Saturday, 18 June 2022

"Endemic isn't harmless"

"Instead of attenuating until it is no worse than the flu or - like a miracle - disappearing, Covid-19 is here to stay. It will join the roster of infectious diseases that we grapple with on a regular basis, like measles, RSV and influenza. But the threat it poses to the health system and its ability to kill [at a rate 8 times more than seasonal flu] and cause Long Covid put it somewhat closer to those older diseases [polio, smallpox] we have since put behind us.
    "'There's a fair chance it's going to sit in this tricky space where it is more serious than the flu but it's not the existential threat that it was in 2020,' University of Canterbury mathematician and Covid-19 modeller Michael Plank said.
    "For more than two years, people have looked forward to Covid-19 exiting a pandemic state and becoming endemic, as if that marks the end of our struggle with the virus. In truth, this is just the beginning...
    "'Covid-19, another highly transmissible infection [like polio] with long-term consequences for health, may well end up in that same basket of diseases that are simply too infectious and too harmful to tolerate ongoing high levels of community transmission.'
    "And without any other interventions, high levels of community transmission are what we're destined to get. The Covid-19 pandemic may be coming to an end, but our fight against the virus is just beginning."

~ Marc Daalder, from his article 'Covid isn’t over, it’s just getting started' [hat tip Eric Crampton]


Duncan Bayne said...

> "There's a fair chance it's going to sit in this tricky space where it is more serious than the flu but it's not the existential threat that it was in 2020"

Was COVID-19 *ever* an existential threat, though?

Anonymous said...

Plank is a plonker. This was never a pandemic. This flu was chickenshit. This was an excuse for tyrants to exploit further.

Anonymous said...

The same for so-called 'climate change.' Mankind can do very little versus natural cycles and the Sun. We are very good at adapting. Tyrants are squeezing trillions out of productive use via this climate con. And they'll later lie "It would've been worse.." Same for SARS Cov-2.0. They'll lie they mitigated it. Ruining of business sectors for an infection with an IFR closely resembling a seasonal flu (Michael Baker to Sean Plunket).

Peter Cresswell said...

"Was COVID-19 *ever* an existential threat, though?"

Well, figures suggest that even Omicron is roughly eight times as lethal as seasonal flu. So there's that.

gregster said...

"eight times as lethal as seasonal flu" What's your super source PC? The Labour Party? Even MSM is positive by comparison..

"The proportion of people infected with Covid-19 in England who go on to die has dipped below that of seasonal flu, which has an infection fatality rate of roughly 0.04 per cent."

"However, the experts stressed it is difficult to accurately compare fatality rates of the novel coronavirus and seasonal influenza. This is because data on the number of people with flu and patients infected with the novel coronavirus are collected differently.
Every hospital in Japan is required to notify the government of each case of novel coronavirus infection, including asymptomatic ones, whereas only around 5,000 hospitals are asked to do so with regard to the number of seasonal influenza patients.
Another problem is that patients who die after catching the novel coronavirus are listed as COVID-19 fatalities even when the direct cause of death is not COVID-19."

Peter Cresswell said...

"What's your ... source?"

The linked article.

gregster said...

Oh, not super then. The same Mark Daalder Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux provocateurs and extremists.

It's a conditional estimate across a year rather than a 3 month season.. at best.

MarkT said...

I’m not sure who’s worse - knee jerk catastrophists who continue to insist every government control was necessary; or knee jerk denialists such as Anonymous who continue to insist none of it was necessary, and we should have been able to freely move around and infect each other. In a strange way both sides encourage each other, because both can point to the irrational excesses of the other side as an excuse for their irrational excesses.

At least people like Plank who probably used to sit in the former camp, now seem to be shifting towards a more rational and balanced position. No evidence of a similar shift in some of these comments.

FreeMack said...

Governments are deliberating not collecting the data necessary to making any clear statements about Covid's lasting impact. (why is that?). They continue to report daily on these who are sick and dying WITH covid despite us all know that is meaningless. Why not also report those sick and dying with white underwear?
In addition to no data, the other big issue is differentiating between the ill effects of the disease and those of the vaccine. The high vaccination rate has made that impossible. Is "long covid" the result of the virus or the vaccine?

gregster said...

"knee jerk denialists such as Anonymous who continue to insist none of it was necessary"

That comment lacks nuance and accuracy.

For such a low IFR, closely resembling seasonal flu, no action should have been mandatory. It is personal choice to take precautions, and that's what should have happened. To force an injection of little effectiveness is extreme tyranny.

This worldwide madness will be reviewed as being scandalous and wrongheaded. And who benefits -- there's your motive. Centralised, statist global players benefit. Freedom loses.

Duncan Bayne said...

> Well, figures suggest that even Omicron is roughly eight times as lethal as seasonal flu. So there's that.

Oh, sure. Even though there's dispute around the specifics, I don't think it's unreasonable to conclude that COVID-19 is at least many times more lethal than seasonal flu. There's a reason my family and I are all vaccinated.

But it is, and was, far from an existential threat.

It's in the same bucket as anthropogenic climate change as far as I'm concerned. Yes, it's real. Yes, it has risk and costs associated with it. No, it's not an existential threat, and mitigations should be treated as a cost-benefit tradeoff just like any others.

MarkT said...

I essentially agree, but only with the benefit of hindsight, and vaccines.

If we take specific action to avoid a threat, and that action is successful in negating the threat - we can’t logically argue the threat was never real, and the actions were never required in the first place. That’s the argument I hear from many deniers.

Duncan Bayne said...

Hah! That's the same conversation as happened around the Y2K bug.

"Well wasn't that a damp squib?"

"Only because of billions of dollars of frantic improvement to countless computer systems worldwide!"