Friday 10 November 2023

COVID-19 Coronavirus and other virus UK and World News Update 10th November 2023

 COVID-19 Coronavirus and other virus UK and World News Update 10th November 2023

World COVID Statistics: 697,638,516 reported cases and 6,937,323 losses of life.

"A&E  depts in England in October saw worst performance this year.
Nearly 30% waited more than 4 hours to be treated or assessed.
Nearly 45,000 had to wait more than 12 hours for a bed after decision to admit."
Some demoralising stats there, neatly summed up by BBC Health Editor Hugh Pym.

101123 COVID Actuaries hospital admissions

"Ambulance times out for October - times rising.
Regions starting to separate into two groups: 
Just about coping: NE, NW, London, SE. 
Not coping: East of England, SW and Midlands.
England average response for Category 2 (suspected strokes/heart attacks): 41 mins vs target of 18."
Some more not so great figures from numbers guy Paul Mainwood. 

101123 COVID Actuaries regional hospital admissions

Latest hospital waiting lists for England at the end of September showed a record high of 7.7 million people waiting for treatment. NHS England have been examining this one, and discovered this actually equates to 6.5 million individual patients, as around a million people are on more than one list. Most of them are waiting for two different treatments, but an unlucky few even more, with a handful on 5 different lists (which can include things like physiotherapy or drug treatments, not just surgeries).
It may not improve any time sooon. This week the BBC report that the NHS has been told to cover any remaining costs arising from strikes, using Winter and other budgets, including maintenance and IT (short-sightedly maintenance isn't really a strong point of the current Government). 

Shall we have some better news? 
English hospital admissions with COVID decreased by 18% in the week ending 5th November, which is excellent. Good way to close off Autumn. The Winter wave is likely to be bigger, so let's start low... (and no-one ruin it by mentioning we simply don't test people in hospitals for COVID). 

Variant Watch
Well hello BA.2.86 - and your new offspring JN.1. As anticipated, BA.2.86 Pirola is now making itself visible, just in time for Winter flu season. It's taken a while to actually make a dent, and Pirola Junior variant JN.1 seems especially exciting. In France JN.1 accounted for 0.7% (1 in every 20) of sequenced results on 18th September, rising to 39.1% (2 in every 5) by 23rd October, just 5 weeks later. 
Although JN.1 carries an additional mutation to it's Dad BA.2.86, it just looks even more easily caught (yet again), and doesn't look any more dangerous.
When you look at the sequences from the UK to 27th October (latest data), we have a really mixed bag, with 11 different variants coming in at between 4% and 7.5% of all sequences each, and several more in between 1% and 4%. The BA.2.86 family (including JN.1) is at 5.9% - just over 1 in every 20 cases sent away to be sequenced. 

Chart showing how covid lineages have changed over time in the UK

There are headlines today talking about the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine being "defective". This is because 2 different cases of people with severe vaccine-induced blood clots are going to court for adequate compensation - and they have claimed it was defective. One of those people died, and one was left with brain damage.
Literally anything you like, when given to an entire population, will cause some people massive reactions or damage. Anything. It doesn't necessarily make it defective, it makes us all unique human beings. Every single viable study found the risks of vaccine-injury were much, much smaller than the risks from catching COVID unvaccinated - including the risk of developing a blood clot.
We always knew some people would have vaccine injuries, and the BBC found that the UK Government has paid out £120,000 to 148 different claimants. It's really not a lot of money, and the system needs updating to reflect the fact it's now 2023.
Loved ones should be respected, apologised to, and fair compensation payouts should never have to be argued for in court. Just give them all a fair amount, and then try to find out why it happens - don't make people fight for what's right. 

Talking of fighting for what's right:
"Eligible healthcare staff at non-NHS organisations such as charities, local authorities or social enterprises will be able to claim a one-off COVID bonus worth at least £1,655."
UK Government 
Healthcare staff were taking legal action, and were likely to win, after NHS employees were given one-off payments last May. This still doesn't include everyone who worked in healthcare through COVID - bank staff (cover for absence) and others will still miss out.

Text explaining around 1 in 3 people sent a bowel screening kit did'nt complete and send it back. Do it.

The Mirror had a story last week about the selling off of Nightingale hospital beds. Apparently the NHS paid £2,500 EACH for specially made beds - which it has nowhere to store, so around 6,000 have been sold off at a huge loss. Lowest price - just £6 for a bed. Someone has bagged a bargain there... 

Sad news folks, at least it's sad if you happen to be a specific grown up child of someone famous and are attempting to cream freebies out of a charity formed in their name. Captain Tom's daughter has lost her court appeal, and has to demolish her home spa.
For reference, planning permission was given for a single storey L shaped premises to be built on land beside her £1.2m house, for use by the occupiers and the Captain Tom Foundation charity. Instead a C shaped building with spa pool was erected. Easy mistake to make.
100 year old Sir Captain Tom died from COVID shortly after a free promotional holiday to Barbados (during a pandemic) with (guess who?) his daughter and her family, and paid for by British Airways and Visit Barbados. Possibly the most ill-advised advertising campaign ever.  
As a reminder - you can still donate directly to NHS Charities Together, and avoid some of the middlemen taking their cut from your charity cash.

Random fact of the day:
The waves of English hospital admissions with COVID over the past 18 months matches almost exactly with levels of COVID found in Dutch sewer water... 

Little shadow people demonstrating Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Symptoms

Shall we have some COVID Inquiry quotes? If we must...

Boris Johnson - former Prime Minister
“It was very frustrating to think that we were being forced to extreme measures to lock down the country and protect the NHS – because the NHS and social services had failed to grip the decades-old problem of delayed discharges, commonly known as bed blocking."

Dominic Cummings - former No.10 chief adviser, and Barnard Castle eyesight tester. In his own written and verbal testimony..
Regarding Boris Johnson:
“I’ve literally said same thing ten f****** times and he still won’t absorb it.”
Regarding Boris Johnson's similarity to the mayor who insists the beaches must remain open despite the shark:
“Get in here he’s melting down. Rishi saying bond markets may fund our debt etc. He’s back to Jaws mode w***."
Regarding Boris Johnson's ability to veer all over the place and fail to stay on target:
“Pretty much everyone called him a trolley, yeah.”

Lee Cummings - former director of communications:
The COVID pandemic was the "wrong skillset" for Boris Johnson

Sir Patrick Vallance - former chief scientific adviser (in his notebook August 2020).
"He is obsessed with older people accepting their fate and letting the young get on with life and the economy going."

Helen MacNamara - former cabinet deputy secretary (fixed penalty for partying, supplied karaoke machine for a Downing Street party). Wording as remembered by Helen herself, and Dominic Cummings:
'I have come through to the PM's office to tell you all I think we’re absolutely fucked. I think the country is heading for a disaster. I think we are going to kill thousands of people.'

Boris Johnson - former Prime Minister (fixed penalties for partying). As recalled by Imran Shafi (Former Private Secretary to the Prime Minister, Public Services):
"Why are we destroying the economy for people who will die soon anyway?"

Former NHS England boss Lord Simon Stevens, regarding the NHS becoming overwhelmed:
Mr Hancock "took the position that in this situation he, rather than the medical profession or the public, should ultimately decide who should live and who should die".
(In fact NHS staff were in some cases simply unable to provide regular levels of care - which in many ways amounts to the same situation as rationing.)

Lord Udny-Lister, former chief of staff, in his written statement:
Boris Johnson suggested that "he wanted to be injected with COVID-19 on television to demonstrate to the public that it did not pose a threat”.
And the now infamous and inhumane quote:
"I recall PM Boris Johnson saying in September 2020 that he would rather 'let the bodies pile high' than impose another lockdown."

If you can face it, the entire thing has been live streamed and is available via You Tube on a dedicated channel, and transcripts for all of the evidence are available on a dedicated Government website - search UK COVID-19 Inquiry

Get your kids vaccinated for measles

Trump Of The Day. 
It's a blinder courtesy of Dominic Cummings during the COVID inquiry, and the person discussed is Boris Johnson:
“A low point was when he circulated a video of a guy blowing a special hair dryer up his nose ‘to kill Covid’ and asked the CSA and CMO what they thought.”
(Chief Scientific Adviser was Pat Vallance and Chief Medical Officer was Chris Whitty.)

Teacher and co-founder of Teacher Tapp (daily questions), Laura McInerney, has asked thousands of school leaders what they felt were the worst and best professional moments during COVID. She has a lovely thread on Twitter giving some examples. There's sadness there, but also children bounding around their living rooms doing "PE", bringing cushions to 'pet Fridays' and the proof that schools really are a community. A community which goes far beyond the classroom or school gate. 

It is Friday again! Hurrah! Don't forget to treat yourself to something nice - something especially for you. Be kind to everyone - including you. We need more compassion and respect in this world, and if that means you get to lounge in bed eating crumpets, or take an hour long bath with a book, all's the better. 

Be Human, Be Kind, Save The NHS. 

Some people. They look like numbers here, but they are all people.

Countries / Officially Reported Cases / Losses of life:

USA 109,280,866 / 1,181,863
India 45,001,408 / 533,295
Russia 23,158,908 / 400,319
Mexico 7,649,199 / 334,472
UK 24,804,243 / 231,324
Italy 26,257,548 / 192,554
Germany 38,576,499 / 177,135
France 40,138,560 / 167,642
Indonesia 6,813,790 / 161,920
Spain 13,914,811 / 121,760
Poland 6,542,233 / 119,716
Ukraine 5,557,995 / 112,418
Canada 4,786,258 / 54,902


Dutch sewer water image 
Hospital admissions image 

COVID stats images 

Bowel cancer screening


Waiting lists

Ambulance times

A&e times

Variant watch

Vaccine injury

Healthcare bonus

Nightingale beds 

Imran Shafi And image
Simon Stevens
Domini Cummings:
Pat Vallance 
March 2020
And Image

There were approximately 80,000 deaths from COVID in care homes for elderly people across the EU. 30,000-40,000 were in the UK. Risk of dying was 13 x that of Germany.
Matt Hancock rejected suggestions elderly care home residents should be tested for COVID before they returned home.
May 2020

COVID Inquiry

From February,  Kit Yates

And image of Johnsons's whiteboard again

Broken system

Johnson 'asked Whitty and Vallance if special hair dryer could kill Covid' - upday News

Bed blocking

Coovid inquiry Boris wants to kill the elderly 

Omg kill the elderly

Covid inquiry - Dominic lies

Kill old people

Matt hancock immunity


Taxpayers money to newspapers


Refusal to pay for isolation Rishi

Masks in schools

Image Matt Hancock whats the plan

Captain Toms daughter

Teacher tapp

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