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Fragile Bird

Covid-19 #40: Hoping for Endings

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15 minutes ago, RhaenysBee said:

I haven’t posted here in a while but I just had a covid test done so why not check in. 

we are steadily in the 800ish cases per day realm now. No restrictions, though it’s recommended to wear a mask on public transport and indoor public spaces. Many schools made it mandatory on their own authority as well. Weirdly, though logically, infection rate climbs very very slowly in the city, sewage covid particle levels have been stagnating here for weeks. In turn boarder counties see a more rapid surge of cases, which is no wonder as everywhere around, shit’s getting serious. So much so that we are taking over Romanian covid patients because their hospitals are at 150% capacity and frankly that’s frightening. (That they have such a hard hitting delta wave, not that we are taking over patients, that’s only decent). Vaccination rate barely scrapes 60%.

Well if it is truly other viruses blocking Covid-19 I suspect that things won't be fun in low vax countries like ours once the cold wave has passed...

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16 minutes ago, Luzifer's right hand said:

Well if it is truly other viruses blocking Covid-19 I suspect that things won't be fun in low vax countries like ours once the cold wave has passed...

The low infection rate in the city here could be down to a much higher vaccination rate than in the countryside. At least that’s my logic. But everything’s still so uncertain with covid. 

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4 hours ago, Luzifer's right hand said:

Well if it is truly other viruses blocking Covid-19 I suspect that things won't be fun in low vax countries like ours once the cold wave has passed...

There might be other factors too, like people who tend to be superspreaders are now immune, weather patterns, air quality, who knows, but I share your concern. Practically whole eastern Europe is having exponentially rising cases and deaths. Romania looks very bad. The Baltic countries too. Ukraine, Russia, Bulgaria. Even Poland and Hungary. I think it's a matter of time before cases start to rise again in western Europe as people stopped really taking care and winter is coming.

 

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3 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

I think it's a matter of time before cases start to rise again in western Europe as people stopped really taking care and winter is coming.

I think that is already starting to happen.  Spain, France and Italy still look fine but places like Denmark, Netherlands, Ireland are showing signs of a new bad trend.

And while Hungary's overall case numbers are still ok, fatalities are bad enough now.  Around 75 people dieing every week for a country the size of Hungary is not good.  Western Europe looks much more secure on that metric.  Vaccination matters.  But yes, the bordering countries with Hungary are very bad.

https://reopen.europa.eu/en

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2 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Congratulations to Ivermectin, apparently, for having won a Nobel Peace price, according to ignorant anti-vaxxers and unhinged politicians.

Nobel Peace Prize in 2015.

Noble Peace Prize in 2021.

:P

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3 hours ago, Padraig said:

I think that is already starting to happen.  Spain, France and Italy still look fine but places like Denmark, Netherlands, Ireland are showing signs of a new bad trend.

And while Hungary's overall case numbers are still ok, fatalities are bad enough now.  Around 75 people dieing every week for a country the size of Hungary is not good.  Western Europe looks much more secure on that metric.  Vaccination matters.  But yes, the bordering countries with Hungary are very bad.

https://reopen.europa.eu/en

Meanwhile in Serbia, which has a lower population than Hungary, we are averaging around 52 deaths per day. The vaccination rate is around 50% and stagnating and the government is doing absolutely nothing. Everything is open and the young are going out partying and infecting their parents. My best friend’s sister got covid from her college student son last week and she is now in a hospital on a ventilator. Did I mention that the survival rate of ventilator patients in Serbia is an abysmal 10-20%? I feal so angry, uh. 

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4 hours ago, Padraig said:

I think that is already starting to happen.  Spain, France and Italy still look fine but places like Denmark, Netherlands, Ireland are showing signs of a new bad trend.

And while Hungary's overall case numbers are still ok, fatalities are bad enough now.  Around 75 people dieing every week for a country the size of Hungary is not good.  Western Europe looks much more secure on that metric.  Vaccination matters.  But yes, the bordering countries with Hungary are very bad.

https://reopen.europa.eu/en

Not to criticize you, it just seems to me that such a statement is mostly a function of whichever metric you use. If you compare Hungary you western Europe, then yes - Hungary is doing less than ok. However, keep in mind that western Europe is one of richest parts of the world, with great healthcare and educated population who are willing to vaccinate in large percentage - and with effective vaccines, nonetheless. Compared to western Europe, almost everyone is doing poorly.

Compared to rest of the world (or even rest of Europe), Hungary is much above average. It has 61% vaccinated population (57 for Europe, 47 for world), presumably it has many more vaccines for unvaccinated who change their minds, and while it does have slight increase in number of both cases and fatalities, it's still below European average. And waaaay below horrific wave it suffered during April this year.

There are much more worrisome countries, even as far as only Europe is concerned. Both Serbia (mnedel's post above) and Romania have astronomically high rise in number of new cases. And while Bulgaria is not there yet, with only 20% of vaccinated population, I fear it's just a matter of time.
 

Edited by Knight Of Winter

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1 hour ago, mnedel said:

Meanwhile in Serbia, which has a lower population than Hungary, we are averaging around 52 deaths per day. The vaccination rate is around 50% and stagnating and the government is doing absolutely nothing. Everything is open and the young are going out partying and infecting their parents. My best friend’s sister got covid from her college student son last week and she is now in a hospital on a ventilator. Did I mention that the survival rate of ventilator patients in Serbia is an abysmal 10-20%? I feal so angry, uh. 

holy crap! I feel sorry for your friend. What happened in Serbia? Earlier this year, they had one of the best access to vaccines in the world. There was even vaccine tourism when vaccines were scarce in Europe. I guess people got complacent.

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It's shocking how rapidly Impfneid (vaccination envy) can turn into Impfmüdigkeit (vaccination fatigue). Happened in Germany, too, when vaccine wasn't scarce / rationed any more...

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I am confused by an opinion piece published in one of the papers here today, by an immunocompromised individual, who says his civil rights are abrogated by vaccination mandates for entertainment venues.  He can't get vaccinated so he's locked out.

This is where my confusion comes in.  Immunocompromised, he's all the more likely to contract covid-19 w/o the protection of vaccination and have it critically, with much higher chances of dying from it.  He can also pass it on to others.

It's rotten he can't get vaccinated, and would if he could, but why is he thinking he won't be in danger if he goes into concert hall or (literally) underground comedy club w/o vaccination?

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I guess it's his right to put himself in danger? Though that is very narrow thinking, since if he exposes himself to the virus, chances are he gets sick enough to require hospitalisation and probably ICU, so he risks taking up a limited health resource simply for the pleasure of  going to a club / concert. Then again, everyone who goes out and gets blind drunk is doing the same and most countries seem to shrug and accept that's just a thing that happens.

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2 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

holy crap! I feel sorry for your friend. What happened in Serbia? Earlier this year, they had one of the best access to vaccines in the world. There was even vaccine tourism when vaccines were scarce in Europe. I guess people got complacent.

Thanks.

Vaccines are widely available, all except Moderna, but people are just not taking them.  All who wanted have already been vaccinated and the rest are refusing the shot. Last few decades we had a succession of governments that were more and more corrupt and now the people are very mistrustful. Also, there is a portion of the populace that doesn’t trust anything coming from USA or EU since the west is out to get us apparently. The youths just think that covid is no danger to them and don’t care. Lots of misinformation in the media too.
We also had almost no measures in place for months (and the few we do have are not enforced) and now this is the consequence. The elections are coming early next year and our president doesn’t want to lose votes since curfews, vaccination passes and such were unpopular. The people that support measures and listen to the medical professionals are people who won’t be voting for him anyway. Think of him as a Serbian mini-Tramp. He was also embroiled in scandals recently; his brother is suspected in working with drug dealers and a close associate in conducting illegal arms sales so he needs all the votes he can get. Various industrial sectors also lobbied for no restrictions because economy. Who cares that people are dying in droves from covid and delay in treatment of other maladies. 
And for vaccine tourism, it’s still happening since Serbians are not taking vaccines so we have a surplus. It’s funny, the whole summer Indians were coming in large number to get a jab and sit out the isolation period in Serbia before traveling to other countries. And quarantine wasn’t really enforced, you could see crowds of Indians around all major landmarks. And this was at the time when the rest of the world was limiting travel to/from India to try and slow the delta.
 

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4 hours ago, Knight Of Winter said:

Compared to rest of the world (or even rest of Europe), Hungary is much above average. It has 61% vaccinated population (57 for Europe, 47 for world), presumably it has many more vaccines for unvaccinated who change their minds, and while it does have slight increase in number of both cases and fatalities, it's still below European average. And waaaay below horrific wave it suffered during April this year.

Fair.  I didn't mean to pick on Hungary.  As you say, there are countries that are doing much worse.  But RhaenysBee brought it up just before and I looked it up the stats.

Hungary is interesting because for months we were all surprised about how well it was doing (one of the best in Europe).  It is still better than most but it has declined.   Although, even its decline has been relatively moderately paced.

Anyhow, its all relative.  How do you define good?  Better than peak COVID?  How do you define bad?  When numbers start increasing again?

The worst countries in the world right now are in the greater Caribbean area.  And Bulgaria/Romania.

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54 minutes ago, Padraig said:

The worst countries in the world right now are in the greater Caribbean area.  And Bulgaria/Romania.

Not Russia?

ETA: Actually, the US and Mexico don't look pretty compared to other countries either right now (at least in terms of fatalities per capita). They only look half-decent on a time series as they are coming off their latest peaks. 

Edited by Paxter

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We now finally have our official opening plan for the second week of November.  

  • Vaccination or weekly negative covid test required.
  • Unvaccinated must wear a face covering at all times in the office (don't know how that will be enforced)
  • Face coverings for vaccinated depend on local regulations.
  • Weekly testing provided.  Another vaccination clinic to be provided.
  • Offering extra amenities like free breakfast/lunch/snacks, concierge dry cleaning and errand running, etc. for all employees.

I've been going in some.  I don't think much will change in my life.  Also clients are getting bolder.  I have one client who wants to get together in person for a whiteboarding session.  It's ABSOLUTELY the right answer for the situation, even though it would have been unthinkable 6 months ago.

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46 minutes ago, Mlle. Zabzie said:

 

  • Unvaccinated must wear a face covering at all times in the office (don't know how that will be enforced)
  • Offering extra amenities like free breakfast/lunch/snacks, concierge dry cleaning and errand running, etc. for all employees.

It's difficult to enforce, which has been one of my side jobs for a while now. Our hard deadline at the hospital for a vaccine mandate doesn't begin for a few more weeks, but I think most people who are going to get the shot already have. Masks have already been mandated for a while, regardless of one's status. That said, more people than not do not wear them at their desks/offices/non-shared work spaces. It's a problem because people will walk up to them, and it's common for the person to not put their mask on while also being within six feet of the other person. People are also not social distancing at all, and it's common to see people standing two feet apart with their masks down which really defeats the purpose.

I kept the second line in there because what I find most troubling is the cafeteria. There are three departments in our wing. Two have little to no face to face contact with patients, but the other has a ton, including those who may be infected (this includes nurses and social workers who make in-home visits). Everyone shares the same eating space, and local restaurants constantly bring in good free food. This results in a ton of people being in a space maybe half the size of a basketball court, and almost nobody wears a mask there because they're eating (I avoid the place like the plague and always wear a mask when I need to go in it). People also take their breaks there because they can get away without wearing masks in there. 

Long story short is enforcement is extremely hard, and offering free food in shared spaces may be counterproductive. I'd advise planning around these kinds of potential problems before the rubber hits the road.

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33 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

It's difficult to enforce, which has been one of my side jobs for a while now. Our hard deadline at the hospital for a vaccine mandate doesn't begin for a few more weeks, but I think most people who are going to get the shot already have. Masks have already been mandated for a while, regardless of one's status. That said, more people than not do not wear them at their desks/offices/non-shared work spaces. It's a problem because people will walk up to them, and it's common for the person to not put their mask on while also being within six feet of the other person. People are also not social distancing at all, and it's common to see people standing two feet apart with their masks down which really defeats the purpose.

I kept the second line in there because what I find most troubling is the cafeteria. There are three departments in our wing. Two have little to no face to face contact with patients, but the other has a ton, including those who may be infected (this includes nurses and social workers who make in-home visits). Everyone shares the same eating space, and local restaurants constantly bring in good free food. This results in a ton of people being in a space maybe half the size of a basketball court, and almost nobody wears a mask there because they're eating (I avoid the place like the plague and always wear a mask when I need to go in it). People also take their breaks there because they can get away without wearing masks in there. 

Long story short is enforcement is extremely hard, and offering free food in shared spaces may be counterproductive. I'd advise planning around these kinds of potential problems before the rubber hits the road.

All the food is takeaway, so that helps.  But I hear you.

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13 hours ago, Prue said:

It's shocking how rapidly Impfneid (vaccination envy) can turn into Impfmüdigkeit (vaccination fatigue). Happened in Germany, too, when vaccine wasn't scarce / rationed any more...

That was completely expected. There were always people who would try to get a vaccine, any vaccine, as fast as possible. Even if it meant plain corruption.

Others however, would have a wait and see attitude. Others would be afraid, would hesitate, procrastinate or wouldn't care. And others will oppose.

 

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17 hours ago, Paxter said:

Not Russia?

True. Based on "has it ever been worse", Russia would definitely stand out badly right now.  Although, you should look at the fatality time series for Romania.  It is beyond scary.  That really shouldn't happen in a country with 19m people and access to vaccinations.

The thing with Russia (and the US) is that its sheer scale means that it will never look "the worst" on a per capita basis but it is also unfair to look at sheer volumes.  Both are almost inevitably going to be in the top 10 for the latter.  Of course, they are not just in the top 10, they are 2 and 1 respectively.

I see also that Moderna is a step closer to getting approval in the US for boosters.   Its a 3 step process though ironically.

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/expect-fda-panel-boosters-moderna-johnson-johnson-vaccines/story?id=80561477

Quote

An independent Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Thursday voted unanimously to authorize Moderna Covid-19 vaccine boosters for Americans 65 and older, anyone 18 and older with underlying conditions and those frequently exposed to the virus.

...

The first authorization, which will come from the FDA, is expected within days of the independent panel's non-binding vote.

Then, the question goes to CDC's independent advisory panel of experts. That panel has scheduled a meeting for next Wednesday and Thursday to discuss boosters for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson. Those outside experts will weigh in with their recommendations, which are also non-binding.

Once that happens, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky must sign off, which typically happens within 24 hours of the panel's recommendations. That decision is expected by Friday, Oct. 22, at the earliest.

 

Edited by Padraig

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