Interesting, Covid declines worldwide


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The results;s of Vitamin D trials are inconclusive. The one point of agreement is that people with a significant deficiency of Vitamin D may be more susceptible but there's no evidence that people who have no deficiency are better protected - they get sick and die of Covid as well. As for nose sprays and repurposed drugs, I've learned through this not to be swayed by press releases from the manufacturers, and that includes the vaccine makers. I am relying entirely on regulatory agencies verifying trial results. In the case of the Canadian nose spray, it's 3-6 months away from any approval as a possible tool, and there is no guarantee it will work equally as well against Covid 1.0 or the variants.

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I wanted to add that the will of the virus to survive and replicate is frustrated by the death of the host. It therefore seeks ways to both enhance transmission and not inhibit life. As it mutates, we

Vaccine Arrives In Canada aef 05.mp4

The level will always drop once the most vulnerable  die, as always in nature it is all about the survival of the fittest. 

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The most effective treatment for Covid-19 is staying in good health. Age followed by obesity are the major risk factors for this disease. You will however, never hear any health authority at any level tell people to take responsibility for their own health. This is the nanny state that we now live in.

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7 hours ago, dagger said:

The results;s of Vitamin D trials are inconclusive. The one point of agreement is that people with a significant deficiency of Vitamin D may be more susceptible but there's no evidence that people who have no deficiency are better protected - they get sick and die of Covid as well. 

I don't know, 'cause I'm not a doctor, but looks proven to me.  Or, at the very least, proven well enough that I'm taking Vit D every day.  Sure, some people who have enough Vit D will still get sick just like some people who wear seatbelts will still die in car crashes but the question is; at what rate?  One result I saw, which I can't seem to find right at this moment, was that 98% Covid mortalities (tested post-mortem) were Vit D deficient.

 

 

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FWIW

 

Can taking a vitamin D supplement prevent infection with the virus that causes the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)?

Answer From William F. Marshall, III M.D.
 

There isn't enough data to recommend use of vitamin D to prevent infection with the virus that causes COVID-19 or to treat COVID-19, according to the National Institutes of Health and the World Health Organization.

 

Several recent studies have looked at the impact of vitamin D on COVID-19. One study of 489 people found that those who had a vitamin D deficiency were more likely to test positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 than people who had normal levels of vitamin D.

Other research has observed high rates of vitamin D deficiency in people with COVID-19 who experienced acute respiratory failure. These people had a significantly higher risk of dying. And a small, randomized study found that of 50 people hospitalized with COVID-19 who were given a high dose of a type of vitamin D (calcifediol), only one needed treatment in the intensive care unit. In contrast, among the 26 people with COVID-19 who weren't given calcifediol, 13 needed to be treated in the intensive care unit.

In addition, vitamin D deficiency is common in the United States, particularly among Hispanic and Black people. These groups have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Vitamin D deficiency is also more common in people who are older, people who have a body mass index of 30 or higher (obesity), and people who have high blood pressure (hypertension). These factors also increase the risk of severe COVID-19 symptoms.

However, in recent years two randomized clinical trials that studied the effects of vitamin D supplementation had less hopeful results. In both trials, high doses of vitamin D were given to people who had vitamin D deficiencies and were seriously ill — not with COVID-19. Vitamin D didn't reduce the length of their hospital stays or their mortality rates when compared with those given a placebo.

Further research is needed to determine what role, if any, vitamin D and vitamin D deficiency might play in the prevention of and treatment of COVID-19.

In the meantime, if you have a vitamin D deficiency, talk to your doctor about whether a supplement might be right for you. If you're concerned about your vitamin D level, ask your doctor about getting it checked.

 

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13 hours ago, Maverick said:

The most effective treatment for Covid-19 is staying in good health. Age followed by obesity are the major risk factors for this disease. You will however, never hear any health authority at any level tell people to take responsibility for their own health. This is the nanny state that we now live in.

One of the reasons it is a "novel" virus is because that is not exclusively true. While the majority of deaths involve people who were not very healthy to begin with, I know of two cases of people who would be considered at average or better health prior to being infected. One is no longer with us (guy in his early 50's), the other can't climb a set of stairs without running out of breath half way up (29 yr old dentist, got infected early last March).

BTW, there has been plenty of discussion from health authorities around co-morbidities and prevention. Unfortunately, it gets lost in the day-to-day media noise.

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7 hours ago, seeker said:

I don't know, 'cause I'm not a doctor, but looks proven to me.  Or, at the very least, proven well enough that I'm taking Vit D every day.  Sure, some people who have enough Vit D will still get sick just like some people who wear seatbelts will still die in car crashes but the question is; at what rate?  One result I saw, which I can't seem to find right at this moment, was that 98% Covid mortalities (tested post-mortem) were Vit D deficient.

 

 

I'm taking it too, Seeker, but it doesn't mean I believe it protects me against Covid, only that it seems to have enough health benefit to justify taking it, my doctor recommended it long ago because my level was low, and because it is cheap and can be bought without prescription.

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Studies on vitamin D show it promotes immune response.  Studies have also shown people in northern counties are low, almost universally.
 

The problem, as pointed out by JO above, is Covid is novel. Our immune systems haven’t seen it before. So just because you have a healthy immune system doesn’t mean it will protect you.  It might even work against you.
 

Sorry to hear about your friends J.O.  The young dentist sounds like he had an improper immune response that ended with damaged lungs. 

 

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4 hours ago, Turbofan said:

So just because you have a healthy immune system doesn’t mean it will protect you.  It might even work against you.

 

In light of the information in the videos I posted I would say this is extremely unlikely.

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3 hours ago, seeker said:

In light of the information in the videos I posted I would say this is extremely unlikely.

I was referring to an autoimmune response to Covid that some people are experiencing. The immune system misidentifies the problem and attacks the person.  Doctors have had to treat these patients differently by slowing down their immune response.

One of the more critical autoimmune reactions has been lung blood clotting and permanent lung damage.  In March, when JO’s young friend got Covid, Doctors weren’t looking for it.  Now they are.

https://theconversation.com/an-autoimmune-like-antibody-response-is-linked-with-severe-covid-19-146255

In the earliest days of the pandemic, many immunologists, including me, assumed that patients who produced high quantities of antibodies early in infection would be free from disease. We were wrong.

Several months into studying COVID-19, like other scientists, I’ve come to realize the picture is far more complicated. A recent research study published by my colleagues and me adds more evidence to the idea that in some patients, preventing dysregulated immune system responses may be as important as treating the virus itself. 

I am an immunologist at Emory University working under the direction of Dr. Ignacio Sanz, Emory’s chief of rheumatology. Immune dysregulation is our specialty. 

Inflammation in COVID-19

A harrowing turn in the COVID-19 pandemic occurred with the realization that the immune system’s power in fighting infection was sometimes pyrrhic. In patients with severe COVID-19 infections, evidence emerged that the inflammatory process used to fight the SARS-CoV-2 virus were, in addition to fighting the virus, potentially responsible for harming the patient.Clinical studies described so-called cytokine storms in which the immune system produced an overwhelming quantity of inflammatory molecules, antibodies triggering dangerous blood clots and inflammation of multiple organ systems, including blood vessels, in COVID-recovered children. All these were warning signs that in some patients, immune responses to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19, may have tipped from healing to destructive.

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14 hours ago, Turbofan said:

I was referring to an autoimmune response to Covid that some people are experiencing. The immune system misidentifies the problem and attacks the person.  Doctors have had to treat these patients differently by slowing down their immune response.

One of the more critical autoimmune reactions has been lung blood clotting and permanent lung damage.  In March, when JO’s young friend got Covid, Doctors weren’t looking for it.  Now they are.

I reached out to her mother yesterday and she told me that her doctors have recently said that her severe illness was probably that - her immune system attacking the infection incorrectly. What concerns me most for her is there's been no significant improvement in her energy and stamina in the 9 months since she was discharged from hospital. 

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I still do not know of anyone in my circle of relatives or friends or friends of relatives that have contacted Covid.

My wife was at our doctors today and she asked 'If anyone he knew had contacted Covid and he said "Not a one".

 

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It took a while but I know 5 people in my circle of contacts that have had COVID. Thankfully no serious symptoms; just fatigue and mild cold symptoms.

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I don’t know what to make of this news today.  
 

Variant spread could lead to renewed spike in COVID cases and third wave, Tam warns

https://nationalpost.com/news/canada/variant-spread-could-lead-to-renewed-spike-in-covid-cases-and-third-wave-tam-warns

Health officials can't explain Dr. Tam's "rocket ship" modelling

https://www.calgarysun.com/news/health-officials-cant-explain-dr-tams-rocket-ship-modelling/wcm/c01c309d-4fe4-48ca-93bd-d32e614d62c1

Notice the modelling Dr Tam put forward shows that even if current restrictions remain in place, Covid is set to skyrocket.  The grey line.

She is pushing for even harsher lockdown measures than are currently in place.

 

 

EEA74162-C88B-4EB0-942F-F1AC7583B7B6.png

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I'm not sure what it is that puzzles the Sun's writers about Dr Tam's concerns.  When the so-called UK variant became the dominant strain of the virus in the UK and in Ireland case numbers skyrocketed.  One would expect that given that the UK variant is so easily transmissible.  Why wouldn't the same happen here if lockdown measures were significantly reduced?

Case numbers in the UK are now falling again, but that might be attributable to the fact that the UK is still in lockdown and that the vaccination program there is well underway.  Ours has so far been a joke.

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11 minutes ago, FA@AC said:

I'm not sure what it is that puzzles the Sun's writers about Dr Tam's concerns.  When the so-called UK variant became the dominant strain of the virus in the UK and in Ireland case numbers skyrocketed.  One would expect that given that the UK variant is so easily transmissible.  Why wouldn't the same happen here if lockdown measures were significantly reduced?

Case numbers in the UK are now falling again, but the vaccination program in the UK is well underway.  Canada's has so far been a joke.

I get the concern.  But Canada is an outlier in its projections by a long shot, and we are not the only country with variants.  Nor are we alone in our slow vaccination rollout.  The UK wasn’t looking for what they didn’t know existed.  Other countries have the luxury of monitoring the situation.

This is what concerns me.  The professionals scratching their heads.

The graph left infectious diseases experts scratching their heads. “What are the underlying assumptions?” Dr. Martha Fulford, an assistant professor at McMaster University and infectious diseases physician at Hamilton Health Sciences, told the Sun.

 

For me, a model is only as good as the data inputted and we need to know what the underlying assumptions and the data are. Why is their modelling so different from the modelling everywhere else?”

The Center for Disease Control in the U.S., for example, forecasts a decrease in cases over the same timeline as Dr. Tam’s graph shows the rocket ship-like trajectory.

 

 

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I think the answer probably has to do with what restrictions are in place in different places and in what percentage of the respective populations are presumed to be immune whether through previous infection or vaccination.  The percentage of the population that has immunity due to both factors is substantially higher in the US than it is here according to everything I have read. 

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8 minutes ago, FA@AC said:

I think the answer probably has to do with what restrictions are in place in different places and in what percentage of the respective populations are presumed to be immune whether through previous infection or vaccination.  The percentage of the population that has immunity due to both factors is substantially higher in the US than it is here according to everything I have read. 

and yet their deaths are among the highest in the world.....

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26 minutes ago, FA@AC said:

I think the answer probably has to do with what restrictions are in place in different places and in what percentage of the respective populations are presumed to be immune whether through previous infection or vaccination.  The percentage of the population that has immunity due to both factors is substantially higher in the US than it is here according to everything I have read. 

With all the modelling issues we have already had, the projections themselves become an issue of public trust if heath Canada continues to vastly miss the target.  Eventually people will stop listening.  Provinces won’t buy in.

In fact I think that is already happening.  

When an infectious disease doctor asks, “ Why is the modelling so different from the modelling everywhere else?“,and Health Canada doesn’t have an answer,  there is a problem.  

If you put something out so different than everyone else, you should know to expect you will be asked why.  If you can’t answer that simple question your credibility tanks.

 

 

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I don't see what's so hard to understand. Epidemiologists' models are not perfect, but even my layman's mind can grasp as a possibility that if prevalent R0 does go up 50%, we'll notice that. 

The measures we've taken have maintained it around 0.9, and consistent with that there's been a slow decline since late last year. If the new strain has R0 of 1.3-1.4 (+50%), it will be increasing. One strain gradually reducing, the other increasing, eventually new equals old in number, and old fades away, new continues increase. 

1.3+ R0 makes for a pretty steady increase rate. This is the grounds for concern. 

To bring R0 back down would require measures sufficient to have brought the old strain down below 0.7 (x1.5 < 1). Until we get vac's. This is not rocket science.

BTW, I don't think all projections have been wildly off, with the stipulation that range of uncertainty increases the further downstream you're looking.

Now we're not epidemiologists here, and there are many other factors at play. But either we take sterner measures, or hope that the projections are indeed off (& for the better!) Hopes and plans ....

IAC, illuminating as these discussions can be, we're like the aviation experts in the departure lounge and on flyertalk, involved at the margins and way over-confident in our opinions.

Just about everybody here needs for #'s to come down, fast and a lot. There's not QRH for this stuff, it's a war. We just hope that there are more D-Days than Dunkirks.

Cheers, IFG :b:

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I guess we will see then.

The seven day average on Feb 18 was 2906 cases/day.

Health Canada predicts over 20,000 cases/day within 6 weeks EVEN IF current restrictions stay in place.  It will take two weeks to reach 20,000 cases/day if we reduce lockdown measures.

The rest of the world is generally predicting a slow easing of cases/day.

We will come back in a month and see.

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4 hours ago, Fido said:

I still do not know of anyone in my circle of relatives or friends or friends of relatives that have contacted Covid .... 

Hi, Fido - I guess it depends where you are and who you associate with. I live in a very low-infection area (touch wood!), and I'm like you. Don't know anybody who's got it.

Daughters in YYZ on the other hand - both have had co-workers infected. TTC-ing daily, they take COVID very seriously. So, retired in the sticks, out working in YYZ - it does make a difference ;)

Cheers, IFG :b:

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3 hours ago, Turbofan said:

 .... We will come back in a month and see.

And we'll hope that 20K projection is way off-base :023:

I guess my point is we don't really know OWOTO, just that some more pessimistic possibilities are not totally nuts. 20K/day in 42 days does seem high though.

I think prevalence of the new strain doubles about every 10 days, which is a confusing metric, since the old strain is diminishing, which means the doubling time for B117 is a little longer than that. Regardless, it is increasing, and if Rt is 1.3-1.4, at a steady clip.

I agree the math to get to20K/day is pretty opaque, but maybe not out by orders of magnitude.

Back of napkin: If around 10-15% of daily infections are B117, or about 3-400,  that could reasonably get to half of daily infections, beyond that being "dominance", by mid-late march (12-1600), which again boosts to 5-6K by the time 6 weeks is up.

But, you know how exponential arithmetic works. Should we focus about the error 42 days from now when it might be irrelevant in another couple of weeks after that?

IAC, the crucial thing to me is I don't know. Respectfully, I don't think any of us does.

Cheers, IFG :b:

Edited by IFG
Clarification & elaboration?
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18 hours ago, IFG said:

Should we focus about the error 42 days from now when it might be irrelevant in another couple of weeks after that?

 

In my mind the issue is one of credibility.  

If the projection is out by weeks or even a month or two I would call the modelling credible.  Half way correct would also make it credible.  No one expects exact.  We do however expect reasonable.  

Every other country is using similar simulation software.  It’s the input data that each country has a choice in.  Health Canada’s choices on inputs are clearly not inline with other jurisdictions.

It was therefor imperative that they explain the input choices they made, and why.   No critical thinker will just blindly accept a wildly different projection without explanation. They provided no explanation.  Worse when asked for the inputs they didn’t know.

It would be like getting a flight plan from A to B with way less gas than normally expected.  You scratch your head and can’t see the reason.  When you call dispatch to ask about it they say “ I don’t know, it’s what the computer spat out.”

So back to my comments on credibility.  Without an explanation on inputs no policy maker can act on it.  

It becomes lose, lose.

If Health Canada’s projection is right, we should be resorting to a full on shelter in place.  But we won’t because the projection didn’t come with a credible explanation.

If Health Canada is wildly wrong, no one is going to listen next time.


 


 

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2 hours ago, Turbofan said:

In my mind the issue is one of credibility ....

Fair enough. I did not see the presentation you seem to be referring to, but not answering questions certainly brings more of them!

I have been seeing quite a bit of stuff about the effect of the newer strains that suggests another surge, with similar suggested forecasts,  so I'm not so inclined to summarily discount it.

I'll have to look up the other national projections you refer to. I wonder what the inputs are regarding vaccination. Seems clear that they're a game-changer, WHEN they are widespread. We're definitely stumbling out of the blocks on that. Absent vaccination, it seems equally obvious that a more transmissible variant would increase infections. I have not seen anybody yet suggesting the new variants are actually not more transmissible.

And I do agree about measures not aligning with forecast. In fact, Ontario is relaxing :white:

We'll see what we see in a month or two, it's not a contest. Hoping for the best ...

Cheers, IFG :b:

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31 minutes ago, IFG said:

Fair enough. I did not see the presentation you seem to be referring to, but not answering questions certainly brings more of them!

I have been seeing quite a bit of stuff about the effect of the newer strains that suggests another surge, with similar suggested forecasts,  so I'm not so inclined to summarily discount it.

I'll have to look up the other national projections you refer to. I wonder what the inputs are regarding vaccination. Seems clear that they're a game-changer, WHEN they are widespread. We're definitely stumbling out of the blocks on that. Absent vaccination, it seems equally obvious that a more transmissible variant would increase infections. I have not seen anybody yet suggesting the new variants are actually not more transmissible.

And I do agree about measures not aligning with forecast. In fact, Ontario is relaxing :white:

We'll see what we see in a month or two, it's not a contest. Hoping for the best ...

Cheers, IFG :b:

IFG....I need some help here. I have no knowledge  as to your background though clearly you're informed and since you " made fun" ( justified) of my " google degree", I assume you have at least a first level degree in the sciences.

Meanwhile, the person with whom you are " engaging" (Turbofan) reports he/she is in fact a scientist....an immunologist at Emory University.

Have I mis-read or is that akin to the discussion of flight dynamics between a frequent-flyer and a pilot? 😉

A propos nothing.....my hometown went into the red because of the number of infections. 75 per cent of those infections were in one facility....the jail. Aren't those persons already " quarantined"?

AND......it was my understanding that the increase in deaths resulting from the Covid variants was due not to the severity of illness per se but simply because of the great increase in number of infected. There is necessarily a levelling as the number of infected increases relative to the total population.

In the absence of vaccinations.....way to go JT.....Canada is left with limited choices; accept the risk and protect the vulnerable and increase infections or.....isolate to minimize transmissions until all of the 52 countries further advanced in vaccination supply meet their own needs and extend a helping hand.

And why do we focus on number of infections as though this metric is determinative of anything? Surely the issue ought to be the number of hospitalizations of persons without predisposing conditions ( the vulnerable). If that rate is ( for eg) 1/1000, is that not "acceptable" ? If the daily report in Ontario was not 4,000 new cases (!!) but instead 4 hospitalizations due to Covid.....would everyone still be so distracted?

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