Doom and Bloom: R-Nought and a New Pandemic Book

The Alton’s at Doom and Bloom Medical has up an article discussing the infectiousness of Covid-19, and they also announce that their new book Alton’s Pandemic Preparedness Guide: Emerging and Current Viral Threats is now on sale.

If you’ve paid any attention to the worldwide pandemic of COVID-19 or watched movies like Contagion, , you’ve heard the term “R-nought”.

Alfred Lotka

The R-nought (or reproduction number) is the 100-year-old brainchild of a public health expert in demographics named Alfred Lotka. A disease’s R-Nought, he said, is the number of cases that will occur in a population if an infected person is placed in the middle of it. Not just any population, however; one that hasn’t been exposed to the infection in the past.

In the 1950s, epidemiologist George MacDonald used it to describe the contagious potential of malaria. He suggested that, if the R-nought is less than 1, the infectious person will transmit to fewer than one other person and an outbreak will eventually peter out. On the other hand, if the R-Nought is greater than 1, the disease will spread. Seasonal flu carries an R-Nought of 1.28, while the current COVID-19 is probably closer to 3.

Probably? Certainly, the R-Nought represents important data regarding an infectious disease. Why, then, probably? Because different sources may report different R-Noughts for the same disease based on a number of factors. It’s not just the nature of the virus itself.

Estimation of the R-nought primarily relates to 3 parameters:

  1. how long a person is contagious
  2. the likelihood that contact with a susceptible person will end in transmission of the disease
  3. the frequency of contact between the infected individual and the susceptible population.

Let’s take them one-by-one. The first is how long a person is contagious. Certainly, you want to quarantine someone during their infectious period, but, with COVID-19, that period is not known for certain.

For SARS, it was about 14 days, so that’s what they’re using for the related SARS-COV2 (the name for the virus that causes COVID-19). There are outliers, however, that range from 20-37 days. With a range that wide, how do they figure out when you’re no longer contagious?

If COVID-19 testing is available, they have determined three criteria for considering release from isolation:

•   You no longer have a fever without using fever-reducing drugs.

•   Symptoms like cough or shortness of breath have improved significantly.

•   you have received two negative tests in a row, 24 hours apart.

If testing is not available, the three criteria are:

•     You have had no fever for at least 72 hours without using fever-reducing drugs.

•     Symptoms like cough or shortness of breath have improved significantly.

•     At least 7 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared (I was surprised at that last one; perhaps 14 days is more prudent).

Pneumonia (circled)

Aside: Recovering COVID-19 patients might be surprised when they feel better but are told that the X-ray still shows signs of pneumonia. This is because the x-ray appearance of pneumonia commonly seems to lag behind the patient’s clinical appearance.

The second parameter is how likely is it that contact with a susceptible person ends up in infection. That depends partially on the characteristics of the virus itself, but It might also depend on a person’s age, general health, lifestyle, or even bad habits.

Older folks may get it as often as younger folks, but seem to do worse across the board. In one study, if you were in your twenties and got COVID-19, your chances of dying was 0.2 percent. If you were in your eighties, it was closer to 22 percent.

What about bad habits? Consider smoking: Most COVID-19 victims are men. in China, 50% of men smoke there as opposed to about 5% of women. Therefore, you can probably conclude that women have healthier lungs, on average, than men.

Cultural differences might also play a role. In Iran and certain other countries, most men work or spend a good amount of time outside. From this, we can infer that they might be exposed more often than women, who probably spend more time at home.

The third parameter is the frequency of contact between the infected individual and the susceptible population. For example, there are people that are known as “super spreaders”. A super-spreader is an individual who is more likely, for one reason or another, to infect others. 20% of infected individuals are responsible for 80% of transmissions to others.

Although South Korea is held out as a model of success in the containment of COVID-19, that wasn’t always the case. In mid-February, confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection suddenly jumped in that country. The Korean CDC attributed the increase in cases to “Patient 31“, who had participated in a mass religious gathering in the city of Daegu.

In New York, a lawyer contracted the illness and then spread it to at least twenty other individuals in his community in New Rochelle. In the early going, he was thought to account at one point or another for more than half of coronavirus cases in the state

Super-spreaders aren’t confined to viral disease, 100 years ago, a woman named Mary Mallon worked as a cook in New York. She was an asymptomatic carrier of the bacteria Salmonella Typhi, and passed that disease to more than 50 other people, giving her the nickname “Typhoid Mary“.

Terminating Typhoid Mary’s employment and quarantining super-spreaders and their contacts helps, but only if it’s done rapidly. In South Korea, it can be said to be successful. In New York, well, not so much.

There’s more to R-noughts than those 3 parameters, like testing issues, the availability of personal protection equipment to a community, and much more. It’s interesting to think about what the R-Nought of the 1918 Spanish Flu would have been if it occurred today with commercial air travel so common.

More updates on issues relating to the pandemic in the near future.

Oh, and if you were wondering where we’ve been lately, we’ve been personally packing medical kits seven days a week as well as writing our latest book, Alton’s Pandemic Preparedness Guide: Emerging and Current Viral Threats. You can find it on Amazon.com and, soon, at doomandbloom.net.

KIMA News: Donations of Respirator Masks and Other Medical Supplies Needed

From KIMA news, Donations of respirator masks and other medical supplies needed

Health care providers are in critical need of supplies as COVID-19 continues to hit Washington. Critical health supplies are in demand for Trios, Lourdes, Kadlec and Prosser Memorial. The Tri-Cities Business and Visitor Center is volunteering to be a central donation point to drop off supplies. Jim Hall, a representative of area health organizations, explains what type of items are needed.

“Hand sanitizer, wipes, PPE equipment, gowns and more, the more we can accumulate the better position we are going to be,” explained Hall. According to Hall, the Tri-Cities community is stepping up.

“Thank you to the community and thank you to the Business and Visitor Center for putting this collective effort together,” said Hall. You can drop off supplies Monday through Wednesday from 11 am to 7 pm at the Tri-Cities Business and Visitor Center.

“I know all of the medical providers in the area have really been swamped with inquiries from the public on how they can help,” said Hall. You can help by donating or help by practicing good hand washing and social distancing.

Health officials say we will get through this together. “I know nurses and doctors and health care providers are working around the clock to take care of our entire community,” said Hall.

Here is a list of supplies in critical shortage:

  • Masks- Surgical Masks, N95 Masks, or Handmade
  • Face Shields / Goggles
  • Finger Oximeter
  • Gloves (Non-Latex preferred)
  • Disinfecting Wipes
  • Thermometers
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Isolation Gowns

According to the Washington State Department of Health, many items were delivered to Washington State given from the Federal Strategic National Stockpile.

Here are the numbers of supplies given:

  • Gowns: 26,459
  • Gloves: 104,250
  • Masks: 133,760
  • Suits: 13

Here are the numbers of supplies given directly to the state:

  • 1.6 Million N95 Respirators
  • 560,000 Masks
  • 12 Million Disposable Gloves
  • 600,000 Masks
  • 74,000 Disinfectant Wipes

Reason: Stop Looking for ‘Leadership’ During the COVID-19 Outbreak

JD Tuccille at Reason has some well pointed words about leadership during the current pandemic – Stop Looking for ‘Leadership’ During the COVID-19 Outbreak

As the COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.S., pundits and opposition politicians pounded President Trump for displaying a “lack of leadership” in response to the deadly virus. And it’s true that, as always, the president was prone to minimizing inconvenient developments, bristling at critics, and contradicting members of his own team. Without a strong, focused figure in the White House (maybe somebody less deplorable?), we can’t possibly pull through this crisis, the opponents suggested. But that’s ridiculous; anybody making their responses to events contingent on political office not being held by narcissistic ass-clowns is putting their fate in the hands of circumstances they can’t control. They’re making a false virtue of dependency.

That’s not to say we shouldn’t listen to people who have expertise. Epidemiologists shared widely reported warnings in January of “the spread of 2019-nCov within and outside mainland China.”

“The more we learn about it, the greater the possibility is that transmission will not be able to be controlled with public health measures,” Toronto-based Allison McGeer, an infectious disease specialist, cautioned at roughly the same time.

Even China’s awful political rulers, who muzzled medical whistleblowers after they warned of the disease (there’s leadership!), admitted by the end of the month that the situation was out of control.

Just weeks later, the World Health Organization, as clumsy and prone to stroking authoritarian regimes as it is, said the virus had “pandemic potential,” while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned of “severe” disruptions to American life from “community spread” of the new virus.

Anybody paying attention had the opportunity to get ready for what was comingif they were allowed to do so by our fearless leaders.

It’s worth noting that, when political officials act, their most positive efforts come from getting out of the waythat is, by undoing the “leadership” they demonstrated on earlier matters.

President Trump announced “compassionate use” easing of restrictions on patients’ use of drugs that don’t yet have FDA approval for treating COVID-19.

Congress extended liability protection for makers of protective N95 face masks so that hospitals can directly purchase equipment that isn’t specifically approved for medical purposes under cumbersome FDA rules.

Eased regulation enforcement, announced by the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), means the government won’t take action against health insurers who modify their catastrophic plans to cover COVID-19 diagnosis and treatment for their customers.

Licensed physicians can also now practice across state lines, under CMS waivers that ease a host of other rules that bind the practice of medicine in red tape. The feds played catch-up on that one: states including Arizona, California, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Washington had already moved to ease restrictive licensing of medical providers before the feds jumped on the issue.

Even the Transportation Security Administration is joining in, modifying its insistence that doom is found in any liquid container of more than 3.4 ounce capacity so that travelers can carry 12-ounce bottles of hand sanitizer on airplanes.

“The coronavirus is forcing authorities to admit many of their regulations are unnecessary,” Reason‘s Nick Gillespie noted…(continues)

Click here to read the entire article at Reason.com

Rep. Bill Jenkin – COVID-19 Information and Resources

The following coronavirus information comes from the office of Representative Bill Jenkin.

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We are facing uncertain times. The shadow of COVID-19 (coronavirus) continues to threaten our health, lives, economy, and overall finances.

The governor has signed into the law the bill we passed at the conclusion of the 2020 session providing $200 million in emergency funds to immediately equip local and state agencies with funding to help in their response efforts.

I want to ensure you, your families, and your businesses have the most up-to-date information and resources relating to this virus. Below, you’ll find important information and resources to keep you informed and hopefully answer some questions I’m sure you have.

The House Republican Caucus has created a website with local, state, and national resources. Our communications staff keeps this updated daily. It’s another great source for you. I encourage you to bookmark this website.

For other daily resources and the latest headlines, I encourage you to subscribe to my caucus’ daily morning headlines – known as the Capitol Buzz. You can do so by clicking here. I also encourage you to follow our news aggregator The Ledger. You can bookmark the site by clicking here.

If there’s anything I can do to help, please don’t hesitate to contact my office at (509) 492-4648. You can also email me at Bill.Jenkin@leg.wa.gov. My Legislative Assistant, Marge, is also here to assist you with whatever you need. You can email her at Marge.Plumage@leg.wa.gov. I encourage you to reach out. We’re here for you.

I promise, together we’ll get through these uncertain and challenging times.

Sincerely,

Bill

Coronavirus | Information and Resources

Information for you and your family

Recent announcements and news releases from the Governor’s Office and Department of Health

Information for parents from the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI)

Information for employers and employees

Governor’s Office | Partial list of resources to support economic retention and recovery related to COVID-19:

Employment Security Department:

U.S. Small Business Administration:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

Department of Labor:

Department of Financial Institutions:

  • Financial Resources for Washington Residents Impacted by COVID-19
    • Accessing Your Financial Institution.
    • Unemployment Help.
    • Trouble Paying Credit Cards.
    • Trouble Paying Your Mortgage.
    • Trouble Paying Rent.
    • Student Loans Deferment.
    • Short Term and Emergency Loans.
    • Paying Utilities.
    • Insurance Issues.
    • Avoiding Scams.
    • At Home Financial Education Resources for Students.
    • Additional Resources.

Department of Labor & Industries:

  • Workers’ Compensation Coverage and Coronavirus (COVID-19) Common Questions
    • Can COVID-19 ever be allowed as a work-related condition?
    • When to file a claim.
    • When will a claim likely be denied?
    • How can I file a COVID-19 claim?
    • Filing a worker’s compensation claim: Exposure vs. contraction of COVID-19
    • Quarantine.
    • Covered treatment and post-exposure care.
    • Additional information on COVID-19.

Office of the Insurance Commissioner:

  • Coronavirus
    • Health insurance.
    • For insurers and medical providers.
    • Travel insurance.
    • Other types of insurance

It’s an honor to serve you.

Sincerely,

Bill Jenkin

Organic Prepper: How to Help Your Community Be Better Prepared

Kara Stiff at The Organic Prepper has written How to Help Your Community Be Better Prepared for Covid-19 (and Future Emergencies). It’s worth your time to read.

…Some people can’t get their doctors to prescribe a reasonable stockpile of essential medications, or they need regular access to a hospital for dialysis or some other life-saving service. Some don’t have an extra dollar to spend on food for later because they can’t cover food for today. Others can’t stay home even when they’re contagious because they’ll lose their job. And some are suffering from depression or other mental states that make it literally impossible to think about the future, much less plan for it.

Some of these have been issues for me in the past, and I’m just lucky those periods of my life were short. There are millions of people who live there permanently.

Systemic and personal barriers to other people’s preparedness affect me personally, even though my family is in pretty good shape. We live out in the country but we’re still surrounded by neighbors, and our fortunes will rise and fall with theirs. My family can only be as prepared as our neighborhood, our county, our state. Which is to say, not very prepared at all.

How I’m working on community preparedness

So instead of further addressing our personal preparedness with diminishing returns, I’m working on community preparedness. I’m not an elected official or a leader, just a private citizen, so the things I’m doing are friendly and neighborly things.

Before we got our little cold I did my friend’s monthly livestock feed run for her, saving her a day in the car so she can rest up and take care of things at home. Then, I took my elderly neighbors some extra eggs. I haven’t seen them in a while, and it’s to both of our advantages if they remember who I am. I reintroduced myself to my neighbor who just moved in, so he remembers who I am, too.

Of course, it’s safest to live in a tight network of preparedness-minded people with diverse and complementary skills who unconditionally support each other. But how many of us are actually achieving that right now?

It’s difficult to build and maintain that sort of situation in a nation where most people aren’t interested, and people are always moving. Some of my neighbors form a pretty good support group, but I also have neighbors I’m not close with. Knowing their names and faces is far better than not knowing.

Another thing I’m doing is giving extra money to my local food bank. In these times when all the headlines scream that unemployment is low and the economy is hearty, about 15% of my county is already leaning on the food bank, including lots of elderly people and families with small children. These are the people who can least afford a health problem or a wider financial disruption, and it’s ultimately better for me if they have access to the resources to stock up.

The greater the proportion of the population who can meet some of their needs in any emergency, be it a virus, a weather event or just a personal job loss, the more likely it is that any forthcoming disaster assistance can cover the remaining needs. More needs met equals less unrest (certainly not none, but less) and less unrest equals my family being safer (certainly not safe, but safer).

It’s easy to feel that because I’m all set, all those grasshoppers who won’t see to their own needs can suffer and it doesn’t affect me. But it isn’t true. I am safest when everyone is safest.

This week I’m reaching out gently to friends and family, especially those who are vulnerable because of asthma, pregnancy, age or other preexisting conditions. Because my anxiety about my own family is relatively low, I can speak to them in encouraging, soothing, practical ways, sharing information and urging them to get some extra food so they have the option to stay home, hopefully without stressing them out too much. A few people actually contacted me, and I was able to better answer their questions and listen to their feelings because I’m not panicking myself. They weren’t interested last week when I mentioned the virus offhandedly, but this week, they are.

People become receptive to preparedness on their own timelines.

You might have found in your personal conversations that people are uninterested or even scornful about your preparedness ideas. I’ve certainly found that. My dad was polite but not too excited about my thoughts during last winter’s ice storm. Now he’s been following the Covid-19 news, and all of a sudden he wants to talk more in-depth about water catchment, food storage, and communication if the cell service is ever disrupted.

His change of mind just goes to show that people have to become receptive all on their own. In my experience, all we ordinary private citizens can do is try to gently plant a seed of interest in preparedness topics, and then be there to water it when the circumstances are right. For a lot of previously uninterested people, those circumstances are right now, and they might be looking around for somebody to learn from. Groups you’re already a part of (such as clubs or churches) may also be more receptive now that they used to be.

I’m not suggesting giving them a guided tour of your storage, or anything else that compromises your own security, but something as simple as speaking quietly to group leaders, assisting them to support others…

Click here to continue reading at The Organic Prepper.

Reminder to Check on Vulnerable Neighbors

There have been some stories shared on social media of people being carefully approached by strangers who are in the high-risk categories for COVID-19 (older adults and people with heart disease, diabetes or lung disease) and asked for help with shopping or other resources, because the strangers are afraid to expose themselves by going into crowded stores themselves. Sometimes they are being given cash and a shopping list, which exposes these high-risk people to both theft and then not having supplies. If you have neighbors whom you know are in a high risk group, it is a good idea to contact them (ideally via a remote method that doesn’t expose them to anything you may be carrying) and ask if you can assist them with any preparations. You could also print them an OK/HELP sign so that they can notify neighbors if they need assistance, and the people for whom they have phone numbers aren’t able to respond to help.

Be mindful that you still need to practice good hygiene to prevent infection in either direction when passing off goods or payment.

AYWtGS: Handling Quarantine with Kids

Karen at A Year Without the Grocery Store has an article up – Got Kids? How Do You Handle a Coronavirus Quarantine With Them? – with some suggestions on handling quarantine without going crazy.

We all love our children.  But despite that love, want to see parents cringe quickly?  Tell them that they are going to be stuck inside with their children for three months or more.  More than that, they cannot leave their home.

That thought in itself is incredibly overwhelming!  Add to it, getting ready to cut yourselves off from the world, it’s enough to devastate any parent.  How do you handle being cooped up with your kids for months on end?  Don’t stress, there are answers that don’t include 24/7 TV.

Let me start by saying, I’m a mom to five kids ages 8-17.  I don’t take the notion of being stuck inside my home for months with my kids lightly.  While younger kids will have an easier time staying home, older kids are going to feel the isolation much more.

So how do we handle a quarantine with kids?

When I was pregnant with my second set of twins, I was in the hospital every week for a non-stress test.  I had a friend who was pregnant at the same time.  She was hospitalized with placenta previa.  She wasn’t just hospitalized for a week or two.  No, she was hospitalized for more than TWELVE weeks.  And during that time, she was mostly confined to half of a small room.

How in the world did she keep herself sane being remanded to that small room for so long?  Some of her tips and tricks will work for us as we talk about how we’re going to help our kids (and ourselves) through what could be a long quarantine.

(1) Start Your Day Off Healthy

Make sure that you are starting your day off with a multi-vitamin, vitamin C, and a probiotic.  I would also suggest that you spend time in God’s word and prayer at the beginning of your day.  We love to sing together as a family, and this would be a good time to do that as well.

(2) Make sure your kids are learning.

Whether you homeschool or not, make sure that your kids are still learning.   Even if you send your kids to school, make sure that they are bringing their school books home with them as you get closer to keeping them home from school in a quarantine.   Or you could put together a school kit so that you will always have items to help your children learn if they can’t go to school.

For me, it’s really simple.  I have three children still in school.  And since we homeschool, they will all continue doing their school just like normal.  That will go a HUGE way toward helping things still feel normal.

What about older kids who have graduated and are working while still living at home?  Make sure that you have conversations with them now about when you are going to tell them that they can’t continue working for a while.  Have them talk to their employers NOW to manage expectations.

These older children should still be learning!  As I was going through totes today taking stock of everything for our quarantine, I found suture needles and other implements for doing stitches and practice skin.  Find a YouTube video on practice suturing and have them learn how to do sutures.  Or have you or your kids ever made bread or noodles from scratch?  Why not use some of that time to learn how to do a new skill?

(3) Make sure that you and your kids are moving daily.

If you have little kids, it’s obvious why they should do physical activity every day.  But what about older kids who aren’t bouncing off the walls?  Why should they (and you) exercise daily?

Studies have shown that mice were divided into three groups and all infected with the flu.  One group was sedentary.  One group jogged on a wheel for 20-30 minutes (modest activity for mice), and another group of mice was kept on a wheel for 2 1/2 – 3 hours.  Fifty percent of the sedentary group died.  SEVENTY percent of the mice who ran for 2 1/2-3 hours died!  Only 12 percent of the mice who were kept on the wheel for 20-30 minutes died.

Even if you aren’t going to expose yourself to the virus, keeping your body moving a modest amount can help your body better handle whatever is thrown at it.

Now, not everyone has a treadmill or a stationary bike, I get that.  But do you have Amazon Prime?  You can learn (or practice) yoga with your kids using this free video.  Don’t like yoga?  Here’s an exercise video called “Marching Low Impact.”  Or buy a digital copy of “Sweating to the Oldies” and sweat (and laugh and laugh) with your kids.

(4)  Play at least one game a day with your kids. 

This is a great time to spend time playing some of those games that you don’t play regularly either because you haven’t taken the time to learn them or because they take a little more time to play.

Do you have two decks of cards?  All you need is a Hoyle Card book, and you’ll have hours of fun at your hands.

Another thing that might fall into this category is putting together puzzles.

(5) Take a skill that you have to the next level.

Do you have a skill that you enjoy – like knitting?  Take it to the next level.  Maybe you could learn how to do cables or knit in multiple colors.  I’ve learned a bit about spinning, but don’t take a lot of time to actually practice it.  This would be the perfect time to take that skill to the next level.

How Do You Handle a Quarantine with Kids?(6) Schedule time for kids to talk with their friends using Facetime or Skype.

Only one of our kids has a cell phone.  And her cell phone is one for which we purchase minutes.  That means that calls aren’t a regular part of our kids lives.  Even if your kids have cell phones, talking with friends makes so much more of an impact when they can see them.

What if your kids could ‘virtually’ get together with their friends regularly during a quarantine?  They would be able share stories of what’s going on, what they are learning, and the time would pass so much faster.

(7) Enjoy movies and TV shows in moderation.

There are few things that make me feel more claustrophobic than sitting in front of a screen watching mindless TV too long.  I will often feel the need to get up and do something when I’ve got an Amazon or Netflix show going too much.  But that being said, sometimes, we just need to let our minds go to a more fun place and a movie or a TV show can do that for us.

(8) Most Importantly set a routine for your days.  How Do You Handle a Quarantine with Kids?

I say this last because I wanted to give you a lot of options for filling a routine.  Why do you need a routine?

When I was pregnant with my second set of twins, I was in the hospital on a weekly basis for non-stress tests.  I had a friend who was pregnant at the same time, but she was admitted to the hospital because of placenta previa and was at high risk for hemorrhaging.

The thing is that she wasn’t just in the hospital for one or two weeks, she was in the hospital for TWELVE weeks!  She wasn’t just confined to the limits of the hospital.  She was almost exclusively confined to her small hospital room, which she had to share with another person from time to time.

How did she keep from going crazy while she was confined to such a small space?!?

The most important thing that she did (by her own admission) was to set a routine for her day.  She would start it with time in God’s word and prayer.  Then she would spend around two hours scrapbooking.  After that, she would watch TV for about two hours.  Then she would work on a crocheting something for an hour or two.  Her kids and her husband would come and visit her for a couple of hours later in the day.  She would spend some time reading after that.  Then she would spend some time coloring in a coloring book.

Her routine kept her from going completely stir crazy.  So I want you to take 10-15 minutes and using activities from above or others that you come up with on your own to set a schedule for yourself and your children so that you have a routine for when you all are quarantined.

Will the routine change once you get into your quarantine?  Absolutely!  Some things will work.  Some things won’t work as you envisioned them, but you’ll be giving yourself a framework for your family.  Change it around, turn it on its head if need be.  But make sure that you actually have a routine so that everyone doesn’t go completely crazy!

What About You?

What other ideas do you have on how to keep your kids from going crazy during a quarantine?  How long do you anticipate that your family will need to be in quarantine?  Are you concerned about missing any really big events because of the quarantine?  I’d love to hear!  Share with us in the comments so that we can all be better prepared.

Together lets Love, Learn, Practice, and Overcome!

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Dr. Gabriel Cousens’ COVID-19 Wuhan Coronavirus Protection and Prevention

The information below from Dr. Gabriel Cousens was going to presented as part of a health/essential oils presentation during the general assembly meeting tonight (which has been cancelled):

COVID-19 Wuhan Coronavirus
March 10th, 2020 UPDATE
Protection & Prevention
The COVID-19 Coronavirus question, on one level, is getting more complicated, as a certain amount of disinformation contradicting the basic data is emerging. Some say it’s an internet hoax, others say it’s not that serious, and others are saying it needs to be taken seriously. Even though some are saying, “No problem – It’s a minor threat”, it would be a major mistake not to take the proper hygiene and anti-viral nutritional protocol precautions and start the immune system building protocol as outlined in my Coronavirus Protection Protocol. There’s an old Sufi saying, “Love everybody (hoax or not), but tie up your camel (follow the prevention protocol).” This means we must act preventatively. My position as a former lieutenant commander in the Public Health Service is to give advice that will at least make people healthier (if I’m wrong) and save lives (if I’m right).
The present evidence strongly suggests that although there is some controversy, COVID-19 is a laboratory-made weaponized bio-terror virus. This virus is a manmade chimera, which is not actually normally found in nature.
It also turns out that the nations with the most advanced 5G rollouts also have the highest incidence of COVID-19 cases and mortality. There is clear statistical evidence of these 5G-exposed populations have the highest infection rates and death rates. It has been observed that those nations with the most powerful 5G networks are having the biggest outbreak of COVID-19 coronavirus to date. It is well-known that 5G not only is associated with higher rates of depression, paranoia, and anxiety, but also higher rates of weakened immunity, cancer, heart disease, and type-2 diabetes. There are over 10,000 studies showing that 4G is associated with decreased immune system function and chronic disease. Researchers are also claiming that 5G is at least 100 times more potent than 4G, so it’s no surprise that 5G would be associated with higher morbidity, vulnerability, and mortality from this weaponized coronavirus, COVID-19. Based on the available science, it’s reasonable to theorize that 5G could specifically activate the pathological potentialities of the virus. Although this is only probable speculation and has not been totally proven, it still brings us back to prevention with an additional point – the importance of fighting against 5G wherever they threaten to roll it out, for our sakes and the sake of humanity. It took 30 years to absolutely prove smoking causes cancer; we cannot afford to wait that long.
Research from the well-respected Lancet journal out of England shows that people should be quarantined at least 24 days, while others are saying it should be up to 1 month before being released back into the public area. Whether it is by ignorance or by malefic choice, we’re releasing people into the public after only 14 days of quarantine, if they are quarantined at all. It’s not clear who’s making these unscientific decisions but brings us back to the fact that it is our responsibility to take care of ourselves. The estimates are that if we really take care of ourselves, and/or with hospital treatment, the average fatality rate is between 2% to 3.4% depending on age and degree of wellness. Others, who have direct contact with Chinese sources are claiming it may be 10 times higher. A statement made by Anthony Fauci, MD, director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, in an editorial published on 2/28/20 in the New England Journal of Medicine, suggested that COVID-19’s mortality rate is “considerably less than 1%”. The worst mortality rates, which increase with age and lack of proper health and hygiene, could be 15-18% fatality rate if over 70 years old; others say this approximate 15% mortality rate is for those over 80 years old; and still others say these higher rates apply to those as young as 60. Other scientific estimates of the mortality rate are: 8% for ages 70-79 and 3.6% for those ages 60-69. Mortality rates seem to increase with age. Kids under 10 seem to be quite safe with a projected fatality rate of .04%. The bottom line, again, is that we have the ability to protect ourselves from this, and there’s no need to go into fear, but we do need to pay attention.
As the statistics unfold, the mortality rate for COVID-19 appears to be roughly 30 times greater than the flu, although the rate of spread for the flu virus is greater. Marc Lipsitch, a Harvard epidemiology professor, has stated, “I think the likely outcome is that it will ultimately not be containable.” He predicts that at least 40-70% of the US population will contract the virus. Most medical experts believe that while it can’t be contained that 98% of the population will do ok. COVID-19 is a lower respiratory illness, as opposed to the cold, which generally effects the upper respiratory system.
As of March 10th, 2020, an estimated 110,000 people worldwide have been affected by COVID-19, but others estimate at least 300,000 people in China alone have been infected. Of those infected, 81% have a mild infection, 14% have a moderate infection, and 5% become critical and need hospitalization. Two-thirds of those who have died are men. 80% are older than 60 years, and 75% had underlying chronic diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and high blood pressure.
In an attempt to gain some perspective, current statistics show that on a single day, such as on February 10th, 2020, 108 people in China died from COVID-19. Even if the numbers are tenfold higher for COVID-19, it brings it to 1,080 people dying in a day, which is still less than all other causes of death per day, except suicide.
·     1,660 Americans died of cancer.
·     2,150 Americans died from heart attacks.
·     123 Americans died from suicide.
·     3,287 Americans died from car accidents.
·     8,500 children around the world starved to death.
Obviously, the deaths per day from COVID-19 was significantly lower than other causes of death for that day. Also, the 1918 influenza pandemic had a mortality rate of around 5%, but enormous impact because it was highly contagious. The idea, of course, it not to become a statistic for any of these causes.
Compared to other lethal viruses, COVID-19 also has a lower mortality rate at this state of the pandemic. For example, according to WHO, the mortality rate for SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) is approximately 10% and for MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome), it is 30%. COVID-19’s mortality rate may be as low as 1%, but is probably, based on current statistics, at least 2-3.4%. As you can see, relatively speaking, on a global level, COVID-19 has a lower mortality rate than these other major viral infection threats, but generally a higher infectivity rate than all but the H1N1 epidemic of 2009/2010. The last SARS outbreak had more fatalities than the current COVID-19 currently has. Currently 110 countries have reported COVID-19 infections; second to the H1N1 outbreaks. In general, it seems, at this point, that the COVID-19 virus is less deadly than MERS or SARS, but neither have captured the headline attention that COVID-19 has received.

Continue reading “Dr. Gabriel Cousens’ COVID-19 Wuhan Coronavirus Protection and Prevention”

Forward Observer: COVID-19 Update

Intelligence analysis and training company Forward Observer sent out an email this morning with some COVID-19 news/updates.

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: Confirmed cases in the U.S. reached 1,257 — nearly a 24 percent increase from yesterday. Yesterday’s increase was 28 percent. The truth is that these numbers are way off. First, Chinese officials estimate that the U.S. had over 9,000 cases earlier this month, based on international flight data from Wuhan. Some American health officials are saying there’s likely to already be 20,000 cases nationwide.

A happy-medium estimate of 10,000 cases at a conservative 10 percent daily growth rate would put us over 3,000,000 cases in the next 60 days, by mid-May. While there may be some mitigating factors to exponential growth, we’re facing an incredibly disruptive future.

THE BAD NEWS: Dr. Brian Monahan, the attending physician for the U.S. Senate, warned senators on Tuesday that anywhere from 70 to 150 million Americans will contract COVID-19.

To put this into perspective, according to the American Hospital Association, there are 36 million hospital admissions in the U.S. each year. If 20 percent of all COVID-19 patients require hospitalization, then there could be 14-30 million extra hospital admissions. Now, China reports that about 15 percent of patients require hospitalization, but Italy says that 50 percent of COVID-19 patients have required hospitalization! If we see anywhere near that range, there’s simply not going to be enough room or staff to treat that many people.

THE GOOD NEWS: The University of Maryland School of Medicine announced that the spread of COVID-19 should ease this year as temperatures rise. That’s the first medical institution I’ve seen backing that theory. Officials warned, however, that more northerly latitudes could continue to see outbreaks into summer.

AND THEN: That pretty much confirms that COVID-19 will be back in the fall for another round of outbreaks.

U.S.: President Trump announced a series of policy steps he’s taking to stop the spread of COVID-19. By far, the most disruptive policy is that travel from most European countries will effectively end for 30 days starting on Friday. American citizens and permanent residents will be exempt.

Boeing leads the pack of U.S.-based corporations tapping credit lines, saying they’ll take out a $13.8 billion loan as insurance against a cash flow crunch. Hilton Hotels is in for $1.75 billion. Meanwhile, San Francisco is reporting hotel revenue dropping by 46 percent, 35 percent in Seattle, and 20 percent in New York. With spring break upon us and summer break right around the corner, it’s going to be a tough and sparse few months for the tourism industry. Port activity was also down 20 percent on the West Coast for the month of February. (Although, by looking at the charts, they’re used to it: they saw worse in previous years during the height of the trade war.)

ECONOMIC WARNING: BlackRock, the nation’s largest asset manager with $7 trillion AUM, advised clients that they don’t see the COVID-19 pandemic “as an [economic] expansion-ending event” — just as long as an effective federal response is enacted. Still, they see “a sharp and deep economic slowdown in the near term.” (Analyst Comment: This outlook underscores their faith that massive fiscal stimulus and favorable monetary conditions can blunt any effects leading to a 2008-esque meltdown. Yeah, my fingers are crossed, too.)

Goldman Sachs’ David Kostin advised clients that the 11-year bull market run is over, and painted a bleak picture of economic reality: “Supply chains have been disrupted and final demand has declined for many industries. Travel is contracting sharply as both individuals and businesses restrict movement. Airlines, hotels, cruises, and casinos report plunging demand, lower occupancy, and cancellations. Employees are being furloughed.”

JPMorgan Chase is alerting its clients that “a market sell-off of this magnitude implied a 65-75% chance of recession in the next year,” but a “timely, strong counter-policy response” and “a peak of COVID-19” in the coming weeks should prove the market drop an overreaction. (AC: JPMorgan Chase is expecting a peak in the coming weeks, which is at odds with what epidemiologists are saying when they expect a continuation for months.)

SHORTAGES: Coca-Cola warned of potential shortages of Diet Coke, due to supplier disruption. (The next panic buy?) Consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble is warning of coming shortages, as well, for the same reason. According to one economist, the “worst impact for businesses [will] come in April and May.” (AC: At some point, accusations of “panic buying” will no longer be sufficient to explain empty shelves, and the reality of shortages will set in. Based on what I’m hearing from China, there will be a period of weeks where shortages will persist. Those shortages could be sporadic or regional, based on where your local retailers source their goods. Regardless: it’s coming.) //END

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BFHD: Social Distancing for High Risk Populations

The Benton Franklin Health District has posted this message on Social Distancing for High Risk Populations in light of the coronavirus outbreak in Washington state.

Benton-Franklin Health District (BFHD) is working tirelessly to limit the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in our community. At this time, we have no presumed or confirmed cases. We know that people are worried about this new illness. Due to the novelty of the disease, information on which to make recommendations is changing rapidly.

Prevention strategies can make a large impact in slowing the increase in cases in the short run and ultimately reducing the total number of cases.

Our recommendations are based on our best understanding of this new disease and with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Washington State Department of Health, and our colleagues at other local health agencies.

We know that COVID-19 spreads among close contacts, and that reducing close contact with others can help reduce the spread of this disease. Social Distancing is a prevention strategy used for many other illnesses.

For social distancing to be most effective, it must be combined with other illness prevention steps.

  • Wash your hands with soap and water frequently, especially after having physical contact with others, being in public places or health care facilities, when leaving work or school and upon returning home.
  • Stay home when you are sick. It is crucial that those who are ill with fever or symptoms like coughing or shortness of breath stay home and away from others.
  • Stay away from other sick people.
  • If someone else at work is sick with a cough or cold, make this known to someone in charge so that person can be asked to leave.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, throw it away, and then wash your hands.
  • Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces with a disinfectant.

Gatherings: BFHD is recommending additional social distancing for people at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. If your event has an intended audience of those that would be considered higher risk, we recommend cancellation of those events.

Those at higher risk include people who:

  • are over 60 years of age
  • have an underlying medical condition, like heart disease, lung disease or diabetes
  • have weakened immune systems
  • are pregnant

If you have questions about whether you or your child is at higher risk from COVID-19, ask your health care provider.

For events where the intended audience is not higher risk, BFHD is advising organizations to follow DOH’s Recommendations for Events and Public Gatherings. Currently, our Health Officer has determined our community is at moderate risk – Threshold 2.

Employers: BFHD is encouraging workplaces and businesses to provide options for their higher risk employees to work from home if possible. If they cannot work from home, employees at higher should minimize their interaction with large groups of people.

Faith Community: BFHD is recommending that our faith community partners practice social distancing during services. Refrain from hugs, handshakes, and any common vessel usage.

What’s Next: BFHD will make decisions about future measures based on active surveillance of all respiratory illness in our community. Surveillance includes monitoring community level data such as emergency department volumes, school absentee rates, respiratory illness rates in long-term care facilities, and data from Washington State’s syndromic surveillance portal.

 

Empty Shelves Do Not Mean “Panic Buying”

I was thinking that I was going to have to write a post like this myself today, but luckily I ran across this letter to the editor at Inforum from NDSU professor of Emergency Management Dr. Carol Cwiak. I can’t count the number of articles decrying the “panic buying” going on ahead of possible COVID-19 quarantines, telling people to calm down – that they only need a sparse few things. Some government officials have been as foolish and uninformed as to say that people only need 2-3 days of supplies for a disaster, in spite of the fact that FEMA and state emergency management officials have been telling people for years now that two weeks or more are necessary, and the fact that coronavirus quarantines are a minimum of two weeks. What we’re seeing in stores is not panic; Black Friday sales in this country have more in common with panic buying than the calm, but widespread, buying we’re seeing.

There have been many media stories and social media posts over the past couple of weeks about consumers’ shopping behaviors related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). These stories and posts inevitably feature photos of empty store shelves and shoppers with carts filled with supplies such as water, paper products, cleaning supplies and medication. In these stories and posts, the shopper’s behavior has been characterized as “panic” or “hoarding” related to fears about COVID-19. This is a mischaracterization of what is happening, and the use of these terms is not helpful.

These behaviors are more appropriately framed from a preparedness perspective. Typically, guidance from public officials about citizen preparedness is not widely followed, often to citizens’ detriment. Despite valiant preparedness efforts by community leaders over the years, citizens, on the whole, have not historically been great at recognizing and taking ownership over their own risks in the public health and emergency management space.

In the instance of COVID-19, there seems to be an uptick regarding citizen preparedness. There has been consistent messaging surrounding citizen preparedness about the need for households to have food and water supplies for a minimum of 14 days and prescription medicine supplies for at least 30 days; and, apparently people are listening. To public health and emergency management professionals who have been preaching citizen preparedness for years (myself included), this is an encouraging step in the right direction. As for the reasons regarding why citizens are more actively owning their own risk in this situation as opposed to other situations in which they have not adequately prepared, we must look at the confluence of a number of factors.

First, we have become a just-in-time society that affords us the luxury of ordering things online that can be delivered in a period of hours. There is no need to shop for a few weeks at a time when you can think about what you want to make for dinner in the morning and have the groceries delivered in the afternoon. And if you are ordering in from a local restaurant, the process is further simplified by services that will deliver just about everything right to your door in under an hour. Retailers have aligned their behavior with consumers’ behavior and stock shelves and maintain inventory based on the society’s migration to just-in-time service.

Second, we live in an increasingly interdependent and interconnected society served by a complex global supply chain that is vulnerable to disruption. COVID-19 is already disrupting the global supply chain and the U.S. is beginning to feel that disruption. There has already been recognition on the part of some major retailers that they will experience shortages on a variety of items sought by consumers.

Third, as COVID-19 continues its spread at the community level, the workforce will be impacted by employee illness, employee absence due to caretaking of ill family members, employee absence due to lack of child care, and employer efforts to control the spread of the disease (e.g., social distancing, social isolation, healthy workplace policies, etc.). Workforce shortages and challenges will potentially affect both the way businesses deliver goods and services and their ability to deliver at current levels.

Fourth, due to the global nature of this public health event, the option to receive help from other unaffected communities is greatly diminished. While some communities will be hit harder than others with impacts from the virus, all communities will be impacted. This is different than most events citizens are asked to prepare for; in this event, there will not be the same level of capacity to help the un- or under-prepared.

Fifth, there is an increased potential for death with COVID-19 and health care systems will be taxed by both additional patients and workforce reductions. The strain on health care systems will challenge citizens’ ability to access just-in-time health care services.

These factors taken together illustrate some of the potential reasons citizens may view these risks as more salient and important to prepare for than other, more common calls for citizen preparedness. Hence, preparations taken by citizens to have the suggested food, water and medicine supply to prepare their households consistent with preparedness messaging from local, state and national government officials is not hoarding or being done in a state of panic. These are rational efforts by citizens who understand the risk and are taking seriously their role in managing it.

KNDU: Prosser Suspends City Programs While Sanitizing Community Center

From KNDU, City of Prosser suspends City programs while it works to sanitize community center because of potential coronavirus exposure.

The City of Prosser has decided to suspend City programs because of a possible exposure to the coronavirus.

On Monday, March 9, the City received information there was a sight chance that a person at the Community Center, located at 1231 Dudley Ave., could have been exposed to COVID-19. According to a news release, the potential exposure comes from a possible transference from a site outside Benton County via a patron of the facility.

According to City Officials, the person who may have been exposed has no symptoms at this time.

Working with the Benton-Franklin Health Department the City of Prosser decided to suspend City programs while it works to sanitize the facility. This is a precautionary measure only, taken to ensure the safety of all citizens. The City has reached out to its facility partners and advised them of the situation and allowed them to determine whether to continue or suspend their programs based on the level of risk.

According to the city, The Senior Citizens Club has posted updates on their program activities on their Facebook page. Meals on Wheels is still operating and will be providing meals. Please check the Prosser Meals on Wheels Facebook page for more information and updates.

The City of Prosser expects to resume programs at the Community Center next week. “We want to stress that this is simply a precaution and thank you for your patience” Steve Zetz, Community Development Director.

Organic Prepper: China’s Control of Pharmaceuticals

In this article from The Organic Prepper, Daisy Luther discusses China’s corner on the pharmaceutical market – 80% of pharmaceutical ingredients are made in China – and recent threats (or merely boasts?) that China would or could cut off drug exports to the US.

As China allegedly conquers the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak that began in Wuhan, it appears that they’re right back to considering the United States an enemy. On Xiahuanet, the Communist Party news outlet, they threatened to withhold all medical exports to the US, at the same asking for an “apology” from the US and “gratitude” from the rest of the world.

This comes at the most crucial point of an outbreak that originated in their own country.

Why is China angry with the US?

Xinhuanet is the biggest news agency in China, and very “influential.” The outlet is the official state-run press agency, so anything found on the website is straight from the Chinese government. An article titled, “The World Should Thank China,” which was published on March 4, covered the outbreak of Covid-19 in the United States.

The article suggests that the US’s data is suspicious because all cases of coronavirus must be confirmed by the CDC. (I can’t disagree with them that our numbers are questionable.) It shows a photograph of people praying in the White House to underline how “nervous” President Trump is about the virus. (This photo was actually of a meeting that the Vice President had about the rapidly spreading virus, as opposed to the President.)

Xinhuanet goes on to tout the control they have taken over the outbreak, saying that Trump admires their handling of the crisis and that his “remarks came from the bottom of his heart.”

At the same time, Xinhuanet criticized the US’s perceived mistreatment of China, citing the travel ban and the evacuation of American citizens from Wuhan, the heart of the outbreak. This caused, according to Xinhuanet, other countries to also “isolate” China from the rest of the world, causing them economic harm.

A translated version of the article says:

These practices in the United States are very unkind. They can be described as falling into the ground and killing people while they are ill. (source)

And now, if it is to be believed that China has contained the outbreak and they’re back to business as usual, they may want to exact some vengeance for this “unkindness.” (And of course, this remains the question – do they even currently possess the capability to manufacture these medical products or is this all a way to save face because their workforce is decimated and the virus is actually not contained at all?)

How did China threaten the US?

In the article, China suggests that they could easily get even with the United States for their perceived mistreatment of China during the outbreak by cutting off medical supplies while we are in the midst of our own outbreak.

If China retaliates against the United States at this time, in addition to announcing a travel ban on the United States, it will also announce strategic control over medical products and ban exports to the United States. Then the United States will be caught in the ocean of new crown viruses.

According to the US CDC officials, most masks in the United States are made in China and imported from China. If China bans the export of masks to the United States, the United States will fall into the mask shortage, and the most basic measures to prevent the new crown virus are Can’t do it.

Also according to the US CDC officials, most of the drugs in the United States are imported, and some drugs are imported from Europe. However, Europe also places the production base of these drugs in China, so more than 90% of the US imported drugs are Related to China. The implication is that at this time, as long as China announces that its drugs are as domestic as possible and banned exports, the United States will fall into the hell of the new crown pneumonia epidemic. (source)

In the next paragraph, Xinhuanet basically says, “Nah, don’t worry. We are filled with love.”

However, there is a great love in the world. The Chinese people and the Chinese government have never done so. They have not insulted the United States, nor have they banned the export of masks and medicines to the United States. (source)

Then the article suggests that the United States, if not the entire world, owes China an apology due to our media coverage of the outbreak in Wuhan and comments made about the outbreak by government officials like  Secretary of Commerce Rose, US Secretary of State Pompeo, and US White House Economic Adviser Navarro. They say these officials “gloated” about the coronavirus outbreak and saw it as an opportunity to pull US manufacturing out of China…

Click here to read the entire article at The Organic Prepper.

What’s Happening in Lombardy from an ICU Doctor

Dr. Daniele Macchini of Bergamo, Italy posted an update on Facebook on how conditions are in the hospitals there. It was translated into English and posted on twitter. (h/t Aesop) There are also reports that retired doctors have been asked to come back to work, and nursing students have been graduated early in order to deal with the health system crisis.

“After much thought about whether and what to write about what is happening to us, I felt that silence was not responsible. I will therefore try to convey to people far from our reality what we are living in Bergamo in these days of Covid-19 pandemic. I understand the need not to create panic, but when the message of the dangerousness of what is happening does not reach people I shudder. I myself watched with some amazement the reorganization of the entire hospital in the past week, when our current enemy was still in the shadows: the wards slowly “emptied”, elective activitieswere interrupted, intensive care were freed up to create as many beds as possible. All this rapid transformation brought an atmosphere of silence and surreal emptiness to the corridors of the hospital that we did not yet understand, waiting for a war that was yet to begin and that many (including me) were not so sure would ever come with such ferocity. I still remember my night call a week ago when I was waiting for the results of a swab. When I think about it, my anxiety over one possible case seems almost ridiculous and unjustified, now that I’ve seen what’s happening. Well, the situation now is dramatic to say the least. The war has literally exploded and battles are uninterrupted day and night. But now that need for beds has arrived in all its drama. One after the other the departments that had been emptied fill up at an impressive pace. The boards with the names of the patients, of different colours depending on the operating unit, are now all red and instead of surgery you see the diagnosis, which is always the damned same: bilateral interstitial pneumonia. Now, explain to me which flu virus causes such a rapid drama. And while there are still people who boast of not being afraid by ignoring directions, protesting because their normal routine is”temporarily” put in crisis, the epidemiological disaster is taking place. And there are no more surgeons, urologists, orthopedists, we are only doctors who suddenly become part of a single team to face this tsunami that has overwhelmed us. Cases are multiplying, we arrive at a rate of 15-20 admissions per day all for the same reason. The results of the swabs now come one after the other: positive, positive, positive. Suddenly the E.R. is collapsing. Reasons for the access always the same: fever and breathing difficulties, fever and cough, respiratory failure. Radiology reports always the same: bilateral interstitial pneumonia, bilateral interstitial pneumonia, bilateral interstitial pneumonia. All to be hospitalized. Someone already to be intubated and go to intensive care. For others it’s too late… Every ventilator becomes like gold: those in operating theatres that have now suspended their non-urgent activity become intensive care places that did not exist before. The staff is exhausted. I saw the tiredness on faces that didn’t know what it was despite the already exhausting workloads they had. I saw a solidarity of all of us, who never failed to go to our internist colleagues to ask “what can I do for you now?” Doctors who move beds and transfer patients, who administer therapies instead of nurses. Nurses with tears in their eyes because we can’t save everyone, and the vital parameters of several patients at the same time reveal an already marked destiny. There are no more shifts, no more hours. Social life is suspended for us. We no longer see our families for fear of infecting them. Some of us have already become infected despite the protocols. Some of our colleagues who are infected also have infected relatives and some of their relatives are already struggling between life and death. So be patient, you can’t go to the theatre, museums or the gym. Try to have pity on the myriad of old people you could exterminate. We just try to make ourselves useful. You should do the same: we influence the life and death of a few dozen people. You with yours, many more. Please share this message. We must spread the word to prevent what is happening here from happening all over Italy.”           – Dr. Daniele Macchini.

“I finish by saying that I really don’t understand this war on panic. The only reason I see is mask shortages, but there’s no mask on sale anymore. We don’t have a lot of studies, but is it panic really worse than neglect and carelessness during an epidemic of this sort?”