Okay, now I’m pissed. We need to finish this, and COVID-19 needs to go be dealt with permanently. Not quite the movie quote, but close enough. Honduras has shut down all cigar factories. If you thought that the U.S. was the only country shutting things down, well, you must be watching the major networks or reading the paper with a record. Stop it. The best thing you can do for yourself, outside of washing your hands, is to cut off or cut out the mainstream media.
Yes, the number of cases and number of deaths have gone up. Woo. You’ve been told this would happen no matter what, at least by responsible outlets. What matters now is the rate of increase and if we can flatten it out. We will not know that for several weeks, as Dr. Fauci has repeatedly said.
Meantime, an incident here prompts me to remind you that if you think you have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it, please don’t go to the ER or anywhere else unannounced, and if you have to call first responders — TELL THEM YOU MAY HAVE IT/HAVE BEEN EXPOSED TO IT! Call your state COVID-19 line, call your provider, but for the love of Pete don’t be stupid and just go without calling to warn them you are coming. We don’t need any more first responders having to be quarantined because they didn’t know they needed full protocols.
Also, don’t give a false name, address, and phone number to the ER if you get tested. If you do that, and go back out in public, you are not just a jackass, but should face charges for willful spread and manslaughter charges if someone you cause to be infected dies. Also, if there is violence inflicted on you by those around you, you deserve it.
Facebook did some good shutting down factual articles on COVID-19 as spam (what do you expect from FB?), as the article I read on it led me to this interesting site courtesy of this article. Plan to add that link to the resources section below.
For all the brainless twits out there, while the worst hit are 60+, you are not immune and it can be bad for you too. For example, in France there are some 300 people in ICU, and more than half of them are under 60. Another doctor is reporting patients in ICU as young as 40, and that none of them had underlying health conditions. There are reports of others in the U.S. and elsewhere that are showing up in ICU without underlying health conditions. In Texas, new patients are showing a spread from 20s to 70s, with around half being 40 or below. In short, you too can be hit and hit hard, so if you are not willing to consider others, here’s a selfish reason to follow the precautions.
As for precautions, washing your hands frequently seems an even better idea based on the data in this paper in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) on how long COVID-19 lasts in the air and on surfaces. Short take: on surfaces it can last more than 72 hours, and remains viable as an aerosol for more than 3 hours. Remember what I said about hitting most used surfaces in bathrooms every hour or two? There was and is a reason… Another resource for those collecting them is this NEJM section on COVID-19
Another reason to take part in quarantine/social distancing/whateveryoucallit is that according to this paper, up to 80 percent of the spread is from people who are either asymptomatic or otherwise not aware they have COVID-19. This article puts it closer to American. Hat tip to Instapundit for this one. Also, got these two links on quarantine and the law from Insty, so go read this and then go read this to learn more about the legality and precedents for what is going on. Would that more of the chest thumpers would read it, as a good solid debate on the Constitutionality and legality is needed and timely. That would take a degree of rationality that is all too rare in this pandemic.
There is more, much more, but I’m out of time this morning.
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If you suspect you have COVID-19 or have been exposed: call your state health department and work with them so that you can be dealt with in a way that minimizes the chance of spreading the virus to those helping you and to the general public. Can’t get them? Call your local department or see if your health service has online/telemedicine screening set up; or see if one who has will let you use it even if you are not in their network. Do not go out in public, and don’t go to an ER or other facility without calling ahead. Be smart.
Use the interactive graphic to keep track of things. Is COVID19 an epidemic? Yes. Is it a Pandemic? Yes. Is there need for panic? NO. HELL NO. Should you be paying attention? Yes. Hell yes. Should you be preparing? Yes, better late than never. And good luck finding/getting stuff.
Want to avoid catching COVID19 here in the U.S.? Wash your flippin hands frequently, wash them thoroughly every time you use the bathroom, then follow with hand sanitizer after every washing, use hand sanitizer liberally when you can’t wash on a regular basis. Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze, and stay away from those who don’t. Also, keep your bugger hooks out of/away from your eyes, nose, and mouth. Do NOT shake hands with anyone, and avoid touching or being touched by strangers. Or your strange friends.
Avoid travel if at all possible. Right now, there is no way I’m going to a trade show, major convention, etc. If you can telecommute, get that set up now. If you have to travel, use lots of hand sanitizer and go to full flu protocols. If you have to use a public restroom, take full precautions including using paper towels and such to handle faucets, doors,etc. Believe it or not, this was highly recommended before now, and major grocery chains have long told employees to use those practices to avoid getting or spreading colds, flu, etc. Not many actually do it, but…
If you own a business, make sure your employees know the above protocols. Have someone who refuses to wash their hands or otherwise follow the protocols? Talk to them, write them up, and if necessary fire them as they now pose a risk of infection to you and your customers. Extreme? Yes, but while the CDC and others are working to slow it down, odds are it is already here and could hit hard and fast. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
I want to reiterate that there is no need for panic, but there is a strong need to be alert, be informed, and be prepared.
Other COVID19/COVID-19/2019-nCoV articles:
COVID-19 13Mar20 The Game Of Loads And Vectors Gets Real For America
COVID-19 9Mar20 The Game Of Loads And Vectors
COVID-19 7Mar20 How To Do It Right If You Have/Have Been Exposed To COVID-19
Quick Additional Thoughts On The Bureaucracy
COVID-19 28Feb20 Reasons To Hope, Reasons To Fear
COVID-19 A Plea To The Politicians (And Media)
COVID19 The Situation In China Gets Even Weirder
COVID19 24Feb20 Raising DEFCON
COVID19 21Feb20: Just Look At The Blooms Dear
Update & Quick Thoughts On Preparedness
Some Quick Thoughts On Coronavirus 2019-nCoV