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Coronavirus Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it

#1221 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-April-03, 13:56

A link to the ourworldindata.org covid vaccination dashboard - https://ourworldinda...ISR~GBR~USA~CHN
The election of Biden has done nothing to change the rate of vaccination.
The new administration is simply continuing the linear trend that began when the vaccine became available.
Today, 30% of the US population have been given "at least" one dose.

Many factors affect the extent to which a population can be considered "safe".
One thing is for sure the current flaccid pace of immunisation - with less than 5% of the world's population receiving a single dose - does not auger well for a return to normality soon.
In Australia, a truly pathetic 0.62% of the population has had one dose.

The combination of fringe anti-vaxxers, internet trolls, vaccine unavailability and general distrust is potentially lethal.

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#1222 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2021-April-03, 14:10

View Postpilowsky, on 2021-April-03, 13:56, said:

A link to the ourworldindata.org covid vaccination dashboard - https://ourworldinda...ISR~GBR~USA~CHN
The election of Biden has done nothing to change the rate of vaccination.
The new administration is simply continuing the linear trend that began when the vaccine became available.

Jan 2: 1.26% vaccinated
Jan 21: 4.50% vaccinated
19 days, 3.24% increase, i.e. 0.17% per day
April 2: 30.44% vaccinated
71 days, 25.94% increase, i.e. 0.36% per day
And on top of that, of course plenty of second shots have been given since Jan 21.

Why post stuff that's obviously wrong?
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#1223 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-April-03, 16:40

View Postcherdano, on 2021-April-03, 14:10, said:

Jan 2: 1.26% vaccinated
Jan 21: 4.50% vaccinated
19 days, 3.24% increase, i.e. 0.17% per day
April 2: 30.44% vaccinated
71 days, 25.94% increase, i.e. 0.36% per day
And on top of that, of course plenty of second shots have been given since Jan 21.

Why post stuff that's obviously wrong?


I suggest that you make a better effort to understand what has been happening with the vaccine roll-out in the USA.
Below is an annotated graph.
During this pandemic, Pfizer - the same US company responsible for ramping up production of penicillin that an Australian in Oxford invented - ramped up production of a German vaccine system that was approved for use in the USA on 13 December 2020.

Unfortunately, the RNA vaccine has major cold logistics problems.
Careful examination of the data shows that when the German-American vaccine became available and the time when more easily transportable vaccines became available, about 15% of the US population were vaccinated.
The single-shot Janssen vaccine became available after 27 Feb 2021. Now, with 2 vaccines available, the vaccinated population rose from 15 to 30%. The first time period and the second time period are roughly similar.

But, there were more vaccines available in the second time period, and the cold chain logistics problem was much smaller. So, what are the reasons for the lack of a faster vaccination rate?
Again, the Australian response is pitiful.

The lack of a Federal vaccination system may be one.
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#1224 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2021-April-04, 18:04

View Postpilowsky, on 2021-April-03, 16:40, said:

The single-shot Janssen vaccine became available after 27 Feb 2021. Now, with 2 vaccines available, the vaccinated population rose from 15 to 30%. The first time period and the second time period are roughly similar.

As a matter of fact, there were already 2 vaccines shipping and available when the J&J vaccine was given approval for emergency use. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have been available for months now in the US. So the US went from 2 to 3 vaccines available, but the J&J vaccine is still in short supply as they ramp up production.

The lack of faster vaccination rates (although last week, the US hit 4 million doses given in a single day) is due to lack of supply, even with 3 companies now supplying the US. You'll hear some state and local vaccine administrators saying they could vaccinate many more, sometimes 2 or 3+ times more people, if they had the supply. Believe it or not, those companies are also shipping vaccine to the rest of the world :o and there is a limited production supply. I personally was shocked when I heard this, shocked, shocked I tell you.
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#1225 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-April-04, 20:28

well, QED etc
non est deus ex machina; även maskiner behöver lite kärlek, J'ai toujours misé sur l'étrange gentillesse des robots.
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#1226 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-April-05, 02:52

View Postjohnu, on 2021-April-04, 18:04, said:

As a matter of fact, there were already 2 vaccines shipping and available when the J&J vaccine was given approval for emergency use. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have been available for months now in the US. So the US went from 2 to 3 vaccines available, but the J&J vaccine is still in short supply as they ramp up production.

The lack of faster vaccination rates (although last week, the US hit 4 million doses given in a single day) is due to lack of supply, even with 3 companies now supplying the US. You'll hear some state and local vaccine administrators saying they could vaccinate many more, sometimes 2 or 3+ times more people, if they had the supply. Believe it or not, those companies are also shipping vaccine to the rest of the world :o and there is a limited production supply. I personally was shocked when I heard this, shocked, shocked I tell you.


Are they making it in the US and shipping it to the rest of the world ? or simply making it in other parts of the world also ?
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#1227 User is offline   awm 

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Posted 2021-April-05, 03:02

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-April-05, 02:52, said:

Are they making it in the US and shipping it to the rest of the world ? or simply making it in other parts of the world also ?


What I've heard is that the J&J vaccine has a manufacturing plant in Europe, but they send it to the US for bottling, at which point the US refuses to ship any back to Europe. A big part of the vaccination problem in (continental) Europe is that certain countries in the vaccine supply chain (notably the US and UK) are acting very selfishly (sometimes called "vaccine nationalism") and refusing to allow companies to ship any vaccines out of the country. The fact that the EU is not doing this is helpful to the world at large (especially poorer countries not involved in vaccine manufacture) but hurts the EU itself in the short term.

Of course, the EU also has somewhat more conservative vaccine approval processes (perhaps if the Sputnik vaccine was approved the supply situation would be better?) but basically the same vaccines are approved in the EU and US and the vaccination rates are very different despite the EU generally having better organised healthcare systems.
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#1228 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2021-April-05, 04:03

View Postawm, on 2021-April-05, 03:02, said:

A big part of the vaccination problem in (continental) Europe is that certain countries in the vaccine supply chain (notably the US and UK) are acting very selfishly (sometimes called "vaccine nationalism") and refusing to allow companies to ship any vaccines out of the country.

I'm not sure about the locations of vaccine production factories. However, the US has contracts for 300 million Pfizer doses, and 300 million Moderna doses for a population of around 330 million. With a significant number of anti-vaxxers and a few with legit medical reasons not to get vaccinated, plus all the children who are not covered by the emergency use authorizations, that's more than enough vaccine to cover everybody who is eligible. Plus there is a contract for 100 million doses from J&J, and contracts from some other companies like Sanofi, GlaxoSmithKline, Novavax, and AstraZeneca which do not have emergency use authorizations yet. Those companies all seem to have 100 million dose orders except AstraZeneca which has an agreement for 300 million.

So the US has enough doses under contract to eventually vaccinate everybody with 2 different vaccines. I heard the US has a warehouse full of the AstraZeneca vaccine that it has refused to share, which is weird because AstraZeneca hasn't even applied for an emergency use authorization. But some countries have put AstraZeneca on hold because of blood clots and I haven't kept up on what's going on there.
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#1229 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-April-05, 04:06

View Postawm, on 2021-April-05, 03:02, said:

What I've heard is that the J&J vaccine has a manufacturing plant in Europe, but they send it to the US for bottling, at which point the US refuses to ship any back to Europe. A big part of the vaccination problem in (continental) Europe is that certain countries in the vaccine supply chain (notably the US and UK) are acting very selfishly (sometimes called "vaccine nationalism") and refusing to allow companies to ship any vaccines out of the country. The fact that the EU is not doing this is helpful to the world at large (especially poorer countries not involved in vaccine manufacture) but hurts the EU itself in the short term.

Of course, the EU also has somewhat more conservative vaccine approval processes (perhaps if the Sputnik vaccine was approved the supply situation would be better?) but basically the same vaccines are approved in the EU and US and the vaccination rates are very different despite the EU generally having better organised healthcare systems.


I think this is a slight mischaracterisation of the UK's position. We supply some of the contents of the Pfizer vaccine made in the EU.

The EU's faux outrage at AstraZeneca (when they have hundreds of thousands of doses they can't get into arms because people don't want them) is ridiculous. Apparently the Netherlands has only got 44% of its doses into people. It's much more efficient to have them go into UK arms where there's less resistance, and then we can let other people use the other jabs once we're done.

This article seems to summarise it reasonably fairly https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/56483766
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#1230 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2021-April-06, 13:39

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-April-05, 04:06, said:

I think this is a slight mischaracterisation of the UK's position. We supply some of the contents of the Pfizer vaccine made in the EU.

(...)

This article seems to summarise it reasonably fairly https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/56483766


I don't think this BBC article is good summary of the overall story. First of all, the EU has administered about 80% of its AZ vaccine doses overall, which seems a completely healthy ratio given that
In my understanding, it goes as follows.

  • The UK government started directly supporting the development, setting up manufacturing etc. of the "Oxford vaccine" quite early.
  • In exchange, it asked for quite a bit of control - e.g. it insisted Oxford would partner with Astrazeneca, which would set up production in the UK and Europe, rather than the US company Merck, which might have produced them in the US and made them subject to US export controls. (And this despite Astrazeneca having no experience in vaccine manufacturing.)
    As part of this licensing deal with Astrazeneca, it also insisted on preferential access to the vaccine, including (in the beginning) 100% of the doses manufactured in the UK.
  • In the EU, development and setting up of manufacturing capabilities were instead left to the companies. It was still supported by the EU - on the one hand, upfront by research grants or loan financing of which BionTech had received plenty (pre-pandemic), and of course after the fact via procurement contracts. But this setup made the EU a normal customer of Pfizer/BionTech, on equal rights with every other country.

I.e., in some sense the UK nationalised vaccine developments, in both senses of the word. So it isn't unfair to accuse it of "vaccine nationalism". But I am still not sure the EU, and the rest of the world, would have been better off otherwise - the UK wouldn't have had exclusive access to the doses produced in the UK. But manufacturing might have been slower, and Oxford would have partnered with a company charging for profit, rather than following the "no profit during the pandemic"-promise AZ made.
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#1231 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-April-06, 17:10

View Postcherdano, on 2021-April-06, 13:39, said:

I don't think this BBC article is good summary of the overall story. First of all, the EU has administered about 80% of its AZ vaccine doses overall, which seems a completely healthy ratio given that
In my understanding, it goes as follows.

  • The UK government started directly supporting the development, setting up manufacturing etc. of the "Oxford vaccine" quite early.
  • In exchange, it asked for quite a bit of control - e.g. it insisted Oxford would partner with Astrazeneca, which would set up production in the UK and Europe, rather than the US company Merck, which might have produced them in the US and made them subject to US export controls. (And this despite Astrazeneca having no experience in vaccine manufacturing.)
    As part of this licensing deal with Astrazeneca, it also insisted on preferential access to the vaccine, including (in the beginning) 100% of the doses manufactured in the UK.
  • In the EU, development and setting up of manufacturing capabilities were instead left to the companies. It was still supported by the EU - on the one hand, upfront by research grants or loan financing of which BionTech had received plenty (pre-pandemic), and of course after the fact via procurement contracts. But this setup made the EU a normal customer of Pfizer/BionTech, on equal rights with every other country.

I.e., in some sense the UK nationalised vaccine developments, in both senses of the word. So it isn't unfair to accuse it of "vaccine nationalism". But I am still not sure the EU, and the rest of the world, would have been better off otherwise - the UK wouldn't have had exclusive access to the doses produced in the UK. But manufacturing might have been slower, and Oxford would have partnered with a company charging for profit, rather than following the "no profit during the pandemic"-promise AZ made.


Is it AZ or one of the others that's being made in India ?

Also the UK negotiated penalty clauses for non supply with AZ, the EU didn't, which is why AZ was supplying the UK from Europe to meet the agreed contracts. Whether this is a good thing I'm not sure

Where are you getting that 80% EU figure from ? because France and Germany are MILES below that and they're the 2 biggest. In fact if you follow the link in the article, very few countries are over 80% so at the time of the article I very much doubt your figure (Spain, Poland and Italy are below 80% too IIRC, it's only places like Hungary, the Czech Rep and Lithuania that are over).
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#1232 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2021-April-06, 19:16

Current estimates for Germany are:-

AZ: 3109351 single dose; 2177 double dose; 2466072 stored
BNT: 6857330 single dose; 4340796 double dose; 1158049 stored
Mod: 580588 single dose; 191802 double dose; 989210 stored
(-: Zel :-)

Happy New Year everyone!
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#1233 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-April-06, 20:38

Johns Hopkins has provided an excellent Dashboard to track COVID19.
It now has a vaccine tracker as well.
http://bit.ly/JHVacTrac
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#1234 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-April-07, 02:42

Some data is now emerging about the extent of excess mortality as a result of the pandemic.
This paper was published in July 2020 in JAMA - a very trustworthy source.

They conclude - inter alia - that:

Quote



Key Points

Question: Did more all-cause deaths occur during the first months of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in the United States compared with the same months during previous years?

Findings: In this cohort study, the number of deaths due to any cause increased by approximately 122 000 from March 1 to May 30, 2020, which is 28% higher than the reported number of COVID-19 deaths.

Meaning: Official tallies of deaths due to COVID-19 underestimate the full increase in deaths associated with the pandemic in many states.

Results: There were approximately 781 000 total deaths in the United States from March 1 to May 30, 2020, representing 122 300 (95% prediction interval, 116 800-127 000) more deaths than would typically be expected at that time of year. There were 95 235 reported deaths officially attributed to COVID-19 from March 1 to May 30, 2020. The number of excess all-cause deaths was 28% higher than the official tally of COVID-19–reported deaths during that period. In several states, these deaths occurred before increases in the availability of COVID-19 diagnostic tests and were not counted in official COVID-19 death records. There was substantial variability between states in the difference between official COVID-19 deaths and the estimated burden of excess deaths.


Daniel M. Weinberger et al., Estimation of Excess Deaths Associated With the COVID-19 Pandemic in the United States, March to May 2020 (1 July 2020)

JAMA Intern Med. 2020;180(10):1336-1344. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2020.3391



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#1235 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2021-April-07, 08:22

There are some numbers from CDC that possibly take into account further analysis since that July 2020 article. See
https://www.cdc.gov/...vid19/index.htm

For March, April, May of 2020 they report the number of covid deaths as
March 7094
April 65239
May 38188
This totals
110,521

This number is more comparable to the increase in the number of deaths from any cause, but of course still noticeably smaller.

We have to allow for some ambiguity. The numbers above are called All Deaths Involving COVID-19.
There is a footnote explaining that this means
"Deaths with confirmed or presumed COVID-19, coded to ICD–10 code U07.1."
I am not familiar with code U07.1 and I intend to stay in that blissful state.


From what I have seen, the cause of death that appears on a death certificate is technically accurate but fairly often it is far from the whole story. Researchers know this and with covid I suppose they are trying their best to understand whether, say, the death is from pneumonia or from pneumonia that was brought on by covid, but it could be a tough call.


Anyway, the bottom line appears to be that yes, some deaths that are not listed as covid deaths might well be deaths that would not have occurred if the patient had not been exposed to covid.
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#1236 User is online   hrothgar 

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Posted 2021-April-07, 08:42

Financial Times had a good article discussing excess deaths today

Here's a key chart


https://twitter.com/...5995649/photo/1
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#1237 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-April-07, 08:43

View Postkenberg, on 2021-April-07, 08:22, said:


Anyway, the bottom line appears to be that yes, some deaths that are not listed as covid deaths might well be deaths that would not have occurred if the patient had not been exposed to covid.


Yes but also some of them were deaths where Covid was involved of people who were very old, frail and sick for other reasons and would have died in the next few months anyway.

In the UK excess deaths were negative in the months after that peak for that reason.

You also have the other excess deaths where other treatment is delayed, or because of mental health breakdowns (suicides and homicides). Covid/lockdown causes these, but is not on the death certificates.
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#1238 User is online   hrothgar 

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Posted 2021-April-07, 08:51

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-April-07, 08:43, said:



You also have the other excess deaths where other treatment is delayed, or because of mental health breakdowns (suicides and homicides). Covid/lockdown causes these, but is not on the death certificates.


Here in the US, the total number of suicides decreased significantly
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#1239 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-April-07, 09:07

View Posthrothgar, on 2021-April-07, 08:51, said:

Here in the US, the total number of suicides decreased significantly


We don't know here, the official figures for suicides for last year won't be published for another 6 months, but according to the relevant charities domestic violence has massively increased (and I suspect that will affect the suicide and homicide figures).
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#1240 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2021-April-07, 09:33

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-April-07, 08:43, said:

Yes but also some of them were deaths where Covid was involved of people who were very old, frail and sick for other reasons and would have died in the next few months anyway.

In the UK excess deaths were negative in the months after that peak for that reason.

You also have the other excess deaths where other treatment is delayed, or because of mental health breakdowns (suicides and homicides). Covid/lockdown causes these, but is not on the death certificates.


Yes, I agree that many of the deaths were people who did not have all that much longer to live anyway. That has relevance to how we think about the deaths but a death from covid is still a death from covid. It depends on just what we want to assess.


Not for the first time, I will mention that I am 82. We do see life a bit differently. A fair number of friends are no longer around. A recent obit of a friend went into some detail about her early life, Becky and I were impressed that anyone even knew that much about her, and decided that if we wish to have that detailed an obit maybe we need to start writing it. Hardly a thought that would have occurred to me twenty years ago.
Still, I plan on being around for a while. I am not making any twenty year plans but I am being careful about covid.

Anyway, stats are tough. Most need to be taken with a grain of salt. For example, I got my covid shot through the University of Maryland Medical System. They asked if I would be willing to respond to a brief daily email questionnaire tracking my health. Sure. So the first question is "How is your general health?" Hmmm. The answer "As 82 year old general health goes, I would say it is good" is not one of the allowed answers. So I just check good. I won't bother you with the various qualifications that I could make to that "good".


It seems clear that covid has had a very substantial impact on our health and on the death rate. The exact numbers? Well, others can argue.
Ken
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