COVID-19
  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    amigadave
    Posts: 2685 from 2006/3/21
    From: Lake Arrowhead...
    @takemehomegrandma,

    Thanks for your reply, and I hope that you and your family will be okay, and not experience severe symptoms. I believe that your whole family is probably now infected with the COVID-19 virus, so I hope you will all stay isolated for at least the next two weeks, to protect other people who are at higher risk than yourselves. I hope that none of your family experience severe symptoms. As someone who has Asthma, and who has had severe breathing difficulties in the past, where my blood oxygen level has dropped below 85%, I know first hand what it feels like to not be able to get enough oxygen and struggle to get air into the smallest parts of my lungs, where the oxygen transfer occurs. It feels like an elephant is standing on your chest.

    I don't think that the policies Sweden has adopted regarding elementary schools remaining open, and no restrictions for travel, are a good idea, and I believe that we will see many deaths in your country over the next few months, but it will allow your country to "get over" this pandemic sooner than most other countries, I guess? Is there any scientific proof that a person becomes immune, after they have experienced the virus once? I have not even heard or read that the medical scientist have confirmed how long a person remains contagious, or exactly how long a person can be a carrier and spreader of the virus. There appear to be many unknowns still, and information is slow to be confirmed and released to the public.

    I went out shopping yesterday and put everything we bought out on the front deck of our house and sprayed it with a bleach solution, and let it sit for over 10 minutes, before bringing it into the house. I washed my hands probably a dozen times yesterday, but still have problems keeping my hands away from my face, which I am still working on to change that behavior.

    Thanks again for sharing your story, and I hope you and your family will be okay and not experience any severe symptoms. Take care, and please do all you can to not spread the virus to anyone else.
    MorphOS - The best Next Gen Amiga choice.
  • »25.03.20 - 16:26
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  • Priest of the Order of the Butterfly
    Priest of the Order of the Butterfly
    KennyR
    Posts: 696 from 2003/3/4
    From: #AmigaZeux, Gu...
    Immunologically speaking, once you've had the virus once and recovered, you will have produced antibodies to it that grant heavy resistance if not outright immunity. There are two types of antibody mode of action that are relevant to viruses; neutralisation (they stick to the virus and make it impossible to infect cells) and complement/killer cell activation (they stick to infected cells and mark them for white blood cells to kill before they can produce too much virus).

    Antibodies are great, but not perfect. The more effective they are, the more specific they tend to be to a particular molecular pattern called an "epitope". Your body will produce a range of antibodies to multiple epitopes on the virus, ranging from the broad-acting but not particularly effective, to the extremely effective but also extremely specific. Once you've been infected once, not only do you have antibodies circulating in blood and mucous against the virus, but the body is primed to more quickly recognise the virus and act against it if it encounters it because white blood cells that know it will still be floating around in your circulation in large numbers, ready to pump out more antibody the moment they get a sniff of their old enemy again.

    Virologically speaking, however...

    ...this is an RNA virus. Replication of this kind of virus is prone to error, so it mutates like crazy. And it's also among the most contagious viruses ever encountered. There's no guarantee that the very specific antibodies you make will still recognise it if it comes back to you after infecting a chain of a few thousand other people. In that case, you'll get a much milder infection, and will be much less infectious.

    But there's also the possibility that it mutates so much that you can get it again and none of your previous antibodies recognise it. Anecdotally, people who have seasonal flu will get it badly every 4-10 years or so because the viral structure is now so different that your system just doesn't recognise it.

    TLDR; we don't know if you can get it again. Work is urgently being done to find out.

    And it's worth pointing out that scientists are among the worst paid and most insecure of all "professional" jobs in Europe and North America. They're now being relied upon to save millions of lives. Stockmarket speculators on the other hand tend to be crazy rich and almost sent the world into depression panicking over their shares. If that's not a shitty system, I don't know what is.

    [ Edited by KennyR 25.03.2020 - 18:37 ]
  • »25.03.20 - 19:20
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  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    takemehomegrandma
    Posts: 2624 from 2003/2/24
    Thanks for the kind words, amigadave! :-)

    I'm feeling about the same, maybe slightly worse but not at all that bad. Been little more than a week now. Or more, difficult to say exactly when it started. If this is as bad as it gets, then it's kind of OK. Not very fun, but absolutely tolerable. And it could be the flu, but I honestly don't think so. Not a cold either.


    Quote:

    I believe that your whole family is probably now infected with the COVID-19 virus, so I hope you will all stay isolated for at least the next two weeks, to protect other people who are at higher risk than yourselves.


    Here the advice is indeed to stay at home if you are infected, but also to continue to go to work/school as long as you don't have any symptoms, even if family members of the household are infected.


    Quote:

    I don't think that the policies Sweden has adopted regarding elementary schools remaining open, and no restrictions for travel, are a good idea


    Schools are still open, no plans of closing them. The max size of public gatherings still lies at 500 people.

    No travel bans, neither international nor domestic. I don't think they have ever practice quarantine on arrivals, in fact I don't think they screen the passengers either. They do put up posters in multiple languages at the arrivals of where to turn if you feel symptoms or develop symptoms later. But there is no testing anymore of people with symptoms, not of *anyone* except those in high-risk groups, health care staff and those with severe symptoms, so why should they test arrivals from abroad? I couldn't get tested myself if I wanted to, even if I put a pile of cash on the table. They would simply say: "Yes it's probably covid, act as if it would be, practice self-isolation and ride it out. Come back if it gets worse."

    Yesterday they held a press conference. Many thought they would announce a reduction of the size of max gatherings, closure of schools, or whatever. But it was an announcement that restaurants were no longer allowed to take orders (for food or drinks) at the bar counter, that you are from now on only allowed to order from a waitress/waiter while seated at a table. Someone asked if buffets were to be banned, but not so, that's up to the restaurants to decide, but everyone should remember to keep 1.5-2 meters distance from other guests. In practice, nobody is serving any buffets anymore. And few people are visiting restaurants at all.

    We have the Easter holiday coming up in a few weeks, and in conjunction with that there is a one week school break. Traditionally, many take this occasion to go to ski resorts in the mountains. They will not close the resorts and they say it's fine to go as long as you make sure to keep your distance to other people, and make sure you can travel home by your own means (or with the assistance of your own family) if you get ill, since you can't expect aid from local authorities and public services with limited resources and capacity. I doubt many will go this year though.


    Quote:

    and I believe that we will see many deaths in your country over the next few months


    I believe there will be many deaths, but another reason is that our healthcare system was at its brink before this even started, they could hardly cope with normal day-to-day operation in "peace time". And there were no preparedness for something like this. The protective gear was simply not there in enough quantities, etc.


    Quote:

    but it will allow your country to "get over" this pandemic sooner than most other countries, I guess?


    The funny part is they say the aim is exactly the opposite, they want to *delay* the peak as long as they can, meaning a longer outbreak but lower peak. But they are solely relying on people's earnest will to participate in disease control by taking responsibility of their own actions, instead of enforcing authoritative actions that they believe people will ignore or find ways to avoid. The idea is that we can only fight this if *everyone volunteer* to make necessary sacrifices in social contacts etc for a limited time. "Pull" instead of "Push", so to say. I heard some country banned people from going outside altogether, except from walking their dogs? Italy? Spain? Only to discover how resourceful dog-owners started to rent out their dogs to people wanting to go outside. Going outside is not a problem, and enforcing that kind of ban could be just for show from the authorities, a mean to show decisiveness to the people, but will end up having no real effect on the outbreak and causing other kinds of damage to the society instead.

    Something that differs Sweden (or maybe Scandinavia as a whole, I don't know) from many other countries, especially the southern countries in Europe, is that we are much more solitary by nature. Almost antisocial, some would say. ;-) We keep to ourselves in tight circles. As awful as it may sound, we are relying more on strong, public institutions than our family, institutions that over the decades has replaced much of the needs of safety and protection that big families or even clans may provide when it comes to people of other origin. This can be something the authorities has factored in, when making decisions. In fact, now when things are starting to ramp up here, it seems to be an over-representation of infected (and deceased) Somalians residing in certain suburbs to Stockholm. Still too early to tell, but it could very well be that they have a different way of living, huge families (or even clans) living tightly together, sharing everything, participating in each other lives. We swedes don't do that. ;-)

    MorphOS is Amiga done right! :-)
    MorphOS NG will be AROS done right! :-)
  • »26.03.20 - 16:20
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    redrumloa
    Posts: 1386 from 2003/4/13
    "Fascists", "Maoists" and #orangeman bad already?

    Stay safe, but I'm out.
  • »26.03.20 - 20:25
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    Intuition
    Posts: 1066 from 2013/5/24
    From: Federacija Bos...
    Edit: Really can't be arsed.

    [ Edited by Intuition 27.03.2020 - 18:22 ]
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  • »27.03.20 - 08:37
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    Intuition
    Posts: 1066 from 2013/5/24
    From: Federacija Bos...
    Quote:

    KennyR wrote:
    Immunologically speaking, once you've had the virus once and recovered, you will have produced antibodies to it that grant heavy resistance if not outright immunity. There are two types of antibody mode of action that are relevant to viruses; neutralisation (they stick to the virus and make it impossible to infect cells) and complement/killer cell activation (they stick to infected cells and mark them for white blood cells to kill before they can produce too much virus).

    Antibodies are great, but not perfect. The more effective they are, the more specific they tend to be to a particular molecular pattern called an "epitope". Your body will produce a range of antibodies to multiple epitopes on the virus, ranging from the broad-acting but not particularly effective, to the extremely effective but also extremely specific. Once you've been infected once, not only do you have antibodies circulating in blood and mucous against the virus, but the body is primed to more quickly recognise the virus and act against it if it encounters it because white blood cells that know it will still be floating around in your circulation in large numbers, ready to pump out more antibody the moment they get a sniff of their old enemy again.

    Virologically speaking, however...

    ...this is an RNA virus. Replication of this kind of virus is prone to error, so it mutates like crazy. And it's also among the most contagious viruses ever encountered. There's no guarantee that the very specific antibodies you make will still recognise it if it comes back to you after infecting a chain of a few thousand other people. In that case, you'll get a much milder infection, and will be much less infectious.

    But there's also the possibility that it mutates so much that you can get it again and none of your previous antibodies recognise it. Anecdotally, people who have seasonal flu will get it badly every 4-10 years or so because the viral structure is now so different that your system just doesn't recognise it.

    TLDR; we don't know if you can get it again. Work is urgently being done to find out.

    And it's worth pointing out that scientists are among the worst paid and most insecure of all "professional" jobs in Europe and North America. They're now being relied upon to save millions of lives. Stockmarket speculators on the other hand tend to be crazy rich and almost sent the world into depression panicking over their shares. If that's not a shitty system, I don't know what is.


    So basically we are fooked. :/
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  • »27.03.20 - 08:38
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  • Order of the Butterfly
    Order of the Butterfly
    number6
    Posts: 408 from 2008/8/10
    @thread

    If you google "virus mutating" or "virus not mutating" now, you'll encounter many articles indicating low rate of mutation.
    This is considered a plus when it comes to development of a longer lasting vaccine.

    #6
  • »27.03.20 - 13:33
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    Intuition
    Posts: 1066 from 2013/5/24
    From: Federacija Bos...
    Quote:

    Zylesea wrote:
    Quote:

    amifrog schrieb:
    But for around 80% of the society infection means nothing more than a little incomfort.

    Don't you agree that controlling safe access and nursery of a minority takes less effort than controlling the outbreak of a mere inconvenience to the majority of people including shutting down all systems that could help those in real danger?


    No I fully disagree - you cannot warrant something ike a safe access. This virus is a b*tch. The incubation time and lack of tests makes it impossible to warrant ceratin a heath state. The idea to selectively isolate risk groups is a typical half theoretical approch. Sounds handy but will fail 100%.

    And indeed, for 80% of the infected ppl the SARS CoV-2 does not elicit the Severe Acutre Respiratory Syndrome, but for up to 20% it does. Start counting to 5, point finger and say "you're out". Tik-tok, I hear you...
    look to Italy, look to Wuhan, look to Spain and think your ideas over.
    There is _no_ alternative to minimizing infections within the entiresociety.

    And again. Covid-19 is dangerous for _all_ ppl. The risk though roughly scales up with age, but it is way off from being zero for yougers. In France 50% of the severe cases are younger than 60 years.

    As unfortuante as it is: there is no plan b. As of now (no vaccination, no real cure) minimizing infections is the only way to minimize deathes/severe cases.


    https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/health-environment/article/3075164/south-koreas-coronavirus-response-opposite-china-and
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  • »28.03.20 - 08:33
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    Zylesea
    Posts: 1943 from 2003/6/4
    Quote:

    Intuition schrieb:

    https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/health-environment/article/3075164/south-koreas-coronavirus-response-opposite-china-and



    I think South Korea does handle the issue best of all nations. But the article does not draw the full picture. The Korean approach does work only if the system is still working. In northern Italy the infrastructure is way overstressed, in Spain (and some other countries) the same. These countries have no alternative to the most restrictive lock down. Once the infection rate is put down with these hard methods the Korean approach should be copycated to maintain the situation for the coming monthes.
    Most countries have reacted too slow, many countries lack the infrastructure.
    I think for example Germany could soon reach the state to copycat Korea (we have high numbers, but the health care system is still working, hopefully it will stay so). Currently most coutries lack the simple things: face masks, gloves, etc.
    Me and my wife we are actully sewing some face masks (cotton doulble layer), output is low, but better than nothing: yesterday evening we made 6pcs, today about 10 will follow. The idea gets momntum here now, I heard of some communities (smaller cities in the Eifel region) that centrally bought medical cotton and give it to the citiziens to sew masks themselves.
    I am glad to live in a region where the situation is still relatively under control (yesterday we had more cures than new infections in my town, but this was probably a lucky day and not the turning point).


    Testing, isolation of infected ppl, pursuing contacts of infected ppl, protection (distance, (hand) washing, face masks, protective glasses and gloves) - that's the way to handle it.
    --
    http://www.via-altera.de

    Whenever you're sad just remember the world is 4.543 billion years old and you somehow managed to exist at the same time as David Bowie.
    ...and Matthias , my friend - RIP
  • »28.03.20 - 11:08
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  • Acolyte of the Butterfly
    Acolyte of the Butterfly
    Posts: 118 from 2013/8/25
    Quote:

    takemehomegrandma wrote:
    The real blow will be to the economy. It's already a fact, but we may not have seen the bottom by far yet. This is crippling to all small businesses. Restaurants and store owners, who overnight had their entire business erased. Nobody going out to restaurants, bars, clubs. Nobody shops, other than groceries. They have had their legs completely swept away by this, and they will land on their heads. Hard. This will change a lot. E-commerce has been pushing normal stores to the side for a long time. A process that could be fast forwarded by this outbreak by a magnitude. This blow could be one single spine-cracker that will cripple normal stores and malls forever. Changing the trade industry and in a way the world as we know it.



    After we get through this, this will be one other tragedy of this whole horrendous affair. I can imagine the glee on the faces of the likes of Zuckerberg and Bezos, as their platforms are regularly lauded on the news at the moment for bringing people and communities together. As someone who has fought internet addiction for years and has slowly made some progress, the sudden lurch to a vastly more online world, with the likely death of many of the remaining offline shops and services, fills me with dread. All my classes are now online with mandatory attendance. Hours every day. And so why not a bit of YouTube? Reddit? NetFlix? I recognise this might sound churlish when people are dying in their scores of thousands. Reducing that by any means is the most important thing. But I hope that a life outside of the internet is still possible, when this is done.
  • »28.03.20 - 20:57
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    Intuition
    Posts: 1066 from 2013/5/24
    From: Federacija Bos...
    Quote:

    takemehomegrandma wrote:
    @amigadave

    Well, sitting here with the fevers, dry-cough and a slight ache in my lower throat and lungs (not as in pain, but more like "I sense them" being there. Normally you don't think about your lungs, they're just there doing their job, if you know what I mean, you never notice them or think about them). A bit like the flu perhaps, which it could very well be. A very mild flu in that case (which I can't remember ever having, my flu's has been "binary" - either it's not there at all or it's there in full effect).

    No way for me to know if it's covid, the flu or something else, since Sweden (for the last two weeks or so) has completely stopped testing "normal" people with symptoms. In the beginning, before the outbreak turned domestic, they were very active in testing and back-tracing people. But that was when they still fought to prevent an outbreak within the country, back when all cases were "imported" ones. Since then the focus has shifted. Now they are only testing people with *severe* symptoms, people from high-risk groups and hospital personnel. The rest of us with symptoms are simply recommended to assume that *it is* in fact covid and therefore practice all necessary self-isolation and to stay at home, riding it out. Come back to the health care system only if you get trouble breathing, otherwise simply stay at home and let them focus on the people who really needs attention. I'm about to turn 45 years old and not in any particular high risk group, so I suppose that's what I'll do. Stay at home until the symptoms are gone or I get trouble breathing. There is nothing to do about it anyway. It seems like the younger you are, the less risk of getting serious symptoms. Some people have had the disease and hardly even noticed. I heard. I listen to that. ;-)

    Not doing broad testing anymore also means that we have no way of knowing the number of infected people, because there is no meaningful statistics. There are statistics of people receiving intensive care treatment of course, and of deceased. I suppose they have other ways of getting a broad picture, like sick leave statistics, statistics of calls and inquires to the medical advisory services, etc. All in all they seem to be of the opinion that Sweden now stands just below the "explosive" growth pace in the well-known envelope, while statistics over the infected almost seems to flatten out.

    Sweden has taken quite a different route compared to most other countries in this. No longer any testing other than of patients with severe conditions or people from high-risk groups. No closed borders, no closed airports or harbors, all trains, buses, mass transit etc still going as usual. No screening of travelers. No travel bans, only recommendations not to travel to certain places if not necessary. No new, special laws for authorities to control the population. No mobilization. There has been a ban of indoor gatherings larger than 500 people, in some other countries it's like 200, 100, 20, 10, 8, 5 (Germany I heard has as of today a max gathering of 2(!) people!). Schools are open, and the government and disease control authorities are actively defending this decision, which is broadly questioned by the public since everyone is watching the news about how other countries acts. But the rationale is that children and the youth, especially at the lower ages, are statistically not in any danger from covid, maybe they don't even spread it much, and the overall effect a school closure would have on the society at large would be devastating, where many parents (including people working in the health care system) would need to go home to look after their children instead. But since Wednesday all high schools and universities has transitioned to distance learning. But all lower grade schools and daycare is still open like normal. Had this virus been like sars (which affected children more than old people), things would most certainly be completely different.

    The whole Swedish approach rests on people's willingness to *volunteer* in slowing down the outbreak by self-isolation. Work from home if you can. Etc. It's a very much debated policy though. People are looking at the rather authoritative measures taken by other countries and question if our authorities are really doing enough. But the government persist, they say it's all about doing *the right* things, and not doing things just for the looks of it that cause damage to the society and economy without really affecting the outbreak very much. Closing schools is deemed being such a thing. I suppose we'll see when it's all over who were right?

    Something that *has been* done in Sweden, is a change in the sickness benefit rules. We have many tax-financed benefits in Sweden compared to the USA. Normally, when you call in sick and stay at home from work, you will have to endure one qualifying day of sickness without pay. After that you get 80% of your salary. Only after a week a doctor needs to check you up (doesn't cost anything of course, other than some $10 reception fee or whatever it is now) to determine if you qualify for further paid sick leave, or if you are well enough to go back to work. With the new temporary rules, the moment *anyone* feels *any kind* of symptom (cough, fevers, or whatever, even very, very slightly) you are simply *assumed* to leave work immediately, go directly home and isolate yourself from society to the best of your abilities, and you will get 80% of your salary for two weeks, no questions asked whatsoever! After two weeks, you must see a doctor (if you haven't needed one earlier of course). I believe this will make the world of difference. Self-isolation will be the only way to slow this outbreak down enough for the hospitals to cope until the population reaches flock-immunity and/or a vaccine gets developed (a tested, safe, commercial vaccine produced in volume may still be years away, so that's nothing to rely on at this moment). This policy (making it possible for people to stay at home) I think will be much more effective than calling out the national guard on the streets etc. It's painful to see the situation many people are in the US, people not being able to stay at home if they are sick during normal conditions. It is my understanding that many people (even senior citizens) are working more or less for tip in the service industry like tourism, in bars, restaurants and diners etc, people with zero economic margins in life and who will stand without any income at all if they don't work a day. So they will go to work even though feeling ill, because they have no real alternative option. Many of them comes in contact with huge amount of people through their work as well. This could be very problematic for the US IMHO. You risk being struck very hard this time by your lack of social safety net. Time will tell.

    I work as a high school teacher, hence I meet many people as well on a daily basis, and I actually kind of *expected* to catch the bug. Schools *are* notorious in disease spreading, every parent probably have experience of this when it comes to the flu or common cold seasons. Anyway, I'm staying at home now. My 7 year old son and 5 year old daughter is at home with me. They both have a slight dry-cough, like something irritating them in the throat, though no fever or anything else. They are full of energy. I take comfort in the assumption that children will hardly be noticing this outbreak. My wife is also a school teacher, still no cold or flu symptoms. She is very worried though, which I think many people are these days. And there is a psychological side to all of this as well. It's hard to dodge the news, and the feeling that everything is spinning out of control. Many people are feeling bad about it. Personally I almost hope I have actually caught the bug and not just the flu. It would be nice to get it over with and be done with it. Preferably now, instead of when the hospitals run out of ventilators. And if whatever I am feeling now is as bad as it gets, then it's perfectly OK I would say. They say that most people will experience it as a flu or even less. Which is tolerable. And when we reach flock-immunity, this will protect the elderly and high risk groups, probably long before any vaccine is developed, tested to be safe and then mass-produced.

    The real blow will be to the economy. It's already a fact, but we may not have seen the bottom by far yet. This is crippling to all small businesses. Restaurants and store owners, who overnight had their entire business erased. Nobody going out to restaurants, bars, clubs. Nobody shops, other than groceries. They have had their legs completely swept away by this, and they will land on their heads. Hard. This will change a lot. E-commerce has been pushing normal stores to the side for a long time. A process that could be fast forwarded by this outbreak by a magnitude. This blow could be one single spine-cracker that will cripple normal stores and malls forever. Changing the trade industry and in a way the world as we know it.




    Hope you and your family aren't suffering too much.

    Saw this article about the science behind Sweden's approach.

    https://www-thelocal-se.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/www.thelocal.se/20200328/explaining-the-science-behind-swedens-relaxed-coronavirus-approach/amp
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  • »29.03.20 - 10:20
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