Author Topic: Covid 19  (Read 19287 times)

Offline Cap'n Chris

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Covid 19
« on: December 28, 2020, 06:26:09 pm »

Global Moderator Comment Posts from https://ukcaving.com/board/index.php?topic=27342.0 split to this new Topic



Let's hope 2021 is a better year for all  :)
Better? Could it possibly be any worse?   :o

By a huge margin, yes. UN have already forewarned of ~200+m suffering starvation/famines from the economic knock-on effects, the latter still having to kick in with a vengeance in 1st world countries, as well as everywhere else. 15% of the world's economy/jobs is international tourism and that's not returning anytime soon, if at all. etc. etc. I anticipate 2021 being significantly worse than this year. Governments have no published exit plans; there doesn't appear to be much of a plan other than continuing to scare people to a level where suicide is shockingly commonplace. The lag effect means no-one noticed and continues to think everything's OK when it most certainly isn't. "Free money" isn't free - we've all been given something in the order of a £16K debt, and counting. The Global depression commences in 2021 and will continue probably to 2023. Wildly negative prognostications suggested 50-70 years of austerity but it probably won't be quite that bad. Shutting down economies kills people.

https://www.un.org/press/en/2020/ga12294.doc.htm
https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/the-true-cost-of-coronavirus-on-our-economy
« Last Edit: December 30, 2020, 09:33:11 pm by paul »

Online PeteHall

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2020, 06:53:09 pm »
I fear that you may be right.

While the restrictions may ease over the course of the year, the impact of the lockdown will be felt for very much longer and the mental health problems will continue as long as the recession and does. Before lockdown, I could happily say that I didn't know anyone who had committed suicide...

Offline maxf

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2020, 07:15:08 pm »
There are lots of public information requests floating around the internet where people have written to their local health authority and requested the number of deaths with the sole cause as Covid, the numbers across the UK are very very low. I'm yet to see one with more than 100 deaths with covid as the sole cause since March begging the question what the real cause of the pandemic is, so far we are all victims.

Whether you agree with the route the government has taken or not everyone wants the same thing really and that is an end to the situation, some believe that wearing masks, strict adherence to rules, mass testing is the way out, some believe otherwise

Offline ZombieCake

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2020, 09:24:15 pm »
I think Cap'n Chris is probably correct.  Looks like a fair number of us in my department are now looking at 100% free time early next year.  The real knock on effects both economically and health wise are probably immense.
It would be nice to have some accuracy and detailed factual transparency instead of the continual project fear spread by the media to pep up their viewing figures.

Offline aardgoose

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2020, 09:53:09 pm »
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I'm yet to see one with more than 100 deaths with covid as the sole cause since March

This is a dangerous distortion of the statistics that downplay the seriousness of the pandemic.  No, it doesn't beg[raise] the question of what is causing the pandemic, in the UK almost 10% of known cases have had the virus sequenced (which allowed the new variant to be described and tracked). COVID is real and is killing people.

https://fullfact.org/online/deaths-only-from-coronavirus/

Online pwhole

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2020, 11:43:11 pm »
This will certainly help if it gets the attention it should:

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/dec/29/four-day-week-would-be-affordable-for-most-uk-firms-says-thinktank

As for the mass redundancies, there was another stressed NHS executive on the news recently reminding folks that there are 80,000 vacancies in the service at present and they're desperate for staff. Obviously they must have money set aside as wages to pay those 80,000 people. Granted not all are 'start on Monday' jobs, but even so, there is work out there. The care sector is going to need tens of thousands of workers and they will have to be paid appropriately.

One reason so many people are dying 'not just with Covid' is because there are so many people who are extremely unhealthy going into old age - with one or more of many dangerous conditions, all of which are much, much worse with a bad infection. Covid is particularly nasty, but it's only highlighting the terrible condition many British people are in physically, and if they're old too they just don't have the resources to fight it off.

Also there were over 60 million prescriptions of anti-depressants last year in Britain. That's almost one per person. Obviously we don't all have a prescription, and many many millions are children, hopefully not all on them either, which means there must be about 2 prescriptions per person for the ones that are taking them. Again, Covid may be exacerbating the situation but it seems like the problem was already seriously entrenched long before this turned up. So why are so many people depressed? Life's never been so easy.

Offline maxf

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2020, 07:52:49 am »
Quote
I'm yet to see one with more than 100 deaths with covid as the sole cause since March

This is a dangerous distortion of the statistics that downplay the seriousness of the pandemic.  No, it doesn't beg[raise] the question of what is causing the pandemic, in the UK almost 10% of known cases have had the virus sequenced (which allowed the new variant to be described and tracked). COVID is real and is killing people.

https://fullfact.org/online/deaths-only-from-coronavirus/
b

You could label it as dangerous distortion of statistics or call it sensible personal risk assessment, I prefer the latter.

Offline Speleofish

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2020, 08:37:15 am »
One of the problems with interpreting death certificates is that if they're filled out correctly, they're quite comprehensive. The first part lists the immediate cause of death and those conditions that led to it. The second part lists all the other co-morbidities that might have been relevant. Most of the people dying of Covid are relatively elderly and will have co-morbidities that should be listed in part two. Therefore it would be most unusual to have a correctly completed death certificate where the only entry was Covid.

For example, an elderly man with diabetes and high blood pressure admitted to intensive care with Covid pneumonia might die after four weeks mechanical ventilation from a second, bacterial pneumonia. I would write his death certificate as 

1a Ventilator-associated pneumonia
1b Covid 19 pneumonia

2 Diabetes and hypertension

This is a relatively simple cause of death in covid. Many are much more complex.

Therefore, I'm not surprised there are few 'pure Covid' death certificates. If people have been filling them in correctly, there should be very, very few!

Offline andrewmc

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2020, 09:10:25 am »
You could label it as dangerous distortion of statistics or call it sensible personal risk assessment, I prefer the latter.

I'd call it wilful misrepresentation of statistics to suit an agenda. If there is a death certificate which says death due to confirmed Covid-19 leading to pneumonia, how is it reasonable to exclude that? I suspect if you tried the same 'analysis' on cancer or HIV you would find remarkably few people apparently died from them...

If it isn't Covid, what are all these excess deaths from?
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-55411323
There's no evidence there that a significant number of 'normal' deaths are being misrepresented as Covid deaths; probably there were Covid deaths that were not recorded as such since the excess mortality in the first peak exceeded the number of recorded Covid deaths. In the second wave, there appears to be a slight reduction in the 'normal' deaths, which could be that _a small fraction_ of 'Covid' deaths are from something else, but there are other better explanations such as reduction of seasonal flu deaths from a better flu vaccination program this year and social distancing. Or it could just be random variation, since the death rate varies a bit every year.

Offline andrewmc

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #9 on: December 30, 2020, 09:22:25 am »
There are lots of public information requests floating around the internet where people have written to their local health authority and requested the number of deaths with the sole cause as Covid, the numbers across the UK are very very low. I'm yet to see one with more than 100 deaths with covid as the sole cause since March begging the question what the real cause of the pandemic is, so far we are all victims.

Also: what is a 'local health authority'? It's not a term that means anything any more, I think (at least in England). There are 135(?) clinical commissioning groups. If you meant 'local authority' as in local councils, then there are around 343 (including district and county councils). There should be, on average, around 500 deaths per CCG, but you would expect only a small fraction of those to be poorly recorded as just 'Covid' if, as Speleofish says, people are doing their job properly. So not finding 100 deaths with Covid as the sole cause for a CCQ means most death certificates are not being bodged, which is good.

Offline maxf

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #10 on: December 30, 2020, 09:30:35 am »
There are lots of public information requests floating around the internet where people have written to their local health authority and requested the number of deaths with the sole cause as Covid, the numbers across the UK are very very low. I'm yet to see one with more than 100 deaths with covid as the sole cause since March begging the question what the real cause of the pandemic is, so far we are all victims.

Also: what is a 'local health authority'? It's not a term that means anything any more, I think (at least in England). There are 135(?) clinical commissioning groups. If you meant 'local authority' as in local councils, then there are around 343 (including district and county councils). There should be, on average, around 500 deaths per CCG, but you would expect only a small fraction of those to be poorly recorded as just 'Covid' if, as Speleofish says, people are doing their job properly. So not finding 100 deaths with Covid as the sole cause for a CCQ means most death certificates are not being bodged, which is good.

But it supports my position of personal risk assessment ? I dont believe I am at much risk if i was to catch it...

Offline Speleofish

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #11 on: December 30, 2020, 09:56:41 am »
I think you're confusing two things. You may well be right that your personal risk is low (I assume you're young, slim, fit and don't have any interesting co-morbidities). If so, you're unlikely to die. You may be lucky and have minimal symptoms or you may be less fortunate and have something that feels like a cross between bad flu and dengue (ie you're pretty sure you're not going to die but you rather wish you could).
However, your argument seems to be based on denying Covid is a big thing in itself. Anyone who's cared for Covid patients would disagree.

Online PeteHall

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #12 on: December 30, 2020, 10:06:10 am »
If it isn't Covid, what are all these excess deaths from?
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-55411323

Mortality rates really aren't that unusual this year. Sure,  higher than last year, the worst in 10 years even (by 3%), but lower than 2008 and I don't remember that making headline news or forcing a national lockdown.
https://www.actuaries.org.uk/learn-and-develop/continuous-mortality-investigation/other-cmi-outputs/mortality-monitor

Offline Speleofish

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2020, 10:44:31 am »
The reality is that many (but by no means all) people who have died of Covid have been in their last year or two of life. Therefore, the impact on overall mortality statistics is relatively small. However, this is in the context of strict lockdowns and massive changes in population behaviour. Lockdown protects elderly, frail people from all sorts of infections so may have reduced non-Covid mortality in this age group.
 
530-540,000 people die in a 'normal' year in the UK. The prediction for Covid deaths if we hadn't locked down was approximately 500,000 in the first wave. Perhaps 50% would have fallen into the cohort with limited life expectancy, the other 50% would have been expected to live much longer. Therefore, without a lockdown, we might have expected 750,000+ deaths, a 50% increase in annual mortality.

The other problem is the complexity of this disease. People become extremely sick and spend a long time in hospital - much longer than they do with 'flu. Most years, the NHS is stretched over winter. Several times in my career I've seen it approach breaking point. This year, it's much worse. If you get bad Covid, you can only be treated in hospital as you will probably die without oxygen. If the NHS breaks and admissions become impossible (or if hospitals run out of oxygen, which happened to two or three in the first wave), many patients who could have survived with hospital care will die. The effect on mortality will then be enormous.

Offline aardgoose

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #14 on: December 30, 2020, 10:55:39 am »
Quote
sensible personal risk assessment, I prefer the latter

Note the "personal", you aren't the only person at risk, your actions aren't risk free to for other people. If you think 'OK. then just shield  the vulnerable' .  How do you do that? It just isn't practical.  The vulnerable may have careers or live in multigenerational families, so now you have to shield the careers and families, and their contacts.  Some vulnerable people do not know they are vulnerable.  People aren't divided into nice isolated groups but messy networks.


Quote
Mortality rates really aren't that unusual this year. Sure,  higher than last year, the worst in 10 years even (by 3%), but lower than 2008 and I don't remember that making headline news or forcing a national lockdown.

You are ignoring the counterfactual.  if no measures had been taken, what would the death toll have been? Additionally, some deaths from no covid causes are lower than expected because of the lockdown measures (increased hygiene, reduced contacts etc).

https://fingertips.phe.org.uk/static-reports/mortality-surveillance/excess-mortality-in-england-latest.html


Death isn't the only outcome, some people who survive have long lasting problems which include lung, brain and heart damage.


 

Offline maxf

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #15 on: December 30, 2020, 12:34:05 pm »
The answer isn't lock down and the answer isn't do nothing but so far it has been heavily biased towards lockdowns for which the negative results of non covid patients is seldom reported in the news along side the fear and scare graphs and stats...

Redundancies
Economic ruin
Dental crisis
Lack of access to what is deemed non essential health care
Mental health crisis
Education crisis
General negative well being of population
Masses of single use plastics etc

To name a few


Offline Speleofish

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #16 on: December 30, 2020, 01:39:27 pm »
I think, unfortunately, the answer right now is another lockdown (and, once again, we're making it too late). The alternative is that the NHS breaks with totally unacceptable consequences. I agree with you that lockdowns produce misery. If we didn't have vaccines, I'd argue we shouldn't lockdown as we would all have to encounter the virus and until enough of us have had it to create population immunity, the pandemic would continue. However, with vaccines the problem is finite. if we can get through the next few months, enough high-risk people will have been vaccinated that the problem will start to disappear.

I suggest we need another few months of fairly intense restrictions with significant government support to allow people who can't work to survive. We then need to focus on all those who have been affected psychologically etc. AND, before the memories fade, we need to reassess all those aspects of healthcare that have been historically underinvested. Critically, this includes ICU (OK, this is special pleading on my part); Public Health (a combination of a government imposed poor organisation and huge underinvestment meant that track-and-trace never had a chance); Mental Health services - again, historically very poorly resourced and unable to cope with the present workload. Probably several other areas too...

Offline al

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #17 on: December 30, 2020, 04:46:35 pm »
From what went on here in the Peak District, I'm not at all sure that the 2nd lockdown actually happened. The place was mobbed, and it's still mobbed after the introduction of Tier-3 following the "lockdown". It will be interesting to see what difference the new Tier-4 makes.

Maxf is quiite correct - the answer isn't lockdown ... well not unless there are some measures of enforcement.

It's tempting to believe that the lack of enforcement is a built in excuse for when it doesn't work. You know ... covidiots etc, something to splash on the front pages of the tabloids. (Unless it's Verbier or Barnard Castle or similar of course.)
Old ... but not old enough to know any better

Offline Cap'n Chris

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #18 on: December 30, 2020, 05:24:16 pm »
Lockdown won't work, imo, because if it is pronounced as being reintroduced there will be massive civil disobedience. It worked the first two times. Not.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2020, 05:51:48 pm by Cap'n Chris »

Offline droid

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #19 on: December 30, 2020, 08:39:29 pm »
Those that think lockdown doesn't work...

What will?
No longer 'Exceptionally antagonistic' 'Deliberately inflammatory'

Offline ZombieCake

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #20 on: December 30, 2020, 09:23:57 pm »
I do wonder if masks are part of the problem.  Please set aside the debate as to whether they work or not, or are just a state command and control mechanism.  From what I've observed people seem to think they're rendered immortal by wearing one, or any old bit of rag or scarf.  No social distancing, etc. etc.  The government propaganda doesn't help as it implies you're OK if you wear one.  Given the spike in infections since they were made compulsory it appears you aren't.  So back to common sense and lots of space might be better.  (I'm not a big crowd fan so don't mind staying in a bit more.)
There again this whole thing seems like trying to push back the ocean.
Where I am the test rate is now about 0.2% which is enough to generate mass panic as that's a huge risk now (I'm guessing the bad outcome rate is much lower, but who really knows).
People are tired of repetitive change and u-turns and inconsistent policies.  I think people are becoming more resentful and have little trust in the powers that be.  The scene was set early by idiots such as Cummings and Fergusson sticking two fingers up to the population and getting away with it, and continued inconsistency thereafter.  That's stuck to this day (Radio 2 thing today).  Hundreds of thousands are now unemployed, cancer screening etc. reduced. Last report I saw said suicide related emergency calls in London had doubled.
What is really needed now is the truth. Not propaganda, not knee jerk reactions, not made up numbers to get headlines, not frenzied media project fear, not skewed statistics or forecasts to aid one argument or another, not big business lobbying to add a few more billion to their shareholders accounts, just the truth. 

Offline aardgoose

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2020, 09:27:07 pm »
Lockdown worked the first time.  Infection rates decreased, but against advice the government relaxed too much too quickly. They relaxed multiple measures at the same time which made it impossible to determine the measures' individual effectiveness. They introduced measures that were designed to increase consumer confidence 'Eat out to Help out' was primarily about confidence building, not assisting the hospitality trade. One study came to the conclusion that this probably added to new cases. The repeated mistake has been to see it as a trade off between infections and the economy. If you don't control infections the economy suffers anyway.

The public messaging has been atrocious with constantly changing and often contradictory rules. There was a constant desire to do what was popular rather than effective. The tier system wasn't backed by evidence eg the arbitrary and probably counterproductive curfew for pubs, and rules about substantial meals.

When, as predicted, infections increased again, we locked down too late.  Infection rates were increasing in the South East probably with the onset of the new variant at the time the last lock down ended.

Lockdowns do work _if_ followed/enforced but the messaging and dangerous disinformation, for example about the false positive rates of the PCR tests, spread by well known 'journalists' and celebrities has been very damaging. So it is true have been become progressively less useful, but the alternative is an overwhelmed health service. It's already at breaking point in London.

In two weeks time we sill see the results of the Christmas day mixing hit the figures. I don't expect them to be pretty.

Nobody wants lockdowns, but there aren't any other realistic solutions. Every time restrictions have been relaxed case numbers increase.

Fingers crossed the new Oxford/AtraZeneca vaccine can be rolled out quickly, by all accounts it is easier to manufacture and distribute than the other available vaccines.


Online RobinGriffiths

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2020, 09:31:02 pm »
Those that think lockdown doesn't work...

What will?

Soldiers at the end of your street probably. Can't see any other way that the great British public take the situation seriously. Of course, it would be a brave Prime Minister that would go down that route.

Offline maxf

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #23 on: December 30, 2020, 09:38:48 pm »
In an audit of hospitals in August in Scotland the cases weren't quite what we were led to be believed as reported...

It is likely that the general public in the outside world is not the main source of input and infection for the hospitals....

https://blogs.gov.scot/statistics/2020/09/15/counting-people-in-hospital-with-covid-19/

Offline aardgoose

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Re: Covid 19
« Reply #24 on: December 30, 2020, 09:41:27 pm »
Quote
What is really needed now is the truth. Not propaganda, not knee jerk reactions, not made up numbers to get headlines, not frenzied media project fear, not skewed statistics or forecasts to aid one argument or another, not big business lobbying to add a few more billion to their shareholders accounts, just the truth.

Very much so. One thing we could do better is have separate press conferences for politicians and health professionals as they do in Germany.  Government stats production and explanations has been dire too.

 

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