Chat about Novel Coronavirus - 2019-nCoV - COVID-19

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  • The furlough scheme announcement was a pleasant surprise. I was expecting the percentage to be cut for July and much less clarity about the future. Will have to see the detail but this should at least allow some planning and keep a fair number of people in work.

  • Yeah, I've read that since posting.
    August onwards, apparently, employers are expected to make a contribution.

  • Any indication on level of contribution? And any mention of SEISS?

    In other news the Belly Mujinga case is pretty fucking heinous.

  • None that I'm aware of.

  • So, while it's not completely clear from the article what and how it happened, this looks like manslaughter or perhaps even murder:

    A railway ticket office worker has died of coronavirus after being spat at while on duty.

    Belly Mujinga, 47, was on the concourse of Victoria station in south-west London in March when a member of the public who said he had Covid-19 spat and coughed at her and a colleague. Within days of the assault, both women fell ill with the virus.

    Mujinga, who had underlying respiratory problems, was admitted to Barnet hospital and put on a ventilator but died on 5 April, the TSSA union said.

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020­/may/12/uk-rail-worker-dies-coronavirus-­spat-belly-mujinga

    Utterly disgusting and tragic.

  • That is horrific

  • I guess that depends on who you compare against. Sure they report more of the actual dead than the uk and are way better off but they still have quite a lot more death than sweden even if one looks at the excess deaths only and they are in lockdown.


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  • It's a pity they haven't incorporated testing rates into that graphic. I wouldn't be surprised if there isn't a fairly strong link between the two metrics.

  • The most awful story. IANAL (obv) but I doubt it could be proven that the incident was the definite cause of her infection. I'm sure I've read that coughing/spitting can be a form of assault though.

  • Of course. The R rate is lower in Sweden. Comparing Brussels and Stockholm May be better. Along with economic impact. Not easy.

    Sweden’s strategy is predicated on a naturally low R rate within their communities. This due to culture, geography, etc. It’s worth remembering whilst Belgium and Sweden have similar sized populations density is also totally different. Sweden is over ten times the size.

  • My point was u cant really say that belgium is doing fine. By what measures? they are actually more or less at the same death rate as uk or not far behind at least if you compare the excess death / population.

  • It’s worth remembering whilst Belgium and Sweden have similar sized populations density is totally different. Sweden is over ten times the size.

    Just as a note on this, while you are of course correct that the density is different, just calculating overall density can be very misleading too. Sure Sweden is a lot larger, but when you look at a breakdown of the density, a large majority of the country is pretty empty:

    But regardless, Belgium is definitely more densely populated even if you just look at actual residential areas.

  • It is pretty hard to compare countries.

    Areas with lots of people close together (cities such as London/countries such as Netherlands/Belgium) and care homes do worse, that will skew your rate. Even within the UK it varies a lot with some cities being badly hit.

    NI is not densely populated and even the more deprived areas tend to have green space nearby with few large flat blocks, reducing density. That helps up here, the overall R is 0.8-0.9 with Belfast, of course, being worst hit.

    You can look at:

    Covid deaths per one million with age breakdown
    Excess deaths compared to "normal" rates with age breakdown
    Survival rate of covid cases in hospital (Germany does strangely well)
    People actually being taking into hospital rather than being left to die at home/in care homes

    And more subjective metrics such as:
    Perceived honesty (GB has just 16% in care homes? NI has 30-40%...that is a big difference)
    How well a country prepared (GB, not very well)
    Testing rates (more testing is better, but not all testing is very effective perse, it needs some intelligence behind it if you can't test everyone and you cannot)

    etc.

  • By the measure of more or less.

  • I heard that on the radio, a terrible story. Also goes to show the risks in returning people to work if very solid guidelines aren't in place.

    Where did you see a mention of a racist element? I don't remember seeing that in the coverage I saw.

  • I agree its very hard to compare country vs country or even regions vs regions but that imo goes back to the original idea that we dont really have a lot of data on this and we dont know that lockdown is the best way to go about this.

    We have been hearing its the only way for quite some time now but the only other nation that does something different (sweden) than most other nations are strangely not doing so bad (not the best either if best is determined by low death this point in time) Im not saying this is enough data to suggest anything just that it does not support the "lockdown is the only way" theory that seems to be widespread among most nations and ppl.

    Well there is bellarus to i guess and they are also doing quite well (sure), I guess its the vodka...

    Are there any more nations that are doing anything differently that also has good reliable statistics one can actually trust?

  • "We don't know that lockdown is the best way to go about this:" Well....that depends. If you don't want the virus to spread, you need a form of lockdown followed up by test and trace.

    Russia now is having a huge growth in cases, after Putin's "i'll be grand".

    We know lockdown reduces new cases. But we also know Sweden is pretty much in a voluntary lockdown, and the China lockdown was way stricter. So you also need to compare lockdown adherence (hello VE day party groups) to make it even trickier...

    Netherlands is carefully re-opening and allowing some small shops to re-open with extra safety, so perhaps they can throw up some useful data in a few weeks.

  • I shouldn't have speculated on that, it was just one of the first things I thought of. Edited.

  • There were lots of papers on N1H1 that showed different forms of lockdown don’t make a lot of difference (and that baselines in hygiene makes quite a lot). So it’s fair to ask if there is a sweet spot of liberty vs precaution vs legislation.

  • When people deliberately pass on HIV, what are they charged with?

  • and the China lockdown was way stricter.

    Some thoughts on this ... this depends on how widespread C-19 was. The appearance of extreme measures means little if it was well beyond the locked down community.

    The same applies in Europe. If the disease was widespread earlier. If it was present widely by the time the first tested cases emerged, the impacts lockdown made are less. So what contributed to the reduction in R? I guess questions around the level of immunity already present in the population are pressing.

    ( sorry for the pub science )

  • Sweden is imo in voluntary social distancing. I dont think we are in lookdown the way i think of that term. It certainly does not feel locked down to live here. But i should have made the use of "lockdown" more understandable as it basicly means nothing if we all have different version of the meaning.

    I mean strict rules. Cant go out more than to shop or pharmacy. Cant excercise than x amount of distance from your house, cant go to work, cant go to school etc.

    To my knowledge there is not data to suggest that these extreme measures work better than those more leniant guidelines that sweden have for instance. For me to live in a lockdown would be very hard (mentally), for me to live here now is basicly not really impacting my life (granted im not all that young anymore so im ok with working n going home or similar).

  • GBH, Section 20 of the 1861 Offences against the Person Act.

    I wonder if it is easier to establish beyond reasonable doubt that someone was infected with HIV by a certain person compared to Covid-19 infection.

  • The analysis of different factors across different countries is hugely difficult isn't it?

    The variation between UK and Germany is astounding to me, and I don't believe it can all be attributed to the greater level of testing at an earlier stage in Germany, or even to how they have implemented the lockdown.

    Likewise, how on earth have Japan only had 633 deaths? As I understand, they didn't even implement as broad a lockdown as the UK, and they have only had 1,725 tests per million (versus 29,566 per million in the UK).

    I am not absolving the UK government of blame by any means, but I think there are a massive range of factors beyond govenrment control that are influencing outcomes across countries.

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