The relentless escalation of Covid-19 news

Covid-19 news will continue to dominate today, and for some time into the future. Someone has predicted the virus may not peak in New Zealand until August, so it looks like being a long haul.

International news from overnight includes another bad day for the US share markets (Dow Jones currently down over 10% Wednesday after a bit of a recovery yesterday), and the UK has announced the closure of all schools.

BBC:

RNZ: Trump says he will invoke wartime act to fight ‘enemy’ coronavirus

US President Donald Trump moved to accelerate production of desperately needed medical equipment to battle the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters reports.

Scrambling to address the virus after initially playing it down, Trump said he is invoking the Defense Production Act, putting in place a law that will allow the US government to speed production of masks, respirators, ventilators and other needed equipment.

“We’re going to defeat the invisible enemy,” said Trump, who said the unfolding crisis had basically made him a “war-time president.”

Trump, appearing in the White House briefing room for what has now become a daily news conference with his coronavirus task force, said he would sign the Defense Production Act later on Wednesday.

The law, which dates back to the Korean War of the 1950s, grants the president broad authority to “expedite and expand the supply of resources from the US industrial base to support military, energy, space, and homeland security programs,” according to a summary on the Federal Emergency Management Agency website.

Vice President Mike Pence, head of the coronavirus task force, urged all Americans to put off elective surgery to allow hospitals to concentrate on the rising influx of patients with the COVID-19 respiratory illness caused by the new virus.

There are now more than 7300 US cases of the illness and at least 118 deaths.

I have just heard Trump speaking and sounding like he is on a war fitting, insisting on calling Covid-10 ‘the Chinese virus”.

LA Times: Schools likely to be closed for the rest of the school year, Newsom says

California public schools are likely to be closed for the remainder of the school year in response to the spread of coronavirus, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday afternoon.

“Don’t anticipate schools are going to open up in a week. Please don’t anticipate in a few weeks,” Newsom said during a Sacramento news conference on the state’s coronavirus efforts. “I would plan, and assume, that it’s unlikely that many of these schools — few, if any — will open before the summer break.”

Nearly all school districts in the state, 98.8%, are closed in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Newsom said.

The summer break in the US is July-August, so that’s a long time closed.


Here in New Zealand

Confirmed cases: Yesterday, eight more cases of Covid-19 were confirmed in the country, taking the number of cases in total to 20.

RNZ: Covid-19 spread in NZ: Answering the big questions

We will get the daily progress report at 1 pm, and the Government is expected to announce further restrictions on mass gatherings.

 

Leave a comment

34 Comments

  1. Daily this week I have been helping clients who are setting up to do their computer work from home.

    Reply
  2. A lot of people are getting quite worried about all the disruption and changes, but particularly about the threat of the virus now it is at least scattered around the country.

    I have a family association with teenager who has diabetes who is very worried, he is at higher risk if he catches the virus (he’s worried about dying). This is getting to be a big deal.

    Reply
    • Duker

       /  19th March 2020

      Has he had pneumonia vaccine?
      This is one of the main side effects of Covid that kills those with low immune response.
      Those pictures of very sick people on ventilators to help them breathe , most would have pneumonia causing that …its around all the time the dozen or so pneumonia viruses, the more expensive vaccine covers them all for years

      Reply
      • David

         /  19th March 2020

        Apparently the pneumonia vaccine doesn’t help with coronavirus.

        Reply
        • Duker

           /  19th March 2020

          hahahahaha…
          Silly man . Its not a CV problem , pneumonia is a side effect of those whose immune system is under attack by CV….
          you can have a whole range of illnesses , even just a mild flu but if the pneumonia takes hold in your lungs the chance of death goes right up.
          Id rather be one of those people who have CV with no symptoms or very mild effects.

          https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/26/6/20-0320_article
          https://newsroom.clevelandclinic.org/2020/03/18/frequently-asked-questions-about-coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/

          Its not going to protect against CV, read my comments.
          Ppneumonia virus is probably in your nose secretions now, and if your immune system is weakened away if goes in lungs and other places and hand in hand with the CV infection effects on your other organs. Kills you off
          “Pneumonia affects approximately 450 million people globally (7% of the population) and results in about 4 million deaths per year”
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pneumonia

          The reason why these are similar to CV19 symptons is because it goes hand in hand and if you have both …look out, hospitalisation is needed to save you

          Reply
          • David

             /  19th March 2020

            Unfortunately you are wrong about coronavirus and your shots effectiveness but a pneumonia shot is generally a great idea.

            Reply
          • David

             /  19th March 2020

            From the WHO website:

            “Do vaccines against pneumonia protect you against the new coronavirus?
            No. Vaccines against pneumonia, such as pneumococcal vaccine and Haemophilus influenza type B (Hib) vaccine, do not provide protection against the new coronavirus.

            The virus is so new and different that it needs its own vaccine. Researchers are trying to develop a vaccine against 2019-nCoV, and WHO is supporting their efforts.

            Although these vaccines are not effective against 2019-nCoV, vaccination against respiratory illnesses is highly recommended to protect your health.”

            Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  19th March 2020

            Babies have had the pneumonia vaccine free for some years.

            Reply
    • Pink David

       /  19th March 2020

      The reaction to the virus will kill far more than the virus.

      Reply
  3. Zedd

     /  19th March 2020

    Meanwhile in Aotearoa/NZ; we have 20 cases (all from people returning from O’seas).. BUT you would think (from some media) that its the Bubonic Plague & we all need to ‘PANIC & hide under our beds !’ :/

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  19th March 2020

      HAVE HAD;the early ones will have recovered by now. What are the chances of catching it here ? One person for every 250,000 has tested positive, none have died, the early ones will have recovered. It’s a nuisance to put it mildly. The economic effects will be tremendous and largely (I suspect) unnecessary.

      I can’t believe that people are letting their children bunk off school and are taking them into town
      .
      You’d think it was the Sweating Sickness that was an incredibly severe form of flu (or so it’s thought now) that swept through mediaeval England; people were all right in the morning and dead before night. It stopped as suddenly as it started and hasn’t happened since.

      Reply
      • Contagious diseases that are contracted and kill in a short timeframe tend to die out quite quickly because dead people don’t spread it.

        Disease will spread a lot more if it takes times for symptoms to appear, or it can be spread by people who never get symptoms. So even if it’s kill rate is lower the number killed can be much higher.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  19th March 2020

          True, but the reporting seems to be largely scaremongering and irresponsible panic inducing. There is no justification for children to be off school in the Waikato and in town or the supermarket with mum or dad. The numbers here hardly qualify as an epidemic and need to be kept in proportion.

          The damage being done by the scaremongering is immeasurable and grossly irresponsible. Yes, take precautions like handwashing, but don’t give way to hysteria and panic.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  19th March 2020

            One epidemic in 1644 is reputed to have killed 15,000 people in six weeks; a phenomenal number when one considers the then population of England.

            Reply
  4. Conspiratoor

     /  19th March 2020

    Relentless yes, Reckless possibly? What we are seeing now is an attempt to buy time until measures are put in place to manage resources to treat those affected. China, Singapore and South Korea have shown that with treatment almost everyone recovers

    I predict this will be over in 6 to 8 weeks as the rest of the world catches up and we are going to be left wondering what all the hoopla was about. I’ll go further, when a vaccine is finally rolled out a sizable portion of the population won’t even bother joining the queue to get it

    Reply
    • Duker

       /  19th March 2020

      Wont be a fully tested vaccine this year… and thats the fast track.
      Its anti virals for those very sick that are the best immediate hope as they use allready tested medicines first.

      Reply
  5. Alan Wilkinson

     /  19th March 2020

    The only way out of this is hard science, innovation and industrial scale manufacturing. Time to reset our values.

    Reply
  6. David

     /  19th March 2020

    We should be manufactuting ventilators ready for July/August.
    And shut the damn border you silly woman, tourism is dead anyway.

    Reply
    • The borders are largely being shut down for incoming people anyway, but they have to remain open for returning New Zealanders.

      Latest:

      The government has raised its travel advice to the highest level, telling New Zealanders not to travel overseas due to Covid-19.

      It’s the first time the government has advised New Zealanders against travelling anywhere overseas.

      Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters said this reflected the seriousness of the situation.

      “New Zealanders who travel overseas risk contracting Covid-19. At the same time, health care systems in many countries are under strain and do not have the capacity to support foreigners,” he said.

      Peters also urged all New Zealanders currently travelling overseas to consider returning home immediately.

      “Borders are closing. You may not be able to return to New Zealand when you had planned to. You should therefore organise to come home now,” he said.

      “If you choose to remain overseas despite our advice, the ability of the New Zealand Government to provide consular assistance may be limited due to internal travel restrictions and the suspension of services.”

      Peters said New Zealanders who are long-term residents overseas need to decide what is best for their personal circumstances.

      He said those to decide to remain overseas need to ensure they are well prepared and follow advice from the World Health Organisation and local health authorities.

      New Zealanders overseas are also encouraged to register on SafeTravel so they can receive updates.

      Reply
  7. lurcher1948

     /  19th March 2020

    In real lifetime , reality

    Reply
  8. lurcher1948

     /  19th March 2020

    https://scontent.fpmr1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/s960x960/90145692_2618449038437640_1935068219240873984_o.jpg?_nc_cat=109&_nc_sid=8024bb&_nc_ohc=RNRSDYFPuwwAX_FvpP9&_nc_ht=scontent.fpmr1-1.fna&_nc_tp=7&oh=9878675a5a9039ff714f101ce1f143fc&oe=5E972FA9
    BRAVER THAN ME,all dog agility training is gone and ALL agility events have gone, maybe this is when I retire SIGH like a puff of wind GONE FOREVER,JESS had a good future…shes a pretty girl,proud to have saved her life

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  19th March 2020

      When the hysteria dies down, the dogs will be back doing their thing.

      Shutting down the agility shows is daft.

      Reply
      • Duker

         /  19th March 2020

        Im going to make a prediction about NZ infection and death numbers.
        50,000 cases ( but maybe only 60% with symptoms), and clearly all wont be tested. The death numbers will be more definitely known, but Im going for a low 0.3-0.4%, which will give 150 -200 deaths.
        Not a big number in the context of yearly deaths from all causes of around 32,000. remember dead is dead no matter the cause.
        However what scares people is death that is contagious.
        Well see how it goes… but right now the major worry is fear it self and thats contagious as well.

        Reply
        • Corky

           /  19th March 2020

          Excellent, Duker. I respect a man who puts his balls on the line. Personally, I wouldn’t have a clue…but

          1- Lockdown for our country by Monday.
          2- Crime to skyrocket as drug supplies dry up and people start to stress, or get cabin fever.
          3- People with spare cash will make a killing buying businesses that fail. They can regenerate those businesses, enjoy the massive profits as business returns to normal after the crisis, then sell again when things quieten down.

          ”But right now the major worry is fear itself and that’s contagious as well.”

          True. I had a coughing fit in Mitre 10…all of a sudden I was alone in the aisle with people at the other end giving me the evils.🤨

          Reply
  9. Do not travel overseas, government urges
    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/412136/do-not-travel-overseas-government-urges

    An urgent Cabinet committee meeting is taking place at 4pm where deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says a full lockdown of the country and the closure of its borders will be discussed. “We’ve got to look at all the possibilities,” he said..

    Jacinda Ardern will hold a media conference at 6:05 pm.

    Reply
  10. Reply
  11. Announced tonight:

    From 11:59 pm tonight (19 march) closing border to all non-citizens or residents, including the Pacific (with exemptions for humanitarian reasons).

    People involved in air and sea freight will still be able to come and go.

    New Zealand citizens and permanent residents will be able to return.

    All cases so far identified are linked to people who have recently come into the country from other countries.

    The aim is to slow down the spread and break it into “small waves”.

    Reply
    • David

       /  19th March 2020

      Finally. she needs to put in a much stronger enforcement regime for self isolators.
      She should also stop dual nationality NZers from popping back and forward to their other home countries for a few months as well.
      Going to be interesting to see how anyone will be able to get home as well, no one is going to fly half empty planes to NZ and empty on the outward bound leg.

      Reply
  12. David

     /  19th March 2020

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/120341358/coronavirus-new-christchurch-hospital-eyed-for-icu-boost

    Good thinking, now who suggested it earlier this week before getting slammed by the resident prolific YourNZ hall monitor. You are welcome.

    Reply
    • Duker

       /  19th March 2020

      “No decisions have been made, and would be dependent on finishing works and commissioning in these areas being completed and signed off.”
      Which is what I said, they also say what staff what equipment, plus I was correct about it being a builder problems that caused the dealys….while you said …

      Reply
      • David

         /  19th March 2020

        We have spare hospital capacity which we should be prepping and my advice was clearly heard and acknowledged as a great idea.
        Wouldnt take much as a lot of it is already finished just needs a shove from someone who is not on the useless district health board here. A former National minister dragged in to finish the project would be my call.

        Reply
        • Blazer

           /  20th March 2020

          not the one who stood for leader and 18months later…jumped!

          Ryall maybe.

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  20th March 2020

            Ryall cost the health system 100s million $ with his failed centralisation of services like food , IT

            The DHB members arent involved in checking if building works are signed off or why fire alarm systems arent working.

            “Wouldnt take much as a lot of it is already finished just needs a shove…”

            The onus is on the builders Fletchers to do so, ‘know -nothings’ who talk about ‘a shove’ , just show their ignorance instead.
            You cant just continue fixing stuff while patients are in building , doesnt work and is absurd as it puts sick at risk, it has to be pretty serious as its been 2 years and Fletchers are well know as clowns for site supervision
            Any way the Dept of Health is leading on this not the DHB and they have top private sector executives on to it such as
            “Evan Davies (Chair)
            Mr Davies is currently Managing Director of Todd Property Group, Chair of the Capital Investment Committee, a Director of Waterfront Auckland Ltd, and a Trustee of the Anglican Trust for Women and Children.”

            https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/hospital-redevelopment-projects/christchurch-hospital-redevelopment-project

            In Berlin their new airport was ‘completed’ 8 years ago but huge numbers of faults have delayed opening till this year

            I hope this is the last word on this to correct patently false information from the usual suspects/know nothings

            Reply
  13. Corky

     /  19th March 2020

    Coronavirus v The World.

    Round One.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s