what’s ahead is to go season by season. In short: Life this spring will not be substantially different from the past year; summer could, miraculously, be close to normal; and next fall and winter could bring either continued improvement or a moderate backslide, followed by a near-certain return to something like pre-pandemic life.

Here, in more detail, is what Americans can expect daily life to look like for the next four(-ish) seasons.

Spring 2021

For the most part, daily life will continue to be far from normal for the next few months. Normal is of course a slippery word, given that many Americans have had to report to work or have chosen to dine out, travel, and do all sorts of things that others have avoided. But whatever people have not been doing for the past year, they can expect to keep not doing it this spring.

It’s unlikely that enough people will get vaccinated in the spring to restore normalcy. In fact, experts fear that the pandemic could get much worse in the near term, because variants of the virus that are more contagious or vaccine-resistant than the original version have begun circulating in the United States. The damage those variants will do is still unknown; “March to May is the mystery,” as my colleague Robinson Meyer wrote earlier this month.

The good news, though, is that even with these variants, existing vaccines appear to reduce the risk of severe illness, meaning more and more people will be protected as vaccinations continue. And vaccines can change individuals’ risk calculus. Ashish Jha, the dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, told me that in a month or so, in the absence of a variant-driven surge, he’d probably be comfortable going to a friend’s house for a drink, mask-free and indoors, if he and his friend were both fully vaccinated. “As we get into late spring, a lot of that stuff—the smaller gatherings of vaccinated people—I think starts becoming quite possible,” Jha said.

Summer 2021

Whatever happens in the spring, the summer should be a sublime departure from what Americans have lived through so far. As my colleague James Hamblin wrote last week, “In most of the U.S., the summer could feel … ‘normal,’” even “revelatory.”

“Barring some variant that is just really crazy, I expect the summer to be a lot like the summer of 2019,” Andrew Noymer, a public-health professor at UC Irvine, told me. Based on the drop-off in cases and hospitalizations over the past few weeks, he thinks life could even be close to normal as soon as sometime in May.

Other experts I consulted were slightly less optimistic, but they generally agreed that at some point between June and September, the combination of widespread vaccinations and warmer weather would likely make many activities much safer, including having friends and family over indoors, taking public transit, being in a workplace, dining inside restaurants, and traveling domestically (whether for work, visiting loved ones, or a vacation).

Regardless of when vaccines for children become available, all of the above applies to kids and their families, according to Emily Oster, an economist at Brown who writes about everyday pandemic decision making in her newsletter ParentData. In-person schooling should become safer as well. Though the timing for kids’ vaccines is uncertain, Oster’s guess is that they might become available over the summer for children 12 and up, and later on for children under 12, perhaps in the fall.

The safest way to phase activities back in will be for people to gradually go from smaller, private social settings (such as a friend’s house) to bigger, public ones (such as a restaurant)—which is also what many will probably feel most comfortable with. “People will slowly expand the social world that they engage in, building [their] pod back up,” predicts Oster.

Jha, for instance, expects to host 20 or so friends for a Fourth of July barbecue in his backyard, with every adult vaccinated and no one having to wear a mask. He imagines himself being comfortable eating indoors at a restaurant later on in the summer, provided it’s not packed and the ventilation is decent.

The summer will still have its limitations, though. The experts I spoke with didn’t foresee the return of indoor concerts, full attendance at sporting events, or high levels of international travel.

They did, however, expect that Americans will be able to ease up on mask wearing and social distancing in other contexts. “I think when people are vaccinated themselves, they will start letting their guard down, but it will also genuinely be safer from a public-health perspective,” said Jennifer Beam Dowd, a professor of demography and population health at the University of Oxford and the chief scientific officer of Dear Pandemic, a COVID-19 public-education campaign. Noymer’s prediction is that masking will be necessary in public settings until every American has at least been offered a vaccine, at which point he figures he would be okay with repealing mask mandates.

Even once these precautions are no longer strictly necessary, many people will probably keep up some of them, opting to wear a mask, say, on public transportation or in a grocery store. Oster thinks that while certain activities should become much safer over the summer, many people might not be comfortable resuming them until the end of the year or even later.

Fall/Winter 2021–22

Even if the summer feels like the end of the pandemic, it could turn out to be more of a temporary reprieve.

Most of the U.S. population should be vaccinated by the fall, but some resurgence of the virus seems likely in the colder months. “It won’t be as bad as this winter, but I don’t know if it’s going to be pretty bad or [if] just a few people will get it,” Noymer said.

Thankfully, the latter scenario seems more likely, and could still allow for additional normalcy; indoor concerts might even come back. “The summer might be a little early for really large crowds,” Dowd said. “I see the autumn as the important turning point for those kinds of mass gatherings.”

This scenario might result in isolated viral flare-ups, but vaccines should significantly reduce the likelihood that anyone who gets infected would end up in the hospital, and could also make them less likely to spread the virus.

Another outcome seems less probable but more troubling: Whether because a variant ends up evading existing vaccines or because infections surge among unvaccinated people, cases might climb again. Even after a wonderful summer, a rise in cases could necessitate a reversion to many of the precautions from earlier in the pandemic, even if it doesn’t require full-on lockdowns. “I’m not saying that the return of the masks and working from home and all the crap that we hate is guaranteed,” Noymer said. “But if it does return, it won’t be in the summer. It’ll be in the fall.”

Thankfully, though, if stubborn variants do circulate, new vaccines should be able to tame them relatively quickly. Adjusting an existing vaccine recipe could take only a few months, meaning that the disruption to daily life would not be as drawn out as what Americans have lived through already.

Spring/Summer 2022

Beyond next winter, experts’ predictions are blessedly simple: Life in the warmer months of 2022 should be normal, or at least whatever qualifies as normal post-pandemic. The virus will still exist, but one possibility is that it will be less likely to make people severely ill and that it will, like the flu, circulate primarily in the colder months; some people would still die from COVID-19, but the virus wouldn’t rage out of control again. Meanwhile, Americans should be able to do most, if not all, of the things that they missed so much in 2020 and 2021, mask- and worry-free.

Of course, this dreamy era is still more than a year away, and some unforeseen obstacle could delay the resumption of normalcy. Jha said he couldn’t picture what that might be, though. After a year spent gaming out how bad the pandemic could get, he can finally see ahead to a time when there are no more catastrophes to imagine.


And a John Hopkins doctor that thinks we'll beat The Atlantic's prediction by a considerable margin:

John Hopkins Doctor Thinks COVID Will Be Largely Gone By April, Half of U.S. Has Herd Immunity
Dr. Marty Makary, a surgeon and a professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health, believes that the coronavirus will be "mostly gone" by April.

In an op-ed published by The Wall Street Journal on Friday, Makary argued that half of the U.S. has already reached herd immunity because there are more coronavirus cases in the country, possibly 6.5 times as many, than the 28 million that have been reported.

Combined with the 15 percent of Americans who have already begun receiving the vaccine, the doctor argued that normal life will return by the spring.

"There is reason to think the country is racing toward an extremely low level of infection," Makary wrote. "As more people have been infected, most of whom have mild or no symptoms, there are fewer Americans left to be infected. At the current trajectory, I expect COVID will be mostly gone by April, allowing Americans to resume normal life."

Herd immunity has been a controversial subject over the course of the coronavirus pandemic. The term is used to describe what happens when the virus can no longer widely spread because a large proponent of the population is no longer susceptible.

During the pandemic, some politicians have suggested letting most of society return to normal so that the virus could run its course. But many epidemiologists have repeatedly shut down the idea, arguing that it's not a defensible plan and pointing to the fact that it would lead to a catastrophic loss of lives with no guarantee that immunity would be achieved.

In the U.S., more than 490,000 Americans have died from COVID-19.

Markary argued that while the topic of natural immunity has often been rejected by most experts in the medical field due to a lack of data, the observational data is showing the majority of Americans may already be protected not only from COVID-19 but also its new variants.

"But the consistent and rapid decline in daily cases since Jan. 8 can be explained only by natural immunity," Makary wrote. "Behavior didn't suddenly improve over the holidays; Americans traveled more over Christmas than they had since March. Vaccines also don't explain the steep decline in January. Vaccination rates were low and they take weeks to kick in."

"Many experts, along with politicians and journalists, are afraid to talk about herd immunity. The term has political overtones because some suggested the U.S. simply let COVID rip to achieve herd immunity. That was a reckless idea," he added. "But herd immunity is the inevitable result of viral spread and vaccination. When the chain of virus transmission has been broken in multiple places, it's harder for it to spread—and that includes the new strains."

His viewpoint has been disputed by other experts like Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Rochelle Wallensky, who said on Wednesday that the U.S. has not vaccinated nearly enough Americans to reach herd immunity.

During the briefing, Wallensky attributed the decrease in COVID-19 cases to the lack of travel and large gatherings that were more common over the holiday season.

On Thursday, White House COVID adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said that it would well after the summer until things return to "normal."

Fauci said if normal means "getting back to a situation where you can have theaters that might be able to have below capacity, that restaurants, indoor dining can be happening, but with moderately diminished capacity," then "that's going to be somewhere between the fall and the end of the year."

President Joe Biden has also discussed a similar timeline to Fauci's. During his CNN town hall on Tuesday, he said, "As my mother would say, with the grace of God and the goodwill of the neighbors, that by next Christmas I think we'll be in a very different circumstance, God willing, than we are today,"

However, Makary continued to defend his opinions in a Friday interview with Fox News.

"There's a 76 percent reduction in daily cases over the last six weeks," Makary said. "You, as a scientist, have to ask why. And we cannot explain that by vaccinated immunity. We can't explain it by a sudden change in behavior. It's natural immunity, and it's now over 50 percent of the population."

Newsweek reached out to the CDC for further comment but did not hear back before publication.
#15159269
The Surgeon is wrong. We will not be done by April That is 30 days away.


Markary argued that while the topic of natural immunity has often been rejected by most experts in the medical field due to a lack of data, the observational data is showing the majority of Americans may already be protected not only from COVID-19 but also its new variants.


Wrong on both counts. It has not been rejected due to lack of data. It has been rejected to do data. And evidence shows that his assertion that "most Americans may already be protected" has also been disproved.

Of course he is defending his position on Fox News. Legit news sources have not stopped laughing at him yet.
#15159275
@Drlee, or it could be that Dr. Makary is right, and the 76% decline in cases over the past six weeks is due to increasing herd immunity. Certainly if it’s true the Democrats have no reason to trumpet the good news just yet, they need the pandemic to give them a reason to pass their pork-barrel boondoggle. And I can understand why the government scientists would be cautious, any sane scientist is going to be—and there might be a certain amount of knowing which side of their bread is buttered. But herd immunity is certainly a valid explanation, if it’s true we’ll know fairly quickly.
#15159279
@Drlee, or it could be that Dr. Makary is right, and the 76% decline in cases over the past six weeks is due to increasing herd immunity.


Actually the science says it is not the case. Why we had the spike is that people behaved dangerously.

Certainly if it’s true the Democrats have no reason to trumpet the good news just yet, they need the pandemic to give them a reason to pass their pork-barrel boondoggle.


Nobody is doing that. You just can't avoid making this a political issue and are willing to kill people to do it.

And I can understand why the government scientists would be cautious, any sane scientist is going to be—and there might be a certain amount of knowing which side of their bread is buttered. But herd immunity is certainly a valid explanation, if it’s true we’ll know fairly quickly.


You do not understand the science. Trust me. You are hanging your hat on one outlier scientist. Try listening to Fauci. He disagrees and is the head of a large team of scientists who are in the battle.
#15159285
Doug64 wrote:@Drlee, or it could be that Dr. Makary is right, and the 76% decline in cases over the past six weeks is due to increasing herd immunity. Certainly if it’s true the Democrats have no reason to trumpet the good news just yet, they need the pandemic to give them a reason to pass their pork-barrel boondoggle. And I can understand why the government scientists would be cautious, any sane scientist is going to be—and there might be a certain amount of knowing which side of their bread is buttered. But herd immunity is certainly a valid explanation, if it’s true we’ll know fairly quickly.


I doubt that herd immunity is a logical explanation.

That would require that communities achieve a fairly high percentage of active and recovered cases, and the antibodies generated from this infection act to protect the rest of the community.

In order for this to be true, you would need infection rates that are quite high.

Manaus, Brazil had 66% of its population infected. This was not enough to stop a subsequent wave that increased cases up to 76%.

So, let us assume that 76% of the community needs to be infected in order for herd immunity to kick in.

Has any US community achieved such a high infection rate?
#15159377
Meanwhile on Planet Earth. CDC announced today that the rate of infection is increasing at about 3% per week over the last two weeks. This is VERY significant.

So to combat the disease that is killing so many people Texas decided to remove its mask mandate and to restore maximum capacities to bars and other public venues. How many people does the Republican Party have to murder before someone notices? We could well see another few hundreds of thousands dead before we achieve any real herd immunity.

As an aside, I wish people really knew what this meant. Their words and actions seem to suggest that they have no clue about what herd immunity means.
#15159396
Drlee wrote:Actually the science says it is not the case. Why we had the spike is that people behaved dangerously.

Except we didn't have a spike, we had a steady increase over a matter of months, followed by a steady decrease over a matter of almost two months.

BTW, there is a limitation to Governor Abbot's proclamation, it doesn't apply to any area with a high hospitalization rate, with "high hospitalizations" defined as the number of Wuhan virus patients making up more than 15% of hospital capacity for seven consecutive days. Apparently, right now that applies to three counties: Culberson, El Paso, and Hudspeth. And the order specifically states that businesses or other organizations can use whatever preventative measures they feel appropriate. The full executive order can be found here.
#15159428
Except we didn't have a spike, we had a steady increase over a matter of months, followed by a steady decrease over a matter of almost two months.

BTW, there is a limitation to Governor Abbot's proclamation, it doesn't apply to any area with a high hospitalization rate, with "high hospitalizations" defined as the number of Wuhan virus patients making up more than 15% of hospital capacity for seven consecutive days. Apparently, right now that applies to three counties: Culberson, El Paso, and Hudspeth. And the order specifically states that businesses or other organizations can use whatever preventative measures they feel appropriate. The full executive order can be found here.


Come on Doug. This has nothing to do with public health and everything to do with Republican Party politics and appealing to the "hoax" crowd. If he had any balls he would keep a tight state mandate in place. Masks do NOTHING to harm the economy. NOTHING. They do not harm people. They are only annoying to crybabies who are worried about their "rats".
#15159477
The probability of surviving covid 19 is reasonably good. The thing to worry about is the after effects, which can be a pain in the drain, even for people who describe their sickness as mild. The cumulative health care costs might be deeply costly to healthcare insurance. Wear a mask.
#15159603
@Pants-of-dog, funny how you haven't been able to point out anything in the "Undocumented Aliens and Crime" thread that is factually incorrect.

Getting to the subject of this thread, it seems that the claims that the Cuomo administration hid the true numbers of nursing home deaths in order to avoid a federal investigation is at best incomplete, at worst outright lies--turns out that top Cuomo aides were altering reports to hide the death count as early as last June, at least according to the New York Times: Cuomo Aides Rewrote Nursing Home Report to Hide Higher Death Toll.

Truthfully, I'm a little surprised to find this being reported by the flagship (for print, anyway) of the MSM(D). Perhaps they've decided that Cuomo isn't going to survive this however much the suppress any news about him, so they might as well try to get some credibility out of it.
#15159605
Doug64 wrote:@Pants-of-dog, funny how you haven't been able to point out anything in the "Undocumented Aliens and Crime" thread that is factually incorrect.


Speaking of misinformation, do you know what the greatest source of misinformation about Covid was?

But this is off topic.

Getting to the subject of this thread, it seems that the claims that the Cuomo administration hid the true numbers of nursing home deaths in order to avoid a federal investigation is at best incomplete, at worst outright lies--turns out that top Cuomo aides were altering reports to hide the death count as early as last June, at least according to the New York Times: Cuomo Aides Rewrote Nursing Home Report to Hide Higher Death Toll.

Truthfully, I'm a little surprised to find this being reported by the flagship (for print, anyway) of the MSM(D). Perhaps they've decided that Cuomo isn't going to survive this however much the suppress any news about him, so they might as well try to get some credibility out of it.


This is not the subject of this thread. There is another thread about Cuomo and the media handling of his actions. This is just more red blue politicking.
#15159718
Drlee wrote:How are you feeling? Are you isolating at home? Hopefully.


Pretty normal, honestly. A few days ago I had some very mild muscle pain and headache, but I didn't really think it would be COVID so I went on with my daily life (I only went outside to do groceries once I'd developed the symptoms, but I did hit the gym thrice while wearing masks, social distancing, disinfecting, etc between the probable infection time and when the first symptoms appeared). I've been sleeping less than I'd like because I work full time and I'm taking some university coursework, and the headache was no different from what I could get for lack of sleep. I was also unsure if it was COVID because my girlfriend had been testing negative the days prior (she needed the test to fly back to Chile - no negative test 72 hours before boarding means no boarding), so she'd have had to get it in the 40 hours between her last result and the flight, which she did :(

Now her case is not so mild, she has developed an acute bronchitis and has all the symptoms of a really nasty flu, and while she isn't hospitalized she's staying in a quarantine residency back at home.

Right now I'll stay at my apartment unit for as long as I have to per the CDC guidelines. I tried doing the groceries online for the first time, and I'm requesting the delivery people to drop things off at my door. Let's see how that works out.
#15159825
Here's the weekly numbers:

Image
Vaccines per 100,000:

Image
Schools opened: 0% = virtual schooling, 50% = hybrid instruction (2-3 days per week in-person), 100% = traditional 5 days in-person. Bolded are those over 90%.

Image
  • 1
  • 84
  • 85
  • 86
  • 87
  • 88
  • 95
The Unthinkable is now reality.

Why do you think we need ideals to guide a societ[…]

In 1945 Democrat President Harry Truman nominated[…]

https://i.imgur.com/QxehGkK.jpg […]

Is this the news from the UK for today? Why did an[…]