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Covid-19 #41: Collateral Damage


Fragile Bird
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Not sure if this was mentioned yet, but the white-tailed deer in the North America are just rolling in SARS-Cov-2 creating a refuge for COVID-19 to hide within.

Unless we come up with a deer vax, this is looking like a forever disease. Which isn't the news I want to hear at this phase of the unending pandemic. 

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28 minutes ago, Centrist Simon Steele said:

Not sure if this was mentioned yet, but the white-tailed deer in the North America are just rolling in SARS-Cov-2 creating a refuge for COVID-19 to hide within.

Unless we come up with a deer vax, this is looking like a forever disease. Which isn't the news I want to hear at this phase of the unending pandemic. 

It hasn't been mentioned here, or hardly anywhere, though I think I did see mention of it in one of the main daily papers a few weeks ago?  And just sighed, because, ay-up, what you said.

Also been reading about vaccinating the Big Cats in zoos and so on. Easier to do zoo animals than deer.  Much, much, much easier.

~~~~~~~~~~~

As of nearly 3 hours ago, I am boosted.  Arm starting to hurt. Maybe a lot of my weekend will be zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzing, literally chilling and like that.  One never knows.  Partner hardly noticed getting the first two jabs, but the booster, well that knocked out a full day.

Edited by Zorral
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2 hours ago, Mudguard said:

You are correct.  The study cited in Zorral's article only compares two groups: vaccine alone to vaccine after infection.  It doesn't compare infection alone to vaccine alone.

This has been a major frustration of mine.  For some reason, many of the pro vaccine crowd seem to be under the impression that immunity acquired through recovery from infection is somehow significantly worse than immunity from a vaccine.  Generally, this hasn't been the case in the past, and I don't think there's strong evidence that this is the case now.  

Many people also find one or two studies that say something and think the issue has been settled or proven, without understanding that many of these studies, the vast majority which are not double blinded clinical trials but instead are merely retrospective or prospective cohort studies, are not designed to prove anything conclusively.  It is virtually impossible to control for all confounding factors in these types of studies. 

That's how you end up with people pointing to a couple of shit studies and concluding that masks don't work and that children don't pass on the virus to any significant degree, despite common sense telling you otherwise.  Both these things happened early on in the pandemic.  Now it's natural immunity is inferior to vaccine immunity, or worse, sometimes natural immunity is completely discounted, which makes no sense.

I've largely given up trying to explain things because it just doesn't appear to stick. 

I think the ultimate point is that vaccines are an INCREDIBLY effective way of obtaining [additional, in some cases] protection without the risk of severe COVID, long COVID or death.  Because COVID ain’t going anywhere, encouraging vaccination, by carrot or stick, is in fact a great medium term strategy - it reduces burdens on hospitals, and hopefully the long-term impact of severe COVID.  I am super grateful that anti-virals look like they will be available to further mitigate the risk profile for society (and individuals), but don’t want to rely on that as well. I know others disagree, but I don’t think lockdowns are a viable long-term or even medium term strategy, so we are looking at risk mitigation layers, which are vaccines, masks, and some capacity constraints/vaccination requirements for larger human interactions.

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2 hours ago, Mudguard said:

For some reason, many of the pro vaccine crowd seem to be under the impression that immunity acquired through recovery from infection is somehow significantly worse than immunity from a vaccine.

In fairness, I think the confusion comes from the early studies that Gorn mentioned, which showed that the immune response from vaccination was very strong initially.  Once something gets traction (and it was a good news story at the time), it is very difficult to shift it.

But, over the last 6 months, study after study has shown that the immune response from vaccination reduces a lot quicker than immunity from getting COVID.   Still, as Zabzie suggested, this doesn't change anything.  Vaccinations are still vital.  It just means that those unlucky enough to have gotten COVID, but lucky enough to have survived, can take some solace from having very good immunity.  And if they back that up with a vaccination, they should be in a very strong position.

I'm not a fan of lockdowns anymore but I think some well targeted restrictions are desirable.  If things worked well, we should be keeping track of how people are getting infected.  So if cases are putting pressure on hospitals and we see that a high percentage of cases are happening in nightclubs, I would be happy with closing them down.  If a high proportion are getting infected at work, get more people to work from home.  Most activities can be performed quite safely, especially if you put in certain mitigations (like good ventiliation, vaccine checks and masking), so I don't see the need for real lockdowns anymore.  That doesn't mean everything needs to be opened though.

Delaying restrictions just means that more things have to close when you finally act.

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1 hour ago, Padraig said:

But, over the last 6 months, study after study has shown that the immune response from vaccination reduces a lot quicker than immunity from getting COVID.   Still, as Zabzie suggested, this doesn't change anything.  Vaccinations are still vital.

Be interesting to see what the drop-off in neutralising antibodies is after the 3rd dose. I've seen it suggested that if we'd had years to develop these vaccines we may have gone with a 3 shot regimen from the start. If the data is correct and we get the reported increase in neutralising antibody titres outside of the studies, we may be able to drag out further shots for a year or more - which would make vaccine compliance significantly easier. Of course this all relys on not getting any more escape mutants, hell in the abscence of Delta we probably would've been on a >1 year booster in any case.

On that note the latest data on AY.4.2 (UK delta+) seems to suggest a very very slight transmission advantage (though interestingly it isn't getting a foothold elsewhere in the world), but the good news is there's no evidence of increased antibody evasion in studies using any of the vaccines, is expected to be dominant in the UK by the end of the year on current trends.

Edited by Impmk2
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1 hour ago, Impmk2 said:

Be interesting to see what the drop-off in neutralising antibodies is after the 3rd dose. I've seen it suggested that if we'd had years to develop these vaccines we may have gone with a 3 shot regimen from the start. If the data is correct and we get the reported increase in neutralising antibody titres outside of the studies, we may be able to drag out further shots for a year or more - which would make vaccine compliance significantly easier. Of course this all relys on not getting any more escape mutants, hell in the abscence of Delta we probably would've been on a >1 year booster in any case.

On that note the latest data on AY.4.2 (UK delta+) seems to suggest a very very slight transmission advantage (though interestingly it isn't getting a foothold elsewhere in the world), but the good news is there's no evidence of increased antibody evasion in studies using any of the vaccines, is expected to be dominant in the UK by the end of the year on current trends.

Getting a 3rd shot 4 months after the 2nd like Vienna is now starting to offer everyone(and other countries with low uptake have already started doing before) does seem like a 3 shot approach anyway. I mean 4 months is not long outside of a crisis.

The rest of the country usually follows Vienna after complaining that the actions of the regional government are too extreme until shit hits the fan so I guess I will have the option for a booster soon.

Our puppet chancellor said that he will greenlight a country wide lockdown for the unvaccinated on Sunday. Probably needs to talk with his party leader and de facto boss first (our former chancellor Kurz).

 

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8 hours ago, Centrist Simon Steele said:

Not sure if this was mentioned yet, but the white-tailed deer in the North America are just rolling in SARS-Cov-2 creating a refuge for COVID-19 to hide within.

Unless we come up with a deer vax, this is looking like a forever disease. Which isn't the news I want to hear at this phase of the unending pandemic. 

I've been in the acceptance stage of grief for several months now.

Covid will become a seasonal infection, like the flu. Instead of flu season, we'll have a combined Covid+flu season. Instead of couple of hundred thousand deaths annually, we'll have a few million. The sane among us will be getting annual booster shots, the others... will not. The health care systems in rich countries will adjust to the new seasonal extremes in demand, the health care systems in poor countries... will not.

Handshakes will disappear as a method of greeting, wearing of masks will become normalized in certain social situations. There'll probably be a bunch of other changes in society, some major, some subtle. People will slowly become adjusted to the newly reduced average human lifespan.

Life will go on.

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So about a year ago I had to mute a friend on Facebook for sharing anti vaccine Covid misinformation. It frustrates me a lot because she is such a nice person. Seriously, she’s great. She ran a horse rescue organization. 
 

Anyway, today she died of Covid after weeks in the ICU. This was totally preventable, but instead she was brainwashed and paid for it with her life. I am so exhausted by the awfulness of it all

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7 hours ago, Luzifer's right hand said:

Getting a 3rd shot 4 months after the 2nd like Vienna is now starting to offer everyone(and other countries with low uptake have already started doing before) does seem like a 3 shot approach anyway. I mean 4 months is not long outside of a crisis.

The rest of the country usually follows Vienna after complaining that the actions of the regional government are too extreme until shit hits the fan so I guess I will have the option for a booster soon.

Our puppet chancellor said that he will greenlight a country wide lockdown for the unvaccinated on Sunday. Probably needs to talk with his party leader and de facto boss first (our former chancellor Kurz).

 

Let's be honest with yourself. General lockdowns are what are needed now and we will probably hear about it before the weekend ends. Netherlands is already implementing a partial one. The question is whether people will follow through after months and months of hammering that vaccines will end the pandemic and they will set you free (translate that to german). Your former chancellor almost said it so and I seethed.

This is March 2020 all over again. It will not happen here! India, Russia, Romania situations are not applicable here because reasons. Even after seeing UK with its high sustained transmission and non-negligible death rate, policymakers preferred to blame more than often some strawman. Not even Israel moved them. I just went through the worldmeter and all countries are following similar trajectories. The question for highly vaccinated countries is how bad it will be for them. That Germany is in trouble is really unexpected, meaning that we all underestimated Delta and overestimated the vaccines.

 

Edited by rotting sea cow
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18 hours ago, Paxter said:

I would still argue that vaccination has been pretty great at harm reduction, it just isn't enough on its own to stop intolerable pressure on health systems and certainly not enough to end the pandemic. Perhaps that will change as population-level vacc rates increase, but I'm not convinced. 

Let's take Germany as an example. If somehow they will have hit the 80% vaccination rate the calls for a "Freedom Day" would have been louder and the government would have give in, specially if that percentage was hit before the elections. How would have had influenced this wave? Should have hit sooner or later?

18 hours ago, JoannaL said:

Its quite easy to calculate. If everyone gets the virus till May (and most experts think so, if we dont go into lockdown, and perhaps even then, its delta, last winter it was the wildtyp) then thats 3 mio  unvaccinated adults older than 60 who will get infected. Lets say of these 3 % need medical care and half of these die, than thats 45000 deaths (just out of stupidity). you can add to that the ones with waning vaccination protection because old age, and because they didnt get the booster in time

Will everybody get it? It will depend who are those unvaccinated 60+ yo. Are they old germans living in (semi) quarantine since they retired? Many towns look exactly like that. Or are they part of reunited families of late comers living in cramped flats and do not speak a word of German?

That's make a huge difference as the late sort of people haven't been properly reached. While in the first type of people are doing it by choice.

 

 

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1 hour ago, rotting sea cow said:

Let's be honest with yourself. General lockdowns are what are needed now and we will probably hear about it before the weekend ends. Netherlands is already implementing a partial one. The question is whether people will follow through after months and months of hammering that vaccines will end the pandemic and they will set you free (translate that to german). Your former chancellor almost said it so and I seethed.

This is March 2020 all over again. It will not happen here! India, Russia, Romania situations are not applicable here because reasons. Even after seeing UK with its high sustained transmission and non-negligible death rate, policymakers preferred to blame more than often some strawman. Not even Israel moved them. I just went through the worldmeter and all countries are following similar trajectories. The question for highly vaccinated countries is how bad it will be for them. That Germany is in trouble is really unexpected, meaning that we all underestimated Delta and overestimated the vaccines.

 

You are preaching to the choir.

The ÖVP claimed at least 9 times that the pandemie is over.

Our minister of finance and one of the closest allies of our former and still defacto chancellor (Putin style).

https://twitter.com/BFaast/status/1456178292923506690?s=20

German language countries have the worst vaccination rate in western European. Our right is nearly as bad as the Repuplicans. Germany was only a bit better than Austria and Switzerland the last time I looked.

 

Edited by Luzifer's right hand
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2 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

That Germany is in trouble is really unexpected, meaning that we all underestimated Delta and overestimated the vaccines.

Not fully unexpected, considering Germany had been spared most of the damages until then, which means a lot of people, specially vulnerable ones, specially unvaccinated vulernable ones, haven't been exposed to covid at all. Obviously, if the unvaccinated are as numerous, if restrictions are lifted and covid spreads, it's going to make things very difficult for the healthcare system.

On the other hand, indeed, it's out of question to bring back massive measures that will hit the whole population. Vaccinated people are never going to accept to sacrifice their life once again for a bunch of unvaxxed fools. Expect them to begin truly pissed off - as in "just as pissed off as the anti-measures have been", except they're far more numerous. Current trend of excluding tests from covid passes and then going for full lockdown for unvaccinated people are, in my opinion, the most logical and the most acceptable for the majority of the population. That of mandatory vaccination - the best option by far, but the one our leaders are too cowardly to take, because reasons.

 

7 hours ago, Gorn said:

Covid will become a seasonal infection, like the flu. Instead of flu season, we'll have a combined Covid+flu season. Instead of couple of hundred thousand deaths annually, we'll have a few million. The sane among us will be getting annual booster shots, the others... will not. The health care systems in rich countries will adjust to the new seasonal extremes in demand, the health care systems in poor countries... will not.

Handshakes will disappear as a method of greeting, wearing of masks will become normalized in certain social situations. There'll probably be a bunch of other changes in society, some major, some subtle. People will slowly become adjusted to the newly reduced average human lifespan.

I don't see any reason for yearly covid shots. It doesn't mutate as fast as flu and doesn't evade vaccines as fast either. As for deaths, when everyone will have been exposed to covid and with mass vaccinations, deaths will go down. I'm not sure yearly covid deaths will be higher than yearly flu deaths, actually, they might well be lower than flu deaths of the past. I don't even see any reason for handshakes to fully disappear, just like current levels of systematic handwashing everywhere might not be kept forever, it's been obvious for a long time that infections are mostly airborne and fomites are a tiny part of them; handwashing is good of course, but for other reasons than covid.

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20 minutes ago, Clueless Northman said:

Vaccinated people are never going to accept to sacrifice their life once again for a bunch of unvaxxed fools.

I don’t think that’s necessarily true - depends on the country / jurisdiction. The Netherlands has just brought in partial closures of businesses for all people and I’m sure it will be accepted by the majority of people. 

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13 minutes ago, Paxter said:

I don’t think that’s necessarily true - depends on the country / jurisdiction. The Netherlands has just brought in partial closures of businesses for all people and I’m sure it will be accepted by the majority of people. 

There have been violent clashes with the police. 

Anyway I will accept a lockdown as will most people I know that got vaccinated asap for their own good and the greater good.

They rest won't I suspect. 

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9 minutes ago, Luzifer's right hand said:

There have been violent clashes with the police. 

Anyway I will accept a lockdown as will most people I know that got vaccinated asap for their own good and the greater good.

They rest won't I suspect. 

As I said - the majority of people. 

And in the case of The Netherlands, quite a large majority of adults are vaccinated. Unfortunately not enough to stave off this latest surge in cases.

 

Edited by Paxter
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26 minutes ago, Paxter said:

As I said - the majority of people. 

And in the case of The Netherlands, quite a large majority of adults are vaccinated. Unfortunately not enough to stave off this latest surge in cases.

 

Hopefully.

At least they have a police force willing to clash with the anti-measure people.

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1 hour ago, Paxter said:

As I said - the majority of people. 

I doubt that. 90% of the people I see on the streets don't give two figs about the pandemic anymore or whether you are or not vaccinated or even if you are using masks. Despite rising numbers (the reported number of cases is a delayed statistic) people are packing restaurants and other venues. I'm turning down invitations and my workplace is still firm about a gathering planed for two weeks more in a restaurant which I won't go regardless that we have 100% vax rate for the staff. 

 

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16 minutes ago, rotting sea cow said:

I doubt that. 90% of the people I see on the streets don't give two figs about the pandemic anymore or whether you are or not vaccinated or even if you are using masks. Despite rising numbers (the reported number of cases is a delayed statistic) people are packing restaurants and other venues. I'm turning down invitations and my workplace is still firm about a gathering planed for two weeks more in a restaurant which I won't go regardless that we have 100% vax rate for the staff. 

Well let’s see what happens. I think most Dutch people will respect the new rules reasonably well and hopefully it has some sort of circuit breaker effect. 

A similar thing happened in Alberta over the summer and they have moved past their peak cases now, albeit that it was a tragic process.

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52 minutes ago, rotting sea cow said:

I doubt that. 90% of the people I see on the streets don't give two figs about the pandemic anymore or whether you are or not vaccinated or even if you are using masks. Despite rising numbers (the reported number of cases is a delayed statistic) people are packing restaurants and other venues. I'm turning down invitations and my workplace is still firm about a gathering planed for two weeks more in a restaurant which I won't go regardless that we have 100% vax rate for the staff. 

 

I also doubt that. I, myself, doubly vaccinated and always masked in public, always willing to adhere to rules, will get EXTREMELY angry, if they close the schools again, because some idiots cannot be bothered to get the vaccine. And I am a very mild mannered person..., others are not. A full lockdown because the unvaccinated are idiots and the politicians are cowards will lead to unrest.

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