Sunday 4 October 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News weekend update 3rd and 4th October 2020.

 COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News weekend update 3rd and 4th October 2020.

The UK Coronavirus dashboard page has this message:
"Due to a technical issue, which has now been resolved, there has been a delay in publishing a number of COVID-19 cases to the dashboard in England. This means the total reported over the coming days will include some additional cases from the period between 24 September and 1 October, increasing the number of cases reported."

Today's report is incredibly late (9.25pm), and incredibly large, and includes the message: "An issue was identified overnight on Friday 2 October in the automated process that transfers positive cases data to PHE. It has now been resolved. The cases by publish date for 3 and 4 October include 15,841 additional cases with specimen dates between 25 September and 2 October — they are therefore artificially high for England and the UK."

The UK added 22,961 cases today (+12,872 yesterday) and now has reported a total of 502,978 positive cases of COVID-19. We completed 264,979 tests on Friday 2nd October. 

2,428 people were in hospital on Thursday 1st October, with 368 using a ventilator on Friday 2nd. 

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we officially reported the loss of another 33 people who have tested positive to COVID-19 within 28 days (yesterday +49). We now very sadly have a total of 42,350 officially reported losses of life in all settings.

Rep. Of Ireland 38,032 (+364) cases and 1,810 losses of life.

There have now been a total of 35,327,777 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 1,040,491. Already 26,294,462 people have recovered.

Protect each other and wear a face covering

"We want people to behave fearlessly but with common sense."
Boris Johnson, UK Prime Minister and shower-time phrase-creator, on the Andrew Marr Show this morning.
For reference, fearlessness is appropriate when doing something risky, whereas common sense avoids risk. If you're being incredibly safe and sensible, you shouldn't need to be brave about it. Possibly the best example of a UK Govt. mixed message yet. 

Bonaire, St Eustatius and Saba, Poland and Turkey were removed from the England travel corridors list at 4am, Saturday 3 October 2020.

Donald Trump was taken to hospital on Friday night. He is at Walter Reed Medical Center Military Hospital, and he has a suite where he can work, so as of now he's still on duty. Different medical authorities have different policies regarding COVID, plus he's the President, so hospital admission doesn't imply serious illness. 

He's been reported to be experiencing mild symptoms, including lethargy. He's also been reported as being ill, with a critical 48 hours treatment-wise. It’s also been reported he may have had some oxygen back at The White House, and on 2 occasions his oxygen levels have dropped below 93%, but he definitely wasn't on oxygen during his transfer to hospital from The White House. Unsurprisingly US journalists are complaining about confusing messages.
Donald meanwhile has been tweeting away regardless, including a 4 minute "Thank you" where he referred to drugs to treat COVID as "a miracle from God", and said the country were very happy Melania is doing well. Glad to hear it. If he can still ramble for that long, it's looking like he's okay so far. Also....he didn't have his Wotsit face on, he almost looked pink, like a real human boy. 

Boris had a car crash interview on Look North. He didn't seem to know why he was there, and had no figures for hospitals in Leeds - the subject of the conversation. He then went on to say that in the areas the reporter mentioned, Track and Trace had done a great job. This included Bradford, which ranks amongst the poorest for performance.
He topped it off by becoming confused at the suggestion that 'middle class holidaymakers brought COVID back to Yorkshire from Northern European ski slopes, and now it is the working classes and poorly paid who are disproportionately badly affected'. Boris replied with:
"With greatest respect, I would say that the virus emanated from China, and from... from contact with bats, and..."
Early night for you Boris... 

Transmission BMJ article English version

We know COVID loves a good singsong, and spreads probably about as quickly as Hobnobs through any choir. Colorado University has published a study with the snappy title "Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 by inhalation of respiratory aerosol in the Skagit Valley Chorale superspreading event". You can see where this is going...
The Skagit Valley Choir Superspreading event is pretty notorious. The 61 person choir held a 2 1/2 hour weekly practise, after which 53 members had confirmed or strongly suspected cases of COVID, and 2 of the choral group unfortunately succumbed.
The findings are that reducing the practise to 1 hour, and better ventilating the room, would have decreased the chances of infection massively. 

Donald Trump's doctor and medical notes show he's been given a real college party punch bowl of therapeutics in an effort to stave off serious illness. It's unclear which, if any, of these he was taking before he tested positive - zinc, famotidine, melatonin and a daily aspirin - and he's also on:
- Vitamin D - the sunshine and margarine vitamin. There's no conclusive peer-reviewed proof as yet, but plenty of circumstantial evidence and logic, to suggest that adequate stocks of Vitamin D (the immune-boosting vitamin) give anyone a better chance of less serious illness. 
- Antiviral Remdesivir - this was developed for treating Ebola and other viruses, but wasn't effective. Trials with COVID patients show it can reduce average hospital stay in the US by around 4 days. It hasn't yet been approved for anything but emergency use by the FDA, however it's been used in volume since May with no known adverse outcomes.
- Regeneron Antibody Cocktail - This is brand new and artificially created, so yes, it's still experimental.
Early results from a study of 275 infected people suggest milder illness for those taking the cocktail than the control group, and it was added to the UK's RECOVERY Trial last week. It's early days, but looking like it could be useful.
- Dexamethasone - steroid based anti-inflammatory. Shown by the UK's RECOVERY trial to prevent one loss of life in every five in seriously ill patients on oxygen. It hasn't proven helpful to less seriously ill patients. 

Talking of experimental. China hasn't yet completed large scale trials, but there are several slightly different reports suggesting they have started mass immunisation, potentially beginning with essential workers. They have already admitted to immunising several hundred thousand people as part of a 'limited use' agreement. 

Meet outdoors 6 people 2 metres

The UK Government is under pressure to explain the science behind some of their guidance and rules.  Northern and Midlands areas are under extra restrictions,  yet more affluent areas (including Chancellor Rishi Sunak's constituency) have higher rates of COVID-19,  yet no extra restrictions.  They are also under pressure to remove the 10pm closing time for hospitality, as it's leading to crowds gathering on the streets, all attempting to go home via public transport at exactly the same time. 

New York ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgery Residents (students) have published an article in JAMA describing how bad the situation in New York really became at worst. Over 700 patients a day there were dying. The Residents found themselves running a makeshift 'overflow' COVID Intensive Care Unit, without the proper training, simply because there was no-one else left to run it. "If Not Us, Who? And If Not Now, When?"

Cineworld is closing all 128 of it's cinemas in the UK and Ireland this week. Cinemas worldwide are a real victim of COVID. Odeon Cinemas are among other large venues who are helping pay the bills by hosting court trials with socially distanced juries.
A genuine sorry to everyone who will lose their jobs. 

COVID Transmission BMJ article Colourblind version
Transmission of COVID in different setting - colour blind friendly version

The BBC are reporting seeing a leaked document to Doctors in the West Midlands, telling them to prepare for a mass coronavirus vaccination scheme from as early as November.
It identifies 2 vaccines called 'Ambush' and 'Triumph'. As none of the current vaccine candidates have these names, we just have to guess. Ambush apparently needs to be stored in hospital buildings and at -70C (-94F), so I'm guessing the USA's Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine. Triumph can be stored at room temperature - I'm guessing the UK's Oxford Vaccine.
They report it could take 10 months to vaccinate everyone, and this will start with the most vulnerable people in care homes.

India has become the third country to report the loss of over 100,000 people to COVID-19. The USA and Brazil have already passed this grim milestone. 

The London Marathon took place today. No-one ran the usual route through the capital. A small number of elite runners ran a circuit around St James' Park, and 45,000 runners from 109 countries took part virtually,  wherever they were. Well done to all of you. 

The British Medical Journal gathered together tons of evidence about 'airborne transmission' (larger droplets and much smaller longer-floating aerosols) and physical distancing. They wanted to know what your risk really is in various settings - should you distance 1m, or 2m, or more? What difference does a cheap mask make? They created a fantastic article and chart, and thanks to the power of the Internet, and volunteers from around the world, they've now translated it into 28 languages, with more to follow. We are ALL in this together. The chart is shown above, as well as a special version which is much clearer for people who are colourblind. 

Some people. They were all once a twinkle in their father's eye...: 

Countries / Cases / Losses of life (some states /provinces yet to report):

USA 7,614,589 (+12,812) 214,397 (+120) 

India 6,573,678 (+26,265) 101,997 (+185)

Brazil 4,906,833not yet reported today 146,011

Russia 1,215,001 (+10,499) 21,358 (+107)

Colombia 848,147 not yet reported today 26,556

Mexico 757,953 (+4,863) 78,880 (+388)

South Africa 679,716 not yet reported today 16,938

UK 502,978 (+22,961) 42,350 (+33)

Iran 471,772 (+3,653) 26,957 (+211)

Bangladesh 368,690 (+1,125) 5,348 (+23)

Italy 325,329 (+2,578) 35,986 (+18)

Turkey 324,443 (+1,429) 8,441 (+57)

Philippines 322,497 (+3,190) 5,776 (+100) 

Indonesia 303,498 (+3,992) 11,151 (+96)

Germany 300,850 (+822) 9,599 (+2) 

Ukraine 226,462 (+4,140) 4,397 (+44)

Netherlands 135,892 (+4,003) 6,454 (+5)

Belgium 127,623 (+3,389) 10,044 (+7)

Oman 101,270 (+2,685) 977 (+42) 

Poland 100,074 (+1,934) 2,630 (+26) 





"Runners from over 100 countries participate in the virtual London Marathon"


"President Trump was administered supplemental oxygen at the White House before going to the hospital, according to The New York Times and AP"


Doctors treat COVID-19-positive Trump and Christie with the drug"

1 comment:

  1. Let's hope we don't beat those record numbers after this weekend? What a nightmare x


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