The Chinese Virus, COVID-19, is incredibly contagious, it is also remarkably mild. It is clear now that the vast majority of people who catch it don’t even know that they have it. (CLICK maybe only 1 in 10 do!). Most people’s immune systems simply swat it aside.
It is also clear that the only people who get ill are those with a compromised immune system. Smokers, the Vitamin D deficient and those with comorbidities such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease or obesity.
It is very easy to see these truths. Firstly look at the statistical death rates country to country (HERE). Those countries such as Iran and Italy where they test only the ill have a high statistical death rate. Those countries where they also test some people with no symptoms and detect the disease in some of them, such as Germany and South Korea, have a far lower statistical death rate. They are seeing a less distorted picture.
Secondly look at the bar chart above, this is for Chinese Virus deaths in Italy. Proof that if you are fit and well with a working immune system you will be just fine. People are dying with Chinese Virus, not of Chinese Virus.
Next lets look at some context. Respiratory infections kill, on average, 2.6 million people every year (CLICK). So far Chinese Virus has killed fewer than nine thousand globally. Statistically insignificant in comparison. So why are we panicking?
Let’s first break down those with Chinese Virus into 5 groups:
- No symptoms whatsoever.
- Minimal, often unnoticed, symptoms.
- Respiratory infection such as a winter cold.
- Really ill. Like a proper bout of ‘Flu.
- Really ill, requiring hospitalisation and intensive care (ICU).
The problem is that we don’t yet know how many are in each group. And with Vitamin D deficiency varying with the amount of sunlight this will change with the seasons. We do know that young people, with a more active Thymus, hardly notice the disease. And we do know that very few people (as a %) are in the last two groups and we know who they are likely to be.
We look to Italy when formulating policy. It has the largest number of Chinese workers in Europe, they went home for Chinese New Year, they came back with Chinese Virus. The Italian public health service didn’t notice and really didn’t want to know. The disease spread like crazy. Then all the ICU demand came at once and they were turning patients away, so the death rate rocketed. We don’t want this happening in the UK. Especially as the NHS only has 8,175 ventilators (CLICK).
Our government has turned to engineering and manufacturing companies, such as the F1 teams, Nissan, Meggitt, JCB and Airbus, to supply 30,000 new Ventilators in a hurry. But is is still precious few for 66 million of us if all the ICU cases come at once. So our government is mostly restricting our freedoms so as to manage ventilator demand.
The government expect 60% of us to catch the disease. That is about 40 million people. If one in a hundred need a ventilator that is 400,000 people. You can see the problem. Especially if they all arrive at once, as in Italy.
The good news is that we have known since the beginning of February that the anti Malarial drug Chloroquine can be repurposed against the Chinese Virus (as this blog told you HERE). There have been several successful small scale clinical trials (HERE). And now the global Big Pharma industry is mass producing it in vast quantities (HERE). This takes the pressure off our sparse ventilator capacity.
But the government should be promoting Vitamin D supplements hard. They stop you catching Chinese Virus and make the symptoms far less severe if you do catch it. Watch this short video by a doctor which explains the medicine and the facts:
Boris is preparing us for 12 weeks of incarceration. This won’t happen. People will rebel against the restrictions. The next month or so is going to be bad, as the NHS ventilator capacity is tested. But after that, as the situation becomes more controlled, the restrictions will have to be rolled back, because it will be impossible to enforce them.
The purpose of Government measures is not to reduce the number of people infected. The disease is so very contagious that it cannot be stopped. What they are doing is spreading the cases over a longer time frame. To reduce the amount of ventilator demand at any one time. And to create a breathing space for the pharmaceutical industry to manufacture repurposed drugs.
To have herd immunity we need 60% of the population to have had the disease (or a vaccine) and we have no idea how close to this percentage we currently are. Which is why the government is making a big deal of the new antibody test that is being developed (CLICK). This, for the first time, will tell us how many people have already had the Chinese Virus, without them realising it. It will give the government hard data to remove their controls on us.
Then there is the weather. Winter viral infections die out in the spring. They don’t like the UV light and the warmth. And we humans get an immune system boost when we are exposed to sunlight and manufacture Vitamin D for ourselves. So Chinese Virus will fizzle out of its own accoed.
Another good reason for lifting restrictions sooner rather than later is the immense economic damage. Not just the eye watering government borrowing, which future generations will have to pay off, but also the shock to share prices and corporate income, which harms everyone’s pension. And mostly the loss of household income on an unprecedented scale. A huge number of people are going to suddenly be a lot poorer than they were.
With some herd immunity Vitamin D and Chloroquine this Chinese Virus epidemic would be less bad than a winter ‘Flu epidemic. We could just carry on as normal. The problem is that in its first year it is so highly contagious that all the cases come at once, putting an incredibly high demand on ICUs and especially on our ventilator capacity. So the next few week will deliver eye-watering headlines. But after a month the daily number of new infections will be falling quickly. And after two months it should be largely business as usual.