Thursday 19 November 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 18 /19 November 2020.

 COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 18 /19 November 2020.

The UK added 22,195 cases today and now has reported a total of 1,453,256 positive cases of COVID-19. 

16,409 people were in hospital on Tuesday 17th, with 1,430 using a ventilator yesterday, 18th November. 

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we officially reported the loss of another 501 people who have tested positive to COVID-19 within 28 days. We now very sadly have a total of 53,755 officially reported losses of life in all settings.

Rep. Of Ireland 69,473 (+415) cases and 2,010 (+4) losses of life. 

There have now been a total of 56,915,293 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 1,360,685. Already 39,587,201 people have recovered.

International Mens Day Check on your mental health

I now have both of my younger children (from 2 different schools) self-isolating because classmates have had positive tests. Reportedly (admittedly by my pre-teen boy child) at least 1 child was sent home yesterday because a family member had symptoms and a positive test result. IF ANYONE IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD HAS SYMPTOMS, YOU ALL STAY HOME. IT'S THE RULES. It's also how we actually stop this thing... 

There was a UK Coronavirus Data Briefing yesterday with Prof Stephen Powis, Medical Director of NHS England, Prof Dame Angela McLean, the Deputy Chief Scientific Adviser and Dr Susan Hopkins, the Medical Advisor to the COVID-19 response. 
- Everyone seems to be behaving really sensibly - or at least they say they are. 98% of people say they wore a face covering outside the home. 
- Cases are still going up in England, it'll take a few more days before the effect of the English lockdown begins to show properly, but the increase in cases is definitely levelling off significantly or dropping everywhere except the North East, South West and South East. 
- Around 1 in every 85 people in England currently has COVID.  
- Daily UK hospital admissions are high, but levelling off in most places, rather than increasing day by day. The total number of people in hospital is still rising. 
-  The ONS reported 63,873 cumulative registered deaths from COVID-19 up to 6 November. This was 14,328 more than the 49,545 deaths within 28
days of a COVID-19 positive test (by date of death) published on the coronavirus dashboard for the same date.
191120 UK England new infections local regions and estimates COVID DATA Briefing

Mass testing begins in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, on Saturday. Anyone living or working in Merthyr will be able to get a coronavirus test whether you have symptoms or not.

We have really great vaccine news today, first up is the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine study with some Phase 2 (small scale human trials) interim data (it's ended, but they've not written it all up properly yet). 
"ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (snappy title) appears to be better tolerated in older adults than in younger adults and has similar immunogenicity across all age groups after a boost dose. Further assessment of the efficacy of this vaccine is warranted in all age groups and individuals with comorbidities."
Over three quarters of the participants reported mild side effects afterwards, including a sore arm, feeling feverish, muscle ache and/or headache. The younger the patient, the more likely they were to report symptoms. 
Over 99% of participants had neutralising antibody responses. Excellent so far. Stage 3 trial data and more stage 2 data will be forthcoming... 

Fantastic news from the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine safety data. 
- Final data shows it to be 95% effective - almost exactly the same as the early results from the 2nd vaccine to announce, Moderna (we are still waiting for Moderna's final data). 
- The vaccine is over 94% effective in people over 65, when it can be harder to kick the immune system into action. 
- Only 1 side effect was felt by over 2% of participants, and that was fatigue at 3.7%, so roughly 1 in every 25. 
- Non of the almost 44,000 trial participants had any serious side effects (remember only half, 22,000, were actually given the vaccine, the rest got a placebo). 
- 170 trial participants caught COVID - 162 in the placebo group, and 8 in the vaccine group.
- 10 trial participants became very ill with COVID - 9 in the placebo group, and 1 in the vaccine group. 

More good vaccine news from China. They have 4 vaccines in development. CanSino isn't looking as effective in the older population, but looks promising in people younger than 55, and is being used on some of the Chinese Military. Around 1/3 of patients seem to have reported mild side effects. 
CoronaVac has no data yet for older patients, but 97% of participants produced antibodies. It seems around 1/3 reported mild side-effects. 
Data seems slow to come out of China, the phase 3 large scale trials are nearing completion, and obviously more information will follow... 

Russia are claiming that their Sputnik V vaccine seems to be 92% effective based on 20 participants catching COVID, but they've not yet published any scientific reports, so we have to take their word for that.

191120 UK regions hospitalisations and inpatients COVID DATA Briefing

The UK Government really do seem to have failed to take their own advice. Not only is Boris self-isolating, so now are Dido Harding (head of Track&Trace) and Steve Powis (Medical Director of NHS England). 

The NHS are asking us to remember to open the windows regularly, even though it's Winter. It will help prevent the air in your home filling up with all kinds of nasty germs and virus - including COVID. They've got a new video out to demonstrate, and it really does help you visualise the build up of exhaled air from simply sitting in a room. Freshen things up. Open the window for regular 10-15 minute bursts if it's too cold or expensive to keep it open more than that. 

Trump of the Yesterday:
Trump has fired Chris Krebs as Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency - because he said Trump hadn't won the election. 
Next week, Trump starts public floggings for anyone who gives him the side-eye. 

Senator Paul Rand of the Day (Trump has some serious competition out there) : 
"Great news! 
- Pfizer vaccine 90% effective
- Moderna vaccine 94.5% effective - Naturally acquired COVID-19  99.9982% percent effective*
 *(estimating 200 reinfections out of 11 million Americans, which is likely an overestimation of actual reinfections)*"
Paul - you're forgetting the 250,000 dead Americans who DEFINITELY won't be catching it again. And the fact that it appears obvious very few people will catch it a second time within 6 months, so if we wait another few weeks, that 200 reinfections might just be a tadge bigger. Time didn't stop. It's not all finished now. Numpty. 

191120 UK weekly deaths and excess mortality collage COVID DATA Briefing

Luxury Cruise News:
Sad news if you were thinking of booking a cruise right now (OMG no). 
Carnival have cancelled all cruises from U.S. ports until Jan 31 at the earliest. Many are cancelled until March, and Carnival Legend cruises from Florida are cancelled until April.
After their disastrous start to the Caribbean Cruise season last week (9 people on board SeaDream 1 have now tested positive), SeaDream Cruises have cancelled all remaining cruises this year. 

A YouGov poll asked "Once a coronavirus vaccine is available, would you support or oppose the government making it legally compulsory for all people in Britain to be vaccinated?"
49% of people said yes, 34% opposed, and 17% didn't know. 
YouGov are getting some criticism for who they are sampling, so it may not be entirely random, but it's a very high percentage. I'd never have expected a result like that. For reference, the UK Government have not expressed any wish to bring in compulsory vaccination. 

All UK talk today is about Christmas. There have been reports that ministers are considering lifting some UK restrictions around Christmas Eve/Christmas Day for 5 days, or something similar. It could be 'up to 4 households', but nothing has yet been announced. SAGE modelling predicts England will need 5 days of tighter restrictions 'for every day that we release'. 
A Government spokesman has said today that we will be told more next week, when we'll also be told what will happen when the lockdown lifts. 

Trump of the Day:
He's right! (ish) The mortality rate has really massively improved with our better understanding of how to treat COVID. I think 85% is probably very generous, but it could be 1/2 of what it was at first among patients requiring oxygen. It's very important to avoid overwhelming the health system though Donald, because then it is likely to be about 7 times greater. 

Dido Harding has to self-isolate

Perpetual Uke, a Rheumatology Consultant at Birmingham City Hospital, fell ill with COVID in late March. She was 24-25 weeks pregnant with twins, and ended up on a ventilator, in an induced coma. 
When she woke up, she was very disorientated, but instantly aware she was no longer pregnant and believed she must have lost her children. 
The twins had been delivered by caesarean and were very early, but fine. 
They are now home with the rest of their family and thriving. It's NEVER all bad news. 

It's World Toilet Day. Over half a billion people in the world do not have a toilet. WHO research shows that for every £1 spent on basic sanitation, £5.50 is saved over time in health costs. 

It's also International Men's Day, and a reminder that the effects of COVID aren't only physical. Men are more likely to become seriously ill with COVID than women, and they are more likely to struggle silently with the mental effects of not being at work, losing their job, feeling unable to provide for their family. It's not your fault. This is something which is happening to us, we don't have control, and we all feel it. If you are finding it hard to cope, reach out. You never have to be on your own if you don't want to be. Talk to your mates. They'll understand where you're coming from, they might need it as much as you. We're all in this together. 

Some people. They're shown as numbers because I don't know how to spell all of their names:  

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

USA 11,916,512 (+42,649) 256,800 (+538)
India 8,993,423 (+35,280) 131,978 (+360)
Brazil 5,947,403 not yet reported today 167,497
France 2,065,138 not yet reported today 46,698
Russia 2,015,608 (+23,610) 34,850 (+463)
Spain 1,542,467 not yet reported today 42,039
UK 1,453,256 (+22,915) 53,775 (+501)
Argentina 1,339,337 not yet reported today 36,347
Italy 1,308,528 (+36,176) 47,870 (+653)
Colombia 1,218,003 not yet reported today 34,563
Mexico 1,015,071 (+3,918) 99,528 (+502)
Peru 941,951 not yet reported today 35,402
Germany 867,132 (+12,599) 13,615 (+123)
Iran 815,117 (+13,223) 43,417 (+476)
Poland 796,798 (+23,975) 12,088 (+637) 

1 comment:

  1. Hoping things are going into decline as we go into lockdown. A strange one to last time with kids still being able to go out to play, school, etc x


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