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50 Specialist Doctors send dire warning hospitals will be swamped 3 x capacity

The wave coming is not just a “bit bigger” than hospitals can handle

Western Australian specialists estimate that at present rate, in 45 days Coronavirus cases will fill up their entire state hospital system. Two weeks later Covid patients will also fill all the beds in the extra two copies of their entire state hospital network that haven’t been built yet.

Hospitals will need 20 times as many ventilators as they have.

“Peak need for ventilators will be over four thousands in a system where we have less than two hundred. Again, most of those needing a ventilator will die. “

Perhaps we are overreacting?

Western Australia is an example of what the rest of the West faces. There are 2.5m people here, but only 120 confirmed cases. In a state which took six years to build one hospital all we need to do is triple our hospital capacity in 6 weeks. Laughing…

The Doctors call for the immediate closure of borders. Which was impossible a few days ago, in a state that only has two sealed roads out, but is now happening on Tuesday “at 1:30pm”. (Presumably the new border guards have to drive out from Perth.) Amazing how fast the world changes once other leaders act.

Doctors want schools closed immediately and social distancing halved “at a minimum”. They warn “Social isolation measures are manifestly inadequate”.

 ”People will forgive the imposed hardships they may suffer but they will not forgive us if we, knowingly, do not act now to stop the demise of thousands of Western Australians.”

Hospital beds required, Western Australia, graph, Coronvirus, Covid-19

Hospital beds required, Western Australia, (Click to enlarge)

 

These dreadful numbers will not pan out, but only because the unfolding disaster will spark all the draconian lock-downs (shelter in place) and quarantine conditions I’ve been saying would come. People will do it voluntarily out of fear anyway once more stories start to hit the news.

We will slow this, and keep deaths far below these tallies. After which I expect the naysayers will pop up and mock the big numbers and tell us they were right all along. “It was nothing”. “See I told you it would peter out. ”

The Docs are not mincing words:

Coronavirus crisis: WA’s top specialist doctors pen chilling open letter to Premier Mark McGowan warning of ‘thousands’ of WA COVID-19 deaths

Almost 50 of WA’s top specialists have penned a chilling open letter to Premier Mark McGowan, warning of thousands of WA coronavirus deaths “without strong and decisive leadership”.
“Without strong action and decisive leadership, first tens, then hundreds and then thousands of vulnerable West Australians will die as a result of COVID-19 infection.

“Most of these deaths will be in the course of just a few weeks. There will be many who will become critically ill and die with hospital staff unable to do anything to prevent their demise.

“We will have colleagues who die.

“We will have nurses, business leaders, school teachers, mothers, fathers, and our grandparents who will die with us unable to do anything but watch it happen.

“We will run out of ventilators and those who need them will then die.

This modeling* estimates that if people cut their social contacts in half the total peak ventilators and hospital admissions will decrease by about six fold. Notice that the dates of the peaks stretch out by another three months with “social distancing”.

Table, model estimate of peak cases coronavirus, WA

Table, model estimate of peak cases coronavirus, WA (Click to enlarge)

I still say Crush The Curve, the slow bleed is still awful. Declare War and get rid of this.

With serious social distancing the state might “only” need an extra 50 ventilators a day:

Nathan Hondros, WA Today

This would mean there would be an extra 400 Intensive Care Unit ventilators required a day to meet the demand. But if every West Australian reduced their normal social contact by half, infections would peak in mid-to-late August and only 52 new ICU ventilators a day would be needed. If tough measures are not put in place, the doctors estimate the number of hospital beds required would be three times those currently available.

The list of surgeons and specialists includes many respiratory experts, but what would they know?

Prepared as well as anywhere in the world (which means “hopeless”)

The state has almost run out of testing kits. Like the US and Italy,  community transmission will be expertly identified right after people turn up needing intensive care for pneumonia.

A “grand round” meeting of doctors at Fiona Stanley Hospital on Wednesday heard questions about whether transmission was already happening given the strict testing criteria.

A shortage of reagents needed for testing means only people with a fever or respiratory illness and have either returned from overseas or had close contact with a known case are eligible. Health or aged workers are also tested.

In the United States and northern Italy, the first indicator of widespread transmission was when patients started to arrive at hospital that required intensive care. That has yet to happen in WA hospitals, but if it does, by that point the disease is “out of the bag”, the FSH meeting heard.

Not so. At that point, the disease will have been “out of the bag” for one or two weeks already.

Dumb bit of code is still weeks ahead of bureaucrats. If we don’t have community spread in WA, and we did lock down, we would get rid of it. Now is exactly the time to close everything.

Whereever you live, if they are not quarantining everything, write to your politicians and media.

We must Crush the Curve.

*All models are still wrong.

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50 Specialist Doctors send dire warning hospitals will be swamped 3 x capacity, 8.9 out of 10 based on 41 ratings

111 comments to 50 Specialist Doctors send dire warning hospitals will be swamped 3 x capacity

  • #
    Nezy

    I note Australia’s chief medical officer this evening on live tv claimed that there was insufficient evidence to conclude that children were infectious. That was his primary reason for a failure to close all schools. Yet he has asked for young people to be responsible and observe the social distancing rules to prevent the infection of vulnerable Australians. I’m not sure when a child becomes a young person but I’d appreciate any advice on the matter. Breathtaking stupidity of the first order but that is obviously now what we are to expect of the people we allow to run this country. My local MP Ben Morton (presumably like most MP’s) has stopped providing any answers to my questions on the governments approach to virus management and is happy to hide behind the usual updates which he thinks absolve him of any responsibility. I intend to keep reminding him. Jo is correct in that most people will now take their own extra precautions and self isolate. The public will ultimately flatten the curve in spite of any official government advice…. Keep up the great work Jo….

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    • #
      Broadie

      Nezy
      You really do not appreciate the gravity of the situation these people face. They were happily cruising around addressing break through issues like sustainability, diversity and equality and next thing you know people are expecting them to make decisions on medical matters. Their whole world has gone to pot, conferences cancelled and the road to a comfy UN or Not for Profit position balanced on a knife edge. They know Hospitals are going to be on overflow with ambulances ramped and patients dying. Happens every year in winter. This time however there is a microphone stuck in their faces and every decision is being recorded and even deaf people are being informed, those with the text on their set turned on at any rate. One wrong word could have you back in a surgery with the great unwashed.
      That goes for the Politicians too. Careers and prestige are at stake here.
      So cut them a little slack, please.

      107

      • #
        Bill In Oz

        Maybe that sarcasm Broadie
        Maybe
        But still not the time old fella

        84

        • #
          Broadie

          No Bill, mockery of a reality.
          Yes I generalize, but please point out any factual errors.
          And mock we must!
          Could you imagine someone being stationed on the NT border to send people back who refuse to self-isolate?
          At least Alan Jones has now realized increased testing will create increased detection.
          This is nuts.

          72

          • #
            Bill In Oz

            “Could you imagine someone being stationed on the NT border to send people back who refuse to self-isolate?”
            Yes !
            It is now happening !
            If not then lock them up for two weeks !
            Needed to do it 2 weeks ago
            Then we would not have over 1000 people sick in SA with this disease now .
            Simple !

            30

            • #
              Broadie

              Good on you Bill.
              You’ve got figures for SA.
              Let’s have them.
              How many tested in Nov 2019, Dec 2019 Jan 2020, Feb 2020, March 2020?
              How many positive tests for Wuhan Virus?
              What is the breakdown of positive tests for any pathogenic virus or bacteria by month?
              What is the breakdown for illness by month and compare that with the historical monthly illness.

              Now compare 1000 sick people or positive tests? for a virus that may have been prevalent in our community for how long we do not know to the destruction of families, communities and businesses as politicians engage in a Dutch Auction to protect their careers.

              I am betting in about 8 days the US administration will announce they have crushed the curve and the US economy will take off. We however will be sitting at a Lawyer’s banquet arguing over liquidations, custody and payroll entitlements because our Politicians did not address the real malaise in our society.

              I’ll give you another prediction.
              There is going to be an increase in mortality in our community for the next 20 years as the Baby-boomers reach the average life expectancy. Our free hospital system already cannot cope and this insanity is going to waste more of the country’s resources that would have funded their care.

              23

            • #
              Kalm Keith

              Simples.

              00

          • #
            WXcycles

            Yes I generalize, but please point out any factual errors.

            OK, you ignored that 9.3% of known cases in Italy have died as though such things are incidental frippery equivalent to a common flu. The observed mortality rate is also 8.7% in Indonesia.

            Wake up to yourself.

            20

      • #
        Travis T. Jones

        The level of incompetence and stupidity required to waste taxpayer money building solar panels to stop cyclones should automatically rule out anyone who did this to continue making such important decisions.

        140

        • #
          Travis T. Jones

          “Our world has just evolved in the (unhealthy) direction in which most of the money is paid for some communication with the other people.
          These “communicators” are the same broader class of people who kickstarted this insane hysteria (after the climate hysteria, a rehearsal) but they will also be the main victims of the Covid hysteria.
          Most of them are so stupid that they don’t realize what they are doing to their future.”

          Lubos Motl

          https://motls.blogspot.com/2020/03/great-viral-depression.html

          Read it all.

          81

          • #
            truth

            Many political communicators are careless people….chosen to do that job for their gregarious persona and verbal ability to fill their communiques with PR..patter and assorted and pap…so the important message …if there at all…is lost in the weeds…ie it’s all about them and their own performance.

            The Medical Officer is not that kind…but IMO Morrison…to whom he answers…certainly is.

            We’re left wondering what the Medical Officer really thinks beyond what he’s wheeled out to say.

            30

    • #
      LightningCamel

      Is it actually beyond contemplation that the two statements coexist perfectly well together without contradiction? Not everything boils down to a simplistic single factor analysis, sometimes an assessment of relative risk and reward is required.

      00

  • #
    Bulldust

    Medcram covered a story about using a device (hack if you will) to attach multiple patients to one ventilator:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MoisrCTu0SY

    Around the 7 min mark approx. That would get us part way there.

    80

    • #
      Konrad

      Setting up temporary field hospitals with patients in head down prone position using repurposed CPAP machines with masks modified with drainage tubes could also work for younger victims.

      This was my thinking a couple of weeks ago, when we still had time. I don’t think think we have the medical personnel available to supervise the planning and set up any more.

      70

      • #

        At least one country was enlisting final year med students early to help — useful given their lower risk profile. I’m sure they could be trained up quickly for a very specific role in the ICU.

        30

    • #
      LightningCamel

      Here is another one, make a ventilator out of a ventilation bag, a couple of syringes and some odds and ends. Much better than nothing. It is time to get on with things we can do instead of cringing behind walls hoping it will all go away.
      https://www.breitbart.com/europe/2020/03/20/responding-to-uk-govt-call-vacuum-firm-designs-simplified-ventilator/

      20

  • #

    Apparently there is a move to free up patents on ventilators. A group of Italian volunteers distributed 3D-printed versions of a vital medical device

    emphasized that both devices serve a purpose: the official product is the better long-term solution, but for now, hospitals can use this printed alternative to fulfill a sudden, drastic demand.

    This is very disturbing if true. Word is that many Chinese workers in the fashion industry were moving seamlessly between Northern Italy and Wuhan.

    Why has Italy suffered so catastrophically from this virus that originated out of Wuhan, China?

    The answer lies in the connection between northern Italy and Wuhan, China. Two very seemingly distant geographies are actually extremely tied together.
    Italy was the first country to offer direct flights from Europe to China 50 years ago and was also the first G-7 country to embrace China’s Belt and Road Initiative.

    I first heard about this through a friend with connections in the international aviation sector who noted the high levels of travel between the two countries.

    110

  • #
    Environment Skeptic

    IMO, for whatever it might be worth, (in my opinion) public hospitals should be for existing public hospital clients/patients.

    My free lance unqualified medical instinct tells me we might keep keep the unknown corona under observation in specialised corona clinics, lest the corona over runs our public hospital resources…especially given it is so new.

    Keep it simple.

    60

    • #
      Raving

      Loads of people are going to die.

      Being in an ICU and not having oronavirus will not protect you. Maybe even worse than being in a retirement home.

      Simple enough?

      The only hope is for effective social distancing and stricter isolation

      21

  • #
    Peter C

    I watched the PM being interviewed by David Speers on the 7:30 report (ABC) tonight. Scott Morrison seems to have an understanding of the economic issues but very limited understanding of quarantine.

    He dithered hopelessly when asked about social shut down (isolation of cases) and put it on the individual states to explain their positions, NSW and VIC have already taken control away from him and apparently WA and SA also.

    Sadly Jo’s idea of a short but harsh quarantine to strop the virus in its tracks has not got through to the PM at all. Hence he continues to be reactive and not proactive when proaction is urgently required.

    140

    • #
      Environment Skeptic

      My feeling is that although a short but harsh quarantine is a good idea, the window for intervention has passed weeks ago. My gut feeling.

      73

      • #
        Environment Skeptic

        Of course now regional quarantines are being tried. Not international in focus but state. Makes sense i suppose.

        Some thoughts. Nothing conclusive.

        20

        • #
          Environment Skeptic

          Even a state travel ban into/out of WA could do with some help from specialised corona clinics.
          And 24/7 talkback radio i mentioned some time back could be a lifeline for those self isolating and lonely etc.

          20

    • #
      Nezy

      Peter C – there is no cohesive plan for anything from this government. It is typical linear / trial and error thinking of the first order. The prime minister and his minions are careful in selecting the advice they choose to take and are making decisions with no firm end result in mind. They HOPE that by introducing measures on a weekly basis and looking at the results obtained that they will eventually find a way through the crisis. SloMo / Ben Morton et al are typical of the “rabbit in the headlights” syndrome. I’m fairly certain that the collective IQ of the cabinet bears a closer resemblance to their shoe size rather than the population norms. They exhibit an almost total failure to understand the concept of an overall plan (both economic and social) and terms such as exponential are totally lost on them. As I said previously we will either succeed or fail IN SPITE of any government assistance, certainly not because of it….

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      • #
        Sceptical Sam

        Yes Nezy, I agree, what we are seeing is: “typical linear / trial and error thinking’.

        However, in Australia, we live in a Federal system of government. That has dangers in a situation like this. But, in the longer term, it is the most robust democratic system yet invented.

        What to do? Take personal responsibility.

        Stay at home. Ban visits from your friends. If they want to come around, give them the benefit of your superior knowledge and understanding. If they don’t like it, they’re not true friends.

        How is it that we want “government” to solve all our problems? You know they’re hopeless. You know they’re slow to act. You know they’re behind the curve on all things.

        Stay at home. Get some N95s or make your own to use when and if you need to replenish the larder and the cellar. If you’ve got some cash get some of it out of the bank. If you can afford a gen-set, get one. Put some fresh water into a couple of jerry-cans. Buy your Vit D3 and Vit C. Get some zinc. Get some tonic – or better still bribe a contact or two to get you some hydroxychloroquine. Get some anti-biotics at the same time – Azithromycin id apparently all the “go”.

        Keep writing to your MPs – State and Federal. Don’t give them a free-kick. Demand masks for the whole population. Gloves and goggles too. And, especially for your local over-worked medical practice.

        Pray.

        70

        • #
          nezy

          Sceptical Sam – you’re quite correct. However the main point I was trying to get across is that, as an individual, I am unable to make the important decisions at a national level to close schools or borders for example. Given the amount of information available to the government I had expected both better decision making and definitive plans to knock this thing on the head within a specified time frame. It is still possible (and achievable) to put a big dent in the projected case load by adopting a more aggressive approach to isolation and mitigation. It is the government response to these obvious strategies (outlined previously by Jo et al) which I am most disappointed with. I have written multiple emails to (the allegedly honorable) Ben Morton MP in the expectation that, as my representative in parliament, it might influence his thinking in some way. I now suspect he is incapable of thought or analysis – he will not even acknowledge my correspondence which I regard as an abrogation of his responsibilities. I am lucky in that I am able to work largely from home and, together with a staff of some 130 who will also be trying this new work methodology, we have decided there will be no compromises in terms of the health of our staff during this difficult time. Stay well and, as Jo has advised, stay out of the way of this virus…

          60

        • #
          Rolf

          If I could I would give you 2 green ones. Agree 100%.

          50

    • #
      truth

      I agree that Morrison’s focus is economics and PR but I don’t think NSW is getting to go its own way…since Gladys appears to have been rolled by him on the wider shutdown and schools issue.

      But I fear he’s one of those ‘leaders’ who arrogantly act out the authority and competence without enough thought and real knowledge and nous to back it up…hence the Hawaii and Houston debacles…mistakes that were obviously long-planned but not ever properly thought through.

      You are so right about him being reactive….the great flaw in leadership that’s allowed this virus to do its worst.

      01

    • #
      Dennis

      It is important to understand the roles of the leaders group or cabinet, consisting of Council Of Australian Governments member Premiers and Prime Minister decisions are made as a “board of directors” and the PM is effectively the chairman.

      The Constitution places full responsibility and power to State and Federal Governments on most of the measures being taken such as schools closures, prohibiting people from gathering in public places, licensing powers and therefore restricting or shutting down bars and restaurants, etc. Premiers have the constitutional law rights to make their own decisions, regardless of what the leaders group might have decided.

      That “Hawaii” reference again plays right into the hands of the Opposition and others, the PM was on family holiday and Bushire Season every years is State Emergency Services responsibility to deal with via the SES Rural Fire Service. It has nothing to do with the Federal Government, they provide assistance such as ADF assets and personnel when requested by a State Government. Even this was blown out of all proportion when in January the PM mobilised the Reserves to assist with the SES clean up, not bushfires as the NSW RFS Commissioner made a political statement about. Also, while the PM was on leave he was represented by the Deputy PM who was Acting PM which is normal practise.

      PM Morrison is the leader’s spokesman but the Federal Government leadership position is subject to State sovereignty considerations.

      20

  • #
    cedarhill

    Imagine building hospitals sufficient to care for the next tsunami or earthquake or meteor or …
    When not needed should they be converted to hospitalizing those suffering from obesity epidemic? the type 2 diabetes epidemic? the type 3 diabetes epidemic (Alzheimers)? the opioid epidemic? etc.? Hospitals are simply hugely expensive to build, hugely expensive to maintain, hugely expensive to staff and subject to things entropy meaning they have to be replaced periodically. Oh, and subject to many of the same disasters as other buildings.

    So what to do? Better, what is a solution?

    The obvious one which governments might actually be successful is having a well conceived plan supported by materials to execute the plan. Gov and NGOs are great at planning/plotting, maybe even excel. Even if they don’t (plans dont’ buy votes), almost any responsible person in nations like Australia or the US can:

    1. utilize their capacity to create mobile hospitals. The US military, for example, has an enormous capacity to locate, implement and supply hospital in or near any battlefield anywhere in the world for large number of casualties. Remember, casualties in some battles in the past were thousands per day. And not just needing a bed and ventilator. Mostly, in Western nation that has prepared for war has the capacity to “re-purpose” for civilian treatment.

    2. Commandeer public buildings. Look at the photos of temporary hospitals from the real killer pandemic of 1918-19. You don’t really need a hospital for patients that need some electronic equipment, portable bed, food and shelter. Nearly any of the deserted school facilities can be used since they have electrical connections, floor space, cafeteria equipment for cooking, some with laundaries, etc. Same for many public facilities. Even private establishments like restaurants.

    3. The biggest issue is logistics. Study how the military solves this problem. They typically have estimate various levels of “engagement” and stockpile non-perishable equipment, supplies, for a specified period at which point industry will have geared up to meet the ongoing needs.

    Imho, it is professionally, ethically irresponsible for any medical community individual, or group, to shout out, nay, scream out, “I Afraid!!” that we might run out of … These folks have had training in triage and how to treat huge influx of patients and have many ways to advise governments and their own governing bodies and organizations what their needs may be “IF”. There simply is not the need for the stirring up hysterical sounding warning in a time when the medical profession along with governments should be describing their actions, what they plan as contingencies and encourage rationale behavior.

    The display, for example, by the US Tony Fauci (NIH) is beyond disgusting as a political “Swamper” that is violently anti-Trump. His emails where he tells Hillary Clinton’s chief of staff when Hillary was Sec.State, quote: “Please tell the Secretary that I love her more than ever…” and “Please tell her (Hillary) that we all love her and are proud to know her.” during Hillary’s famous Benghazi testimony of “what difference” does it make now that some were killed.

    Even bloggers.

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    • #
      Raving

      We have a few mothballed hospitals in Toronto, kept shut down and ready for epidemic increase in caseloads. Converting hotels to temporary hospitals is a great idea.

      Now to surge train auxillary staff. Now to surge manufacture equipment and pharmaceuticals

      30

      • #
        Doc

        No expert on this, but wonder if multi-storey hotels are
        practical owing to the huge amounts of equipment
        required to nurse patients, even forgetting ventilators.
        Would imagine single storey motel units more
        practical, or even the field hospital type multibed
        buildings being built in the USA for NYC art al.
        There’s oxygen, suction, electronic standards,
        monitors of all sorts etc

        20

    • #

      cedarhill, agree with the attitude of making thing work one way or the other (with military precision), but the point here to to scare the pollies into action.

      Why hide the truth?

      The docs and I don’t want three times as many hospitals. We want people to stop getting sick and dying. The best way to save them is to avoid the illness in the first place.

      150

    • #
      truth

      Very illuminating about Fauci…Cedarhill…why don’t they know about this on FOX…or do they and they just don’t want to add to the dumping on Trump?

      If you’re suggesting that availability of lifesaving equipment like should not be raised or discussed by leaders and medical experts I disagree.

      People in Brendan Murphy’s position are under the thumb of the politicians …no matter how much they might protest otherwise…it even shows in Murphy’s demeanour.

      So if journalists ask anything at all they should ask of the PM…Hunt etal…the people who are supposed to answer to us…what he’s doing about the core imperative…keeping Australians alive…and in doing that…if competent… they must ask him…and press him when he dodges and weaves…exactly what he’s doing to ensure Australians won’t die for lack of ventilators.

      Most people are not sheeple and can’t be paternalistically hosed down as you suggest…not all and not these days…we know enough to know when we’re being snowed.

      When a question like that hangs in the air and is never asked…on air…let alone answered…it’s assumed that it’s too dangerous to ask or answer…that journalists know the government doesn’t want to do anything about that issue…that leadership thinks it can clean up the mess…that won’t impact its own of course… with PR and platitudes after the carnage is over.

      When has the word ‘ventilators’ ever passed Morrison’s lips…never as far as i can tell…and never dealt with.

      The caginess is what breeds fear…and maybe…just maybe…. the health professionals are hoping and praying that the leadership will be asked these questions they can’t ask themselves at this point…asked on air…so that politicians will do the hard stuff.

      30

    • #
      peter

      cedarhill, hospital authorities insist on negative-air pressure for any ICU ward or ‘other’ building they put ‘China flu’ patients into. The fear is of China-flu (COVID-19) virus aerosols ‘escaping’. This is a paranoid fear because, I believe, most of the infections have come from personal contact with contaminated skin and surfaces. Advice I have given to hospital staff was that the virus aerosols should dry out and deactivate (die) relatively quickly in an a/c airstream but the risk is NOT zero. But aerosols adhering to surfaces may be different. This virus shows remarkable resilience to remain viable in the environment for hours. Weeks ago I said that this virus was looking more infective than common flu. If health authorities would give up their requirement for ‘negative-air pressure’ we could establish a lot of extra beds for COVID-19 patients very quickly.

      But the real failure is the lack of things like ventilators? Why can’t the government spend real money on acquiring or manufacturing ventilators? To avoid patent costs, make 20 or 30 year-old models. They will work almost as well and a lot better than no ventilator at all. Why is it all but impossible to buy hand-sanitiser or face-masks in this country? Sanitiser is hand-gel with 60% ethanol. It’s not rocket science to make that. Those two simple things, if done continually through the day, would act as a good secondary barrier to infection. Government could spend just $1billion and provide a lot more ventilators, sanitiser and face-masks, why not?

      10

      • #

        Remember the video from the ICU doc I posted a few weeks ago? People didn’t just need mechanical ventilation, the tidal flow had to be reduced to stop the sheer stresses of repeated opening and closing of lung alveoli when they are inflamed. And they have to paralyze people in order to stop them breathing “out of synch” because they feel like they are suffocating (as their lung CO2 is too high).

        Maintaining someone in that kind of state surely takes a bunch of machines and a room of experts.

        I’m sure ventilators help many patients but for the severe respiratory distress crowd there must be a lot more to it. I would presume heart and blood oxy and consciousness and electrolytes etc must be watched continuously.

        20

        • #
          peter

          Yes you’re right Jo. But a lot of that stuff can and is provided in the wards already. Tidal flow has to be adjusted on the ventilator, if adjustment available. Drugs are used to slow breathing etc. If heart/lung bypass is required then a specialist ICU is needed. But that is for very critically ill patients. Even for IC patients the degree of care needed can vary a lot. Every time I went into an ICU only nursing staff were there. That’s not a criticism of doctors, they mostly act as directors. Nurses do all the grunt work.

          When we see data on COVID-19 it is always eg: 1200 infected in Australia and 7 dead. We never see how many hospitalised and how many in ICU. That would be more informative. 7 dead is tragic but not very severe. Hundreds in ICU would be a disaster happening.

          20

  • #
    Analitik

    Let’s hope we haven’t left things to late like in Italy where

    “There was a proposal to isolate people coming from the epicenter, coming from China,” he said. “Then it became seen as racist, but they were people coming from the outbreak.” That, he said, led to the current devastating situation.

    leading to

    “There just isn’t enough equipment. They choose the young, the medical rule of trying to save who has more probability to live.”

    https://www.cnn.com/2020/03/18/europe/italy-coronavirus-lockdown-intl/index.html

    60

  • #
    MrGrimNasty

    In the UK, a lot of the doctors and other medical professionals and their institutions have spent the last few years publishing/signing stunt letters telling us climate change is the biggest health threat to humanity.

    The ‘expert’ medical/scientific advisers to the UK government can’t even agree on CV19 threats/actions.

    Forgive me if I no linger believe experts can guess any better than the rest of us, and if I no longer trust their motives/judgement anyway.

    100

    • #
      truth

      I totally agree MrGrimNasty.

      The CAGW scam has turned everything on its head.

      We used to trust and revere orgs like CSIRO and all the medical establishments …the RBA… academics…educators….and they were worthy of it.

      Now they’re totally Eurocentric…Global Socialism-committed…captured by the garden fairies…and the evil gnomes of Europe.

      We can’t any more trust our ‘leaders’ to always put Australia and the interests of Australians first…except for a few who’ve been clobbered and buried by the fairies yet are still our only real leaders…to some of us anyway.

      50

    • #
      Doc

      It’s really a matter of rendering to Caesar.
      Doctors are steeped in medicine; not climatology.
      Pay attention to the specialist medical advice; not
      to ‘medical climatology’.
      You know how people are today. They believe they
      know everything. As I see it, on a personal level,
      one of the biggest deficiencies people have is
      knowing nothing about one of the subjects I found the driest;
      statistics! Statistics, in the modern world, teaches
      discipline for logical argument. But learning it …..
      (Sorry Jo. It’s just how I found it personally.)

      20

  • #
    The Dark Lord

    wait .. are you sure that is not your global warming scientists ? same gloom and doom forecasts with dodgy numbers …

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    eliza

    DR William Grace and colleagues in New York serious cases reporting high success with hydrochloquine and azytromycin
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYyrQ4RxtOQ&t=213s

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  • #
    eliza

    hydroxychloroquine sorry

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  • #
    observa

    Section 92 of the Australian Constitution-

    “… trade, commerce, and intercourse among the States, whether by means of internal carriage or ocean navigation, shall be absolutely free.”

    I’d be careful with that if I were the States’ Premiers.

    So we’re still going to bankrupt the productive economy and starve the hosts to kill this new cold virus believing we’ve found the Magic Pudding by printing money? Recipe for massive stagflation and misery for the 80 percenters who’ll brush this virus off and there’s no global fallacy of composition with money printing any longer? Count me a skeptic this cure will be better than the disease because the plastic notes make lousy toilet paper.

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      People are not being taxed to enter SA or NT or WA.
      They are being required to self isolate for 14days to prevent the spread of disease;
      And if they do not do it
      They will be quarantined for 14 days and fined for refusing to obey the law.
      I suggest even the dopiest of our lawyers
      Want to preserve their own lives from this infectious disease
      Before making big bucks and dying !

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  • #
    WXcycles

    Weapon-grade snark should be savored.

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  • #
    John F. Hultquist

    ” . . . the first indicator of widespread transmission was when patients started to arrive at hospital that required intensive care. That has yet to happen in WA hospitals, but if it does, by that point the disease is “out of the bag”, the FSH meeting heard.

    “out of the bag” is a technical term much as is “the SHTF”.
    But, in fact, in the Seattle area and the nursing home places, this is exactly what happened. Then the various government agencies — with Federal out front — began a month of chaotic corkscrew activities to nowheresville.

    The virus has been “out of the bag” for 2 months.
    Did the FSH meeting have a plan for this?

    30

    • #
      Raving

      After SHTF plan “B” is FISHDO.

      Either attempt to quash the epidemic or live with the consequences of not having done so. Dont expect the world to be receptive if you have herd immunity and they don’t

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  • #
    Reed Coray

    It’s disappointing to me but I see in Joanne’s reaction and solution to COVID-19 many of the same elements used by global warming alarmists.

    (a) appeal to authority: “The list of surgeons and specialists includes many respiratory experts, but what would they know?

    (b) immediate action is required: “I still say Crush The Curve, the slow bleed is still awful. Declare War and get rid of this.

    (c) dire consequences will follow: “Western Australian specialists estimate that at present rate, in 45 days Coronavirus cases will fill up their entire state hospital system. Two weeks later Covid patients will also fill all the beds in the extra two copies of their entire state hospital network that haven’t been built yet. Hospitals will need 20 times as many ventilators as they have.

    (d) drastic government action is required: “They [doctors] warn ‘Social isolation measures are manifestly inadequate.’”

    (e) models play a major role in the discussion: “This modeling* estimates that if people cut their social contacts in half the total peak ventilators and hospital admissions will decrease by about six fold. Notice that the dates of the peaks stretch out by another three months with “social distancing”–to be fair, Joanne footnoted that “All models are still wrong.”

    Since my medical knowledge is non-existent, I can’t make a cogent argument that Joanne’s COVID-19 position is wrong–maybe immediate drastic governmental action is required. But I can’t help but notice the similarities between arguments used by AGW proponents and Joanne’s COVID-19 arguments. Joanne even anticipates the response of people who disagree with her: “After which I expect the naysayers will pop up and mock the big numbers and tell us they were right all along. ‘It was nothing’. ‘See I told you it would peter out.’ ” If the “big numbers” turn out to be wrong, it may well be that the drastic actions proposed by Joanne and which to some degree are being implemented today are the reason the “big numbers” will be wrong; but if the “big number” turn out to be wrong, isn’t it also possible that the dire predictions are wrong?

    In my opinion most readers of Joanne’s blog believe the actions global warming alarmists demand that we take to avoid CAGW will themselves cause damage–maybe even more damage than the ills they are designed to cure. My sense is that the same may be true for Joanne’s response to COVID-19.

    In any event, the last four or five weeks have been interesting; and I appreciate Joanne’s dedication to advocating for the actions she believes are necessary to avoid serious consequences. The one thing Joanne definitely does different from the CAGW community is she allows, even encourages, comments from people who disagree with her.

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    • #
      Raving

      22 thousand infections in New York state now. That is up from 10k infections yesterday. Isthat fast enough for ‘immediate action’?

      https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/us/

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      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Scary, but the other possibility is that many of these cases have been there for a while and are being freshly identified as CV19.

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      • #
        Raving

        NYS infections are revised down to 15k. Crazy days. Have no idea what is going on. The reported figures are unreliable

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    • #
      Peter C

      You make some very good points Reed, about the similarities between Climate Alarmism and Covid19 alarmism;
      a, appeal to authority
      b, immediate action required
      c, dire consequences
      d, drastic government action required
      e, based on modelling

      But the difference is
      f, Covid19 is real
      g, it is happening now
      h, actions will have economic consequences

      Err, now I think about it the Climate alarmists say that too!

      Why is one panic real and the other not? Maybe two reasons;
      1. Pandemics have happened before.
      2. Jo’s predictions are being tested and proved every passing day.

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      • #
        Reed Coray

        Peter (and others)

        Don’t get me wrong. I agree COVID-19 is real and is happening now. The consequences of doing nothing may be bad. The consequences of letting the people handle the problem in their own way may be bad. We may need government intervention. It’s definitely true that pandemics have happened before. It’s probably true that Jo’s predictions are being tested and proven every day. It’s at least possible and maybe even probable that everything that Joanne recommends we do, we should do. But everything Joanne says about COVID-19, global warming alarmists say about AGW. With my physics background I can and have refuted many of the arguments used by the AGW community. I have no medical background whatsoever; and as such I can neither refute nor confirm Joanne’s arguments/claims. But reading Joanne’s blog the past few months has given me a different perspective on what we are up against relative to global warming. The common man knows as much about the science of global warming as I do about epidemiology–that is nothing.

        At this time, I still hold the opinion that some of the COVID-19 actions taken by governments, both national and local, are overkill. Which actions are overkill I don’t know; and as such I’ll go along with actions in part because there’s nothing I can do about them and in part because I believe they may be necessary. I am in a position where not being able to go to work is no big deal for me personally. However other people are not in a similar position. One example, restaurants in the area where I live are closed. Many restaurant workers have been laid off. If I had a family to feed and I couldn’t work because I was told by the government that to do so would be dangerous, my reaction would be: “You’d better be right about the danger because I am suffering real hardship.” I have to admit that it may be necessary to take such actions; but after this thing has blown over and many more facts and data are available, I’ll make up my mind as to the worth of those actions.

        We do live in interesting times.

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        • #
          Rolf

          Interesting points. You will be able to see what happens with almost no action strategy. It happens in Sweden. For starters you may notice that :

          1. Number of cases seem low compared to deaths.
          2. This is because soon two weeks ago it was published testing was only going to happen when admittance to hospital.
          3. Reason was given as to much time consuming.
          4. Next day stood clear, there was no test kits available. The Swedish government had in spite of 45 days preparation. No test kits, not enough ventilators.
          5. The state department for health is now promoting herd immunity. (Will be very interesting if there is none next winter).
          6. Schools are still open and parents are forced to send kids to school.
          7. Public transports are running as usual. Drivers worry, but not government.
          8. Gatherings of people allowed up to 500 persons. But not 500. So establishment count and allow 499. (Still).
          9. In Sweden they now think next month will be the top. According to all other countries with hard measures it takes between one and two weeks until anything can be seen in number of cases. Number of deaths, takes longer to slow down, as do recovering. I fear it will be a ‘hot’ summer in Sweden. But I am pretty sure some people will be fired come June.
          10. Already mentioned shortage of medicine in Sweden. If that is Chloroquine or Hydroxychloroquine, there may be a disaster coming.

          Then something thats very different between Global Warming and Wuhan-Covid-19. In this case Government is talking this down. This time Government want to do nothing in time. This time Government don’t care enough about our lives. It’s a lot the same but the other way around. Probably they made a secret economic calculus hiding all the parameters.

          Very interesting times next two month’s in Sweden.

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            Reed Coray

            Rolf, Thank you for pointing out that Sweden is handling the COVID-19 phenomenon in a different way than say California or Australia. I’ll be very interested in seeing how that turns out. Now, if we could only get a “Sweden-like Earth” where in one system we do everything the global alarmists want to do, and in the other system we do nothing. At least we’d have a sample size of two on which to judge who was predominately right.

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            • #

              Reed,

              How to tell the difference between a real pandemic and a political scam:

              1. Start with the data — I’ve gone through countries one by one. I could predict in advance which countries would do better and with nothing more than a textbook understanding of epidemiology. There is no genius involved here. Though unfortunately there are a lot of unknowns about how this particular virus acts. But because I know how most viruses act there are limiting bounds. (Sweden sounds like a disaster, and if the Netherlands is doing Herd Immunity that will be too). Stephen Wilde can confirm I predicted the UK would drop that approach within a week. I was only wrong that it dropped it within a day.

              2. Just like the skeptic world I’m on the same side as the front-line hands on workers. There is no evidence of a suppressed pool of doctors who are reporting that this is just another flu season and it’s all hyped. All the docs in wards in Italy, China, Iran, are saying the same thing. “Help!” and “Stop the spread”. There are political doctors who disagree, who hold political positions in the swamp and who said things like “it’s just the flu”, “keep schools open” and “no need to stop flights”. They were yes-men reflecting back what pollies wanted to hear. They are a menace and people are dying who didn’t need to.

              3. My error has been in assuming that people understood basic things about how viruses spread, “die” and kill us. So quiz me, ask me about how epidemics behave or the tin tacks of viral reproduction. I don’t know it all, but in asking — I’ll learn what info is useful, and readers who don’t know will learn about the fascinating, extraordinary world of the War on Microbes which we win every day we are alive — until we dont.

              4. My predictions from the start – that vaccines would be too slow, that anti-virals were our best hope, that climate would matter, but not save us, that we needed to shut borders, that the cruise ship was a high risk situation and we should have pulled them out asap. have all been borne out. I also said the exponential curve with a lag would be a diabolical risk that few would understand the terrible power of growth and how fast this trainwreck would come, and from the beginning I said the biggest problem would be the lack of ICU beds and lack of any immunity in the population.

              I’m no ideologue — if there is one time Big Government is needed and organised action would save lives it is surely during a pandemic. Instead, the slow corrupt swamp has allowed self interest and politically correct fashions to do harm to thousands (potentially millions).

              So, look after yourself. Don’t believe the government officials who say crowds of ten are OK. They are not. Don’t believe that 6 feet of space will save you either. These things reduce the risk, but one infected person sheds germs and they hang in the air for hours (CDC link, I need to post on). They can land on the moist surface of your eyes and infect you that way even if you wear a mask.

              Don’t believe it when they say masks don’t help. Doctors wear them for a reason and it’s not just to protect patients. Good masks stop 98% of viral through put (which won’t stop all disease as it only takes one viral particle…)

              That said, our front line workers need them more than anyone, but I would not shop without a mask now. I will post soon on how we can make them. So stay home, do mail order. If you see your grandchildren and they have not been isolated for two weeks then you are mixing with their whole school, their sports club, their friends, and putting yourself at risk.

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          Reed Coray

          I would like to add two thoughts. First, I’m glad I’m not in a position that has to make decisions one way or the other. If I were, I would almost assuredly take some measures and not take others. Second, since I don’t have a firm opinion on what to do, I give quite a bit of rope to those who have to make such decisions. In the public’s eyes, if they’re right, they’re heroes; if they’re wrong, they’re goats. Somehow I’m adverse to calling them either heroes or goats. They’re just the people who had to make tough decisions, and they made them to the best of their ability.

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          • #

            Reed, you can make decisions — at least to keep yourself out of hospital and to inform friends, write to newspapers and politicians.

            Secondly, no no no. Leaders need to assume responsibility, not palm this off on their advisors. Brendan-do-nothing-Murphy (our chief medical advisor) is a fool using the old Influenza Epidemic playbook but it’s Scott Morrisons job to find better advisors, listen to them all and figure out which one makes the best arguments.

            In the West we are going to pay dearly for a system which has little accountability and which allows so many pandering excuses for a failure of leadership. If this viral plague was slower the real leaders would rise to the top as they do in a war, but this was is so fast it will be at a peak in weeks.

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    • #
      truth

      ReedCoray:

      That’s a massively humungous difference you admit right there in your last sentence….but its only one of many…enough to make the two situations not even approaching comparable…no matter how seductive it is for a CAGW true believer to try.

      This threat can be seen by researchers…not just hypothesized.

      ….it’s killing people in large numbers….now …in real time…not an amorphous Socialist political opportunists’ thought bubble specifically designed as a means for Global Socialism ends…. to scare the world about what might happen decades to centuries down the track.

      ….the evidence is before our eyes…some Australians already have personal impact

      ….you think Italy is topping itself on back of an hypothesis that must not be questioned?

      …the dire consequences of this alarm are in our face…in anecdote from relatives…in the experience …real time… in Italy…Spain…France where some us have relatives who can verify…not in ‘gonna happen’…’could happen’…’by the end of the century’….in ten years time etc etc.

      …evidence of this is not produced as CAGW ‘evidence’ is…by expunging the past to fit the hypothesis that was set in concrete as never to be questioned even before the research was done… by corrupting the peer review process…by sacking and ostracising dissenting scientists…by hiding/losing raw data…by corrupting the scientific process….by ditching democratically-elected leaders who refuse to sell their countries and their sovereignty out for it …to foreign global Socialists.

      There’s only one connection to CAGW…and it’s in the danger that many of the present ‘leaders’…thankfully not in the US…are captured by the CAGW hoax and were well on their way to expunging borders that surely even the wokest of the woke can now see are vital protection against existential threat.

      Even Labor…who would have had our borders porous and totally unable to be secured and defended by now….according to UN diktat…. had the worst befallen Australia in the form of a Labor government…even Labor are now admonishing the government for woke Gladys’ border protection debacle in failing to prevent the Ruby Princess catastrophe.

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    • #
      Analitik

      The early impression that CoViD-19 is just a disease that affects old people is proving to be incorrect. Older people, especially with underlying medical conditions, do have the highest mortality rate by far but that is largely due to as many needy patients having access to ventilators as possible. Younger patients with serious progression are much more likely to survive but it seems is ventilation needed to have any chance.

      This is why Italian hospital staff are now forced to assess the likelihood of a patient’s survival (high risk group or not) before putting a patient on a ventilator at all. And patients with other diseases/conditions then get caught up in the overload and receive sub-standard care resulting in high mortality across all serious medical conditions.

      The following article from the US makes for scary reading. Maybe it’s hyping the hysteria but I can’t see the motivation – ProPublica is supposed to be a non-profit independent news outlet with a focus on “shining a light on abuses of power and betrayals of public trust”

      It first struck me how different it was when I saw my first coronavirus patient go bad. I was like, Holy shit, this is not the flu. Watching this relatively young guy, gasping for air, pink frothy secretions coming out of his tube.

      A Medical Worker Describes Terrifying Lung Failure From COVID-19 — Even in His Young Patients

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      Doc

      The world has COVID-19 ‘a effect in China and Italy to judge it by.
      No false picture to paint about what happens if a NATION (for the
      globalists) lets it go.

      Global Warming ie AGW, has nothing to show but
      a huge excess of doom supplied by 40% of
      the world’s population that believe a myriad
      of political, social, financial carpetbaggers and
      Innocent, mislead and indoctrinated, scared young people.
      After 40years it has no proof of basis and is such a
      crock of ….. it cannot even front scientific debate.

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    • #
      Doc

      [snip duplicate]

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        DOC

        Sorry JO. I found today it’s pushing the post comment button twice.
        You probably know your site’s a bit slow – and mine has a bit of trouble
        with the router set up – and the button stays a nice green colour inviting
        another push…….. I will try to keep my fingers away from the mouse a bit
        further now I know the problem.

        BTW, I don’t know how you do it, keeping up to the minute with developments around the
        country and the world, writing informative and enough controversial material to interest
        everyone, staying accurate, and taking up the debate in the blog. Your energy is incred.

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  • #
    yarpos

    Interesting comment about the naysayers. Sounds just like the people who think y2k was nothing, but totally clueless on what it took to make sure it was nothing.

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    Hunt Yarra

    If you think the graphs for infection are scary, wait till you see the divorce rate.

    For the next three or four weeks everyone gets to play ‘stay home and get to know the family’.

    Any odds on the survival rate?

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    Drapetomania

    Dr. Carl Juneau, PhD
    Epidemiologist
    He has an interesting take on this.
    And quotes Dr. Didier Raoult

    Dr. Didier Raoult, MD, PhD, an infectious diseases specialist, is a member of the French scientific committee on COVID-19 (Ministère des Solidarités et de la Santé, 2020). Based on scientific publications, Dr. Raoult ranks first worldwide in Communicable Diseases (Expertscape, 2020).

    “…As of today, there has been 148 [COVID] deaths in France [now 562]. This is not negligible, but it should be put in perspective with what we know. For example, we know there is increased seasonal mortality in this country that we have called ‘flu’ for a long time and that in fact likely represents all sorts of virus-related mortality. […] And if you look at this chart, from current data, in 2017, there was a significant mortality peak, and for now, to get there, we would need 10,000 additional deaths. So 150 extra won’t change the curve….”

    https://medium.com/@drjuneau/us-covid-19-how-many-will-actually-die-from-an-epidemiologist-56ebb6081ab0

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    • #
      truth

      The death rate in the Northern Hemisphere Winter is much higher than here…so far…which probably bodes badly for our death rate in coming months…except that our Winter will be milder than most NH …except perhaps than Spain.

      Let’s hope …for once…for the ‘warmest Winter evaah!

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      • #

        Truth, at this stage Australia has been protected in the death rate because the infected are in the 40s and 50s mostly. People well enough to travels — ie 20s with no kids and 40s+ whose kids have grown up a bit.

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    Leigh

    The elephant in the room is with a 20% increase daily, one would expect in 14 days there will be 16 times the number of cases confirmed in Australia. Think 20,000.

    The problem is those people are actually infected today and potentially infective from today.

    Anything done today to reduce the rate of increase won’t take effect for two weeks.

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    robert rosicka

    Confirmed Corona virus cases in Victoriastan are doubling every three days I heard this morning which is wow .

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      On Saturday the 7th of March it was 7 people infected in SA.
      This morning the 23rd of March, it is now 100 people infected.
      So from 7 to 100 in 16 days !
      What doubling rate is that ?
      I think it works out at 5 doublings in 16 days
      So yes it’s doubling every THREE days here in SA !

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      • #
        Bill In Oz

        And In 16 more days – 9/4/2020 !
        It may be 3200 infected people here in SA.
        Yes it’s prediction.
        But it’s an up close and nasty forecast.

        Closing the borders and locking down can stop that doubling !

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    Bill In Oz

    Link posted on Chiefio… Interesting USA modelling by state
    Of what may happen depending on the strategy adopted
    In each state …..

    https://covidactnow.org/

    I wonder if anyone has done something similar for Australia ?

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    • #
      Kalm Keith

      So do I.

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    • #
      Peter C

      Thanks Bill,

      An interesting observation from those projections is how quickly the disease progresses and then stops.

      Assuming the no intervention pattern, which is what we have had up till now, the whole thing is over by the end of April (just over a month away).

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      • #

        Yes, peter, as with all the Ro curves I have posted, this hits like a Tsunami in weeks and then goes. But the inhumanity of the “Do Nothing” curve will shock people and we are looking at 5 – 10 times as many deaths as would happen under the stricter quarantine options.

        The Slow Bleed option reduces the toll but not hugely, and it drags things out for months, deadly to the economy.

        Stricter quarantine saves lives, and if hopefully we both gear up and discover treatments that work, we may be able to lift quarantine sooner, though that is not guaranteed.

        What is guaranteed is that if we don’t do draconian quarantine in days we lose all future chances to do the lower death toll options. Even if someone figures out a treatment, mass produces masks, makes ICU beds and mass produces Chloroquine by July, it will not help all the people who died in May and June.

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    WXcycles

    Early in the day but Italy’s percentage daily rise in new cases is not as sharp today, around +12% (so far). If this number is lower tomorrow their quarantine will finally be beginning to show a slight positive impact on cases (59,138 cases).

    The Italian percentage of total cases who died is up again to 9.26% (+0.25%).

    Top-25 infected percent rise in daily new cases:

    USA +26%
    Brazil +24.2 %
    Turkey +24 %
    Australia +22.5% (19% yesterday)
    Portugal +20.2 %
    Belgium +19.1 %
    Israel +18.2 %

    Lowest rise countries:

    S. Korea +1.7 %
    Denmark +5.0 %
    Norway +4.4 %
    Japan +3.9 %
    China +0.9 % (46 new cases reported today)

    Russia is only #45 but recorded +17.4 % rise today (367 cases). Their early border closure with China slowed it, but it had already gotten in. They’ll need a national quarantine period to beat it as well.

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    Deplorable Lord Kek

    heard radio reports that centrelink is being overrun with applicants (quelle surprise).

    great way to spread the virus…

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  • #
    Deplorable Lord Kek

    What is going on here?

    22 March 2020
    Australia: 1,071 cases
    Japan: 1,055 cases

    23 March 2020
    Australia: 1,314 cases
    Japan: 1,086 cases

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    Sapel Mirrup

    For those wishing to calculate the doubling time for infections from data curves on sites such as https://epidemic-stats.com/coronavirus/australia use the formula:

    Doubling time (days) = (T2 – T1)ln2/ln[N2/N1]

    where N1 is the no. of infections at time point T1 and N2 is the no. of infections ad time point T2 (at a later date).

    On the presented curves you can pick the nodal points over a long stretch of curve and directly read off the dates and the numbers to plug into the formula.

    Obviously there is some sampling variation (real life), however at last reading the doubling times for Australia and Italy were similar, at about 3.9 days.

    Things are expected to change when a growing number of people become resistant to infection, and the shape of the curve changes from exponential to logistic, with a point of inflection. For now, though, most of them are exponential.

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    observa

    The test for go hard with lockdown will be China. If it springs up again there then this money printing supposedly to be paid back by my children and grandchildren will be seen for what it is. Magic Pudding fairy dust and already prices are rising in the supermarkets to call forth the restocking of shelves with the necessary workforce that’s left. Some are more expendable than others it seems instead of the level playing field with productive output.

    Here if you’re in trouble paying the bills grab some shrinking Super and see how that goes as the Super Funds have to fire sale assets to make the payouts. All we need is more IOUs to strip the supermarket shelves folks and the goods will magically reappear with an app or click and collect. Message doesn’t seem to be getting across judging by the demand for toilet paper from all the snowflakes pooping themselves. Something does not compute eh? Look up fallacy of composition and try the bank notes as toilet paper if you find the credit card wanting.

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    Andrew McRae

    I was hoping a new edition of the weekly federal epidemiology report would be released by last night so I could tweak some of my model’s parameters on distribution of case severity. But it looks like we won’t know until Thursday what was happening last week.

    In the meantime here are projections of 3 potential scenarios, and I will just say that:
    • The Australian case rate has hardly gone down at all since 14 March. Now doubling every 5.3 days instead of 4.0 days. We are “flattening the curve” quite feebly so far.
    • Current projections, even assuming we somehow limit infections to no more than 3 times last year’s seasonal flu cases, still leads to ICUs overflowing by 23 May, and ordinary hospital beds one week later, ending in at least 31000 premature deaths by 30 August.
    • I used the “Flu*3″ limit just so I won’t be accused of scaremongering. You don’t want to see what it looks like under true business-as-usual.
    • Further reducing social interactions to cut the exponent of the growth in half will still lead to ICUs overflowing by 30 August, but the ordinary hospital beds are enough for the severe cases, only 3700 dead in that scenario, which is quite optimistic.
    • Flattening the curve incurs a huge far-reaching cost and takes too long. A lockdown done early will have a big effect on final numbers even if not enough testing capacity is available yet to check everyone. Total lockdown for 4 weeks which halts growth within 1 week and keeps it there for 3 weeks sounds like a much better option. Crush the curve.

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    max

    Quarantine and the Supply Chain
    by George Friedman
    The global medical community appears to have devised a strategy for mitigating the coronavirus that depends largely on quarantine, or limiting contact among the infected and potentially infected, thereby limiting the virus’ spread. The hope is to keep it at bay long enough for it to fade away on its own or, as many experts believe, die in the more hostile conditions of warmer weather. In the meantime, it’s possible that scientists will develop more effective treatment for the disease it causes.
    …there are three indispensable supply chains: food, pharmaceuticals and energy. The need for food is obvious. The inability to obtain pharmaceuticals for pre-existing medical conditions could kill more people than the coronavirus itself. Electricity is essential to refrigerate foods and possibly pharmaceuticals, allow information to flow, and drive facilities needed for the supply chain. Gasoline must be delivered if the trucks that distribute food and pharmaceuticals are to run. There are undoubted other supply chains we have missed, but these are the essentials to get us through until the weather turns.

    https://geopoliticalfutures.com/quarantine-and-the-supply-chain/

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    observa

    Covid19 go hard lockdown can fail even if you could catch them all with symptoms and quarantine them.

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    • #
      Andrew McRae

      That is not what is implied by the experts quoted in that article.

      Song Tie, vice director of the local disease control centre in southern China’s Guangdong province, told a media briefing on Wednesday that as many as 14% of discharged patients in the province have tested positive again and had returned to hospitals for observation.
      He said one good sign is that none of those patients appear to have infected anyone else.
      “From this understanding … after someone has been infected by this kind of virus, he will produce antibodies, and after these antibodies are produced, he won’t be contagious,” he said.

      “I would say that it is less about if it is possible that re-infection can occur than how often it occurs,” Cheng said.

      So while reinfection could occur occasionally, it doesn’t significantly alter the healthcare load because they won’t feel ill like the first time, and more importantly it does not escalate the cases because they are not infectious. So a failure of quarantine does not result in a failure of the purpose of the lockdown.

      That’s also an old article in a fast changing situation.
      A research scientist gave an answer last week that COVID19 is infectious between for about a 5 day period between 3 and 8 days after initial infection. The USA CDC today still says that once someone has no symptoms and tests negative for the virus presence, they are no longer infectious.

      Another old and apparently wise piece of advice is to never let perfection become the enemy of progress.
      Enormously cutting down the size of the infectious population, even if not to absolutely zero, makes an exponential difference over time. If not completely eradicated then it will come back and we’d have to go through all this again, but the peak is kept low each time.

      It might even be an ongoing solution to keep the flight, meeting, and crowding restrictions in place all the time and also schedule 2 weeks of total shutdown every 2 months until an effective antiviral is available. This would be a periodic dragnet that finds everybody who is symptomatic and limits the spread by the asymptomatic. At least that is something people and businesses could plan for. It would allow most businesses to run at full capacity for most of the time. It could give some certainty to what has now become a chaotic and stressful situation for most people with no fixed end date in sight.

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  • #
    Dennis

    “President Trump, even surrounded by carriers of Wuhan virus, is not affected. Why? He told us. Hydroxychloroquinine. The chief knows the secret, but his ‘advisors’ have it on hold. Why?

    FACT- Hydroxychloroquinine has been used for malaria – which I contracted 35 years ago in South America – and has been proven effective against the Wuhan virus, which uses a similar mechanism to attack humans.

    I have used this amazing drug off and on for decades to prevent relapses – which sometimes were worse than the first bout – but haven’t had a one since learning the secret of Co-Enzyme Q-10 – a.k.a. hydroxychloroquinine.”

    Howell Wolz

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    • #
      Deplorable Lord Kek

      “but haven’t had a one since learning the secret of Co-Enzyme Q-10 – a.k.a. hydroxychloroquinine.”

      wait, what has Co-Enzyme Q-10 got to do with hydroxychloroquinine??

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    dp

    Close the airports to passenger traffic to shut down the death flights. This is the primary vector element.

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    • #
      el gordo

      Lock down the cities, the people are not welcome in the bush.

      ‘Fleeing to the country to avoid the virus was “not a good strategy”, he said, as “it will penetrate throughout Australia”, with social distancing only aimed at slowing the spread, not eliminating it.

      ‘Mr Quinlan said Australians should follow the advice of Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy, who has advised people to avoid all non-essential domestic travel.’ SMH

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    Bob in Baltimore

    Look Jo predicted 125,000 deaths in Australia…that’s how it will play out so everyone can stop their useless commenting

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  • #
    Raving

    Jo, social/physical distancing is working. Some European countries are showing a decrease in the exponential rate of infection spread. Public panic will eventually ensure tighter isolation and everyone will have a seat in this crazy game of musical chairs.

    Big big question is how to restart the world after everything has been shut down and isolated. Only 56 per million infected in China. How are they going to reintegrate back into the world economy. How is anyone going to do it without triggering new infection spikes

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    • #

      See my latest post. Yes Social distancing could work, if saving 100,000 in NY state, but killing 250,000 who don’t need to die is “good”.

      A decrease in exponential growth can still be exponential.

      You ask the right questions — how soon we stop quarantine measures depends on how soon we can stockpile whatever treatment there is, and get enough tests to hunt down and isolate every last case. That will happen. It ought be our #1 priority. We are not prepared for this. Two months from now, we might be.

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      • #
        Raving

        My fear was for no decrease. A decreasing exponential is strong encouragement for further tightening.

        Hope they come up with some effective remedies quickly. Its an unpleasant bug which is unfairly sold as a mild infection for the vast majority of infected. The isolation will make the world stir crazy :(

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    Well that was a stroke of luck.

    Two weeks back Barbara had a specialist appointment with the Respiratory/Pulmonary Specialists Team at Redland Hospital, where she spent almost five weeks last year with a bad bout of Pneumonia which nearly took her life. At this most recent appointment, the Specialist said that going on all the most recent scans of two days before, there was an improvement. She still has deteriorated lung function, a phlegmy cough and she is now on two different types of ‘puffers’. While there has been an improvement, the Specialist recommended that we remain vigilant, and we can keep all that done via our GP, and the Specialists say that the level of improvement is such that they don’t need to see her again, for a scheduled visit, and we have had three of them now, one every three Months. He was going to send some notes and recommendations to our local GP, and we were to make an appointment to see him. Twelve days back now, thinking something like this may come to pass, I got in early, and I got repeats of both her puffers, so luckily I have three of both of them now, (two per script) and only recently they have begun limiting it to one puffer per customer now, so luckily I did get in early. One puffer will last three to four weeks.

    Because Barbara’s lung function is so marginal, I’m keeping her ‘in’ as much as possible, and even I’m keeping my travels outside to a minimum, mainly to ‘Woolies’ during the Pensioner 7AM time slot, and even those are now not being frequented by many people, and this morning there would only have been a dozen of us in our local Woolies, and I actually got all I wanted, mainly fresh milk, now also limited to two, and the shelves are becoming more and more depleted, even at that early time.

    We made that appointment with our GP, and we went in to see him today, Barbara’s first outside trip in ten days. We were the only patients in the waiting room, and that was odd, because he has five other GPs in his practice as well, and the rooms are usually well occupied. The young ladies behind the counter mentioned that very few people were even ringing in to make appointments now.

    We saw our Doctor, just that follow up, and asking for some prescriptions for Barbara. He did the usual checks, this time on both of us actually, and we were both okay. He wrote out the scripts and looked at the notes from the Rheumatologist we also saw a few weeks back now. He noted that Barbara takes the occasional ‘Quinate’ tablet for cramps and also the rheumatologist mentioned it was also useful for her Arthritis as well. Barbara has always taken Quinate for those cramps. I was always dubious that they worked so quickly, and when I quizzed the rheumatologist, she said that yes, they worked very swiftly. I had this doubt that it may be psychosomatic, but she again reassured me that it was a good and quick treatment for cramps. Our GP mentioned the quinine aspect, and I could sort of see where he might have been leading, but he didn’t expand, and I didn’t press the point, but his last comment was that the Quinine aspect might be efficacious in the current climate, not expanding more on that. He was looking more at me as he was saying this, and I think I understood the possibly underlying intent.

    Then, the last thing, and just on the off chance, he asked if we would like the flu shot. That was a surprise as we were reliably informed by the ladies at the front counter that stocks were not scheduled to arrive till early April, and as we had asked a few weeks back, we were on the list to be called as soon as they did arrive. We both said ‘Yes, please,’ And he added that those stocks had only arrived this morning. So, he took us to the Treatment Room, and we both got our requisite flu shot.

    So, we came away with our flu shots out of the way, and everything we wanted done.

    All up, it was a trip well worth going out for.

    The roads have a lot less traffic than usual.

    Tony.

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    LightningCamel

    Some comment on the elevated death rate being recirded in Italy. Here is a quote of some of it.

    A study in JAMA this week found that almost 40 per cent of infections and 87 per cent of deaths in the country have been in patients over 70 years old.

    And according to modelling the majority of this age group are likely to need critical hospital care – including 80 per cent of 80-somethings – putting immense pressure on the health system.

    But Prof Ricciardi added that Italy’s death rate may also appear high because of how doctors record fatalities.

    “The way in which we code deaths in our country is very generous in the sense that all the people who die in hospitals with the coronavirus are deemed to be dying of the coronavirus.

    “On re-evaluation by the National Institute of Health, only 12 per cent of death certificates have shown a direct causality from coronavirus, while 88 per cent of patients who have died have at least one pre-morbidity – many had two or three,” he says.

    The rest is here. Also makes mention of demographics and living conditions.

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