After health expert in China said new coronavirus was "under control," he himself became infected

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/01/22/after-health-expert-in-china-s.html

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I don’t like the sound of this. Does it cause a rash?

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Plus the first case has arrived in the USA, from China, yesterday.

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Well, after all his job is to evaluate the new coronavirus, so…

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he himself became infected

I have spoken.

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The numbers in this article are out of date – I think it’s now up to 17 dead and over 500 infected globally.

It does look like the vast majority of people infected are not dying, and presumably will recover? I am not a health professional! Would love more deets from any doctors here on how this virus compares to, say, seasonal influenza outbreaks, particularly nasty things like SARS and MERS, etc.

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personally I want to see this guy as spokes person for every cause I’m against.

They’ve now cut off all transportation out of, and shut down public transportation within Wuhan. A city of 11 million people. But yeah, sure, there are only 500 confirmed cases of infection.

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I found this article in The New York Times to be interesting and informative:

Reading the new Gibson now, it’s hard not to think “Jackpot” when these types of outbreaks pop up… :frowning:

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Its hard to say which tendency is dominating here - the authoritarian tendency to cover up bad news or the authoritarian tendency to overreact without consideration for convenience of citizens

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Or I mean, a fairly reasonable tendency to try to control a potentially very dangerous public health crisis? The upcoming holiday season in China could lead to an absolutely massive expansion of infections across the country, and by extension the world. Many, many deaths could occur. Huge economic problems. Boston got shut down completely for a few days after the Boston bombing, and this seems much more dangerous, to me.

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https://www.barfblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/remain.calm_.animal.house_.jpg

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Excuse me while I make a quick purchase.

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It is hard to compare this with other outbreaks because we simply don’t know. Once the incubation period, when symptoms start, how long the virus lasts outside the body, transmission rate and mortality rate is nailed down it will be easier to compare. That could take up to another month to figure out because there is a relatively long time between infection and symptoms showing up.

It doesn’t help that everyone with a fever and problems breathing are not going to have it and efforts to screen everyone will be problematic with the population density involved. Add on to that everyone involved will be working hard to cover their own ass and non Chinese officials will likely be facing obstructionism it will be difficult to get accurate info.

If history is any indication, this one is going to infect more than SARS but likely be less deadly and hopefully less infectious. Will it infect as many as a flu or cold? Worst case scenario, yes. If I was to guess it is going to be like a bad flu year, but not as bad as the 1917 flu as that took down the healthy, while this is taking down the old and sick as most flu do.

That being said, the virus is still mutating. The latest theory is that it made a large jump from snakes to humans and it is still adapting to a new host. It may do the usual cold bug trade off of becoming more infectious but less deadly. Of course it may do something else entirely. The problem is that we don’t know.

The best thing to do is not panic, wash your hands lots, and not go out if you feel ill. Buying some extra tissues and cans of soup won’t hurt either.

Edit : Disclaimer: I am not a disease expert or a medical professional, just an enthusiast with training as a biolab tech.

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That long time (currently undefined) is the scary part here. That long latency makes spread much more efficient and easy.

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China is a big movie set were nothing is real.
And they try to export the model…

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