Author Topic: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.  (Read 8003 times)

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Offline Carana

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #60 on: December 02, 2021, 07:34:16 PM »
Not everyone's cup of tea, but I find she has a point on this:

Let’s not pretend the anti-mask babies would have lasted a minute in the blitz
Marina Hyde


It’s funny that so many of those who bang on about the ‘war effort’ seem unable to do something minor for the public good

‘Those unable to bring themselves to wear a mask wouldn’t make the first sacrifice for their fellow humans, let alone the ultimate one.’
Tue 30 Nov 2021 13.42 GMT

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/nov/30/anti-mask-blitz-war-public-good


Offline Wonderfulspam

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #61 on: December 02, 2021, 07:46:02 PM »

The mask mandate is total nonsense & should be opposed for that very reason.

If the disease is transmissible on public transport & in shops, then it's equally transmissible in gyms, pubs, cafes, cinemas & theatres.

Apparently masks aren't mandated in those settings, not because the virus doesn't spread there but for 'practical reasons'.

So, the only actual logical step to prevent transmission is total lockdown again.

Why don't they just do that if stopping the spread is paramount?
On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero

Offline Wonderfulspam

On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero

Offline Wonderfulspam

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #63 on: December 02, 2021, 08:11:54 PM »

If I were German I'd be refusing the vaccine, not because I'm anti vax but because I'd like to see where they're going with this.

Seriously, what are they going to do?

Throw people in jail & force a needle into them?  If so then they're f..king Nazis!
On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero

Offline Carana

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #64 on: December 02, 2021, 08:45:49 PM »
The mask mandate is total nonsense & should be opposed for that very reason.

If the disease is transmissible on public transport & in shops, then it's equally transmissible in gyms, pubs, cafes, cinemas & theatres.

Apparently masks aren't mandated in those settings, not because the virus doesn't spread there but for 'practical reasons'.

So, the only actual logical step to prevent transmission is total lockdown again.

Why don't they just do that if stopping the spread is paramount?

Hmmm.

Very recently, cases and deaths have picked up again in western Europe. Possibly due to the relaxation of measures and the waning of vaccine immunity.

However, over the summer, both were way down compared to the UK, despite swarms of tourists.

What I noticed in France, which fared well:

- Masks were compulsory everywhere in public, except if sitting down to eat or drink, or e.g. on a walk without anyone else around.

- The EU Covid pass was compulsory in almost every venue (except supermarkets & pharmacies), but included sitting down at an outside café.

- There was a massive wake-up call by Macron early in the summer to get vaccinated: the message was basically, if you don't eat your veg, ok, but then you won't get dessert.

In Belgium, the mask mandate was the same, but there wasn't the same push to get vaccinated and there was no Covid pass. It fared worse than France.

- I was also in a couple of other EU countries, albeit briefly, but in which masks were also compulsory in public settings.

- In England, from what I can gather, the messaging came across as vague and masks weren't compulsory in public settings (or when they were, they weren't enforced).

While not the only country in its approach, my impression is that the UK waits until the last possible moment to enforce any measures (to avoid anything unpopular?) and is constantly playing catch-up.



Offline Carana

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #65 on: December 02, 2021, 08:53:05 PM »
If I were German I'd be refusing the vaccine, not because I'm anti vax but because I'd like to see where they're going with this.

Seriously, what are they going to do?

Throw people in jail & force a needle into them?  If so then they're f..king Nazis!

I'm not sure how mandatory vaccinations for all would work on the legal front. Some vaccinations are compulsory in quite a few countries for school and for health practioners, as well as for international travel. The difference being is a choice: get the jab or don't go to school, find a different job, don't travel to countries that have requirements.

Offline Wonderfulspam

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #66 on: December 02, 2021, 09:12:13 PM »
I'm not sure how mandatory vaccinations for all would work on the legal front. Some vaccinations are compulsory in quite a few countries for school and for health practioners, as well as for international travel. The difference being is a choice: get the jab or don't go to school, find a different job, don't travel to countries that have requirements.

It will be interesting to see what happens, If public vaccines become law then all employers will be bound by that law presumably & so couldn't actually employ the unvaccinated, since they'd be knowingly employing criminals & possibly spreading the virus risking liability presumably.

But the unvaccinated could still get the dole & buy food so they're not total b........s.



On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero

Offline Wonderfulspam

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #67 on: December 12, 2021, 12:23:42 PM »

One demonstrable benefit of the mask mandate.

University of Portsmouth study finds 9,000% increase in face mask litter



Researchers found two million littered masks were collected across 11 counties

University researchers are urging the government to prevent an "environmental disaster" caused by face mask litter.

A study from the University of Portsmouth found mask litter increased by 9,000% in the first seven months of the pandemic and could have led to further spread of the virus.

During their study, researchers discovered two million littered masks were collected across 11 counties.

A government spokeswoman said it is "vital" waste is correctly disposed of.

Researchers from the university believe the plastic pollution caused by face mask litter could last hundreds of years.

Professor Steve Fletcher, from the University of Portsmouth, said: "Without better disposal practices, an environmental disaster is looming."

The university is now calling on the government to create new policies for enforcing waste disposal.

The study, published in the journal Nature Sustainability, was based on findings from March to October 2020 using the Covid-19 Government Response Tracker database and a litter collection app called Litterati.

University researchers warn face masks can act as a 'vector' to spread coronavirus, as well as cause infrastructure problems like blocking sewers and pose a threat to animals, as they can choke on them.

Professor Fletcher added: "The majority of masks are manufactured from long-lasting plastic materials, and if discarded can persist in the environment for hundreds of years. This means they can have a number of impacts on the environment and people."

Lead researcher Dr Keiron Roberts said: "We need to avoid this pandemic litter becoming a lasting legacy.

"Government policies and legislation can have a large impact on the composition of litter. There is a clear need to ensure the use of these items is accompanied with education campaigns to limit their release into the environment."

A spokeswoman from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, said: "Our priority is rightly to protect public health during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but this does not dilute our existing commitments to tackling single-use plastics and combating litter.

"It is vital we all dispose of our waste - including face coverings and other PPE - in the correct manner. Face coverings should be disposed of in normal waste bins."

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-hampshire-59622307
On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero

Offline Carana

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #68 on: December 14, 2021, 08:25:37 AM »
I'll be interested to see who the Tory backbenchers will turn out to be. My crystal ball is telling me that a large proportion will be from the Brexiteer / ERG crowd.


COVID-19: Tory backbenchers prepare to turn on Johnson over COVID restrictions as PM calls for a vaccine volunteer army

In the Commons, after a six-hour debate MPs will vote on four new regulations: on face masks, isolation rules, COVID passes and NHS compulsory vaccinations, of which the COVID passes are the most fiercely opposed by the Tory rebels.
https://news.sky.com/story/covid-19-tory-backbenchers-prepare-to-turn-on-johnson-over-covid-restrictions-as-pm-calls-for-a-vaccine-volunteer-army-12495295

Offline Carana

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #69 on: December 14, 2021, 08:28:21 AM »
From the above:


The latest MP to join the rebellion, "Red Waller" Jo Gideon, whose majority in Stoke on Trent Central is just 670, tweeted: "I will be voting against the introduction of vaccine passports on Tuesday. Their effectiveness is unconvincing and the impact on our hospitality industry and major events businesses, who have already had to sacrifice so much, would be unjustified."

If she'd bothered to check, she just might realise she's wrong.


COVID vaccine passports 'increase jab uptake' in countries with lower coverage, study suggests

Researchers at the University of Oxford found that COVID certification led more people to get vaccinated in France, Israel, Switzerland and Italy - but had no significant impact in Denmark and Germany, where takeup was higher than average.
https://news.sky.com/story/covid-vaccine-passports-increase-jab-uptake-in-countries-with-lower-coverage-study-suggests-12495303



Offline Wonderfulspam

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #70 on: December 14, 2021, 10:25:43 AM »

'I alerted the wider world to Omicron - and I believe Britain is overreacting':  Doctor Angelique Coetzee, the South African GP who knows more about its effects than anyone, calls for calm despite variant cases spiking 50 per cent in 24 hours.

The UK Government's handling of what Boris Johnson warned will be a 'tidal wave' of Omicron infections verges on hysteria.

With predictions of one million cases by the end of the month and concerns about the NHS being overwhelmed with up to 10,000 hospitalisations per day, I gather there is talk of Christmas again being cancelled and a possible New Year lockdown.

Yet you only have to look at the picture in South Africa, where the world's first known cases of Omicron were spotted, to realise this reaction is out of all proportion to the risks posed by this variant.

And I should know — because I am the doctor who first raised the alarm about Omicron back in November.

The variant appeared to have been circulating in South Africa for some time, having previously been identified in Botswana. It was my duty — both as a GP and as chair of the South African Medical Association — to report my concerns.

Symptoms

I have no regrets about doing so, but I was astonished by the extraordinary worldwide reaction in the days that followed, with Britain and some other European nations imposing heavy travel restrictions on flights from across southern Africa, as well as imposing tighter rules at home on mask-wearing, fines and extended quarantines.

I said then that we didn't know anywhere near enough about Omicron to make such judgments, or impose such policies. Now I find myself even more astonished by the UK Government's latest pronouncements, given what has become apparent about Omicron in the past four weeks.

I have been working with Omicron patients throughout that time, and I think it's safe to say that I know more than most about the effects it can have on human beings.

As a general practitioner for more than 33 years, I am one of the foot soldiers who sees patients first. We clinicians deal day-to-day with real people, not statistical projections, and I can reassure you that the symptoms presenting in those with Omicron are very, very mild compared with those we see with the far more dangerous Delta variant.

Don't just take my word for it. I have seen quite a few Omicron patients who have previously had the Delta variant and they will tell you that, while no one ever wants to get Covid, they feel almost lucky that it was only Omicron they had the second time around.

My first Omicron case, a young man who came into my surgery, initially thought he had been in the sun too long after working outside.


Patients typically present with muscle pain, body aches, a headache and a bit of fatigue. And their symptoms don't seem to get any worse than that. After about five days they clear up, and that's it.

In the part of South Africa where I work, there haven't been many patients admitted to hospital with Omicron, and most have been treated at home, using anti-inflammatories, such as ibuprofen, and low doses of cortisone.

Bear in mind, too, that most of those who contract Omicron here are unvaccinated (only 26 per cent of South Africans are fully vaccinated). While this is certainly not an argument against vaccination — I cannot stress the importance of that enough — it's reassuring to know that even unprotected bodies fight off this variant much more easily than Delta. Current data indicates that the majority of cases admitted to ICUs are unvaccinated people.

In the UK, where the levels of vaccination are much higher, there is even less reason to worry. A Pfizer/BioNTech booster, given after an initial round of either Oxford/AstraZeneca or Pfizer, raises the level of protection, offering 70-75 per cent protection against symptomatic infection.


To date, some 23.5 million Britons have had all three vaccinations, so it's completely over the top to be talking about Plan Cs or lockdowns.

Indeed, I am disappointed by such knee-jerk reactions. They bear no relation to what we're seeing in surgeries in South Africa, where people rarely even discuss Omicron. As one Twitter user commented: 'Covid's become a UK neurosis.'

Of course, your Government cannot afford to be complacent. According to the UK Health Security Agency, ten people have so far been hospitalised with the variant in England, and Omicron is expected to become the dominant coronavirus in the capital in the next 48 hours.


Milder

On a visit to a London vaccination clinic yesterday, Boris Johnson dismissed the idea that it is 'somehow a milder version of the virus', and revealed that at least one person is confirmed to have died with Omicron.

Even one death is one too many. But will there be many more? Our experience in South Africa suggests not.

While Covid-19 admissions are rising sharply in more than half of our nine provinces, deaths are not rising as dramatically and neither is the average length of time people stay in hospital.

Admittedly, our laboratories do not carry out genetic sequencing for every death, so we do not know how many Covid-related deaths can be attributed to Omicron and how many to other variants.

But yesterday there were only 11 Covid-related deaths in South Africa, far fewer than the 578 weekly average reported at Delta's peak.

If Omicron really were such a deadly variant, we would expect the numbers to have shot up, yet that simply isn't happening here.

This makes it all the more peculiar to see what's happening in the UK. This huge over-reaction is scaring people unnecessarily, and if your Government does decide go to for a hard lockdown in the New Year, that could end up doing far more harm than good.

That is because Omicron could potentially be of great help to us — which is certainly not something you could say about the Delta variant.

Panic
A hard lockdown would slow the process of Omicron making its way through the population and allowing people to develop the vital antibodies which will move your population towards 'herd immunity'.

The next variant that comes along might be slower spreading but more severe, and so we will need all the help we can get from such natural immunity.

That can only be of value to us all — unlike restrictive measures that hit the economy hard and will bring about more hardship and poverty, with no gain beyond satisfying the politicians' need to be seen to be doing something.

So my message to Boris and his ministers is this: stay calm. Take it day by day and do not panic people, because that will only end in chaos. You are already seeing problems with the NHS vaccination booking system following the Prime Minister's address to the nation of an accelerated booster plan on Sunday.

In the fight against Covid, as in life generally, it's important to pick your battles, and in over-reacting to Omicron we are in danger of missing out on the benefits of a variant which could be a friend rather than a foe.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10306211/DR-ANGELIQUE-COETZEE-alerted-wider-world-Omicron-believe-Britain-overreacting.html
On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero

Offline Carana

Re: The Government's mishandling of the Covid-19 epidemic.
« Reply #71 on: December 14, 2021, 09:25:18 PM »
There doesn't appear to be enough data about this Omicron variant yet: it does seem to be highly contagious, but could be milder... or perhaps not. I guess we'll know more in a week or two.

However, I really don't see the big deal in the so-called Plan B restrictions (I've been living with them as a blessed alternative to months in lockdown).

Smallish restaurants have been moaning, but it's no more time-consuming to have a Covid pass ready when a waiter asks if you've booked a table.

I don't like wearing a mask any more than the next person, but I've just got used to it if I'm going into a confined space. A pain for cashiers and other shop employees, but the sooner people stop moaning about their individual freedoms and collectively make an effort to help get rid of Covid, the faster we'll be able to go back to more or less normal lives.