The case for herd immunity?

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Pondering

Non-computer-simulated hospitals in Canada were over-loaded during the first wave leading people to quit.  They say they are at the breaking point if they get another wave the size of the one in the spring. Numbers, not simulations, suggest the fall winter wave COULD BE worse. Maybe we will be lucky and that won't happen but we can't take the chance because our heatlh care system will collaspe. 

We aren't producting or optaining enough PPEs or testing capacity or hospital staff to deal with waves larger than what we experienced in the spring. 

Those are non-computer simulated PPE and testing shortages. 

You said in another post that the world is pursuing an elimination strategy. No we are not. Most experts agree that Covid-19 is likely to be with us forever. 

Canada is trying to slow transmission to a rate that the hospitals can manage. That is the only goal of restrictions. Not overloading the hospitals. Some regions have managed to eliminate it but they know it isn't permanent. 

The spread cannot be contained by age and health status. It isn't just a small percentage of the population that is vulnerable. Millions of people live with chronic health conditions that are easily controlled by modern medicine. There is no wall we can place between people who are more or less vulnerable. The less vulnerable still have a risk of death or permanent disability. 

Not only are there no real life models of that working there aren't even any computer simulations of it happening. 

There is no huge number of young people demanding to be set free. A minority of young people flout the rules. Most are not begging for the on-campus experience. 

NDPP

Swedish Virologist Says Her Country's COVID-19 Strategy Has Failed But Nobody Will Admit It (radio)

https://www.cbc.ca/radio/as-it-happens/as-it-happens-monday-edition-1.57...

"It has been assumed that they were going for herd immunity, but they've been speaking through both sides of their mouths [like their defenders]. On the one hand they've been denying it. On the other hand they said it would be a bonus. They said that come fall, and the second wave, we will be much better protected than our Scandinavian neighbours who had 11 times less deaths than we did in relation to population. But it became very clear once broad testing was being done that there was nothing close to herd immunity.

And so of course, they realize that they can't go for herd immunity. It's going to kill too many people. I mean it's already killed almost 6,000 people in a population of 10 million. So they are no longer going for herd immunity, which doesn't mean they are prepared to say, 'we were wrong and we're going to change our recommendations..."

Sweden also remains outrageously and officially anti-mask. So much for their supposedly social democrat COVID-19 public health policies.

Aristotleded24

NDPP wrote:
Swedish Virologist Says Her Country's COVID-19 Strategy Has Failed But Nobody Will Admit It (radio)

https://www.cbc.ca/radio/as-it-happens/as-it-happens-monday-edition-1.57...

"It has been assumed that they were going for herd immunity, but they've been speaking through both sides of their mouths [like their defenders]. On the one hand they've been denying it. On the other hand they said it would be a bonus. They said that come fall, and the second wave, we will be much better protected than our Scandinavian neighbours who had 11 times less deaths than we did in relation to population. But it became very clear once broad testing was being done that there was nothing close to herd immunity.

And so of course, they realize that they can't go for herd immunity. It's going to kill too many people. I mean it's already killed almost 6,000 people in a population of 10 million. So they are no longer going for herd immunity, which doesn't mean they are prepared to say, 'we were wrong and we're going to change our recommendations..."

Sweden also remains outrageously and officially anti-mask. So much for their supposedly social democrat COVID-19 public health policies.

From the CBC Link:

Quote:

Now Sweden is shifting its policy. According to the Telegraph, starting Monday, the government has empowered regional health authorities — in consultation with the federal public health agency — to instruct citizens to stay away from crowded spaces like shopping malls, museum, gyms, and concerts, and avoid taking public transport or visiting the elderly. However, there will be no legal or financial consequences for non-compliance.

Einhorn, a virologist, author and filmmaker in Sweden, is one dozens of medical experts who have been critical of the country's COVID-19 response from the start. Here is part of her conversation with As It Happens host Carol Off. 

Is the Swedish government finally willing to admit that its approach to tackling COVID-19 has failed?

I haven't seen any such signs, no.

Do you think they'll just continue as they are?

There have been incremental changes in the recommendations. There has never been, and I doubt there ever will be, any kind of admission of having made mistakes.

If you were to describe Sweden's approach to tackling the coronavirus, what words would you use?

Stubborn is probably the best word I can come up with.

The data do not back up any of these claims. Sweden has simply not seen the upswing in cases that the rest of Europe has. When you look at both Sweden and the rest of Eurpoe, the death curves remain relatively flat, in spite of in some cases massive upswings in case numbers in recent weeks. The toothpaste is now out of the tube, and people can see for themselves what is really going on. Furthermore, the CBC, moreso than any other media organization in the country, has hyped up the coronavirus panic and hysteria. People are slowly starting to see through that. The media is circling the wagons engaging in damage control trying to retain control of a narrative that is slipping away from them. It doesn't surprise me that the CBC found a Swedish virologist to bolster their case. There are a range of opinions on any subject within a given population, but even she admits there is no indication that there will be major changes to the government's response.

That Sweden is a social democratic country plays a minor role in the death tolls. The real reason for the high death tolls is the deaths in elder care homes. That was a common feature in the pandemic, from Stockholm to Sydney to Seattle to Steinbach. Nobody in the Swedish government is saying that aspect was a success. Finally, I also found it ironic for Einhorn to accuse the Swedish government of being stubborn. If anyone is being stubborn, I feel it is the pro-lockdown scientists, and their cheerleaders among the professional class and middle-class retirees.

I also suspect that any day a report is going to come out saying that Sweden's economy for the third quarter did very well, that many people already know that, and that this "blame Sweden" approach is an attempt to change the narrative and mould public opinion before that happens.

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
Non-computer-simulated hospitals in Canada were over-loaded during the first wave leading people to quit.  They say they are at the breaking point if they get another wave the size of the one in the spring. Numbers, not simulations, suggest the fall winter wave COULD BE worse. Maybe we will be lucky and that won't happen but we can't take the chance because our heatlh care system will collaspe.

In order to accomodate surges in covid patients, hospitals moved mountains to delay or cancel a wide range of procedures. This will produce not only a backlog of patients the system will have to address at some point, but more demand as new people require these medical procedures. Even delaying these procedures most likely will result in complications that will be harder to deal with. Not to mention the strain on the system in the coming years as things like cardiovascular disease and mental health problems present their own pressures. If the system cannot cope with a temporary surge in covid patients, there's no way it will be able to handle what is to come.

Pondering wrote:
It isn't just a small percentage of the population that is vulnerable. Millions of people live with chronic health conditions that are easily controlled by modern medicine.

Which is all the more reason to do what we can to promote public health. In that vein, why close down the gyms when exercise improves overall health, and they aren't even a major driver of covid spread?

Public health is a complicated thing. You never focus on only one aspect of it, you think about how each component interacts.

Pondering wrote:
The less vulnerable still have a risk of death or permanent disability.

That's true and it needs to be addressed. OTOH, I've also seen evidence of a relationship between prior health (mostly sedentary lifestyles) and an increased risk of long-term complications. So if the virus is going to be out there anyways, we may as well have a public health strategy that improves health care overall to give people a better chance.

That also depends on how you count the number of cases. Sunetra Gupta, whom I've read a great deal from in recent week, doesn't even look at the official case count because that is dependent on how much testing is done. She has a point. A recent estimate by the World Health Organization is that 700 million people have been infected worldwide, almost 20 times the official number on the Worldometers page. Sure the testing likely missed many people with the infection, but has testing missed that many? Are we all of a sudden going to see that many people struggling with long covid?

Pondering wrote:
There is no huge number of young people demanding to be set free. A minority of young people flout the rules. Most are not begging for the on-campus experience.

You're an authority on young people now? I was talking to a younger person the other day, and this person reported missing being at the workplace. I can imagine many are also feeling that way about in-person learning at school as well. Any competent educator will tell you that instruction is only one part of learning, that having a chance to collaborate with others is also a vital part of the learning experience.

Pondering

Individual frustrated young people is not a groundswell of people demanding to be set free. No one, not one person here has claimed there isn't significant widespread damage to the economy and to the mental health of people yong and old among other things so you don't need to keep telling us about it. We get it. Lots and lots of people are suffering as a direct result of restrictions. 

In order to accomodate surges in covid patients, hospitals moved mountains to delay or cancel a wide range of procedures. This will produce not only a backlog of patients the system will have to address at some point, but more demand as new people require these medical procedures. Even delaying these procedures most likely will result in complications that will be harder to deal with. Not to mention the strain on the system in the coming years as things like cardiovascular disease and mental health problems present their own pressures. If the system cannot cope with a temporary surge in covid patients, there's no way it will be able to handle what is to come.

That is exactly what we have been saying. The Canadian health care system cannot deal with another large influx of Covid patients and still take care of everyone else's health care needs. That is why we can't open up more than we already are. 

Which restriction, specifically, are you objecting to? You cite Sweden a lot and Sweden has restrictions which you say are wrong. You say there should be no restrictions at all. 

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
No one, not one person here has claimed there isn't significant widespread damage to the economy and to the mental health of people yong and old among other things so you don't need to keep telling us about it.

You have constantly belittled any attempt at discussion for that, and dismissed any discussion of that in a cruel, callous manner as simply what needs to be done in order to "save lives," whatever it means to "save lives" when it was never that simple.

Pondering

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Pondering wrote:
No one, not one person here has claimed there isn't significant widespread damage to the economy and to the mental health of people yong and old among other things so you don't need to keep telling us about it.

You have constantly belittled any attempt at discussion for that, and dismissed any discussion of that in a cruel, callous manner as simply what needs to be done in order to "save lives," whatever it means to "save lives" when it was never that simple.

That is because your only goal is to lift all restrictions because you are a libertarian. You are using the harm people are suffering to bolster your argument not to help them. 

You don't care at all about the lives of hospital workers. You don't care about all the people who won't get their treatments because the system is overwhelmed by Covid cases. 

Like Trump, you ignore all the evidence presented, in favor of presenting questionable articles. You make claims about Sweden that are demonstratively untrue and ignore the evidence we present that shows it is untrue. 

No matter how many articles we present showing that Sweden had more deaths than their neighbours, that Sweden did in fact have many restrictions, and that they are experiencing a rise in numbers, you just ignore the evidence. You ignore the different conditions in various countries like percentages of people living alone and voluntary complience. 

We have explained multiple times why young people cannot be exempted. 

Worldometer provides all the numbers we need. Libertarianism is not the answer to Covid-19.

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
That is because your only goal is to lift all restrictions because you are a libertarian.

So? Some people are liberterians.

Pondering wrote:
You don't care at all about the lives of hospital workers. You don't care about all the people who won't get their treatments because the system is overwhelmed by Covid cases.

You may think whatever you want about what I care or don't care about. I'm secure enough in my own opinions that I don't need your validation.

Pondering wrote:
You make claims about Sweden that are demonstratively untrue and ignore the evidence we present that shows it is untrue.

Like the claim that the second wave in Sweden is currently not nearly happening to the same extent as the rest of Europe?

It's also true that Sweden suffered more deaths than its neighbours. Even the Swedes will admit that. But we are still in the middle of this pandemic. The death count could still go in one of 2 ways: Sweden could still end up with a higher death toll relative to its neighbours. It's also possible that the death rates in other countries may start rising relatively quickly, and when it's all over Sweden has a death toll closer to its other neighbours than it is currently. Time will tell.

Pondering wrote:
We have explained multiple times why young people cannot be exempted.

Who is "we?" You're the only one who has made that point most strenuously.

Pondering wrote:
Worldometer provides all the numbers we need.

41 million cases and 1.1 million deaths as of today, while tragic for the people involved, is not a big thing relative to a population of nearly 8 billion people. Coronavirus is the only cause of death for which we do worldometers and daily news updates. If you did that for any other cause of death, people would be scared of that as well. To illustrate my point, here are the top causes of death worldwide for 2016:

Quote:
Heart disease, a little under 10 million

Stroke, approximately 6 million

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, approximately 3.5 million

Lower respiratory infections, approximatley 3.5 million

Alzheimer disease and dementia, approximatley 2 million

Trachea, bronchus, lung cancer, less than 2 million

Diabetes, less than 2 million

Road injury, less than 2 million

Diarrhoeal diseases, less than 2 million

Tuberculosis, less than 2 million

Note that each one of those individual causes is more than the death count for coronavirs to date. Come to think of it, I think we should start doing daily press breifings to say how many people died of heart disease and cancer. Maybe it would scare us as a society into acting and reducing the associated mortality.

NDPP

"To achieve herd immunity through natural infection would mean more Americans killed by Covid in a year than were killed in all of the wars of the 20th century."

https://twitter.com/DrTomFrieden/status/1318258172780568577

 

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

Over 1 million worldwide over the course of less than 12 months looks pretty significant in comparison to your list of global rates for diseases clocking in at less than 2 million worldwide.

And another consideration, many of those diseases are controlled and treated for many years if not decades before the person succumbs to the disease. An apples to oranges approach to statistics is laughable at best and misleading at worst. 

Aristotleded24

laine lowe wrote:
Over 1 million worldwide over the course of less than 12 months looks pretty significant in comparison to your list of global rates for diseases clocking in at less than 2 million worldwide.

Why? Is it because covid, unlike many of the other diseases listed, is killing large numbers of people in a rather priviledged part of the world?

The year is almost over, and the official death count from covid is less than 1.2 million people as of today. In most countries, the death curve is nearly flat, and certainly does not follow the wave pattern as closely as it did during the first wave. I certainly don't think the global death toll from covid is going to come close to the combined total of diarrhoeal diseases and tuburculosis. I'll check back on this at the end of the year. If I'm wrong, I will come back to this thread and publicly eat my own words.

Aristotleded24

Aristotleded24 wrote:

laine lowe wrote:
Over 1 million worldwide over the course of less than 12 months looks pretty significant in comparison to your list of global rates for diseases clocking in at less than 2 million worldwide.

Why? Is it because covid, unlike many of the other diseases listed, is killing large numbers of people in a rather priviledged part of the world?

The year is almost over, and the official death count from covid is less than 1.2 million people as of today. In most countries, the death curve is nearly flat, and certainly does not follow the wave pattern as closely as it did during the first wave. I certainly don't think the global death toll from covid is going to come close to the combined total of diarrhoeal diseases and tuburculosis. I'll check back on this at the end of the year. If I'm wrong, I will come back to this thread and publicly eat my own words.

Besides, my reasoning for posting those different causes of death is that if you take any cause of death, set up a Worldometers page to track it, and provide regular press conferences to the public about its occurence, how many people died and so on, people are going to be very scared of that particular cause of death.

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Besides, my reasoning for posting those different causes of death is that if you take any cause of death, set up a Worldometers page to track it, and provide regular press conferences to the public about its occurence, how many people died and so on, people are going to be very scared of that particular cause of death.

100% nonsense. For any regular cause of death, people would see a curve that is mostly stable on an annual basis, with possibly seasonal ups and downs. It would be boring as shit, and nobody would pay any attention.

Pondering

We try to prevent deaths from all of those causes as well. Covid is far more communicable. 

Is this getting more attention because it hit the Western world. Probably. 

People are "afraid" of strokes and heart attacks etc. 

On Sweden:

https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/sweden-sticks-to-its-guns-as-covid-19-cases...

This week, it announced stricter local guidelines in Uppsala, a university town 70 kilometres (45 miles) north of Stockholm that has seen a spike in cases since students returned in the autumn.

Among other things, locals have been advised to avoid public transport and in-person contact with people outside their own household until November 3.

On Thursday the country also introduced restrictions on nightclubs, with Prime Minister Stefan Lofven admonishing Swedes "that the party is over now in nightclubs, and it needs to stay that way for as long as necessary."

 

And while images in the media occasionally show crowded city buses and restaurants, surveys by the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency found that 80 percent of Swedes have changed their behaviour as a result of recommendations.

They are working from home or limiting social contacts -- even though there are no fines or sanctions for disregarding them.

"There's nothing that forces you, but Swedes are like that you know, they follow (rules)," said the 60-year-old sea captain, noting that cultures were different in other parts of Europe.

 

Public gatherings of more than 50 people have been prohibited since late March, but the government said Thursday cultural and sporting events could now accomodate 300 people as long as they were seated respecting social distancing.

 

Authorities have meanwhile repeatedly stressed that Sweden's overall strategy has been chosen to cope with a "marathon, not a sprint."

Sweden is not doing nothing. Some restrictions are more voluntary than others but work because culturally the country is more homogenous and they follow rules without having to be fined. 

Many other places in the world, such as Canada, are more individualistic and multicultural requiring a different approach than Sweden. 

It suits the media to pretend Sweden's response is radically different than everywhere else but it isn't. In practice large gatherings are not happening and people are practicing social distancing and working from home if possible. 

No two countries are exactly alike in terms of culture, population size, degree of isolation, health care capacity, etc. Even so as far as I know there isn't a single country in the entire world that doesn't have any restrictions.

Not one, but that is what you are arguing in favor of.  You can't come up with an example country because there are none. 

 

 

Aristotleded24

Michael Moriarity wrote:
Aristotleded24 wrote:

Besides, my reasoning for posting those different causes of death is that if you take any cause of death, set up a Worldometers page to track it, and provide regular press conferences to the public about its occurence, how many people died and so on, people are going to be very scared of that particular cause of death.

100% nonsense. For any regular cause of death, people would see a curve that is mostly stable on an annual basis, with possibly seasonal ups and downs. It would be boring as shit, and nobody would pay any attention.

Look at the actual numbers. Throughout much of the industrialized world, there was a spike in covid cases in the spring, a drop as we went into the summer months, and now numbers are going up at about the same time we would have expected larger numbers of people to come down with respiratory illnesses. In spite of in some cases record numbers of cases, with the exception of Japan, the United States, and Australia, the death curves have either remained relatively flat or only gone up slightly as new cases are identified. Per Wikipedia, while there is an uptick in the number of people with covid in the ICU, it is nowhere near where it was in the spring.

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:

We try to prevent deaths from all of those causes as well. Covid is far more communicable. 

Is this getting more attention because it hit the Western world. Probably. 

People are "afraid" of strokes and heart attacks etc. 

On Sweden:

https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/sweden-sticks-to-its-guns-as-covid-19-cases...

This week, it announced stricter local guidelines in Uppsala, a university town 70 kilometres (45 miles) north of Stockholm that has seen a spike in cases since students returned in the autumn.

Among other things, locals have been advised to avoid public transport and in-person contact with people outside their own household until November 3.

On Thursday the country also introduced restrictions on nightclubs, with Prime Minister Stefan Lofven admonishing Swedes "that the party is over now in nightclubs, and it needs to stay that way for as long as necessary."

 

And while images in the media occasionally show crowded city buses and restaurants, surveys by the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency found that 80 percent of Swedes have changed their behaviour as a result of recommendations.

They are working from home or limiting social contacts -- even though there are no fines or sanctions for disregarding them.

"There's nothing that forces you, but Swedes are like that you know, they follow (rules)," said the 60-year-old sea captain, noting that cultures were different in other parts of Europe.

 

Public gatherings of more than 50 people have been prohibited since late March, but the government said Thursday cultural and sporting events could now accomodate 300 people as long as they were seated respecting social distancing.

 

Authorities have meanwhile repeatedly stressed that Sweden's overall strategy has been chosen to cope with a "marathon, not a sprint."

Sweden is not doing nothing. Some restrictions are more voluntary than others but work because culturally the country is more homogenous and they follow rules without having to be fined.

The Swedish government actually treated its citizens like adults who were capable of making rationally informed choices, unlike nearly everyone else. Furtheromre, the consistency of the measures that Sweden has taken means people know what to expect over the long-term, rather than the shut-down-open-up cycle that everyone else is going through.

You know how else Sweden is different from other countries? There aren't any uprisings of people in the streets protesting the government's measures.

Pondering

The Swedish government actually treated its citizens like adults who were capable of making rationally informed choices, unlike nearly everyone else. Furtheromre, the consistency of the measures that Sweden has taken means people know what to expect over the long-term, rather than the shut-down-open-up cycle that everyone else is going through.

But you are against the measures that Sweden is taking. They are not having mass gatherings of thousands of people congregating from around the world like the Olympics and big international festivals. 

This is a balanced article about the pros and cons of school closures. 

Aristotleded24

I have a question for people who have questioned the very idea of herd immunity. Generally when a disease outbreak happens, it has phase of growth, a phase where it peaks, and then the number of new cases drops off, and the disease tends to not be present in high numbers. This has happened with every disease outbreak in human history. Presumably, if we hadn't done anything, the coronavirus would have done the same thing: rapid rise in cases, a flat period, and then the number of new cases falls off. It is often the case that these outbreaks cause a great deal of carnage and suffering along the way, and something should be done about that. That is a fair point of discussion. But the basic idea that if we hadn't done anything that coronavirus would have eventually burned itself out and not been as highly present, is anyone here seriously questioning that idea?

Pondering

There is no evidence that Covid-19 would eventually burn itself out. The flu hasn't burnt itself out. There is zero evidence of long term immunity. It is more likely that it is with us permanently. That means like the flu everyone will have to be vacinated, perhaps every year.

Aristotleded24

What do you mean by that? The flu does come back in waves, but it does have periods of low times where it is infecting very few people. Are you saying you think that, left to its own devices, covid will continue to infect more people and never follow a down curve where the number of new infections drops off? That seems to be the basic fact people are questioning.

Pondering

Aristotleded24 wrote:

What do you mean by that? The flu does come back in waves, but it does have periods of low times where it is infecting very few people. Are you saying you think that, left to its own devices, covid will continue to infect more people and never follow a down curve where the number of new infections drops off? That seems to be the basic fact people are questioning.

Yes. If it were deadly to everyone then eventually it would burn itself out. Instead it ranges from no symptoms at all to death. If everyone knew they were sick within 24 hrs of catching it we could isolate people more quickly. It mutates so you can have antibodies to one strain and get sick with another. The vaccines being developed target areas of the virus that don't change from strain to strain. Like the flu some people will die every year. 

That is why it is so sickening that we ignored every chance we had to shut it down from the start. Had we done that everything could have stayed normal for most of the world.

That we would face another pandemic style virus has been known for decades. We learned nothing from SARS. We let our PPEs rot in storage instead of rotating stock. We have transferred so much manufacturing that we are at the mercy of other countries for necessities of life. The WHO failed. National governments failed. High level health "experts" failed. 

So now we are screwed. 

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:

Aristotleded24 wrote:

What do you mean by that? The flu does come back in waves, but it does have periods of low times where it is infecting very few people. Are you saying you think that, left to its own devices, covid will continue to infect more people and never follow a down curve where the number of new infections drops off? That seems to be the basic fact people are questioning.

Yes. If it were deadly to everyone then eventually it would burn itself out. Instead it ranges from no symptoms at all to death. If everyone knew they were sick within 24 hrs of catching it we could isolate people more quickly. It mutates so you can have antibodies to one strain and get sick with another. The vaccines being developed target areas of the virus that don't change from strain to strain. Like the flu some people will die every year. 

That is why it is so sickening that we ignored every chance we had to shut it down from the start. Had we done that everything could have stayed normal for most of the world.

That we would face another pandemic style virus has been known for decades. We learned nothing from SARS. We let our PPEs rot in storage instead of rotating stock. We have transferred so much manufacturing that we are at the mercy of other countries for necessities of life. The WHO failed. National governments failed. High level health "experts" failed. 

So now we are screwed.

I want to see if I am getting this correct. My understanding of what you just said is that, in the absence of intervention, that covid will continue to register more new infections each day than the day before, and the number of daily new infections will never drop off on its own. Is that understanding of what you are saying accurate? If so, it would be the first time any infectious disease has ever behaved that way throughout human history.

Pondering

Aristotleded24 wrote:
 I want to see if I am getting this correct. My understanding of what you just said is that, in the absence of intervention, that covid will continue to register more new infections each day than the day before, and the number of daily new infections will never drop off on its own. Is that understanding of what you are saying accurate? If so, it would be the first time any infectious disease has ever behaved that way throughout human history.

It will only drop off during outdoor season and if people are following social distancing etc. They don't always burn themselves out or smallpox, measles and polio would be long gone. Even with vaccines we have not eradicated them. 

Polio eradication, the permanent global cessation of circulation by the poliovirus and hence elimination of the poliomyelitis it causes, is the aim of a multinational public health effort begun in 1988, led by the World Health Organization, the United Nations Children's Fund and the Rotary Foundation. Wikipedia

Canada was certified "polio free" in 1994. Sadly, some people who recovered from paralytic polio in the past may later experience post-polio syndrome (PPS). This nervous system disorder can appear 15 to 40 years after the original illness, bringing progressive muscle weakness, severe fatigue, and muscle and joint pain.

Some viruses burn out. Many do not. Covid is unlikely to burn out because it seems antibodies are short lived, a person can catch different strains, and many people have no idea they are infections. 

That is why our failure to test and contact trace is so stupid. Ford and others are assuming thanksgiving family gatherings are the culprit but that is an easy assumption because of the lack of contact tracing. 

We still take the polio vaccine in Canada because even though it was eradicated in Canada in 1994 it is so dangerous that we don't want to wait for a "hot spot" to emerge before vaccinating people. 

With or without a vaccine, Covid-19 is likely with us forever, like the flu, which has not burned itself out either. 

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:

Aristotleded24 wrote:
 I want to see if I am getting this correct. My understanding of what you just said is that, in the absence of intervention, that covid will continue to register more new infections each day than the day before, and the number of daily new infections will never drop off on its own. Is that understanding of what you are saying accurate? If so, it would be the first time any infectious disease has ever behaved that way throughout human history.

It will only drop off during outdoor season and if people are following social distancing etc.

If there is a natural downswing in the summer, that at least implies a seasonal aspect to covid infections. That is good news, because there is a predictability associated with it. We understand that there are times when it will be bad, so we can prepare against it. Remember that the reason we were made to do social distancing is that this was a new virus and we didn't know how it would behave. The more predictable a health issue is, the easier it is to manage, and the immediate urgency is less.

Pondering wrote:
That is why our failure to test and contact trace is so stupid. Ford and others are assuming thanksgiving family gatherings are the culprit but that is an easy assumption because of the lack of contact tracing.

Not only that, but without the data to back up his contention, it is very easy to assume he's using Thanksgiving dinner as a scapegoat to blame people.

Speaking of family dinners, there is another aspect of contacting and tracing that is problematic. The restrictions on people's personal lives to stop the spread are very strict. Pretty much the only people who aren't open to being accued of breaking the rules in some way are those who stay at home all the time and who don't ever allow any visitors. Add to that the moral outrage that every transmission of covid is someone's fault because a person or group did something wrong. Let's say I had a big Thanksgiving dinner, well in excess of the numbers that public health authorities allowed. Now I start feeling symptoms. What if I'm scared of getting myself or my family in trouble or being blamed for sparking an outbreak, and I decide to tough it out because it's just not worth the risk? Maybe I won't bother with the test at all. Or take this incident from a church in Prince Albert. With the idea of fines and that, what if the next event like that happens (and there will be a next event like that, rules or no) and people sick from that outbreak don't go to authorities for fear of the fines or being stigmatized? You think tracing is going to be effective then?

A key thing with the testing and tracing strategy is public buy-in. People now have big incentives to either hide from or not co-operate with authorities. At the very least, the tone of the messaging needs to change from, "you broke the rules and covid spread, so it's your fault as an individual if somebody dies" to "we're sorry you got sick, but we will do our best to help you and to manage and minimize the impact on you and your loved ones."

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

I have now entered the category of vulnerable age. Please don't let me go down in flames due to COVID :-)

Aristotleded24

laine lowe wrote:
I have now entered the category of vulnerable age. Please don't let me go down in flames due to COVID :-)

If this means what I think it means, then happy birthday, and hopes and best wishes for many more to come! :)

Of course nobody wants anybody to go down to covid. We also want to make sure that whatever measures taken don't cause additional harm. We are all different in our perception of and our tolerance for risk when it comes to covid, so I think we all need to be more patient and accomodating with each other (and maybe I need to include myself in that as well).

What I'm trying to say is, covid or no covid, life is short. Let's do what we can to live our own best lives, to help our fellow human beings live their best lives, and find ways to do so which respects that other people have different levels of comfort, concern, and fear of covid (in eithier direction) than we do.

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

Thank you for the birthday wishes, Aristotlded. I am officially a "pensioner".

Life is indeed short when you reflect on how fast it goes by as you get older but there are many, many, many who live very beautiful, active lives well into their 90s and beyond. Obviously, a person over 80 or 90 years old is not going to have the resiliency of someone younger but geriatric health doesn't mean that efforts should be sacrificed to ensure they don't succumb to flus or COVID.

Aristotleded24

Yes, I agree that we should do what we can to protect our elders. When I see that every care facility in the city is currently under lockdown, I question whether all the sacrifices we have been making are actually doing the job, and if there are better ways to protect our elders. For example, while a few have gone on heightened alert, no schools have had to close outright because of covid. No gyms or fitness facilities have had any outbreaks connected either. Do they need to be under tight restrictions if they're not driving spread, especially in a context where we are currently matching or breaking records?

One of the common themes througout the pandemic is that elder care homes drove covid fatalities throughout the world, regardless of whether they were located in countries that locked down or not. Perhaps we can start looking there for solutions. There's also ethical issues around quality of life, for example, why force elders to spend what little time left separated from their families?

I also wonder if the fact that we live separately from our grandparents plays a role in this. It doesn't surprise me that messaging around "protecting the elderly" doesn't resonate with a large portion of the population that has next to no contact with them. In cultures with multi-generational families, protecting the elderly is so ingrained in people that they just incorporate those habits while going about their lives. They don't need to be told what to do, they just know.

In terms of covid and flu, some people have managed to survive both.

Pondering

Patience is good but "each to his own" doesn't work for Covid. People who get covid not only endanger others by being contagious they also endanger people who need medical care but can't get it due to overloaded hospitals. 

https://www.sltrib.com/news/2020/10/25/with-coronavirus-cases/

With new coronavirus cases shattering records on a daily basis, Utah’s hospitals are expected to begin rationing care in a week or two.

That’s the prediction of Greg Bell, president of the Utah Hospital Association, who said administrators of the state’s hospitals confronted Gov. Gary Herbert on Thursday with a grim list: Criteria they propose doctors should use if they are forced to decide which patients can stay in overcrowded intensive care units.

The state’s hospitals can shift patients around to free up bed space, Bell said, and the state has long planned to open a field hospital at the Mountain America Expo Center in Sandy if necessary.

But one of the defining features of intensive care is access to doctors and nurses with specialty training — and opening new beds does not mean those health care workers can staff them.

https://www.sltrib.com/news/2020/10/19/utah-coronavirus-cases-up/

“We continue to see high volumes of patients in intensive care units at our hospitals across the state,” said Jess Gomez, spokesman for Intermountain Healthcare, which operates the hospital. “Health care resources across the state, including highly trained caregivers who provide specialized intensive care, continue to be stretched."

It is Utah’s second hospital to fill its ICU beds; University of Utah Hospital on Friday also exceeded its normal ICU capacity and opened an overflow unit, requiring doctors and nurses to work overtime.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/10/08/wisconsin-doctor-green-bay-on-the-verge-...

  • “We are on the verge of a crisis in Green Bay and our surrounding counties,” Dr. Paul Casey of Bellin Health Systems in northeast Wisconsin told CNBC’s Shepard Smith.
  • “We see a frighteningly rising trend of Covid positivity rate above 20% in our community,” he said in an appearance on “The News with Shepard Smith.”
  • “If the rise continues and isn’t abated, we’re going to have to cancel elective surgeries again. We have not done that yet, but it’s close,” he said.

Further weighing on the care being provided to patients is the fact that as many as 200 medical workers are out sick, he added, battling their own bouts with the virus that has now infected nearly 7.6 million and led to more than 212,000 deaths in the U.S., according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

“We see a frighteningly rising trend of Covid positivity rate above 20% in our community,” Casey said.

Bellin Hospital, which specializes in heart and vascular service among others, could be forced to reduce what procedures it can provide to patients to retain resources to fight the ongoing health crisis. The health institution shut down elective surgeries in the spring.

We do need to be patient and understanding with one another while firmly insisting that it is a civic duty to wear masks, physically distance and to stay home when you can. 

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
Patience is good but "each to his own" doesn't work for Covid. People who get covid not only endanger others by being contagious they also endanger people who need medical care but can't get it due to overloaded hospitals. 

https://www.sltrib.com/news/2020/10/25/with-coronavirus-cases/

With new coronavirus cases shattering records on a daily basis, Utah’s hospitals are expected to begin rationing care in a week or two.

That’s the prediction of Greg Bell, president of the Utah Hospital Association, who said administrators of the state’s hospitals confronted Gov. Gary Herbert on Thursday with a grim list: Criteria they propose doctors should use if they are forced to decide which patients can stay in overcrowded intensive care units.

The state’s hospitals can shift patients around to free up bed space, Bell said, and the state has long planned to open a field hospital at the Mountain America Expo Center in Sandy if necessary.

But one of the defining features of intensive care is access to doctors and nurses with specialty training — and opening new beds does not mean those health care workers can staff them.

https://www.sltrib.com/news/2020/10/19/utah-coronavirus-cases-up/

“We continue to see high volumes of patients in intensive care units at our hospitals across the state,” said Jess Gomez, spokesman for Intermountain Healthcare, which operates the hospital. “Health care resources across the state, including highly trained caregivers who provide specialized intensive care, continue to be stretched."

It is Utah’s second hospital to fill its ICU beds; University of Utah Hospital on Friday also exceeded its normal ICU capacity and opened an overflow unit, requiring doctors and nurses to work overtime.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/10/08/wisconsin-doctor-green-bay-on-the-verge-...

  • “We are on the verge of a crisis in Green Bay and our surrounding counties,” Dr. Paul Casey of Bellin Health Systems in northeast Wisconsin told CNBC’s Shepard Smith.
  • “We see a frighteningly rising trend of Covid positivity rate above 20% in our community,” he said in an appearance on “The News with Shepard Smith.”
  • “If the rise continues and isn’t abated, we’re going to have to cancel elective surgeries again. We have not done that yet, but it’s close,” he said.

Further weighing on the care being provided to patients is the fact that as many as 200 medical workers are out sick, he added, battling their own bouts with the virus that has now infected nearly 7.6 million and led to more than 212,000 deaths in the U.S., according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

“We see a frighteningly rising trend of Covid positivity rate above 20% in our community,” Casey said.

Bellin Hospital, which specializes in heart and vascular service among others, could be forced to reduce what procedures it can provide to patients to retain resources to fight the ongoing health crisis. The health institution shut down elective surgeries in the spring.

We do need to be patient and understanding with one another while firmly insisting that it is a civic duty to wear masks, physically distance and to stay home when you can.

Yikes! That reminds me of the 2017-2018 flu outbreak in the United States which really taxed resources. Seems quite sad that the country didn't learn anything from that  experience.

Question about the flu season: how does the flu curve typically play out? Is this the time when, outside of covid we would expect to see flu cases and related hospital admissions rise? If so, when does that curve typically begin to level off? I've seen some evidence that in Ontario and Quebec the curve of new infections has at least been flat so far this week. Manitoba is all over the place. Saskatchewan seems to be doing relatively well. BC and Alberta seem to be on a clear upward trend. Do we typically see regional variations in flu infections?

The biggest question I have is, how does the total curve for infectious respiratory diseases this year (covid plus everything else) compare to the base line we would expect to see outside of the pandemic?

By the way, "stay at home" isn't always an option for older workers who work in "essential" industries. These workers are at high risk of needing hospital and/or ICU intervention if they become infected. I'm sure at the very least, we can all agree on some sort of pension adjustment that allows them to stay home (perhaps negotiated through stronger unions) while the pandemic is still active?

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

On the lighter side:

Pondering

Yikes! That reminds me of the 2017-2018 flu outbreak in the United States which really taxed resources. Seems quite sad that the country didn't learn anything from that  experience.

Question about the flu season: how does the flu curve typically play out? Is this the time when, outside of covid we would expect to see flu cases and related hospital admissions rise? If so, when does that curve typically begin to level off? I've seen some evidence that in Ontario and Quebec the curve of new infections has at least been flat so far this week. Manitoba is all over the place. Saskatchewan seems to be doing relatively well. BC and Alberta seem to be on a clear upward trend. Do we typically see regional variations in flu infections?

The biggest question I have is, how does the total curve for infectious respiratory diseases this year (covid plus everything else) compare to the base line we would expect to see outside of the pandemic?

To my knowledge we have never had a flu outbreak that required us to put up field hospitals nor have our coroners and funeral homes needed refrigerated trucks for storage. 

The flu generally peaks in January or February in Quebec and Ontario. I expect it to be way down this year because of the precautions everyone is taking and the increase in vacinations. 

These are the numbers

  • 2016-2017  27,345
  • 2017-2018  55,059
  • 2018-1019  39,192
  • 2019-2020  42,541 

Covid 19, so far this year, 222,887, and we haven't entered peak transmission time yet. It abated somewhat in the summer because we were outdoors. We have had 10,000 deaths so far. The average number of flu deaths each year ranges from 500 to 1,500. 

For comparison:

Cancer is the leading cause of death in Canada and is responsible for 30% of all deaths. It is estimated that in 2020: 115,800 Canadian men will be diagnosed with cancer and 44,100 men will die from cancer. 110,000 Canadian women will be diagnosed with cancer and 39,300 women will die from cancer.

Those are yearly numbers and Covid only really arrived in March. The peak months for transmission are ahead of us. 

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

Thank you, Michael Moriarity. That cartoon was funny. Made me smile.

 

 

Aristotleded24

Michael Moriarity wrote:

On the lighter side:

That's a simplistic take on things, and there are more complexities that the stop-covid-at-all-costs crowd can't see. It's not as simple as stopping coronavirus. The measures you take will have impacts. It is widely accepted that the response to the pandemic will bring massive economic devastation. We on the left know that economic devastation is bad for health and costs people their lives, and will in this part of the world. I see the impact here in Winnipeg as there are far more people sleeping in bus shelters since the start of the pandemic. Furthermore, it is estimated that 130 million could starve globally because of the lockdowns (contrast with the fact that as of today less than 50 million have been diagnosed with covid globally). Of course, the suffering and misery of others is a very hard thing to see behind a curtain of elite priviledge.

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
To my knowledge we have never had a flu outbreak that required us to put up field hospitals nor have our coroners and funeral homes needed refrigerated trucks for storage.

That certainly was the case in the United States. Kim Iversen also explained in one of her videos that the bodies of people who died from covid had to be handled differently because of being treated as biohazards.

Besides, I've already said that I think any discussion about what happens in the United States in response to criticisms of the measures in Canada (or anywhere else in the world, for that matter) are a red herring because the United States is a global outlier in terms of how it has mismanaged the pandemic.

Pondering wrote:
The flu generally peaks in January or February in Quebec and Ontario. I expect it to be way down this year because of the precautions everyone is taking and the increase in vacinations.

That's true, but I think you're also discounting the possibility that respiratory infections that would have been considered to be influenza in any other year may be picked up as covid infections this year. I know it's different viruses, but the presentation of symptoms is very similar. To be even more precise, to call it a "flu" season is a misnomer because there are hundreds of respiratory viruses that make people sick.

Pondering wrote:
These are the numbers

  • 2016-2017  27,345
  • 2017-2018  55,059
  • 2018-1019  39,192
  • 2019-2020  42,541 

Covid 19, so far this year, 222,887, and we haven't entered peak transmission time yet. It abated somewhat in the summer because we were outdoors. We have had 10,000 deaths so far. The average number of flu deaths each year ranges from 500 to 1,500.

Those flu deaths, do you know if they are laboratory-confirmed cases, or just estimates? We aren't generally that careful about testing people for influenza, and that was even the case in the 2009-2010 pandemic. Official estimates of influenza cases are always higher than laboratory confirmed cases.

Pondering

You bring conspiracy type information to  the board then challenge numbers from health institutions and universities. 

If someone has diabetes, and dies due to covid, cause of death is covid because they would otherwise still be alive. Many people are living are living a full lifetime with conditions like diabetes. It is common. Same goes for obesity and heart conditions.

Trying to cast doubt on the numbers when they overwhelmingly show that if the virus is left to go wild health care systeems are overwhelmed and more people die. We don't have to let it happen here just to prove that it will. There is no jurisdiction on Earth, anywhere, that has taken the route you propose. Not a single one. Not even Sweden. 

Our hospitals are telling us they can't take it. Our nurses are telling us they can't take it. Do you think they are lying to us?  Do you think right-wing politicians like Legault, Kenny and Ford want to shut down any businesses? Do you not think massive corporations in oil, air travel, and international hotel chains and international events organizers would be screaming bloody murder if they thought we could go back to normal without inviting even worse economic collapse? 

And you still keep bringing right-wing or lunatic fringe doctors and studies and commentators. 

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
Trying to cast doubt on the numbers when they overwhelmingly show that if the virus is left to go wild health care systeems are overwhelmed and more people die. We don't have to let it happen here just to prove that it will. There is no jurisdiction on Earth, anywhere, that has taken the route you propose. Not a single one. Not even Sweden.

Let's look at some numbers:

Best-case scenario fataility projection for Canada (presumably a tough lockdown): 46 000

Deaths to date: Approximately 10 000

By the way, nobody is advocating we let the virus run wild. Not even the doctors I have cited.

Pondering wrote:
And you still keep bringing right-wing or lunatic fringe doctors and studies and commentators.

That you would resort to name-calling without challenging the substance of what they are saying speaks volumes. Funny thing is, most of the pro-lockdown scientists resort to the same tactics. On the other end, if you ask the doctors I have cited about critcism of their position, their general attidude is, "let's look at the data, and if we learn from it, all the better."

Covid mainly kills the elderly, and we have had outbreaks in the nursing homes throughout the country in every stage of lockdown and opening up. Every seniors home in Winnipeg is currently under lockdown, so I challenge the idea that the current actions have had any impact on reducing fatalities where they are most likely to occur. For a fraction of what we spent just on CERB, we could have better protected our elderly residents while allowing life to go on much more normally than it has.

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
There is no jurisdiction on Earth, anywhere, that has taken the route you propose. Not a single one. Not even Sweden.

So by that logic, if everyone around me decides to jump off a bridge, it would be a bad idea for me to not jump off a bridge.

Bacchus

If I have a bad heart or diabetes and get Covid and because of my issues, it kills me, was it the bad heart/diabetes that killed me or Covid?

 

The answer is Covid because without that particular sickness I would be alive with a bad heart/diabetes

Pondering

By the way, nobody is advocating we let the virus run wild. Not even the doctors I have cited.

Does that mean you are retracting from your position that we should be having international events and opening stadiums to sports fans and concerts? 

I have yet to hear you support a single restriction. You consistenly ignore or try to undermine the Canadian medical professionals in hospitals saying they are overloaded and burning out. I can only assume you don't give a shit about their working conditions or lives. 

You got suckered by Kim Iverson. She spent 22 minutes ranting against the mainstream media for something she thinks they will do in the future but you missed the half a sentence indicating that they had not done what she was accusing them of. This is someone you call a hero, a patriot and a truth-teller when she is a liar and propagandist.

You got suckered by some fringe scientists complaining no major medical journal will publish their pop-science study not that they will simply release it themselves. It doesn't matter to you if it is junk science as long as it promotes libertarianism. 

I give you numbers indicating that Covid 19, so far this year, is at  222,887. The highest number of flu cases in the past 4 years is  55,059. Then you challenge the flu numbers. Even if they were wildly off it is still very obvious that Covid is much much much much much much much much worse than the flu. You would have to be living under a rock not to know that.  The numbers I looked up took me two seconds on Google. 

Throughout the entire world whenever they lift restrictions before Covid is under control the hospitals become overwhelmed but you will look for some obscure case in which that didn't happen and consider that proof that the other thousands of major hospitals that show otherwise must be wrong. 

It is obvious to me that you are not at all interested in the truth about Covid and that you are an extension of the right wing attempt to politicize Covid in the service of their personal agenda without any regard at all for the people who are dying and will continue to die at higher rates specifically because of the lies they and you promote. 

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

The following chart was really helpful when I was wondering what to do about having a head cold awhile ago.https://www.multicare.org/file_viewer.php?id=19865&title=COVID-19-Symptoms-Chart

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:
I give you numbers indicating that Covid 19, so far this year, is at  222,887. The highest number of flu cases in the past 4 years is  55,059. Then you challenge the flu numbers. Even if they were wildly off it is still very obvious that Covid is much much much much much much much much worse than the flu. You would have to be living under a rock not to know that.  The numbers I looked up took me two seconds on Google.

We are also looking for, testing for, tracing for, going after and announcing covid like we do for no other illness or human malady.

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

You seem to not get it, Ari. The numbers increase expodentially in a way that no other diseases are doing. That is the crisis. You keep bringing up weird analogies that don't make sense. If we had 1-5 deaths daily for a strech of a week due to opiod or amphetimine overdoses, that would constitute a public health crisis too. But for an infectious disease, these daily markers are even more significant because of how widely spread contact can be.

Aristotleded24

How are these cases counted? We didn't have testing capacity in the spring that we do now, so I think part of the numbers we are seeing now are due to testing people who in the spring time would have been told to simply stay away from others, and many of these people recovered. Furthermore, a positive test can span a range of scenarios, from a person showing no symptoms to ending up in the ICU. Raw case counts alone do not go into that level of detail. As for exponential increases? I've been checking numbers on my own on a daily basis for some time. That does seem to be a trend in Europe at the moment, although some countries look like they might be at their inflection point. I'm not seeing anything that looks like an exponential increase here in Canada. Even BC, which seems to have a clear upward trend right now, that looks to me like it is a more gradual increase, and it settles into a new range of new cases (right now that seems to be around roughly 360-380 new cases per day on average). I'm also looking at the death curves for various countries. It is up in many of them, however it is not anywhere near what the death curves looked like in the spring, even in the face of new daily case counts which have been shattering records for weeks. How is it going to go? Eventually all of these numbers will start coming down soon.

Speaking of numbers, here is a really great website where anyone can go and check out numbers and trends from around the world, and in specific regions of Canada, the United States, Europe, and Israel. I highly recommend it. The governments of Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba and Saskatchewan also have web pages with much useful information. I prefer to get the numbers directly where I can instead of relying on the media to tell me anything.

Pondering

Someone who has covid but no symptoms is far more dangerous than someone with symptoms. 

Aristotleded24

Aristotleded24 wrote:
I've seen some evidence that in Ontario and Quebec the curve of new infections has at least been flat so far this week.

Well this doesn't appear to have aged well:

Quote:

Ontario recorded an additional 1,050 cases of COVID-19 this morning, which marks a new single-day high for the province.

The seven-day average of new cases, which helps smooth out noise in the data, is now up to 950. The province is also reporting 14 more deaths, with its official death toll standing at 3,166. Just under 64 per cent of those deaths were residents of long-term care homes.

Aristotleded24

And of course the science on herd immunity has long been settled:

Quote:

Fauci's confession:

"When polls said only about half of all Americans would take a vaccine, I was saying herd immunity would take 70 to 75 percent ... Then, when newer surveys said 60 percent or more would take it, I thought, "I can nudge this up a bit," so I went to 80, 85. We need to have some humility here .... We really don’t know what the real number is. I think the real range is somewhere between 70 to 90 percent. But, I'm not going to say 90 percent."

The issue of herd immunity for covid is quite contentious. Some estimates have been as low as 20%. Other estimates, which people are more familiar with, are in the range posted in this post, anywhere from 50 to 70 to even close to 100%. Certainly Fauci and government health officials are prone to estimate the threshold on the higher end. I'm curious as to how it became settled science that the herd immunity thresholds are that high, or why government officials are taken as an authoritative source without much further investigation or critique. I think the fact that most reporters are not trained in the relevant fields, along with the fact that the media outlets they work for have close relationships with the government, plays a big role.

JKR

Are you trained in the relevant fields?

Aristotleded24

JKR wrote:
Are you trained in the relevant fields?

I minored in math, I took first year biology courses in universty, and I read about this kind of thing occaisionally. My mind is built for science and math. Plus I also like to ask questions when something doesn't make sense to me, and I tend to be skeptical of people and institutions of authority. Not the greatest credentials in the world by a long shot, but I'm guessing it's more than what your average reporter is, especially on the math front.

Besides, in the course of this pandemic, I have cited many people who are trained in the relevant fields whose views align more with me than with the dominant viewpoint.

Aristotleded24

Gabriela Gomes argues that herd immunity is approaching

This was posted on October 7 of this year. Since that time, we have seen new cases fall off dramatically throughout Europe (excluding the Scandinavian countries), the growth in new cases worldwide has levelled off, and in recent weeks has actually started to fall off. The pandemic is still increasing in some parts of the world (Quebec and Ontario come to mind) however the trends may support this point of view.

Sunetra Gupta argues that we are closer to herd immunity as well

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