Sarah Palin will pry your Klondike bar from your cold dead fingers.

calendar   Saturday - April 04, 2020

Hospital Ship Empty

Floating Physical Virtue Signaling?

Process Problems And Red Tape Cause Empty Hospital Ship

The USNS Comfort, the Navy hospital ship that docked in New York Harbor this week as part of a greater effort to relieve hospitals overrun by an influx of coronavirus patients, only had 20 patients aboard as of Thursday evening.

The ship, equipped with 1,000 beds, 12 operating rooms, and 1,200 personnel, has not come close to reaching its capacity, taking on just 20 patients as of Thursday, a Navy spokeswoman confirmed Thursday evening.

“The process continues and we are honestly looking forward to seeing a significant increase in patients being transferred to the Comfort,” Capt. Patrick Amersbach said.

The ship was never intended to take patients with coronavirus. Rather, it is expected to lessen the load on local hospitals battling the virus by taking patients with other illnesses or traumas. However, there are reportedly 49 medical conditions “that would exclude a patient from admittance to the ship.”

Some say the bureaucratic tape is preventing the ship from accepting more patients. Officials, for instance, cannot transfer a patient to the vessel until he or she is thoroughly examined at a local hospital, including undergoing a test for the virus, and cleared.

Ambulances cannot take patients directly to the Comfort; they must first deliver patients to a city hospital for a lengthy evaluation — including a test for the virus — and then pick them up again for transport to the ship,” according to the Times.

Ok, how to fix this? Idea: set up a couple of tents or Quonset huts on the dock to work as a triage center, and process walk-ins as well. Keep the patient transfer system they have in place, but augment it with a few dozen military ambulances if necessary. It may be a stretch, a fantasy, but I’d extend the triage center to also include something like the Urgent Care offices that are all over the place. Regular doctor’s office for walk-ins, staffed by docs and PAs. And everybody who comes in the door gets one of those 15 minute COVID tests, and then a pack of HCQ and a pack of zinc supplements. People who actually test positive get a Z-Pack too (and a free mask), and the folks with mild symptoms or no symptoms are sent on their way. Maybe severe virus patients get transferred back (or to) a regular hospital. Maybe they need to put up a couple more tents on the dock just for that. My point is that you deal with the medical need you’ve got, and it doesn’t have to be an either/or thing.

I don’t know what these 49 exempted conditions are. Duh, it’s a good bet the hospital ship isn’t an oncology center. Cancer. But I bet they’ll deliver babies. Come on, theses ships were designed to handle combat casualties. So gunshot victims, blunt force trauma, burns, concussions, etc, are their bailiwick. OTOH, they’ve got doctors and nurses, so see what you can do to extend their care coverage. General illness, asthma, rashes, poisoning. Eye care and dental? I really don’t know what the ships are capable of, but if they can do something close to full service medical care, than that’s what they should do. And it’s free.

But cut the red tape. Don’t thin it out, eliminate it. And cut the fiscal aspect of it too: is there even a tiny chance that hospitals aren’t transferring patients because that would cut their insurance billing? Can’t have that kind of attitude, not right now.

On the third hand, with the city pretty much shut down, shootings, car accidents, and job injuries are way down. I don’t have the numbers for domestic violence or other medical things that happens when everybody stays home all the time. 


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 04/04/2020 at 09:07 AM   
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calendar   Thursday - April 02, 2020

Data To Ignore

Merely “Anecdotal” Data: Worldwide Consensus of 6227 Doctors: Chloroquine Works Best

I gather from the MSM that “Anecdotal” is newspeak for snide dismissal from your betters.

An international poll of more than 6,000 doctors released Thursday found that the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine was the most highly rated treatment for the novel coronavirus.

The survey conducted by Sermo, a global health care polling company, of 6,227 physicians in 30 countries found that 37% of those treating COVID-19 patients rated hydroxychloroquine as the “most effective therapy” from a list of 15 options.

Hydroxychloroquine, which is sold under the brand name Plaquenil, was prescribed mainly in the United States for the most severe cases, but not so in other countries.

“Outside the U.S., hydroxychloroquine was equally used for diagnosed patients with mild to severe symptoms whereas in the U.S. it was most commonly used for high risk diagnosed patients,” the survey found.

The 30 nations surveyed included those in Europe, Asia, North America and South America, as well as Australia. No incentives were provided to participate in the poll, conducted March 25-27, according to Sermo.

What is missing from this news article is how effective it has been found to be. Or not to be.

•The two most common treatment regimens for Hydroxychloroquine were:
•(38%) 400mg twice daily on day one; 400 mg daily for 5 days.
•(26%) 400mg twice daily on day one; 200mg twice daily for 4 day

The standard HCQ pill is 200mg. So we’re talking about a maximum of 14 pills per person for a 6 day treatment plan of the first regimin above.

Average Time for COVID-19 Test:

•On average tests in the US take 4-5 days, and in 10% of cases the wait is more than 7 days.

14% of US physicians and over 50% in all of Europe and Japan report getting test results in 24 hours; in China 73% of doctors get tests back in 24 hours, while 8% get tests back within the hour

The ENTIRE WORLD is 4-5 times better than us at test turnaround time. Somebody (CDC, FDA perhaps) has seriously screwed the pooch here.

Not to point out yet again that this stuff may do a better job with the lighter cases. It’s not like we don’t have tens of millions of these pills here. But we may be over focusing on the wrong patient group, to the exclusion of the others. The greatest help for the greatest number? The needs of the many versus the needs of the few? Does it really have to be an either/or thing when we have the capacity to do both?

By the time you read this we will have a quarter million cases in the USA. At 14 per, that adds up to 3.5 million pills. Pretty sure we’ve got at least 50 million at this point. WHAT THE FUCK IS THE PROBLEM HERE?? Oh, I forgot. “Anecdotal”. And Trump.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 04/02/2020 at 10:22 PM   
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calendar   Monday - March 30, 2020

It Would Take A Miracle, Max

Sorry, this is a rough post. Actually, it started as an email paste and just got expanded a bit. And it’s 2am. Good night.

Doctor Vladimir Zelenko, Miracle Worker??

Rockland County NY, on the west side of the Hudson River across from Westchester County, and just 30 miles NW of NYC, currently has 2209 cases, and northern neighbor Orange County has 1247.

Dr. Vladimir Zelenko from Kiryas Joel. You know, the place up in Orange County that only had 14 cases? And also from Monsey NY… very likely from New Square or nearby. Both are very very similar communities, like Weschester’s New Rochelle NY and NJ’s Lakewood, only much moreso. Capice?

Yeah, he’s treated 699 patients with HCQ ( Plaquenil )+ Z-Pack + Zinc and had 100% success. Well, at least with shortness of breath. Not much else mentioned at this point, except that nobody died or needed to be put on a ventilator.

“results within 4 to 6 hours”

In a video posted on YouTube, Dr. Vladimir Zelenko, a board-certified family practitioner in New York, said he saw the symptom of shortness of breath resolved within four to six hours.

Read more ... and this is from 2 days ago, referring back to results he shared a week before that

The whole treatment costs just $20.

the success story from Dr. Vladimir Zelenko, a board-certified family practitioner in New York, after he successfully treated 350 coronavirus patients with 100 percent success using a cocktail of drugs: hydroxychloroquine, in combination with azithromycin (Z-Pak), an antibiotic to treat secondary infections, and zinc sulfate.  Dr. Zelenko said he saw the symptom of shortness of breath resolved within four to six hours after treatment.

Now, Dr. Zelenko provides updates on the treatment after he successfully treated 699 COVID-19 patients in New York. In an exclusive interview with former New York Mayor, Rudy Giuliani, Dr. Vladmir Zelenko shares the results of his latest study, which showed that out of his 699 patients treated, zero patients died, zero patients intubated, and four hospitalizations.

Dr. Zelenko said the whole treatment costs only $20 over a period of 5 days with 100% success. He defines success as “Not to die.”

OTOH, others in the community really do wish he’d just pipe down for now. All the news is giving their members a bad rep and causing problems.

KIRYAS JOEL - Village leaders and community groups issued a joint statement on Tuesday rebuking a local doctor’s predictions about the spread of the coronavirus and urging him to stop posting videos online about the outbreak or else leave Kiryas Joel and the Hasidic community out of them.

The unusual public plea from the village’s main congregation, health center and other organizations came after Dr. Vladimir Zelenko recorded at least seven videos, including one that predicted a rampant spread of COVID-19 in Kiryas Joel and another that led Fox News host Sean Hannity to invoke the community on his radio and TV shows on Monday.

“We the undersigned institutions strongly believe that the predictions presented by Dr. Zelenko have been proven false and are not supported by the overall medical establishment, specifically in his wild conclusions as to the spread of the virus in our community,” the letter stated.

They said those statements had spurred discrimination against its residents and made it difficult to staff local businesses that remain open during the state emergency. Zelenko had estimated 90% of Kiryas Joel had COVID-19 after 9 of his first 14 tests came back positive — a conclusion the Orange County health commissioner blasted as irresponsible.

About 25,000 people live in the Kiryas Joel community. Last time I checked, they only had 14 cases officially. Now he’s treated nearly 700? Either he really REALLY gets around, or else the local rumors (that Kiryas has 75% of all the cases in Orange County) are pretty much true.


But is Tulicizumab even better?

according to doctors treating coronovirus patients in Italy, Tolicizumab, a drug used to treat moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis, has been shown to be more effective than hydroxychloroquine. Tolicizumab is so effective that the FDA gives green lights to Phase III Tocilizumab Trial for COVID-19 pneumonia. In a related report, Italian doctors said that a 101-year-old Italian man who survived the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic and World War II, recovered from COVID-19.

In another report, scientists claim Tocilizumab has been shown to help cure 95 percent of critically ill coronavirus patients in China. Tocilizumab, which is marketed as Actemra, is taken by patients with rheumatoid arthritis to reduce inflammation. Chinese doctors gave it to 20 patients during the peak of of coronavirus epidemic. Nineteen of the patients were discharged within 14 days despite being critically ill. Actemra has now been approved for use in China and for trials in the US


Tocilizumab, also known as atlizumab, is an immunosuppressive drug, mainly for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis, a severe form of arthritis in children. It is a humanized monoclonal antibody against the interleukin-6 receptor (IL-6R).

I guarantee you Actemra costs a whole lot more than generic Plaquenil and generic Z-Pack. And some vitamin pills. Yeah, I picked up on the zinc angle a couple weeks back. Vitamin C and D too, also rumored to help. Taking selenium, another metallic supplement, was an earlier rumor.


Not really related to this at all ... but little Putnam County NY, just north of Westchester (which has 8519 cases, 2nd in the nation only to it’s southern neighbor NYC), has a mere 142 cases. How is this possible?  Both counties are populous bedroom communities; commuters to NYC. Right across the Hudson, Orange County is also one these days, although it was the back of beyond as recently as 1985. Rockland has always been, ever since the bridges opened.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/30/2020 at 12:38 AM   
Filed Under: • Health-Medicinepandemic and epidemic diseasesPandemic Pandemonium •  
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calendar   Friday - March 27, 2020

Viral Career Killer

Dem Michigan Governor Threatens Doctors For Chloroquine

I kind of wonder if she has any actual authority here, but if this stuff works then “I left you to die!!” is the worst re-election slogan in history.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs warns that prescribing hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine for treatment of COVID-19 ‘without further proof of efficacy’ may be investigated for administrative action; reaction from Dr. Jeff Colyer, former Kansas governor.

Excerpt from the letter sent out by the Michigan BPL:

TO:  Licensed Prescribers & Dispensers
RE:  Reminder of Appropriate Prescribing and Dispensing

Dear Licensed Prescribers and Dispensers:The Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs has received multiple allegations of Michigan physicians inappropriately prescribing hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine to themselves, family, friends, and/or coworkers without a legitimate medical purpose.

Prescribing hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine without further proof of efficacy for treating COVID-19 or with the intent to stockpile the drug may create a shortage for patients with lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or other ailments for which chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are proven treatments. 

Reports of this conduct will be evaluated and may be further investigated for administrative action. 

Prescribing any kind of prescription must also be associated with medical documentation showing proof of the medical necessity and medical condition for which the patient is being treated. 

Again, these are drugs that have not been proven scientifically or medically to treat COVID-19.Michigan pharmacists may see an increased volume of prescriptions for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine and should take special care to evaluate the prescriptions’ legitimacy.

Pursuant to Michigan Administrative Code, R 338.490(2), a pharmacist shall not fill a prescription if the pharmacist believes the prescription will be used for other than legitimate medical purposes or if the prescription could cause harm to a patient

In addition to whatever stock on hand is in the US, Teva has donated 6 million pills, Bayer AG has sent us 3 million, Novartis has 50 million on hand and will churn out another 80 million by the end of May, and the FDA has added HCQ to the Interim Policy list, which will allow generic pharma companies and even pharmacies to make the stuff.

All told, there is probably enough out there right now to treat 4 million people. With lots more coming. So there is no shortage at all, and no hoarding necessary. Just keep the distribution channels running. Since the treatment plan is less than a week, we should have trials results data real soon. Provided, of course, that the media bothers to report it.


You may remember Governor Whitmer. She’s the one who gave the Dem rebuttal to President Trump’s magnificent SOTU address back in February.

“It’s pretty simple. Democrats are trying to make your health care better. Republicans in Washington are trying to take it away,” Whitmer said in prepared remarks.

Uh huh. That is pretty simple: she’s a total lying hypocrite.


Meanwhile, this EVIL DRUG that TRUMP IS POISONING EVERYONE WITH is showing success in Belgium and Bahrain. Phhhbbtt. Foreigners, what do they know about anything? It’s up to MI Governor Whitmer to block this for your own good.

Bahrain and Belgium report their hospitals are successfully treating coronavirus patients with the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine touted by President Trump as a possible breakthrough in the pandemic.

The Kingdom of Bahrain’s Supreme Council of Health chairman said his country was among the first to use the drug and that its impact has been “profound,” according to the Bahrain News Agency.

Dr. Shaikh Mohamed, who leads the National Taskforce for Combating COVID-19, was also quoted by the news agency as saying hydroxychloroquine was administered according to the same regimens as those used in China and South Korea.

The first COVID-19 case in Bahrain was reported on Feb. 21, and hydroxychloroquine was first administered to patients showing virus symptoms on Feb. 26. As of March 25, the virus had caused 4 deaths in Bahrain, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. 


Meanwhile in Europe, another U.S. ally, Brussels, is reporting similar early success with the same drug and is taking steps to ensure its availability for the sickest coronavirus patients.

“Using the limited stocks of these medicines for unnecessary or unjustified preventive treatments jeopardizes the availability of these medicines for patients who need them: chronic patients and hospital patients seriously affected by Covid-19,” Belgium’s Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products said this week.

Belgium, like the United States, has begun a longer-term clinical trial on the efficacy of using Hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 patients.

While warning against hoarding, and saying that this treatment plan is not yet proven or even fully tested, Belgium is delivering enough to treat 22,000 patients to each of their hospitals, with enough in the next delivery to treat another 17,000. There are 7,284 cases in the whole country.

Sounds like they are giving it a serious try. 


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/27/2020 at 07:07 AM   
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calendar   Thursday - March 19, 2020

As Expected, Trump Makes It Happen

President Trump: Move Forward With Plaquenil Right Now

President Trump announced Thursday that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is making experimental drugs—including those used for treating malaria -- available as part of the ongoing effort to tackle the spread of the coronavirus.

Trump announced at a White House press briefing that chloroquine, a drug designed for use in malaria, has been FDA approved and will be made available by prescription “almost immediately.” He said it was one of a number of antiviral therapies to limit the symptoms of the virus that the administration is trying to get to Americans as quickly as possible.

“I have directed the FDA to eliminate rules and bureaucracy so work can proceed rapidly, quickly and fast,” he said. “We have to remove every barrier.”

Addressing potential safety concerns, Trump noted that it had been used previously in treating malaria, “so we know if things don’t go as planned, it’s not going to kill anybody.” He said it had shown “very encouraging” early results.

He also said another drug, remdesivir, would be made available to Americans as well by the process of “compassionate use.” He said it would remain to be seen whether it would help combat the crisis.

So while the President did actually specifically say “chloroquine”, it’s pretty much a guarantee that he meant hydroxychloroquine sulfate, which is the common drug Plaquenil. To us laymen, it’s all chloroquine, although there are two forms of it, and the new NIH study did indicate that HCQ was much more effective. See yesterday’s posts.

U.S. researchers, following the lead of scientists in other countries, have launched studies to see whether widely-available, low-cost generic drugs can be used to help treat the illness caused by the new coronavirus.
... a 1,500-person trial, led by the University of Minnesota, began this week to see whether malaria treatment hydroxychloroquine can prevent or reduce the severity of COVID-19. Two other trials are studying the blood pressure drug losartan as a possible treatment for the disease.

The malaria drug, also being tested in China, Australia and France ...

Besides having a direct antiviral effect, hydroxychloroquine suppresses the production and release of proteins involved in the inflammatory complications of several viral diseases.

There was a report out of China recently that a test of 100 ailing subjects given Kaletra showed barely any positive effects (1 in 100), and bad reaction to that HIV medicine’s combination of lopinavir and ritonavir forced 13.8% off the mediction. Remdesivir is not the same as ritonavir.

This is most likely part of the WHO’s worldwide guinea pig large scale in-situ test of multiple solutions

The World Health Organization is taking the drug-testing approach that helped stifle Ebola’s latest resurgence and using it against the new coronavirus.

At least 10 countries including France, Spain and Switzerland agreed to join a trial called Solidarity that the global agency is coordinating, simultaneously testing four therapies by pitting them against each other.

The strategy is designed to speed up a process that can take years as doctors scour laboratories for promising treatments against the new virus.
In the Solidarity trials, researchers will test four therapies, some of which are already used in people, to treat Covid-19: Gilead Sciences Inc.’s experimental remdesivir, AbbVie Inc.’s Kaletra (used to treat HIV infection), Kaletra with an anti-inflammatory treatment called interferon-beta, and the malaria drug chloroquine.

China has included chloroquine in treatment recommendations for Covid-19. Ongoing studies showed that Kaletra, a combination of the drugs lopinavir and ritonavir, gave little benefit, according to early results published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine. Additional medicines may be added and some of the original treatments may be cut out as the trial progresses.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/19/2020 at 12:06 PM   
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calendar   Wednesday - March 18, 2020

And We Have A Cure?

Breaking News, Kind Of

Claim: Plaquenil and Z-Pack Cures COVID-19 100% In 6 Days

Study done via NIH, released a couple days ago finds that hydroxycholorquine much more effective in vitro than choloroquine:

According to the study, the researchers tested the pharmacological activity of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine using SARS-CoV-2 infected Vero cells. They then implemented physiologically-based pharmacokinetic models (PBPK) for both drugs separately by integrating their in vitro data. Using the PBPK models, hydroxychloroquine concentrations in lung fluid were simulated under 5 different dosing regimens to explore the most effective regimen whilst considering the drug’s safety profile.

Based on PBPK models results, a loading dose of 400 mg twice daily of hydroxychloroquine sulfate given orally, followed by a maintenance dose of 200 mg given twice daily for 4 days is recommended for SARS-CoV-2 infection, as it reached three times the potency of chloroquine phosphate when given 500 mg twice daily 5 days in advance.

[ Splitting hairs here. It turns out that the “coronavirus” we’re all going crazy about not only is just one of thousands of coronaviruses, but it is also a variation of the SARS virus. Specifically, the disease is the SARS-CoV-2 virus, and COVID-19 is the illness/symptoms created by the virus. For all of us normies, the terms are interchangeable. ]

Meanwhile in France ... a preliminary?? study of 40 patients ... (although the Chinese, South Koreans etc have been using this for awhile)

BREAKING: New controlled clinical study conducted by doctors ​in France shows that Hydroxychloroquine cures 100% of coronavirus patients within 6 days of treatment

a recent well controlled clinical study conducted by Didier Raoult​ M.D/Ph.D, et. al in France showed that 100% of patients that received a combination of HCQ and Azithromycin tested negative and were virologically cured within 6 days of treatment.

In addition, recent guidelines from South Korea and China report that hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine are effective antiviral therapeutic treatments for novel coronavirus.

A therapeutic agent that prevents infection with novel coronavirus is highly desirable–especially for persons with high-risk exposure (e.g healthcare professionals) as well as persons with comorbidities (heart disease, diabetes, etc) and compromised immune systems. Ground-breaking in vitro studies demonstrate potential efficacy of hydroxychloroquine as a prophylactic for novel coronavirus infection in primate cells.

Note: Hydroxychloroquine (brand name Plaquenil) is an inexpensive, globally available drug (tablet) that was approved for widespread medical use since 1955. It is commonly used today to treat malaria, systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis.

The study is part of the initiative from an independent group of scientists and physicians working on an open-data clinical trial for prevention of COVID-19, through the use of hydroxychloroquine in combination with other therapeutic agents. The group is now calling on President Trump to allow Americans to use the drug.

HCQ is hydroxychloroquine, the pill called Plaquenil, and Azithromycin is the antibiotic commonly known as the Z-pack. Z-pack hit the market 29 years ago as a respiratory treatment antibiotic, but has proven very effective against many other illnesses too.

I am thrilled to hear this, and even more thrilled to hear that a cheap common RA drug combined with a cheap common antibiotic appears to be highly effective; while other reports have shown that HCQ along with the (very expensive, >$500) HIV combo drug Kaletra (Lopinavir and Ritonavir)

HCQ also appears to be very effective at keeping you from getting this damn thing in the first place.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/18/2020 at 09:09 PM   
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calendar   Tuesday - March 17, 2020

Give Us Your Blood (to test, and later when you’re recovered, to share with others still sick)

Plasma From Recovered COVID Patients May Help Those Still Sick: China Testing It, WHO Agrees

This is on the news tonight, but has been out there online, buried under the hysteria, for a month now. Gee, I wonder why?

You get sick, your body makes antibodies, you get well. Those antibodies are in your blood. Filter the blood cells out of blood and you’re left with plasma. Which has the antibodies ... which may not be personally unique to each patient? Your antibodies will cure me? A lot of the time, this works. Plasma therapy is nothing new; it’s been done for quite some time now.

SHANGHAI/GENEVA (Reuters) - Doctors in Shanghai are using infusions of blood plasma from people who have recovered from the coronavirus to treat those still battling the infection, reporting some encouraging preliminary results, a Chinese professor said on Monday.

A top emergency expert at the World Health Organization (WHO) said later that using convalescent plasma was a “very valid” approach to test, but that it was important to get the timing right to maximize the boost to a patient’s immunity.


There are no fully licensed treatments or vaccines against the new coronavirus, and the process of developing and testing drugs can take many months and even years.

Convalescent plasma has been proven “effective and life-saving” against other infectious diseases, including rabies and diphtheria, Dr. Mike Ryan, head of WHO’s health emergencies program, told reporters in Geneva. “It is a very important area to pursue,” Ryan said.

“Because what hyperimmune globulin does is it concentrates the antibodies in a recovered patient. You are essentially giving the new victim’s immune system a boost of antibodies to hopefully get them through the very difficult phase.

“So it must be given at the right time, because it mops up the virus in the system, and it just gives the new patient’s immune system a vital push at the time it needs it. But it has to be carefully timed and it’s not always successful.”


Testing, testing, testing

Acceptably Accurate 15 and 10 Minute Tests

[ February 17 2020 ] Chinese scientists have created a new diagnostic method using blood serum that can produce accurate results in 15 minutes and greatly reduce the exposure of medical workers to ill patients.

The new test kit is called novel coronavirus IgM antibody, and it has finished preliminary evaluation in lab and clinical tests, the State Key Laboratory of Respiratory Disease in Guangdong province said.

[ March 17, 2020 ] COVID-19 IgG/IgM Rapid Test Device by Caming Pharmaceutical, sold by Watson International

COVID-19 IgG/IgM Rapid Test Device is a rapid chromatographic immunoassay for the qualitative detection of IgG & IgM antibody of COVID-19 IgM in human whole blood , serum, or plasma as an aid in the diagnosis of COVID-19 infections.

This kit uses immunochromatography. The test card contains: 1) colloidal gold-labeled recombinant new coronavirus antigen and quality control antibody gold markers; 2) two detection lines (G and M lines) and one quality Control line (C line) of nitrocellulose membrane. The M line is immobilized with a monoclonal anti-human IgM antibody for detecting a new coronavirus IgM antibody; the G line is immobilized with a reagent for detecting a new coronavirus IgG antibody; and the C line is immobilized with a quality control antibody.

All a tech needs to do is add a few drops of blood and 2 drops of buffer solution to the simple disposable device. It’s like one of those early pregnancy test things, but with serum instead of urine. It tests both antibody lines and has a control test to show if the tech screwed up. Results in 10 minutes. So it’s really fast. It’s 100% accurate on healthy people, and 90.5% - 96% accurate on infected people. Not perfect, but a damn site better than nothing, and a LOT less invasive than the older test that needs a lung fluid sample. For susceptible people the test is 70 - 74.5% accurate, whereas the older test isn’t even applicable (0% accuracy). Testing in China shows the false positive rate for this group to be extremely low.

The current CDC test uses a swab from upper and lower respiratory tract.

A laboratory test produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is currently being used for COVID-19 testing in the United States. This test requires a swab from the patient’s nose or throat and lungs and is available at CDC-designated locations in the United States and qualified international laboratories.

There are two main elements to a COVID-19 test, according to interim guidelines shared publicly by the CDC to clinicians.

The coronavirus is a respiratory disease, so the test kits take specimens from both the upper and lower respiratory tracts.

Tests in the lower respiratory tract include a branchoalveolar lavage, a minimally invasive procedure in which the clinician places a bronchoscope through the patient’s mouth or nose and into the lungs. A sterile fluid solution is squirted into a small part of the lung, and a specimen is collected for examination.

The patient then produces a sputum sample: “Have the patient rinse the mouth with water and then expectorate deep cough sputum directly into a sterile, leak-proof, screw-cap sputum collection cup or sterile dry container,” the CDC’s instructions read.

In the second test, for the upper respiratory tract, the clinician will swab the patient’s nostril as well as the throat. The test also collects a 2 to 3 milliliter specimen following a nasal “wash” or aspirate, which involves a soft, flexible tube in the nose.

These specimens are refrigerated until they can be shipped to the CDC for testing.

The kit is to be stored at 35-46 degrees Fahrenheit and kept at that temperature using an ice pack or dry ice as it is shipped to a CDC lab.
The CDC does not specify the time frame for which results should be expected, but its guidelines call for the samples to be shipped overnight.

In the case of the patient being treated at UC Davis Medical Center, the positive diagnosis appears to have been received about three days after testing.

And when they’re swamped with tests, it’s going to take a lot longer than 3 days to get the results. So a 10 minute test is one helluva improvement.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/17/2020 at 08:57 PM   
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A glimmer of hope? Or mabye 3 of them?

Inexpensive readily available malaria pills may prevent/slow/cure COVID-19

HIV meds might do the job too, or work with the malarial for a stronger curative

UPDATE: Chloroquine is actually Hydroxychloroquine, the same as hyrodxychloroquine sulfate, and is the common drug called Plaquenil or Quinprox. Aside from being a malaria treatment, Plaquenil is used to treat lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. Extremely high doses can mess up your eyesight, causing retinopathy.

[ news today: ] Recent guidelines from South Korea and China report that chloroquine is an effective antiviral therapeutic treatment against Coronavirus Disease 2019.  Use of chloroquine (tablets) is showing favorable outcomes in humans infected with Coronavirus including faster time to recovery and shorter hospital stay.  US CDC research shows that chloroquine also has strong potential as a prophylactic (preventative) measure against coronavirus in the lab, while we wait for a vaccine to be developed.  Chloroquine is an inexpensive, globally available drug that has been in widespread human use since 1945 against malaria, autoimmune and various other conditions. 

“Data from the drug’s [chloroquine] studies showed ‘certain curative effect’ with ‘fairly good efficacy’ … patients treated with chloroquine demonstrated a better drop in fever, improvement of lung CT images, and required a shorter time to recover compared to parallel groups.  The percentage of patients with negative viral nucleic acid tests was also higher with the anti-malarial drug… Chloroquine has so far shown no obvious serious adverse reactions in more than 100 participants in the trials… Chloroquine was selected after several screening rounds of thousands of existing drugs.  Chloroquine is undergoing further trials in more than ten hospitals in Beijing, Guangdong province and Hunnan province.”


[ China, exactly one month ago: ] Three potential anti-COVID19 medicines have been officially announced by the Ministry of Science and Technology: Favilavir [Fapilavir], Chloroquine Phosphate, and Remdesivir. They all initially showed more obvious curative effects and lower adverse reactions in clinical trials.
The other one with the most potential – so far – has been Remdesivir, which Gilead had already been developing as a treatment for Ebola disease and Marbug virus infections. It has subsequently also been found to show antiviral activity against other single-stranded RNA viruses such as respiratory syncytial virus, Junin virus, Lassa fever virus, Nipah virus, Hendra virus, and coronaviruses (including MERS and SARS viruses).


[ Australia today: ] Queensland researchers find ‘cure’, want drug trial

Some patients who tested positive for coronavirus in Australia have already been treated with one of the drugs and “all did very, very well,” researchers say.
A team of Australian researchers say they’ve found a cure for the novel coronavirus and hope to have patients enrolled in a nationwide trial by the end of the month.

University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research director Professor David Paterson told today they have seen two drugs used to treat other conditions wipe out the virus in test tubes.

He said one of the medications, given to some of the first people to test positive for COVID-19 in Australia, had already resulted in “disappearance of the virus” and complete recovery from the infection.

Prof Paterson, who is also an infectious disease physician at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, said it wasn’t a stretch to label the drugs “a treatment or a cure”.

“It’s a potentially effective treatment,” he said.

“Patients would end up with no viable coronavirus in their system at all after the end of therapy.”

The drugs are both already registered and available in Australia.
One of the two medications is a HIV drug, which has been superseded by “newer generation” HIV drugs, and the other is an anti-malaria drug called chloroquine which is rarely used and “kept on the shelf now” due to resistance to malaria.

He said the researchers want to study them in a “very meaningful way” against the coronavirus to “try and alleviate that anxiety of Australians”.

I’ve got an idea for a clinical trial: at least 180,000 people wordwide have this bug. There are millions of doses of malaria pills sitting around everywhere. A whole bottle of pills is under $10. I say go for it.

It may also be the case that cholorquine works better with the HIV drugs, which I guarantee cost a whole lot more than a mosquito pills that’s been around since the 1940s.

And then there’s the zinc supplement thing, and the selenium supplement thing, and the vitamin C supplement thing. And I’ve read that South Korea and Japan are getting good results using some pancreatitis medicine that is not FDA approved yet.

On the third hand, absolute authoritarian lockdowns seem to have done the job in China. But they aren’t saying whether or not they’re feeding the entire country choloroquine tablets.

[ 2/6/20 China trying Remdesivir: ] Doctors in Washington State gave remdesivir to the first coronavirus patient in the United States last week after his condition worsened and pneumonia developed when he’d been in the hospital for a week. His symptoms improved the next day.

A single case cannot determine whether a drug works, but a report on the Washington patient, in The New England Journal of Medicine, has nonetheless sparked excitement about the drug.

Another report published on Tuesday by scientists in China added to the enthusiasm, showing that remdesivir blocked the new coronavirus, officially known as 2019-nCoV, from infecting cells grown in the lab.


Gilead had stockpiled the drug, as well as the materials used to make it, for use against Ebola. The company is now using that stockpile for the trials in China and for individual patients like the one in Washington State

Remdesivir may also work against kitty cat coronavirus, which is a whole different thing.

More links to studies that say the same thing:


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/17/2020 at 08:41 AM   
Filed Under: • Health-Medicinepandemic and epidemic diseases •  
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calendar   Thursday - March 12, 2020

Everybody Is Kung Flu Fighting

“We have rung the alarm bell loud and clear”
- Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO director general


Someday, hopefully in April, this will all pass, and things will be normal again. But it may not be until May or June or later. And things won’t be normal anytime soon.

Maybe the massive shutdown of daily life will prove to be an overreaction. Maybe the virus, while contagious, isn’t that harmful. But the die is cast. Everything is shutting down.

No more hockey either. Like the NBA, the NHL just canceled the rest of the season. Aww crap.

And that’s about that needs to be said, other than random reports from here and there as the bodies pile up. If they do. And I hope they don’t. But “social distancing” is going to be the new watchword for the next few months.

I’m going to go to the grocery store again and buy up lots of everything that can be frozen or stored. If there is anything left. Because I’m a cynical semi-pessimist, I fully expect to encounter a near-panic situation when I get there.

Oh, the Dems came up with their own Mo Gibbs Wish List package too -

House Democrats late Wednesday unveiled a 124-page spending measure to address the coronavirus pandemic meant to aid workers and families set to have their lives disrupted.

Lawmakers are expected to vote on the bill Thursday and, while it is poised to pass under the House Democratic majority, it’s not clear yet whether Senate Republicans will take it up before Congress is set to adjourn for a week-long recess.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said earlier Wednesday the price tag for the measure would be in the billions. A summary released by the House Appropriations Committee included some of the costs.

The House measure includes provisions that would entitle workers to paid sick leave and added time off for coronavirus patients and and establish a federal funding for “emergency leave” for people quarantined by the illness or caring for others affected.

It also would expand food stamps and unemployment insurance for those impacted by the coronavirus and the school and business closures it has caused, as well as aim to provide meals to children who normally get lunch at school. The measure also provides aid to states coping with increased medical costs for the poor.

Well, I suppose that won’t hurt, and it’s all fiat currency anyway, so what the heck.

I was going to post yesterday on how NYC and Seattle are planning on keeping their schools open no matter what, as they’re more social assistance centers than they are learning institutions. Let’s see if that idea lasts longer than the first provable school kid infection vector.

... and the stock market is tanking again OF COURSE.  >2000 points down one day, >1000 points up the next, now it’s down >1800 points and it’s not even 10am. Aside from being totally overvalued, the market is totally over-reactive. It’s all a dream anyway, so why not just dream “and then the wicked witch Wuflu put the whole castle to sleep for 100 years 60 days”, AND JUST PARK IT.

U.S. stocks plummeted at opening Thursday after President Trump’s speech Wednesday night failed to calm investors’ fears about the coronavirus.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 7.43%, for a loss of 1,749 points, at opening.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite were also down at opening, 6.62% and 6.49%, respectively.

At the market opening, the price for crude oil is down by more than 7% and trading at roughly $30 a barrel.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/12/2020 at 08:53 AM   
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calendar   Wednesday - March 11, 2020

Who says it’s so

Kung Flu is now officially a Global Pandemic

The President is giving a speech about it right now. Travel restrictions against China, first Federal travel restriction ever.

Trump to take “strong but necessary actions”: NOBODY comes here from Europe. Exemptions only for Americans AFTER they’ve been screened. Right now it doesn’t apply to the UK.

No insurance co-pay for getting tested. Tax cuts, workers comp.

$8.3 Billion in funding. So on and so forth. “Social distancing”, schools closed. “This is not a financial crisis, just a short moment in time we all have to get through together. “

The outbreak of the novel coronavirus that’s now sickened more 100,000 people across the world has officially been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) — weeks after WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters in February that the outbreak of the virus, and the disease it causes --COVID-19-- “absolutely” had the potential to become a pandemic.

“WHO has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and we are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity and by the alarming levels of inaction,” Tedros said during a Wednesday press conference. “We have therefore made the assessment that COVID-19 can be characterized as a pandemic.”


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/11/2020 at 08:02 PM   
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calendar   Tuesday - March 10, 2020

Mama Mia

Italy Shuts Down. Rest of world not far behind.

In addition to the Red Zone, in which the northern third of Italy is in lockdown, the Italian PM Giuseppe Conte delivered a speech in which he specifies that damn near everything is off limits everywhere ...

00:00 …all events are suspended, every type and discipline of sporting competition,
00:06 whether in public places or private.
00:10 Sporting events will be allowed… those with, let us say —
00:14 in which professional athletes participate,
00:20 or in the absolute category, where Olympic games, national / international events,
00:26 but either behind closed doors or open without the presence of the public.
00:32 In addition, all organized events are suspended,
00:36 as well as events in public or private places,
00:41 those events of a recreational, cultural, sporting, religious, or exhibition character.
00:49 But also suspended are all events in cinemas, theaters, pubs,
00:55 dancing schools, gaming rooms, betting rooms, bingo rooms, discotheques.
01:01 So we can no longer allow ourselves to be in these areas where people congregate…

Not that anyone is going to Italy: nearly all the cruise lines have stopped visiting, and many of the airlines are neither going there nor flying out. Italy is closed.

Israel is still open, but everyone who comes there from somewhere else goes into quarantine for 2 weeks. Everyone. From Anywhere.  Just in time for the Easter and Passover season.

Israel will quarantine anyone arriving from overseas for 14 days, a decision coming barely a month before Easter and Passover.

All St. Patrick’s Day parades were canceled in Ireland, including one in Dublin that typically draws half a million to its streets.

All schools in and around Madrid will close for two weeks. The rising number of cases around Spain’s capital “imply a change for the worse,” the country’s Health Minister Salvador Illa said.

Trying to send a message of confidence in the economy, French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife walked on Paris’ Champs-Elysees avenue. “I’m shaking hands using my heart,” he said as he waved to people while keeping a 1-meter distance from passersby.


After earlier closing its land borders, Saudi Arabia cut off air and sea travel to and from Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Italy, Kuwait, Lebanon, South Korea, Syria and the United Arab Emirates. All Saudi schools and universities closed beginning Monday.

Qatar cut off travel to 15 countries and said it would shut down schools and universities beginning Tuesday.

Meanwhile back in the USA, at least a dozen more universities have sent their students home and shifted to online learning mode. Watch those numbers grow intensely in the next couple weeks. [ Then watch the primary schools lock the doors. And the malls and movie theaters close for a couple months. Hope you’re well stocked up with food and medications! ]

I have to wonder at the longer term implications of these universities going digital. This could be suicidal for them.

If every lecture for every class is now “in the can”, then why do they need to pay all those professors such big salaries? Why do they even need to have them around at all? Push it a bit further, and every campus in America becomes “matchbook college”, an old name for some of the original distance learning schools that used to advertise on matchbook covers. Why even have students in place? They can get drunk, have cheap sex, and silly protests at home.

And since any and every eager little Millennial will post those videos online, will this cause tuition to drop like a rock? Is this the beginning of the free college education Bernie is promising? If this online campus thing goes on until Christmas, then every Spring, Summer, and Fall course they offer will be taped and accessible, from Freshman English to post-graduate classes. And they’ve just put themselves out of business, aside from charging for the exams and the diplomas.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/10/2020 at 10:07 PM   
Filed Under: • EducationGovernmentHealth-Medicine •  
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Harvard Becomes Newest Online Only Campus

Harvard: Pack It Up, And Don’t Come Back After Spring Break

Harvard University has told all students to move out of their dorms by Sunday, is canceling classes on campus and moving all courses online to try to “de-densify” the campus and limit any spread of the new coronavirus. 

“The decision to move to virtual instruction was not made lightly,” University President Lawrence S. Bacow said in a letter to students and staff that was posted online Tuesday. “The goal of these changes is to minimize the need to gather in large groups and spend prolonged time in close proximity with each other in spaces such as classrooms, dining halls, and residential buildings.”

The school is transitioning to online instruction for graduate and undergraduate students with plans to offer all classes online by March 23, he said. Harvard is also limiting non-essential meetings to no more than 25 people, he said.

Harvard’s spring break starts Saturday and ends March 22 and its spring term ends in late April. The university said students shouldn’t return to campus after the break.

Monkey see monkey doo, or “an abundance of caution”: other campuses follow suit:

On Monday, Princeton announced similar measures, telling students that classes would be taught online following spring break. As a precaution, Ohio State University President Michael Drake also told students on Monday that all instruction for its more than 68,000 students would take place online until the end of March, although none of the state’s three confirmed cases are associated with the university.

The University of Washington in Seattle told students last week it would move temporarily move online and resume normal operations by the end of March, affecting nearly 50,000 students.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/10/2020 at 01:31 PM   
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calendar   Friday - March 06, 2020

Bio Jihad?

Pretty much what I implied the other day. If you think this is an accident, or just a case of someone being uppity and stubborn, think again.

Italy: Patient Zero is a Pakistani who ignored quarantine to deliver take-out Chinese food to hundreds

The man, a Pakistani, although asymptomatic, was invited by Italian health authorities to place himself in quarantine at his home in the Pavia area, but did not follow the suggestion and went on as if nothing had happened at the Chinese restaurant where he worked.

A young man of Pakistani origin residing in a municipality of Lomellina, in the Pavia area, tested positive for the Coronavirus and was asked to stay home for two weeks so as not to infect others.

According to Adnkronos, instead the foreigner ignored what should be common sense, and thought it well not to respect the quarantine. And he compounded the risk by making home deliveries of Chinese food.

Fortunately, the Carabinieri of the local station, who intervened following an anonymous report by some particularly attentive citizen, thought about stopping the careless migrant. The military intervened to return him to his home, at least for the period provided for by the protocol in cases like this.

The migrant was reported for failure to comply with the provisions of the judicial authority, an offense for which imprisonment of up to three months is foreseen or a maximum fine of 206 euros, as required by article 650 of the Italian penal code.

The Carabinieri have been busy reconstructing all the movements of the young man, in order to identify as many people as possible with whom he came into contact. In the meantime, the military has closed the Chinese restaurant.

The province of Pavia, as well as the entire Lombardy region, has been particularly affected by the Coronavirus epidemic. The alarming numbers led to the decision to keep Italian schools closed for another week, not only in Lombardy but also in Veneto and Emilia-Romagna, as well as other regions.

And just like Kung Flu, this bio-jihad attitude is contagious too.

Expect such actions to become major felonies real soon, and expect that even saying such things will soon be categorized as hate crimes.

Let no crisis go to waste. Forward the State!!


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/06/2020 at 11:04 AM   
Filed Under: • Health-Medicinepandemic and epidemic diseases •  
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calendar   Thursday - March 05, 2020

going viral

too darn many news stories on Kung Flu

•  Sick guy was told by doc to stay home. He goes to party. Now everybody is kung flu fighting. What a dick. I expect to see nearly instant and very strong changes in social behavior as this thing runs rampant. Everyone will be watching everyone for coughs, sneezes, touching, etc. Sanitizer wipes will be everywhere. Pack your mask and your nitrile gloves in your pockets.

•  Welcome to NJ. Yeah, it’s those same people who had the big measles thing last year, and before that the hepatitis outbreak. Not the best way to win friends.

•  Airport health screener has it. I have to wonder, how many people did he infect and not know it? Some jobs should be done by robots.

•  Darn, you can no longer kiss your dog in Hong Kong. Despite doggie masks, pets are getting sick with this too.

•  Hungary gets it, but not from Chinese. From Iranians. Hasn’t the world put them all on lockdown yet?? And now that Turkey has opened their borders to the EU, is a new biological diaspora intifada starting up? Zombie Apocalypse? This kind of thing can lead to war. Bad.

•  The American Solution: Bury the disease in money and pork Congress approves $7.8 billion to do whatever it takes. 3 times more than Trump asked for. Sorry, I’m too much of a cynic to wonder which shysters are going to get even richer from this, and I expect ZERO fiscal accountability. Exactly 2 Republicans voted against it, saying it was way too much money for now. Maybe later, but not now.

•  Latest fatality: small airlines? Maybe our One World masters should just put a leash on the banks and credit card companies for a while, and ready some kind of virus welfare handouts for the millions who are going to lose work, jobs, homes.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/05/2020 at 06:05 PM   
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Not that very many people ever read this far down, but this blog was the creation of Allan Kelly and his friend Vilmar. Vilmar moved on to his own blog some time ago, and Allan ran this place alone until his sudden and unexpected death partway through 2006. We all miss him. A lot. Even though he is gone this site will always still be more than a little bit his. We who are left to carry on the BMEWS tradition owe him a great debt of gratitude, and we hope to be able to pay that back by following his last advice to us all:
  1. Keep a firm grasp of Right and Wrong
  2. Stay involved with government on every level and don't let those bastards get away with a thing
  3. Use every legal means to defend yourself in the event of real internal trouble, and, most importantly:
  4. Keep talking to each other, whether here or elsewhere
It's been a long strange trip without you Skipper, but thanks for pointing us in the right direction and giving us a swift kick in the behind to get us going. Keep lookin' down on us, will ya? Thanks.


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