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2019–20 Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19) Thread


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45 minutes ago, SitTwizzle said:

At last I have found it! French official data such as the number of tests everyday (rarely reported on worldometers.info), the number of positive, some numbers by département (sort of big county)...

https://www.cascoronavirus.fr/test-depistage/france

I think they are understandable for English speakers but if any translation is needed, I would be pleased to do it.

There are some strange elements (for instance, a research-oriented centre which has never changed its policy since the beginning of the epidemic, has no recent rise in contamination, but they are in a town where it is still summer so maybe there will be a rise when there is less sun). Of course, the government has started recently a "recentering" upon people most likely to be infected, hence a rise in rates. But there may also be a tendency to rise the cycle threshold. Anyway I do think there is a  rise in contaminations, but probably not as much as one could think at first sight, and it seems the virus is less dangerous now, after the mutations of last months.

I think the "less dangerous" part is really due to advances in therapeutics and protocols with very sick patients.  At least here, people aren't as likely to be put on a ventilator and/or die as they were in Match.  But long term effects are still pretty scary.  

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On 10/11/2020 at 4:37 PM, barbara said:

I think the "less dangerous" part is really due to advances in therapeutics and protocols with very sick patients.  At least here, people aren't as likely to be put on a ventilator and/or die as they were in Match.  But long term effects are still pretty scary.  

No, no, at least for viruses researched in France. With the same protocols since end of February, there is much less need for ICU (effective use of ICU in France is another question, with political questions) and deaths with the mutations of the virus. It may be more contagious though. And the surveys don't mention long-term effects because they aren't known yet... [admin edit: we're not allowing discussions against vaccines here, it's too political]

Well, the Institut Pasteur of Lille is launching trials for a medicine which could prove efficient against the virus. Who knows.

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В 12.10.2020 в 02:47, SitTwizzle сказал:

No, no, at least for viruses researched in France. With the same protocols since end of February, there is much less need for ICU (effective use of ICU in France is another question, with political questions) and deaths with the mutations of the virus. It may be more contagious though.

Some say virus is more aggressive, but I don't know if there's any research on this here. Virus might be more contagious, also they say kids are big concern, cuz they don't feel symptoms, but get virus from school to home to the parents and grandparents. Now most of school classes are back to the remote studying. Universities are not, as far as I know, only partly maybe. 30% of company's workers should work remotely.

Numbers are already higher then in spring here but it seems like government don't want strict lockdown anymore, at least it's what it looks like.

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I should have 

1 hour ago, Lunna said:

Some say virus is more aggressive, but I don't know if there's any research on this here. Virus might be more contagious, also they say kids are big concern, cuz they don't feel symptoms, but get virus from school to home to the parents and grandparents. Now most of school classes are back to the remote studying. Universities are not, as far as I know, only partly maybe. 30% of company's workers should work remotely.

Numbers are already higher then in spring here but it seems like government don't want strict lockdown anymore, at least it's what it looks like.

I should have updated. The infectiology centre (I think it is one of the largest in the World, and I have not seen elsewhere such comprehensive surveys, but I may have missed things, or other surveys may be on the way; I am sure China, among others, have an attentive eye upon the mutations) who has established this, after a survey on a great many people and samples, also noted (and published this week) that since last month, new mutations had appeared, more aggressive than lately, which they observed only on hospitalised patients. This means that in France at least, we have on one side viruses rather similar to a severe flu (I hope I won't horrify people here because of the association that can be made with irresponsible words), on the other side viruses not quite as pathogen as last Spring, but not very far. Of course, with time, there are more and more variants of the virus.

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My state just shut down rinks for 2 weeks in response to the latest surge - basically, hockey was associated with increased COVID-19 spread, but instead of just shutting down hockey, they’re shutting down all ice sports. Figure skating hasn’t been associated with any increased transmission, but we’re still caught up in the ban. Meanwhile, still no mask mandate (and lots of people ignoring the signs at businesses who have individually required masks), bars and restaurants are still open at 100% capacity as long as social distancing can be maintained... literally the only thing the government has done about the recent spike in cases has been to shut down the rinks. 
 

I’m so tired of seeing people ignoring CDC recommendations to decrease community spread, having our case numbers spike to the worst we’ve seen since the first wave, and somehow having my (very socially-distant) hobby be the only thing that’s been locked down again so far. We’ve been doing this since March - at this point I have zero patience for people who can’t follow the guidelines.

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4 hours ago, river said:

My state just shut down rinks for 2 weeks in response to the latest surge - basically, hockey was associated with increased COVID-19 spread, but instead of just shutting down hockey, they’re shutting down all ice sports. Figure skating hasn’t been associated with any increased transmission, but we’re still caught up in the ban. Meanwhile, still no mask mandate (and lots of people ignoring the signs at businesses who have individually required masks), bars and restaurants are still open at 100% capacity as long as social distancing can be maintained... literally the only thing the government has done about the recent spike in cases has been to shut down the rinks. 
 

I’m so tired of seeing people ignoring CDC recommendations to decrease community spread, having our case numbers spike to the worst we’ve seen since the first wave, and somehow having my (very socially-distant) hobby be the only thing that’s been locked down again so far. We’ve been doing this since March - at this point I have zero patience for people who can’t follow the guidelines.

There really seems to be no rhyme or reason to what safety precautions and/or requirements various state and local governments implement.   How totally infuriating.  Hockey is a smash-each-other sport.  It should be in the soccer/football category and be separate from individual sports.  I could understand a limit to how many people could be in a rink, but this is just non-sensical.  At least little ponds will be frozen over in a month or so.  Or, you can get very Canadian, and flood a playground when the temps are below freezing. Instant rink.

This whole "free to do whatever I please" attitude, as if freedom means whatever you want it to, in the US has evolved into something it was never suppose to be.  If we can't care about each other and understand that our behavior is capable of putting others at risk; if we just don't care, then we misunderstand what being patriotic is about.  The narcissist-in-chief is both the end result of decades of "me! me! me!" and the epitome of what being an American is currently all about.  It's really embarrassing.  And maddening.

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Update about Italy: till september, I felt kind of proud that, despite one neighbour(France) faring not so well (and other countries, like Spain and UK, faring similarly not so well) Italy was doing almost as well as Germany...alas, that sadly didn't last, so after WHO praised Italy for being virtuous of course we had to ruin ourselves again.

after a steady, but slow rise in cases, positivity rates, ICUs and deaths starting from mid August and continuing throughout September, here we are, in October, catching up eagerly! //sarcasm

depressing details/rant under spoiler

Spoiler

 

In a week Italy hit an unprecedented >160000 daily tests twice (and an average of >test 100000 daily). It would look good, wouldn't it? Well, it's not: while tests are 2-3 times those we did in back july, positive cases are 20 times more those we had in July (and I'm being conservative).

https://dashboard.covid19med.it/

I've been expecting that things would get worse for weeks, 'cause all trends had been in very slow but very steady rise since mid August, and autumn was coming and anyone with eyes and a vague idea about this virus work would have known.

 

In September, whenever positivity rate went above 2% I was moderately worried. Now, I'm happy if(when) it is(will be) below 6%.

Throughout all September, the rise in ICUs was usually <10 per day (so it was a slow, but steady rise). A couple weeks ago we got to double digits increase daily... and then this past week the increase spiked to 50 per day. Since ICU trends are at least one week delayed compared to new cases, those +50daily are consequence of the days when we had +4000daily cases (and again I'm being conservative, so I fully expect to see ICU daily increases +100 very soon (daily cases have more than doubled this past week, while positivity rate kept getting worse and proper tracking became harder and harder).

 

Now we've registered 11000 new cases on sunday. While  daily cases on their own don't say much,this particular data on a sunday is different: usually both tests and cases regularly hit their weekly lowest point on sunday&monday (especially monday). Last sunday decrease had been rather small, and pessimistic me thoguht it was a bad sign... and indeed we've got the week we've got. You can imagine how thrilled I am about what's to come now, when instead of the expected decrease in the number of daily cases we've got the weekly max instead

 

I'm not surprised, but I'm angry, because this was an entirely predictable outcome of reopening all schools (most don't even require people to keep masks while in classes), giving up on smartworking, filling up buses and subways and trains again (cloth masks can work only so far, when there are dozens of people all squeezed in a confined space...). All of this happening at the same time (which roughly was 2-3 weks ago, and indeed timing is about right). Also, people never turly learned to keep one darn metre from each other (not that 1m is enough, but many can't even keep that). Oh, and they wear masks when walking but then they huddle all together around a small table to drink, eat or smoke... (ok to be fair it was outdoors, so it wasn't terrible, but if you, government, are gonna ask people to keep masks on when outdoors(if they can't keep 1 m from each other) then you'll better not let this kind of fuckery happen: social distancign, masks... there must be at least one of the two (and many still don't get that ideally you'd like to have both, especially when you have significant local spread). I'm not even starting at how those masks are worn (though thankfully most people learned to keep their noses tucked in, at least...but too many keep touching the mask and pulling it down&up&down and such, without washing hands before and after all that...)

 

So, now I'm here a bit bemused and wondering how on earth is it possible that, while Italy isn't in as bad a situation as past March (yet), that's exaclty were we've headed.

Data from last week was that 60% cases was asymptomatic (like during summer, and roughly in line with data from several studies form other countries, or form cruise ship and so on), and only 6% required hospitalization. Even smaller percentage (<1%), required ICUs, and mortality was much, much, much lower than back in March (way below 1%).

Still, what the optimists repeating "it's not like in March" forgot when comparing data, is that

1) confirmed case in March/April were largely underrepresented (estimates are that there were about 6-10 times more cases. Many people with symptoms weren't tested back in March)

2) while there is yet no magic cure for covid, now doctors have the advantage of better knowledge and months of experience, so there is a number of practices being used to have the best possible outcome.

3) people with symptoms in March were mostly left to their own devices till they got so sick they needed ventilators, while now they are being monitored and treated since almost the first symptom (an aside, in the last couple of weeks the % of peopel who got tested not form tracking but because they had symptoms rose to 30%. Another sign that tracking was starting to fail).

4) health system currently isn't overhelmed(yet), so every single patient that needs treatment can get the best possible care. Also, no dramatic shortage of PPE for HCpersonnel (yet), doctors and nurses aren't exhausted and racing agaisnt time all day everyday every week with no time to take a breath (yet)

 

So, all considered, current data don't make me optimistic about the next few weeks (though I hope that by November we'll start seeing positive effects from the most recent measures. If we don't blunder it again and if we've made it in time, that's it)

 

Part of the reason why Germany managed to do better than most back in March is that they had many available ICU (other than more testing and tracking). They had to create new ones out of thin air (they could even accept some patients from italian's ICUs).

Now Italy is at just a bit over 10% of its ICU capacity. Not terrrible, but one can't be sure situation will still look "not terrible" in two more weeks, unless trends start changing soon (also, in some places they are already nearing the max capacity. Sure, new dedicated ICUs will be created, and other hospitals wards will be converted to treatment of covid patients, but if we'll have to sacrifice treatment of other pathologies to have enough room (and personnel) to treat covid patients, we''ll have already failed (again)

 

 

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9 hours ago, LadyLou said:

Update about Italy: till september, I felt kind of proud that, despite one neighbour(France) faring not so well (and other countries, like Spain and UK, faring similarly not so well) Italy was doing almost as well as Germany...alas, that sadly didn't last, so after WHO praised Italy for being virtuous of course we had to ruin ourselves again.

after a steady, but slow rise in cases, positivity rates, ICUs and deaths starting from mid August and continuing throughout September, here we are, in October, catching up eagerly! //sarcasm

depressing details/rant under spoiler

  Hide contents

 

In a week Italy hit an unprecedented >160000 daily tests twice (and an average of >test 100000 daily). It would look good, wouldn't it? Well, it's not: while tests are 2-3 times those we did in back july, positive cases are 20 times more those we had in July (and I'm being conservative).

https://dashboard.covid19med.it/

I've been expecting that things would get worse for weeks, 'cause all trends had been in very slow but very steady rise since mid August, and autumn was coming and anyone with eyes and a vague idea about this virus work would have known.

 

In September, whenever positivity rate went above 2% I was moderately worried. Now, I'm happy if(when) it is(will be) below 6%.

Throughout all September, the rise in ICUs was usually <10 per day (so it was a slow, but steady rise). A couple weeks ago we got to double digits increase daily... and then this past week the increase spiked to 50 per day. Since ICU trends are at least one week delayed compared to new cases, those +50daily are consequence of the days when we had +4000daily cases (and again I'm being conservative, so I fully expect to see ICU daily increases +100 very soon (daily cases have more than doubled this past week, while positivity rate kept getting worse and proper tracking became harder and harder).

 

Now we've registered 11000 new cases on sunday. While  daily cases on their own don't say much,this particular data on a sunday is different: usually both tests and cases regularly hit their weekly lowest point on sunday&monday (especially monday). Last sunday decrease had been rather small, and pessimistic me thoguht it was a bad sign... and indeed we've got the week we've got. You can imagine how thrilled I am about what's to come now, when instead of the expected decrease in the number of daily cases we've got the weekly max instead

 

I'm not surprised, but I'm angry, because this was an entirely predictable outcome of reopening all schools (most don't even require people to keep masks while in classes), giving up on smartworking, filling up buses and subways and trains again (cloth masks can work only so far, when there are dozens of people all squeezed in a confined space...). All of this happening at the same time (which roughly was 2-3 weks ago, and indeed timing is about right). Also, people never turly learned to keep one darn metre from each other (not that 1m is enough, but many can't even keep that). Oh, and they wear masks when walking but then they huddle all together around a small table to drink, eat or smoke... (ok to be fair it was outdoors, so it wasn't terrible, but if you, government, are gonna ask people to keep masks on when outdoors(if they can't keep 1 m from each other) then you'll better not let this kind of fuckery happen: social distancign, masks... there must be at least one of the two (and many still don't get that ideally you'd like to have both, especially when you have significant local spread). I'm not even starting at how those masks are worn (though thankfully most people learned to keep their noses tucked in, at least...but too many keep touching the mask and pulling it down&up&down and such, without washing hands before and after all that...)

 

So, now I'm here a bit bemused and wondering how on earth is it possible that, while Italy isn't in as bad a situation as past March (yet), that's exaclty were we've headed.

Data from last week was that 60% cases was asymptomatic (like during summer, and roughly in line with data from several studies form other countries, or form cruise ship and so on), and only 6% required hospitalization. Even smaller percentage (<1%), required ICUs, and mortality was much, much, much lower than back in March (way below 1%).

Still, what the optimists repeating "it's not like in March" forgot when comparing data, is that

1) confirmed case in March/April were largely underrepresented (estimates are that there were about 6-10 times more cases. Many people with symptoms weren't tested back in March)

2) while there is yet no magic cure for covid, now doctors have the advantage of better knowledge and months of experience, so there is a number of practices being used to have the best possible outcome.

3) people with symptoms in March were mostly left to their own devices till they got so sick they needed ventilators, while now they are being monitored and treated since almost the first symptom (an aside, in the last couple of weeks the % of peopel who got tested not form tracking but because they had symptoms rose to 30%. Another sign that tracking was starting to fail).

4) health system currently isn't overhelmed(yet), so every single patient that needs treatment can get the best possible care. Also, no dramatic shortage of PPE for HCpersonnel (yet), doctors and nurses aren't exhausted and racing agaisnt time all day everyday every week with no time to take a breath (yet)

 

So, all considered, current data don't make me optimistic about the next few weeks (though I hope that by November we'll start seeing positive effects from the most recent measures. If we don't blunder it again and if we've made it in time, that's it)

 

Part of the reason why Germany managed to do better than most back in March is that they had many available ICU (other than more testing and tracking). They had to create new ones out of thin air (they could even accept some patients from italian's ICUs).

Now Italy is at just a bit over 10% of its ICU capacity. Not terrrible, but one can't be sure situation will still look "not terrible" in two more weeks, unless trends start changing soon (also, in some places they are already nearing the max capacity. Sure, new dedicated ICUs will be created, and other hospitals wards will be converted to treatment of covid patients, but if we'll have to sacrifice treatment of other pathologies to have enough room (and personnel) to treat covid patients, we''ll have already failed (again)

 

 

Did Italy, like France and Spain, let all travellers enter without a precaution (except for a pretence at the end of the summer...) and everybody have highly imprudent events (dancing in skin contact with dozens of strangers, shouting...) while filling ICU and hospitals with stupid rules (France; in Spain I don't know) and forbidding to treat asymptomatic patients (France too) before setting up a dictatorship when cases started rising? If not, you cannot be really "proud" of Italy. Ah, and there are less ICU beds in France now than last spring, because of all the treatments which have been delayed due to poor management of the crisis, and which are now really urgent.

And there are now, in France and Italy, trials of a new treatment for patients in cytokin storm (the main killer in this disease), at first sight it seems this treatment saves nearly all those who had been previously treated, but only half of those who had not. Fortunately the prophyllactic treatment against the second killer in this disease (thrombosis) has not been forbidden (yet?) and it saves half the lives (heparin).

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This is an answer to Paskud's post on the Team Japan thread. This answer rather belongs to the coronavirus thread, so I write it here.

She writes there are 30.000 cases per day in France.

Which is both true and false.

It is true because there have been up to 30.000 positive tests reported in a day lately, and there are consistently more than 25.000.

https://www.cascoronavirus.fr/test-depistage/france

It is false in a sense, because of course all infected people are not tested, this is true everywhere except on those cruise ships where crew and passengers have been quarantined.

But it is also false in the sense of comparisons. Because now, we have also consistently more than 200.000 tests per day, which is a very good thing but you cannot compare the gross number of positive cases with a period, or with countries much less tested. And, many centres have risen the cycle threshold, which is, in the PCR tests, the number of cycles of RNA replication you make to see if you get CoViD RNA.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polymerase_chain_reaction

But, with enough cycles, you can get CoViD RNA starting from elements in the sample which were not CoViD RNA. Then you get a false positive.

If the test becomes positive before 20 cycles, then the sample is very likely to be infected. Between 21 and 30 cycles, there are still many, but the rate of false positives is rising. Some stop there, because with 30 or 31 cycles, you have few false positives and few false negatives, it is cheaper both in tests and in quarantines, yet there are a few false negative (people who are told they don't have CoViD while they have it) who may infect others of fall seriously ill. Other laboratories prefer 35 cycles, because between 31 and 35 cycles, some of the samples announced to be positive are really positive (but most are not). And there are also laboratories who don't scruple to make 40 cycles, or even more, while it is known that if a sample doesn't test positive before 35 cycles, then it is not positive at all. So, all those "positive" tests above 35 cycles, are false positives. The problem is, it is very hard (if not impossible) to get the information of how many tests were got after how many cycles in a given country. The thing is, I've heard about a rise of the CT in a number of laboratories in France (in other countries, I have no idea).

 

So, to evaluate if there is a real rise in contamination in France, one must find other ways, and of course they cannot be precise.

1) The causes. There have been a great, general imprudence this summer in France, encouraged by the government. Parties, travel without precautions or checking... Plus an accommodation legislation in France which practically prevent employers from giving a simple accommodation to seasonal workers, which makes that one in a group rents a studio and they cram in to sleep at night without any precaution, and later contaminate others.

2) A testing centre. There is however, a testing centre in France, belonging to a great research centre in infectiology, who both tests regularly frontline people and occasionally suspicious and contact cases since the beginning of the epidemic, with rather even numbers, in a large city, one of the focuses of the epidemic, with a Mediterranean climate (so, cold wasn't there yet); and who have stuck to the same method, with 35 cycles per testing (no case being ignored, but no useless cycle); I think they may have had among the very few such cohorts, so reliable, in the world. They communicate rather often but publish surveys much later, so, sorry, I can't send an abstract. I don't have October numbers but until the end of September, there had been a slow but constant decrease of the incidence (from 9.5% during the real epidemic, to 8% at the end of September). It looks in no way like the official numbers for France, where the influence of changes in testing policy and "statistical treatment" made appear a rather senseless graph (which one can find on the site above, or on worldometers.info/coronavirus/).

3) Excess of deaths. In spite of the nearly general prohibition of the main, best known prophylactic treatment (hydroxychloroquin + Azithromycin, which the centre above administers only to people who not only test positive, but who also, either have worrying symptoms, or have biological parameters letting fear a severe case, others are merely checked regularly), and in spite of the number of medical and surgical treatments delayed because of the poor management of the epidemic, there is no excess of deaths at present.

https://euromomo.eu/graphs-and-maps/

Yet, the "second wave" was announced at the beginning of September, and indeed, the lock-down decisions of last week were made from statistical projections using the numbers of the first half of September. If the "second wave" was real, there should already be an excess of deaths (such as in Belgium and The Netherland), because if many CoViD victims die many weeks or even months after having been tested positive, there are also many people who die within a month.

4) Occupation of ICU beds. Very hard to know the real thing, but there have been witnesses (insiders). I cannot say if they are representative of a general trend or not.

From the witnesses, the beds announced to be occupied seem to be mostly so (but not only of course) by people who shouldn't be there : either patients from other services who happen to be tested positive but are known not to be infected (false positive), or obese patients who tend to have more severe symptoms than lean ones but with a rather good prognosis, and who could be treated at home. This without counting the victims of French health officials orders, who impose an intubation for every people needing some ventilation, even if they need very little and they could get it by non-invasive means : they must stay 6 more weeks, only to heal the lesions caused by the intubation itself, and it can have lifelong sequels! This measure did a lot for ICU overwhelming last Spring but now, it seems some centres (how many?) manage to bypass it?

This, in spite of the arrival of new mutations since the beginning of September, more pathogenic than the summer ones (but less than the Spring one, plus they seem to be the minority; I hope their propagation is halted in all priority).

 

For me, the situation in France is that the epidemic itself ended at the end of April, but contrary to some Asian countries, the virus is still circulating and this circulation is not curbing very much. In spite of the Government's efforts, it didn't resume, at least had not done so until lately, and most people can manage to live with very little risk, with prudence but not exaggerated precautions.

This is for the present.

 

The fear is, if a "second wave" does happen, we would be in a worse situation than last Spring, because of all the measures imposed by the government to maximise the consequences, and no added ICU bed.

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4 hours ago, SitTwizzle said:

This is an answer to Paskud's post on the Team Japan thread. This answer rather belongs to the coronavirus thread, so I write it here.

She writes there are 30.000 cases per day in France.

Which is both true and false.

It is true because there have been up to 30.000 positive tests reported in a day lately, and there are consistently more than 25.000.

https://www.cascoronavirus.fr/test-depistage/france

It is false in a sense, because of course all infected people are not tested, this is true everywhere except on those cruise ships where crew and passengers have been quarantined.

But it is also false in the sense of comparisons. Because now, we have also consistently more than 200.000 tests per day, which is a very good thing but you cannot compare the gross number of positive cases with a period, or with countries much less tested. And, many centres have risen the cycle threshold, which is, in the PCR tests, the number of cycles of RNA replication you make to see if you get CoViD RNA.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polymerase_chain_reaction

But, with enough cycles, you can get CoViD RNA starting from elements in the sample which were not CoViD RNA. Then you get a false positive.

If the test becomes positive before 20 cycles, then the sample is very likely to be infected. Between 21 and 30 cycles, there are still many, but the rate of false positives is rising. Some stop there, because with 30 or 31 cycles, you have few false positives and few false negatives, it is cheaper both in tests and in quarantines, yet there are a few false negative (people who are told they don't have CoViD while they have it) who may infect others of fall seriously ill. Other laboratories prefer 35 cycles, because between 31 and 35 cycles, some of the samples announced to be positive are really positive (but most are not). And there are also laboratories who don't scruple to make 40 cycles, or even more, while it is known that if a sample doesn't test positive before 35 cycles, then it is not positive at all. So, all those "positive" tests above 35 cycles, are false positives. The problem is, it is very hard (if not impossible) to get the information of how many tests were got after how many cycles in a given country. The thing is, I've heard about a rise of the CT in a number of laboratories in France (in other countries, I have no idea).

 

So, to evaluate if there is a real rise in contamination in France, one must find other ways, and of course they cannot be precise.

1) The causes. There have been a great, general imprudence this summer in France, encouraged by the government. Parties, travel without precautions or checking... Plus an accommodation legislation in France which practically prevent employers from giving a simple accommodation to seasonal workers, which makes that one in a group rents a studio and they cram in to sleep at night without any precaution, and later contaminate others.

2) A testing centre. There is however, a testing centre in France, belonging to a great research centre in infectiology, who both tests regularly frontline people and occasionally suspicious and contact cases since the beginning of the epidemic, with rather even numbers, in a large city, one of the focuses of the epidemic, with a Mediterranean climate (so, cold wasn't there yet); and who have stuck to the same method, with 35 cycles per testing (no case being ignored, but no useless cycle); I think they may have had among the very few such cohorts, so reliable, in the world. They communicate rather often but publish surveys much later, so, sorry, I can't send an abstract. I don't have October numbers but until the end of September, there had been a slow but constant decrease of the incidence (from 9.5% during the real epidemic, to 8% at the end of September). It looks in no way like the official numbers for France, where the influence of changes in testing policy and "statistical treatment" made appear a rather senseless graph (which one can find on the site above, or on worldometers.info/coronavirus/).

3) Excess of deaths. In spite of the nearly general prohibition of the main, best known prophylactic treatment (hydroxychloroquin + Azithromycin, which the centre above administers only to people who not only test positive, but who also, either have worrying symptoms, or have biological parameters letting fear a severe case, others are merely checked regularly), and in spite of the number of medical and surgical treatments delayed because of the poor management of the epidemic, there is no excess of deaths at present.

https://euromomo.eu/graphs-and-maps/

Yet, the "second wave" was announced at the beginning of September, and indeed, the lock-down decisions of last week were made from statistical projections using the numbers of the first half of September. If the "second wave" was real, there should already be an excess of deaths (such as in Belgium and The Netherland), because if many CoViD victims die many weeks or even months after having been tested positive, there are also many people who die within a month.

4) Occupation of ICU beds. Very hard to know the real thing, but there have been witnesses (insiders). I cannot say if they are representative of a general trend or not.

From the witnesses, the beds announced to be occupied seem to be mostly so (but not only of course) by people who shouldn't be there : either patients from other services who happen to be tested positive but are known not to be infected (false positive), or obese patients who tend to have more severe symptoms than lean ones but with a rather good prognosis, and who could be treated at home. This without counting the victims of French health officials orders, who impose an intubation for every people needing some ventilation, even if they need very little and they could get it by non-invasive means : they must stay 6 more weeks, only to heal the lesions caused by the intubation itself, and it can have lifelong sequels! This measure did a lot for ICU overwhelming last Spring but now, it seems some centres (how many?) manage to bypass it?

This, in spite of the arrival of new mutations since the beginning of September, more pathogenic than the summer ones (but less than the Spring one, plus they seem to be the minority; I hope their propagation is halted in all priority).

 

For me, the situation in France is that the epidemic itself ended at the end of April, but contrary to some Asian countries, the virus is still circulating and this circulation is not curbing very much. In spite of the Government's efforts, it didn't resume, at least had not done so until lately, and most people can manage to live with very little risk, with prudence but not exaggerated precautions.

This is for the present.

 

The fear is, if a "second wave" does happen, we would be in a worse situation than last Spring, because of all the measures imposed by the government to maximise the consequences, and no added ICU bed.

This is very well researched and packed full of information.  Thank you.    As for the states, I know that LadyLou had said how upset she is with Italy and the fact that they now have a positivity rate of 2% and things are going to be shutting down again.  You all are SO lucky to not be in the states.  I live in a country in Arizona that is doing GREAT, but that's because we have a positivity rate of only 3%.  There are some states with a positivity rate over 20%. Cases, hospitalizations and, soon, deaths are headed up exponentially again.  This is a third wave and deaths are over 220K already.  This is insanity.  The one doctor trump listen to, who is NOT an epidemiologist, had a tweet take down by Twitter today because he said "no masks". What?  The president is flying all over the country spreading misinformation (the nice way to say "lies") and the virus.  The man is insane and doesn't care that it is now predicted that over 400 thousand, 400000, will be dead by the end of the year.  He criticizes his opponent because Biden will "listen to the scientists". Well, duh.  I should hope so.  The disrespect and disregard for science is appalling.  Especially as a scientist.  I just don't get it.  What is the matter with these people?

Anyway - rant over for today.  We do what we can do.  Wear a mask.

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In Romania is getting worse by day... the schools, restaurants, bars and many others are closing again and we have to wear the mask everywhere ... we have over 3% positivity rate and they said is going to get even worse in November/December if the ppl don't obey the 3 simple rules ... 

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5 hours ago, barbara said:

This is very well researched and packed full of information.  Thank you.    As for the states, I know that LadyLou had said how upset she is with Italy and the fact that they now have a positivity rate of 2% and things are going to be shutting down again.  You all are SO lucky to not be in the states.  I live in a country in Arizona that is doing GREAT, but that's because we have a positivity rate of only 3%.  There are some states with a positivity rate over 20%. Cases, hospitalizations and, soon, deaths are headed up exponentially again.  This is a third wave and deaths are over 220K already.  This is insanity.  The one doctor trump listen to, who is NOT an epidemiologist, had a tweet take down by Twitter today because he said "no masks". What?  The president is flying all over the country spreading misinformation (the nice way to say "lies") and the virus.  The man is insane and doesn't care that it is now predicted that over 400 thousand, 400000, will be dead by the end of the year.  He criticizes his opponent because Biden will "listen to the scientists". Well, duh.  I should hope so.  The disrespect and disregard for science is appalling.  Especially as a scientist.  I just don't get it.  What is the matter with these people?

Anyway - rant over for today.  We do what we can do.  Wear a mask.

I don't know how tests are led but the official positivity rate in France is around 13% now, and the, I would say, real positivity rate among the most exposed in a large city with more circulation than the average, is probably 8% unless it has just risen. Much above 2% or 3% anyway. To be honest, 3% is even a very low number, as a survey has shown that 95% of the babies in collective childcare had had some sort of coronavirus (I think it was before CoViD). Not quite sustainable on the long term.

As to anti-mask discourse, I have read about this MD and he was accused of having had an anti-mask discourse, but I don't believe implicitly anymore such discourse because I know of two SNS accounts that have been closed on such accusation and it was wrong. Even here I have been accused of being anti-vaccine while I am not at all! I like science and I try to find what I can, and have some little idea of how a research can work and be biased or not. I have advocated for wearing mask (where necessary! A French pneumologist had problems because he insisted on seeing his patients breathing without mask!) since February while all authorities and media (in France at least) pretended it was of no use (now they pretend to have said that because they didn't have enough masks, while home-made masks work very well for everyday use and there were already tutos available; and while the acuteness of mask penury in France seems to have also been organised) but now I wonder how I will be regarded? I confess I don't quite follow what American politicians say about the mask, sorry, because following what they really say is rather difficult in general (so many sentences placed out of context etc, one must find the text of the original discourse... You as an American have this chore to do and it must be terribly boring, I much sympathise towards all American electors), I even wished to see state by state the policies and successes/failures (and maybe linking it to the political colour of the governor but as you guess, I have renounced — furthermore I am still wondering the difference between the two main parties and, somehow, arrived to the lazy conclusion that it is probably not for me to understand; European politics must look just as "exotic" to you, I guess).

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In Belgium cafes and restaurants need to close again for four weeks to stop the spread of the virus :/, there's curfew too nationwide (from midnight to 5 AM). This time the virus is more widespread in Wallonia, partly due to the start of the university academic year (and you know, students usually go home during the weekend and...you know what happens next 🙀)

 

At least one knows now what to do, and there is still enough hospital capacity (especially the intensive care beds — there were thankfully enough capacity during the first wave too), but people are tired of the pandemic and that could impede with the swift response one needs to face the wave 🙀🙈

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  • 2 weeks later...

So, to update satellites outside of the states, we are at nearly 9 million cases so far and about 227,000 dead.  We are not bending any kind of curve and our government has not now nor has had any plans to mitigate the spread of the virus.  We are a disaster zone and it's really, really embarrassing. 

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