R51 – Ministerial Report from the SoS for Health and Social Care - Coronavirus Watch

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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
Breaking News: diseases spread. How much do we know about this virus? Do we know that upon infection patients immediately present with fever? If not then existing measures to try to limit spread may not be sufficient. Do we know that all those affected have been screened before leaving the city? Well we can quite confidently say not given screening of everyone leaving has only very recently started. Even with screening can we know for certain that everybody leaving the city is screened? No, unless there is a wall around the city which I'm pretty sure there isn't.

If we want to take an alarmist approach to this should we not simply shut down the airports entirely? Maybe ban anybody that has visited an country that has known cases from flying to the UK? And we want to base our assumptions on SARS we should definitely be banning entry because it had an incubation period of 4-6 days and was observed to be as long as 14 and a mean incubation period of 5 days. Oh, wait, that is massively OTT, global cases in the initial outbreak 8273 of which only 612 were outside Greater China. If you want to take the line that China isn't being open would you like to remind us how many months it took for China to be open about SARS.

We also have the experts saying that their knowledge suggests it is not as serious as SARS and when you look in detail at the 1700 figure it is not contradicting the official figure, is the official figure confirmed cases only? If so you have that great big incubation period. When you look closer at the 1700 figure you see a 95% CI of 427-4471 and assumes that there is a total of a 10 day lag between infection and detection, in other words there were an estimated 1700 cases a week with the confirmed figure being only 200 because most cases haven't been confirmed yet, in fact most cases probably haven't even started developing symptoms yet

You also cite widespread panic and the actions presented in the statement are exactly the sort of things that cause panic given they give credibility to the idea that we are at any real risk
If we're taking your approach of taking it to the extremes, then we can very well also just say we should do nothing about anything ever. It is always about striking a balance between health safety and other factors such as business interests.

China covered it up for 3 months in the case of SARS. What is your point? This doesn't help your argument.

I also don't see why you think your point regarding the delay between infection and detection is helping you in any way. That is ultimately an unfalsifiable hypothesis, because you can always have it unconfirmed, no matter how long you have been infected, and no matter how many symptoms you have shown. In fact, you can remain unconfirmed even after you die.

The above 2 points only show that the actual situation is at least 10 times worse than what is currently being reported.

By your logic, I suppose you believe the initial inaction against HIV was the most proper thing to do, then? It was confined to a certain community, it takes years to show any symptoms, and nobody knew how to detect or treat it.

And how about ebola? Nobody has caught it in the UK, so does it mean Britain should've acted like it didn't happen?

---

Regarding your numbers - it is quite dishonest that you use the word "Greater China" to attempt to hide its impact worldwide. The territories with Greater China all have a hard border just like there is one between the UK and China. In fact, it is more difficult for people within Greater China to travel between the regions, then travels between the UK and 3 of the 4.

But let's put your non-existent point aside, and talk about the numbers. So we should just not consider those people who died people?
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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by 04MR17)
What's amusing, is the idea that government statements to satisfy one opposition party also triggers the other. Keep up the good work folks! :lol:
I don't find it amusing at all that people are dying and someone is practically saying that we shouldn't even do anything about it, because he who avoided statistics believes he's more professional than researchers at Imperial College London, and other non-arguments I don't quite understand.
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Baron of Sealand
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As someone above attempts to paint hundreds of deaths in 2003 being nothing of concern at all, this just shows up:

https://nypost.com/2020/01/20/britis...e-coronavirus/

British tourist feared to be victim of deadly new Chinese coronavirus

By Jackie SaloJanuary 20, 2020

A British tourist is feared to have contracted the mysterious coronavirus that’s sweeping Asia after he was hospitalized on a trip to Thailand, according to a report.

Ash Shorley, 32, was admitted in critical condition to a Phuket hospital, where he’s being treated for pneumonia-like lung infections, the Sun reported.


Doctors believe his symptoms are consistent with the new Chinese coronavirus, which has killed three patients and infected hundreds of others.

“They think he is the first Western victim of the Chinese flu,” his father, Chris, told the outlet. “We are waiting on tests.”

Shorley — who had been traveling around Southeast Asia — became ill and his lungs collapsed on Koh Phi Phi island, the outlet reported.

He was transported on a special seaplane to the hospital because his lung damage prevented travel at higher altitudes, the report said.

“He wasn’t able to go above a certain altitude because his lungs would pop,” his mom, Julie, told the Sun. “They managed to get him here and if it wasn’t for the doctors’ expertise, he would be dead by now.”

While at the hospital, Shorley had around 70 ounces of liquid drained from his lungs, according to the report.

Chris Shorley said doctors informed him that his son was two days away from death when he arrived at the hospital.

“If he wasn’t so fit and healthy before, he wouldn’t be with us now,” his father told the Sun.


His family is urging travelers in Asia to take precautions.

“Anyone traveling to Asia, I would say to you, get a mask,” his father said. “Everyone here is wearing masks, there are people coughing everywhere.”

The SARS-like outbreak is believed to have originated in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, where 198 cases have been recorded.

The country has confirmed a total of 217 cases of the mysterious illness — with five patients in the capital city, Beijing, and 14 in Guangdong, state broadcaster CCTV reported.

Officials said the epidemic has spread to Thailand and Japan with the cases involving recent travel from China.
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Baron of Sealand
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As the member of an opposition party up there debating whether we should take any action to safeguard public health, the US has already taken action, as the CDC seems certain that it will reach the United States.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
If we're taking your approach of taking it to the extremes, then we can very well also just say we should do nothing about anything ever. It is always about striking a balance between health safety and other factors such as business interests.

China covered it up for 3 months in the case of SARS. What is your point? This doesn't help your argument.

I also don't see why you think your point regarding the delay between infection and detection is helping you in any way. That is ultimately an unfalsifiable hypothesis, because you can always have it unconfirmed, no matter how long you have been infected, and no matter how many symptoms you have shown. In fact, you can remain unconfirmed even after you die.

The above 2 points only show that the actual situation is at least 10 times worse than what is currently being reported.

By your logic, I suppose you believe the initial inaction against HIV was the most proper thing to do, then? It was confined to a certain community, it takes years to show any symptoms, and nobody knew how to detect or treat it.

And how about ebola? Nobody has caught it in the UK, so does it mean Britain should've acted like it didn't happen?

---

Regarding your numbers - it is quite dishonest that you use the word "Greater China" to attempt to hide its impact worldwide. The territories with Greater China all have a hard border just like there is one between the UK and China. In fact, it is more difficult for people within Greater China to travel between the regions, then travels between the UK and 3 of the 4.

But let's put your non-existent point aside, and talk about the numbers. So we should just not consider those people who died people?
You desire to strike a balance and yet your approach is to take greater steps than were taken for either SARS or MERS simply because this disease exists; SARS, a disease that killed 10% of those infected, and MERS a disease that killed 38% of those infected, neither warranted significant action at UK airports, and now you want to impose screening for a new disease that based on the most recent information kills 1.5%.

China covered up SARS for 3 months, it appears to have come forward immediately with this one, the first case outside China wasn't three months before China even admitted they had cases, as with SARS, it is three weeks after. I suppose the alternative is that China has known about it since October and it just hadn't spread for all those months and then it heard the Chinese were accepting it existed and this new virus though "ooo, now the Chinese have said we exist we'd better start infecting people." No. The spread is inconsistent with a massive coverup. And of course your proof of a coverup is that the Chinese government aren't counting cases that haven't presented with any symptoms yet, because the Chinese state is incapable of identifying asymptomatic patients it is guilty of a coverup.

And yes, the initial inaction over HIV was the correct thing to do, if in the face of any new disease (or if we want to talk about ebola local outbreak of an old one) we introduce screening in airports we may as well just screen everybody. Every year there are plague cases in the US, should we have some form of screening on arrival from the US just in case somebody is carrying plague? No, that's completely unnecessary

How did the UK react to Ebola? Screening for those at high risk, i.e. those that were treating ebola victims and working in ebola communities, everybody else travelling from the region were asked to self refer or had a screening risk assessment carried out by telephone after arrival. There is an ongoing outbreak right now, ~4000 cases, over half fatal. What has the response of the government been? Are you now going to demand we screen everybody arriving in the UK from DR Congo and parts of Uganda? No, because that would be disproportionate.

TB, there's another one, Common in most of Africa and Asia, especially sub saharan Africa, don't screen for that, don't even vaccinate for it anymore in a lot of the country, prognosis is pretty good in the developed world, but you're still looking at a 6 month treatment course.

You might also want to check the reasons the CDC are choosing to screen: JFK and San Fran because they have direct flights, LAX due to a high volume via other airports. The CDC has also stated they believe the risk to be low. According to Statistica the UK receives only about 400k Chinese tourists each year, San Fran alone gets that many a year just from Beijing and Shanghai, although I suppose given we're talking passenger movements you're looking at half of that. Regardless, volumes are significantly greater
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Jammy Duel
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Some cases in MERS in Qatar at the end of last year, shut down flights from Qatar?
MERS in Saudi Arabia too
Lassa Fever is Sierra Leone

Here's another one, according to WHO so far fatalities have only been recorded where there is an underlying condition
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Jammy Duel
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there's a 4th victim now, an 89 year old with underlying health conditions! Shut down the airports!

Get the Queen and Prince Phillip face masks just in case somebody coughs near them who may ha e been in the same room as somebody who has recently been in Wuhan! Scratch that, full hazmat suits, get in touch with the people at Porton Down or the Royal Free Hospital !
Last edited by Jammy Duel; 4 weeks ago
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LiberOfLondon
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(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
Do you actually believe the Chinese government has been truthful about this? Also, all of a sudden, we now have 14 new cases in Shenzhen, and cases in Shanghai and Beijing. Between now and the last time I talked to the Health Secretary, South Korea has recorded its first case and China has announced another death.

In addition, there are now confirmed cases in Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, and suspected cases in Singapore, Taiwan, and Vietnam.

And it was lucky that it didn't reach the UK. Can't say the same about the US, Ireland, Romania, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, and indeed Canada, where there was widespread panic and 44 deaths.

Do you have faith in Imperial College London? According to them, China is underreporting the cases by more than 10 times the actual number.



I would say the difference would be that outside London, there are relatively few immigrants from Oriental Asia (where the virus is from). If we look at the pattern of how SARS spread globally and how this virus is spreading internationally right now, it's mostly within Chinese communities overseas.
(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
In fact, it is more difficult for people within Greater China to travel between the regions, then travels between the UK and 3 of the 4.
This is your country on communism.
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Jammy Duel
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And while citing the CDC

"Chinese authorities additionally report that they are monitoring several hundred healthcare workers who are caring for outbreak patients; no spread of this virus from patients to healthcare personnel has been reported to date. Chinese authorities are reporting no ongoing spread of this virus in the community, but they cannot rule out that some limited person-to-person spread may be occurring."
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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
And while citing the CDC

"Chinese authorities additionally report that they are monitoring several hundred healthcare workers who are caring for outbreak patients; no spread of this virus from patients to healthcare personnel has been reported to date. Chinese authorities are reporting no ongoing spread of this virus in the community, but they cannot rule out that some limited person-to-person spread may be occurring."
It was perhaps not reported at the time of writing of that piece, but it seems you're *still* not getting how quickly developing this is. It has been reported as of a day ago: https://amp-scmp-com.cdn.ampproject....ge-infections:
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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
You desire to strike a balance and yet your approach is to take greater steps than were taken for either SARS or MERS simply because this disease exists; SARS, a disease that killed 10% of those infected, and MERS a disease that killed 38% of those infected, neither warranted significant action at UK airports, and now you want to impose screening for a new disease that based on the most recent information kills 1.5%.

China covered up SARS for 3 months, it appears to have come forward immediately with this one, the first case outside China wasn't three months before China even admitted they had cases, as with SARS, it is three weeks after. I suppose the alternative is that China has known about it since October and it just hadn't spread for all those months and then it heard the Chinese were accepting it existed and this new virus though "ooo, now the Chinese have said we exist we'd better start infecting people." No. The spread is inconsistent with a massive coverup. And of course your proof of a coverup is that the Chinese government aren't counting cases that haven't presented with any symptoms yet, because the Chinese state is incapable of identifying asymptomatic patients it is guilty of a coverup.

And yes, the initial inaction over HIV was the correct thing to do, if in the face of any new disease (or if we want to talk about ebola local outbreak of an old one) we introduce screening in airports we may as well just screen everybody. Every year there are plague cases in the US, should we have some form of screening on arrival from the US just in case somebody is carrying plague? No, that's completely unnecessary

How did the UK react to Ebola? Screening for those at high risk, i.e. those that were treating ebola victims and working in ebola communities, everybody else travelling from the region were asked to self refer or had a screening risk assessment carried out by telephone after arrival. There is an ongoing outbreak right now, ~4000 cases, over half fatal. What has the response of the government been? Are you now going to demand we screen everybody arriving in the UK from DR Congo and parts of Uganda? No, because that would be disproportionate.

TB, there's another one, Common in most of Africa and Asia, especially sub saharan Africa, don't screen for that, don't even vaccinate for it anymore in a lot of the country, prognosis is pretty good in the developed world, but you're still looking at a 6 month treatment course.

You might also want to check the reasons the CDC are choosing to screen: JFK and San Fran because they have direct flights, LAX due to a high volume via other airports. The CDC has also stated they believe the risk to be low. According to Statistica the UK receives only about 400k Chinese tourists each year, San Fran alone gets that many a year just from Beijing and Shanghai, although I suppose given we're talking passenger movements you're looking at half of that. Regardless, volumes are significantly greater
US and Australia have both introduced checks.

The Guardian reported that there are deaths who the Chinese government declined to test for, confirming what I just said: https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...-say-relatives
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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by LiberOfLondon)
This is your country on communism.
Also, ironically, a Peking University professor who claimed that the virus could be prevented and controlled has now confirmed that he's been infected, without even entering a patient's room (he said he was looking at a monitor from the outside).
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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
there's a 4th victim now, an 89 year old with underlying health conditions! Shut down the airports!

Get the Queen and Prince Phillip face masks just in case somebody coughs near them who may ha e been in the same room as somebody who has recently been in Wuhan! Scratch that, full hazmat suits, get in touch with the people at Porton Down or the Royal Free Hospital !
Oops. There are officially 6 now. Are you starting to realize how quickly this is developing? Or are you going to hold on to outdated information from an authority that is known for its cover-ups?

People's Daily itself already reported that Wuhan is on lockdown with everyone leaving the city being checked. There's also a notice from their tourism office saying civil servants are. not allowed to leave Wuhan except when a special permission is granted.

Also, TB is screened for immigrants into the UK. In fact, it's not even just screening at the airport. Immigrants from those countries are required to provide a certificate proving that we don't have TB before we could get the visa. But you don't know that, do you?

There were also actions done about the MERS when it was at its peak, but yeah let's act like UK totally ignored it. There is also a difference between worrying about an outbreak from a small country like Sierra Leone and an outbreak in the most populous country on Earth with plenty of tourists and immigrants in the UK.

I can only give you a face palm emoji for your support of inaction against HIV. Congratulations, the approach you support led to 32 million deaths.

It doesn't seem like you actually know anything about how governments responded and are responding to disease control. You have outdated information at every turn. And you couldn't even find the flights between Wuhan and the UK.

And who's talking about shutting down the airports? Oh, you. And only you.
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LiberOfLondon
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(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
Also, ironically, a Peking University professor who claimed that the virus could be prevented and controlled has now confirmed that he's been infected, without even entering a patient's room (he said he was looking at a monitor from the outside).
Infections are thoughtcrime against the Glorious Leader! -100 social credits, imperialist aristocratic running dog Baron of Sealand
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Miss Maddie
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(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
I would say the difference would be that outside London, there are relatively few immigrants from Oriental Asia (where the virus is from). If we look at the pattern of how SARS spread globally and how this virus is spreading internationally right now, it's mostly within Chinese communities overseas.
Luton Airport is in London. Stansted Airport is in London. Southend Airport is in London. All have the same level of air service to Wuhan and China as Gatwick does. Why screen at Gatwick and not the other London airports with stop over services?

As as a percentage of total communities, London isn't even the biggest. Manchester has 1.8 times more Chinese immigrants than London does as a proportion of populations.
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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by LiberOfLondon)
Infections are thoughtcrime against the Glorious Leader! -100 social credits, imperialist aristocratic running dog Baron of Sealand
It's the perfect way for Mother China to eliminate poverty?
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Baron of Sealand
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(Original post by Miss Maddie)
Luton Airport is in London. Stansted Airport is in London. Southend Airport is in London. All have the same level of air service to Wuhan and China as Gatwick does. Why screen at Gatwick and not the other London airports with stop over services?

As as a percentage of total communities, London isn't even the biggest. Manchester has 1.8 times more Chinese immigrants than London does as a proportion of populations.
In that case, I'd support screening at all of these locations. The US is also screening at multiple locations. (And they also have their first confirmed case, in the last hours since I last spoke).
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Baron of Sealand
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I just saw (unconfirmed) report from a tour operator to North Korea claiming that NK has placed a ban on Chinese tour groups during the Lunar New Year period.

In order to calm the public, I suggest that a certain member who believes there's nothing to worry about should pay a visit to Wuhan to prove that it's really no big deal.
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Jammy Duel
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And we can add to the list of sources of this being a massive overreaction the World Health Organization who have said:

"WHO does not recommend any specific health measures for travellers. It is generally considered that entry screening offers little benefit, while requiring considerable resources. In case of symptoms suggestive to respiratory illness before, during or after travel, the travellers are encouraged to seek medical attention and share travel history with their health care provider."

While the statement is from 12 days ago the latest update was 11 days ago, clearly the view of WHO is that there is no need to change this guidance.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
I just saw (unconfirmed) report from a tour operator to North Korea claiming that NK has placed a ban on Chinese tour groups during the Lunar New Year period.

In order to calm the public, I suggest that a certain member who believes there's nothing to worry about should pay a visit to Wuhan to prove that it's really no big deal.
You really are scraping the barrel if you're resorting to using North Korea to justify ignoring WHO.

I would quite happily do so, even as the CDC confirms the first known US case in the State of Washington
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