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D. Carlton Rossi

World Coronavirus

The Coronavirus Trade-Off That Won’t Go Away


Clive Crook

March 25, 2020

Amid this extreme uncertainty, a crucial trade-off persists – between the steps you take now to save lives and the damage those steps will do to the economy. At first sight, in the spirit of “just do everything,” one longs to deny this trade-off: Governments should move instantly to save as many lives as possible, while reducing the economic damage as far as they can. This thinking sustains the view that hesitating to adopt “lockdowns” in many Western countries – the initial preference for “mitigation” over “suppression” – was a grave mistake. The truth is more complicated.


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David Da-i Ho (Chinese: 何大一; born November 3, 1952) is a Taiwanese-American doctor and HIV/AIDS researcher who has made many scientific contributions to the understanding and treatment of HIV infection.

His group was the first to demonstrate protective efficacy of a long-acting antiretroviral drug as pre-exposure prophylaxis in rhesus macaques. In fact, one such agent, cabotegravir, has been advanced into Phase-3 efficacy trials in high-risk populations, in collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline. In parallel, Dr. Ho's group has also engineered exquisitely potent antibodies that neutralize divergent strains of HIV. The most promising neutralizing agent is a bispecific monoclonal antibody that entered a first-in-human clinical trial in 2019 with the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Ho Lab is funded by two NIH grants to pursue the use of engineered antibodies to purge the viral latent reservoir as a part of the international HIV cure effort. Currently, the Ho lab is funded by the Jack Ma Foundation to work on coronavirus projects.

Video: 2:15 minutes




Farage: Coronavirus Exposes Western Supply Chain’s Dependence on China

Nigel Farage has said that the Chinese coronavirus has exposed the West’s dependence on China in its supply chains, and he hopes the pandemic inspires Prime Minister Boris Johnson to reconsider his decision to allow Huawei to help build Britain’s 5G network.

Criticising those who benefit from ties with China, the Brexiteer added: “I have pointed out before that many members of our big business class, of the civil service, and indeed of our political class are increasingly in the pay of China.

“I think what it is showing us is that while the ‘just in time’ supply chain in the global economy may provide us with efficiency in the global economy, it doesn’t provide us with resilience in the global economy. I think that’s something we will need to look at after because it’s clear that now the concept of ‘over there’ does not exist in a global economy, and a disruption in one part will very quickly become a disruption elsewhere,” Former international trade secretary Dr Liam Fox said earlier this month.

The Conservative MP added that the outbreak should prompt the UK to look at making more ourselves — “import substitution” — as well as to reevaluate “the trend to run down stocks and run down warehousing” in order to “increase resilience should we face something like this in the future, which is likely, because pandemics are the norm in human history, not the exception”.


It is much easier to associate the word "china" with the word "chain". China chains.

Figure: Timeline of transmission between 5 patients in Germany; only two patients had contact with the index patient.

Infected people without symptoms might be driving the spread of coronavirus more than we realized

Elizabeth Cohen, Senior Medical Correspondent

Updated 3:32 PM ET, Sat March 14, 2020

The role of asymptomatic transmission

Several experts interviewed by CNN said while it's unclear exactly what percentage of the transmission in the outbreak is fueled by people who are obviously sick versus those who have no symptoms or very mild symptoms, it's become clear that transmission by people who are asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic is responsible for more transmission than previously thought.

"We now know that asymptomatic transmission likely [plays] an important role in spreading this virus," said Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.

Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, expressed concern about the spread of the disease by people who haven't yet developed symptoms, or who are only a bit sick. "There is also strong evidence that it can be transmitted by people who are just mildly ill or even presymptomatic. That means COVID-19 will be much harder to contain than the Middle East respiratory syndrome or severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), which were spread much less efficiently and only by symptomatic people," he wrote, using the scientific word for the disease caused by the virus.

A study posted Sunday by Belgian and Dutch researchers shows that between 48% and 66% of the 91 people in the Singapore cluster contracted the infection from someone who was pre-symptomatic. Of the 135 people in the Tianjin cluster, between 62% and 77% caught it from someone was pre-symptomatic.


People who are infected but asymptomatic can spread disease efficiently. They are hardy and mobile. They have no reason to avoid crowds or kissing. They don't know they are sick, and no one else does.    NY Times

This article and comment provide one answer as to how COVID-19 spreads. Young people are generally strong and healthy. This means that if they are infected that they might either be asymptomatic or have mild symptoms. However, if they were to infect older people then the situation changes. Generally, the immune system of older people is not as strong. This means that they are easily infected. They are particularly susceptible if they have weakened immune systems. When infected they take much longer to recover. While recovering, of course, they can infect other people. One suspects also that older people retain the virus in their respiratory tract between 20 and 37 days after they have shown signs of recovery. This period is probably much longer than with young people. Therefore, they can infect caregivers and family. All of this means that the fatality rate for older people is higher than young people.


Getting Tested for Coronavirus at a Drive-Through Clinic

Wall Street Journal

March 13, 2020

As coronavirus spreads across the world, countries are setting up drive-through clinics to make it easier for their citizens to get tested. WSJ’s Andrew Jeong visited a test site in South Korea to see how it works. Photo: Denis Bosnic for the Wall Street Journal

Video: 2:38 minutes



We Predicted a Coronavirus Pandemic. Here’s What Policymakers Could Have Seen Coming.

Last year we ran a disaster scenario shockingly similar to the news now. Here’s what experts realized the world is getting wrong, and how they can fix it.

The news of a highly contagious new virus jumping from China to the U.S. has caught many Americans by surprise. For us, the outbreak was more like déjà vu: Last October, we convened a group of experts to work through what would happen if a global pandemic suddenly hit the world’s population. The disease at the heart of our scenario was a novel and highly transmissible coronavirus.

For our fictional pandemic, we assembled about 20 experts in global health, the biosciences, national security, emergency response and economics at our Washington, D.C., headquarters. The session was designed to stress-test U.S. approaches to global health challenges that could affect national security. As specialists in national security strategic planning, we’ve advised U.S. Cabinet officials, members of Congress, CEOs and other leaders on how to plan for crises before they strike, using realistic but fictional scenarios like this one.

The principal conclusion of our scenario was that leaders simply don’t take health seriously enough as a U.S. national security issue. Congress holds few hearings on the topic, especially in the defense committees, and the White House last year eliminated a top National Security Council position focused on the issue.


Cladex: A Pandemic Exercise

Clade X is a day-long pandemic tabletop exercise that simulated a series of National Security Council–convened meetings of 10 US government leaders, played by individuals prominent in the fields of national security or epidemic response.

Drawing from actual events, Clade X identified important policy issues and preparedness challenges that could be solved with sufficient political will and attention. These issues were designed in a narrative to engage and educate the participants and the audience.

There are four separate videos. In total, there are about five  hours of viewing time.



                                   The Navagli District of Milan

Empty streets and paranoia as Italy endures lockdown, death toll soars


Agence France-Presse
Updated: 7:01am, 9 Mar, 2020

One hour ago

The country on Sunday recorded the second-highest coronavirus toll in the world, after reporting a sharp jump in deaths – up 133 to 366 – and overtaking South Korea on infections.

“The virus closes the heart of the north,” the Stampa daily’s headline read, while Il Messaggero went with “Half of Italy shuts”.



CEO of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations Dr Richard Hatchett explains the long-term dangers of the Covid-19 coronavirus - saying it's the scariest outbreak he's dealt with in his 20-year career.

Channel 4 News

March 06, 2020

Video: 19:52



Steve Walsh who is known as the Super Spreader of COVID-19

UK has plans to deal with pandemic causing up to 315,000 deaths

2013 paper outlines response to flu outbreak, long considered a more deadly risk than terrorism

Dan Sabbagh Defence and Security editor

March 6, 2020

Emergency planners have drawn up proposals to deal with “excess deaths” of between 210,000 and 315,000 over a 15-week period as part of longstanding measures to ensure the UK can cope with a deadly pandemic.

The “reasonable worst-case scenario” was first established a decade ago and still forms part of the underlying planning, supporting the coronavirus action plan announced by Boris Johnson at an emergency Cobra meeting on Monday.

Excess deaths at this level would amount to about 0.4% to 0.5% of the British population and are based in part on a 2.5% mortality rate, although this week Chris Whitty, England’s chief medical officer, said he anticipated a mortality rate of no higher than 1%.


Mapping the Coronavirus Outbreak Across the World

Cedric Sam, Chloe Whiteaker, Hannah Recht and Demetrios Pogkas

Updated: March 4, 2020, 4:30 AM EST

The large majority of cases and deaths have been in mainland China, but that trend is changing. New cases in other countries surpassed those reported in China for the first time on Feb. 27. So far, there have been 220 deaths and 13163 cases linked to the virus in other countries, mostly in Italy, Iran and South Korea.



Coronavirus news: Can you get coronavirus twice?

Person reinfected in Japan

CORONAVIRUS could remain dormant in those who have recovered, health officials have warned as a person in Japan has become reinfected by the disease.

By Sean Martin

UPDATED: 14:08, Thu, Feb 27, 2020

A tour bus operator who is in her 40s in Osaka has tested positive for the coronavirus strain for the second time, with 189 confirmed cases in Japan and at least three dead.

The woman was first diagnosed with coronavirus in late January and was discharged from hospital on February 1.

However, she has been reinfected leading to fears many of those who have recovered could be struck down once again.

Philip Tierno Jr, professor of microbiology and pathology at New York University, said: “Once you have the infection, it could remain dormant and with minimal symptoms.


Seasonality, explained: What warm weather could mean for the novel coronavirus

Wall Street Journal

March 04, 2020

President Trump has repeatedly suggested warm weather could slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. It appears he is referencing seasonality, which describes how active a virus is depending on the climate. In other words, the idea that people get sick more often in the winter.

Health experts say that for this strain of the coronavirus, which continues to spread across the globe, it’s too early to know if seasonality will have an impact. There are still too many unknowns to predict what will happen to the virus in warmer months.

Even if the novel coronavirus does dissipate in the currently impacted areas, it may find new life in the tropics and southern hemisphere. And that migration between hemispheres can actually prolong the lifespan of the disease. Experts say this means the virus could exist year round.

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLr09SVhqsQ