The Coronavirus doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. As reports of more cases continue coming in, it’s starting to look like the beginning of a long battle with this dreaded virus.
Since its inception in China, Coronavirus has made its way around the world to over 40 countries, inculding Germany, Switzerland, Croatia, Iraq, Spain, Algeria, Malaysia, South Korea, Belgium, Lebanon, France, Finland, Sweden, Egypt, Iran, Sri Lanka, Israel, Cambodia, Nepal, Afghanistan, Russia, and the United States.
Brazil is the first South American nation to confirm a coronavirus infection, which means it has achieved a foothold on a new continent. According to Brazil’s Health Ministry, one test of a local patient has reportedly come back positive. The diagnosis is not declared “official” until a second infection is confirmed.
Despite irrefutable facts (deaths), we still have those that downplay Coronavirus as “just another flu.” Regular influenza carries a 0.1% mortality rate, whereas nCov2019 allegedly carries a 2% mortality – 20 times more deadly. The worst offender is the the World Health Organization, which still claims it is not yet a pandemic. Given that the formal definition of a pandemic is a disease spread over multiple distinct and separate geographic regions, WHO’s argument fails, as nCov2019 is on four continents.
Coronavirus infections exploded by 45% overnight in Italy – up to 822 at the time of this writing and still rising. Their first case was only diagnosed a week ago. The rapid progression is terrifying. To contain the virus, Italy is running armed road-blocks around 12 towns, prohibiting road travel.
According to The Epoch Times, the source of the outbreak in Italy is unclear:
“Italian health officials haven’t yet identified the source of the outbreak. Angelo Borrelli, the head of the Italian civil protection department, said the case count grew from 222 to 322, representing a 45% increase, in a 24-hour period from Monday evening to Tuesday evening”
After telling everybody the virus was under control, an Iranian bureaucrat has the Coronavirus:
“Only a day earlier, a coughing and heavily sweating Iraj Harirchi said at a televised news conference in Tehran that ‘the situation is almost stable in the country.’
Health Ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour confirmed Harirchi had the virus. Harirchi himself posted an online video saying he had it and that he had quarantined himself at home. He promised that authorities would bring the virus under control.”
The very government bureaucrat sitting in quarantine after accidentally getting infected is telling us the government has it under control. The irony would be laughable were the ramifications not so tragic. As we go to press, CBS News reports Masoumeh Ebtekar, Iran’s vice president for women and family affairs, has also contracted Coronavirus.
The CDC today changed its testing guidelines after complaints that surveillance was inadequate to the evolving situation. Until the changed guidelines went into effect, only 455 patients suspected to have Coronavirus received the test in the U.S.
Coronavirus in the U.S.
One completely noxious example is the case of a woman who may have infected a whole hospital. This individual is the first in the U.S. for whom officials do not know the source of illness. An unknown source of illness raises the possibility that the virus is circulating ubiquitously within the environment. The patient diagnosis was confirmed at UC Davis Medical Center as COVID-19 on Wednesday.
Dozens of staff members exposed to the patient at NorthBay VacaValley Hospital have been quarantined and asked to self-monitor for symptoms. The total number of exposed health care workers is unknown, but less than 100.
The patient was transferred by ambulance to UC Davis Medical Center the morning of Feb. 19. Doctors there said they had concerns that the CDC delayed the diagnosis of Coronavirus. Doctors wanted to test upon arrival, but the CDC didn’t agree until four days later, on Feb. 23.
A UC Davis vice chancellor wrote in an internal email that the CDC did not initially agree to the testing because the woman did not meet its criteria, which include recent trips to China or contact with someone who has the disease. The CDC has now changed its criteria to include people who are in hospital with fever and severe respiratory illness like pneumonia without an alternate diagnosis.
The New York Health Department announced 700 people were requested to voluntarily self-isolate in the state for two weeks. That includes 83 people in Nassau County, 29 in Suffolk County and, eight in Westchester. Clearly, the epidemic is still not under control.
Read more from Loraine Silvetz, MSW.