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!

There are links in this post.  Some of the links may be affiliate links.  Some of the links may not be.

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

STAY AHEAD OF THE CURVE: https://members.forwardobserver.com

Each and every morning, I’m looking out for my readers. If you sign up and you’re not satisfied, just email me within seven days and I’ll refund your subscription. You literally have nothing to lose and a lot of warning signals to gain. You can sign up here: https://members.forwardobserver.com

Always Out Front,
Samuel Culper

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?”