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Old 08.01.2021, 10:22
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Re: Coronavirus

Two existing drugs show promising signs for treatment of covid-19. I copy the whole article below for the benefit of those without an Economist subscription.

Another life-saving treatment is found for covid-19

GOOD NEWS from covid-19 wards is hard to come by these days. A relentless surge in infections is overwhelming hospitals around the world. But the results from clinical trials of two drugs announced today just improved the prognosis, for both patients and hospitals.

The two drugs, called tocilizumab and sarilumab, are currently used to reduce inflammation in patients with arthritis. Hyper-inflammation, whereby the immune system goes into overdrive and destroys the organs, is how covid-19 tends to kill. The search for suitable anti-inflammatory drugs for covid-19 has already turned up one, dexamethasone. It is a cheap steroid that dampens the immune system across the board. In contrast, tocilizumab and sarilumab are more targeted. They are both made of antibodies that block the effect of interleukin-6, a protein that stokes the immune response and has been prominent in patients with covid-19.

The clinical trial of tocilizumab and sarilumab enrolled 800 patients hospitalised for covid-19 who were ill enough to require transfer to intensive-care units (ICUs). The trial was conducted in six countries, with most of the participants in Britain. (It has an efficient programme of covid-19 drug trials, in which a quarter of hospitalised patients are enrolled). Half of the 800 patients received one of the two drugs on top of the standard treatment, and the other half received only the standard treatment (including dexamethasone).

Nearly 36% of patients in the standard-treatment group died, compared with 27% of patients in the group that also received tocilizumab or sarilumab. In other words, it cut the death rate by about a quarter. Moreover, the patients treated with these drugs recovered faster and were discharged from hospital seven to ten days earlier. The reduction in hospital stay would free up lots of ICU beds—welcome news in places like Britain and America, where lots of hospitals are running out of beds.

The two drugs appear to work equally well, though the results are more certain for tocilizumab which is an older, more widely available drug and was, therefore, given to the vast majority of participants in the new-treatment arm of the trial.

The drugs are not cheap, and so may be beyond the means of developing countries. In Britain a course of intravenous treatment costs £750-1,000 (about $1,000-1,400). The shorter ICU stay more than offsets this amount; a day at the ICU costs the country’s National Health Service (NHS) around £2,000 per patient. And, in general, patients who spend fewer days in intensive care recover faster afterwards and need less rehabilitation.

The NHS will start using tocilizumab immediately for covid-19 patients at ICUs. Hospitals already have supplies of the drug and the government is working with Roche, a drug manufacturer that makes it, to increase supplies. For now, Britain has banned exports of both tocilizumab and sarilumab. As covid-19 deaths continue, the trial results bring a ray of hope for patients, exhausted health workers and the millions of people under lockdown.

https://www.economist.com/science-an...d-for-covid-19
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  #19282  
Old 08.01.2021, 10:30
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Re: Coronavirus

Reuters: Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine appears effective against mutation in new coronavirus variants -study
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  #19283  
Old 08.01.2021, 10:44
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Re: Coronavirus

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Two existing drugs show promising signs for treatment of covid-19. I copy the whole article below for the benefit of those without an Economist subscription.

Another life-saving treatment is found for covid-19

GOOD NEWS from covid-19 wards is hard to come by these days. A relentless surge in infections is overwhelming hospitals around the world. But the results from clinical trials of two drugs announced today just improved the prognosis, for both patients and hospitals.

The two drugs, called tocilizumab and sarilumab, are currently used to reduce inflammation in patients with arthritis.
Actemra (tocilizumab) is our 'old' Roche drug and was in the Covid trials since the beginning of the pandemic. It failed the initial phase III study but showed promising results in later trials.
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  #19284  
Old 08.01.2021, 11:14
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Re: Coronavirus

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Just to add some perspective. More people have died in Hiking accidents (54) than number of Covid fatalities for under 50yrs olds (32).

Every life lost is saddening but this figure is so low it highlights the appalling approach currently adopted.
I'm all for comparisons and putting things in perspective, but not for playing with numbers to make my point.

You need to compare like with like. So all these hikers were under 50?

And everyone over 50, esp. those dying of covid, are irrelevant, their life meaningless, etc. and should be dropped from statistics?

And I don't think these 54 hikers died in hospital ICUs potentially limiting healthcare for others.
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  #19285  
Old 08.01.2021, 11:37
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Re: Coronavirus

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And I don't think these 54 hikers died in hospital ICUs potentially limiting healthcare for others.

Generally instant death I would say.
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  #19286  
Old 08.01.2021, 11:52
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Re: Coronavirus

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I'm all for comparisons and putting things in perspective, but not for playing with numbers to make my point.

You need to compare like with like. So all these hikers were under 50?

And everyone over 50, esp. those dying of covid, are irrelevant, their life meaningless, etc. and should be dropped from statistics?

And I don't think these 54 hikers died in hospital ICUs potentially limiting healthcare for others.
I heard about people getting infected with the hiking virus but don't think this is a medical condition
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  #19287  
Old 08.01.2021, 12:05
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Re: Coronavirus

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Passt... COVID-19 is the disease. The virus that causes the disease is SARS-CoV-2.

The South African variant is referred to by literally everybody as just that, and the UK variant is also known by the country where it was first identified. Technically the South African version is named 501.V2 and the UK one is B.1.1.7. The South African variant is considered to be the more worrisome in terms of vaccine efficiency.
According to CDC
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In the United Kingdom (UK), a new variant strain of SARS-CoV-2 (known as 20B/501Y.V1, VOC 202012/01, or B.1.1.7 lineage) emerged

In South Africa, another variant of SARS-CoV-2 (known as 20C/501Y.V2 or B.1.351 lineage)
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  #19288  
Old 08.01.2021, 13:16
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Re: Coronavirus

"Traders rehearse the Corona uprising
In several European countries, entrepreneurs are announcing civil disobedience to government measures. A group has also formed in Switzerland.

While the Federal Council announced on Wednesday afternoon about the planned extension of the lockdown, a group of dissatisfied traders announced resistance. Owners of restaurants, beauty salons, cafes and fitness studios want to open their businesses on January 11, 2021, despite a state ban - during normal shop hours.

Actions planned in 68 municipalities
A look at the Swiss online g roup shows that more than 5,000 members have joined."

https://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/gewerbl...d-336664051214

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Old 08.01.2021, 13:21
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Re: Coronavirus

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"Traders rehearse the Corona uprising
In several European countries, entrepreneurs are announcing civil disobedience to government measures. A group has also formed in Switzerland.

While the Federal Council announced on Wednesday afternoon about the planned extension of the lockdown, a group of dissatisfied traders announced resistance. Owners of restaurants, beauty salons, cafes and fitness studios want to open their businesses on January 11, 2021, despite a state ban - during normal shop hours.

Actions planned in 68 municipalities
A look at the Swiss online g roup shows that more than 5,000 members have joined."

https://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/gewerbl...d-336664051214

It was only a matter of time, I'm surprised it took this long tbh. A consequence of only looking at the Covid figures when deciding on lockdowns.
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  #19290  
Old 08.01.2021, 13:54
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Re: Coronavirus

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"Traders rehearse the Corona uprising
In several European countries, entrepreneurs are announcing civil disobedience to government measures. A group has also formed in Switzerland.

While the Federal Council announced on Wednesday afternoon about the planned extension of the lockdown, a group of dissatisfied traders announced resistance. Owners of restaurants, beauty salons, cafes and fitness studios want to open their businesses on January 11, 2021, despite a state ban - during normal shop hours.

Actions planned in 68 municipalities
A look at the Swiss online g roup shows that more than 5,000 members have joined."

https://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/gewerbl...d-336664051214

That's a bold strategy, let's see if it pay off

This is going to be very interesting. Unless the business and self-declared entrepreneurs have popular support, they'll become the black sheep of every town and bankruptcy will arrive sooner than expected.

PS. Coiffeurs are still open in Aargau
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Old 08.01.2021, 13:59
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Re: Coronavirus

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That's a bold strategy, let's see if it pay off

This is going to be very interesting. Unless the business and self-declared entrepreneurs have popular support, they'll become the black sheep of every town and bankruptcy will arrive sooner than expected.
I'm not sure if even active support is required, I think sympathy to their situation would suffice. I think this is rather an exercise in getting the governments to reconsider their position as opposed to a long term strategy.
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  #19292  
Old 08.01.2021, 14:00
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Re: Coronavirus

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That's a bold strategy, let's see if it pay off

This is going to be very interesting. Unless the business and self-declared entrepreneurs have popular support, they'll become the black sheep of every town and bankruptcy will arrive sooner than expected.

PS. Coiffeurs are still open in Aargau
The locals need their Swiss style bouffant quiff with moustache sorting.
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  #19293  
Old 08.01.2021, 14:08
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Re: Coronavirus

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I'm not sure if even active support is required, I think sympathy to their situation would suffice. I think this is rather an exercise in getting the governments to reconsider their position as opposed to a long term strategy.
If the small business owner has not ensured popular support, I'd expect at least several passive-aggressive notes on the door next morning. Behind close doors you can expect people talking about not buying anything from that irresponsible person anymore.

This is not about any objective truth, it's only about how an individual is perceived by others. I can imagine this works on towns with 500-1000 inhabitants where everyone is family or friend. In larger populations, these links don't exist. So, good luck.
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  #19294  
Old 08.01.2021, 14:18
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Re: Coronavirus

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If the small business owner has not ensured popular support, I'd expect at least several passive-aggressive notes on the door next morning. Behind close doors you can expect people talking about not buying anything from that irresponsible person anymore.

This is not about any objective truth, it's only about how an individual is perceived by others. I can imagine this works on towns with 500-1000 inhabitants where everyone is family or friend. In larger populations, these links don't exist. So, good luck.
Fair point, I could see that could be the case. The counter to that would be in such towns and villages the support for the SVP is higher and they have taken a lockdown sceptic position, I really wonder though.

The biggest mystery to me throughout this whole pandemic is how many people who shout loudest about others following the rules, don't believe they apply to them. Whether it be celebrities snapped without a mask, or the droves that have flocked to ski resorts and beaches during lockdown. This being the case, if the shops were open, perhaps people would use them.
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Old 08.01.2021, 14:28
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Re: Coronavirus

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The biggest mystery to me throughout this whole pandemic is how many people who shout loudest about others following the rules, don't believe they apply to them. Whether it be celebrities snapped without a mask, or the droves that have flocked to ski resorts and beaches during lockdown. This being the case, if the shops were open, perhaps people would use them.
It's called hypocrisy, part of the human condition.

So, it's totally normal for people to complain about the restaurant not respecting the closure, calling the police and all that......while driving to other canton where restaurants are open. I don't expect anything better.
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Old 08.01.2021, 14:43
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Re: Coronavirus

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It's called hypocrisy, part of the human condition.

So, it's totally normal for people to complain about the restaurant not respecting the closure, calling the police and all that......while driving to other canton where restaurants are open. I don't expect anything better.

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Old 08.01.2021, 14:51
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Re: Coronavirus

Todays published numbers are 3220 out of 26 k tests

166 hospitalisations
75 death

https://www.covid19.admin.ch/en/overview
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Old 08.01.2021, 14:59
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Re: Coronavirus

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Todays published numbers are 3220 out of 26 k tests

166 hospitalisations
75 death

https://www.covid19.admin.ch/en/overview
Not too bad. While cases may still be somewhat underrepresented, it looks on the hard figures of hospitalizations and deaths there is hoping.

There was an interesting comment in the latest Cidrap podcast (some would put Osterholm clearly in the fear-monger category) regarding wave patterns in the US. Some states behave totally different than expected from the holiday rhythm (namely Upper Midwest with huge spike before Thanksgiving and coming off since) while others seem to be driven more by holidays. In other cases, areas where people thought they should have some immunity by now, cases again through the roof (AZ and other sunbelt). Long story short, Osterholm concluded that we have still no explanation how these patterns come about.
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Old 08.01.2021, 15:02
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Re: Coronavirus

Interesting news from Canada:

"At this point, there is no flu in Quebec (only 4 cases were detected between August and December)" Arruda (public health director) said on Wednesday. "If you have symptoms similar to the flu, it is probably COVID-19." ....Nearly 1.5 million people have been vaccinated against the flu since Nov. 1 and doses will still be made available to those at risk who request it, the ministry says." https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montr...ebec-1.5865170

Never thought about this, but a widespread vaccination for the common flu makes real easy to identify & isolate covid19 cases.
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Old 08.01.2021, 15:06
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Re: Coronavirus

At last, from Monday

''All international passengers will soon have to test negative for Covid-19 before travelling to the UK.

People arriving by plane, train or boat, including UK nationals, will have to take a test up to 72 hours before leaving the country they are in.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said travellers "can't board... without having that negative test".


In the meantime, elderly 'nationalists' in the UK are refusing the Pfizer vaccine, as they want the 'British' one.
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