Want a coronavirus test? It's easy - just be rich, famous, or powerful

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/03/23/want-a-coronavirus-test-its.html


At this point the best way for ordinary people to find out if they are infected is to cough in a rich person’s face and wait for their test results.


@Brainspore Dang, you got that first.


When anyone asks me at this stage why there isn’t testing available widely or better access to medical treatment I keep answering with the same point…“This is why we MUST HAVE universal healthcare.”


This pandemic is going to be a strong case study in the utility of public vs. private for profit health care.

Also, I am long on tumbrels.


just be rich, famous, or powerful

… or South Korean?

… or pretty much from anywhere in the developed world other than the U.S. ?


At this point Canada has less than half the cases and less than half the deaths of the US per capita. Here’s hoping every country can flatten the curve.

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However Canada is limiting testing now.

In my view it’s not a high volume of testing that’s important; it’s the quarantine and social services support. I’m all for locking everywhere possible down tight, especially when you have idiots going to parks and beaches and not observing the 6ft/2m distancing rule.


Yes-- but what about in two days time?

Canada has less than half the cases and less than half the deaths of the US per capita.

The U.S. just has to decide to focus its resources. America gets a lot done once it gets off its behind.

I’ve just checked the stats, and I see no reason yet to believe from the statistics that either Ontario or Canada has succeeded in containing this yet. Growth (ln) is still 18% to 20%/day. I am not an epidemiologist.

I understand that we also need to get the South Korean style immunoglobulin M and G testing going, which is cheaper and turns around in a few minutes.


Twenty four months of total lockdown is the only way to beat this thing.

No one has claimed they have.


But what about the cases and deaths of super rich USians per capita?

I was wondering what the heck was going on off of the coast of Africa. I guess it’s just Indiana.


Both are important, because if you don’t have a high volume of testing it’s impossible to know who should be cleared to offer those social services. Knowing which health care workers can still safely attend to patients in hospitals and which grocery store employees can still safely stock shelves etc. is going to be key. That means testing for all of those people, but also testing everyone those people are in close contact with. If a grocer’s spouse is a known carrier for the virus then that grocer might do well to let someone else cover their shift for the next couple of weeks.


Probably too late for this:


Not really. If we could get enough tests to test everyone, a couple times a month, then a couple months lockdown at the beginning, followed by just isolating people who test positive, and their contacts, would probably do the trick.


It’ll be interesting to see if they can source ventilators exclusively for rich people later. We’re looking to be in worse shape than Italy, and I was reading something by a doctor in Italy who admitted they don’t even bother ventilating anyone over 60 because they have to ration access and there are too many younger people who need them and have slightly better prognoses. So a lot of people, especially older people, aren’t going to get the life-saving care they need, and there’s going to be a lot of pressure to provide that care for the wealthy regardless of their prognosis.


Good on ya Harry Moroz for the comic/tragic point, and I hate to be “that” guy but – logical fallacy. The rich person could have already had the virus, so a positive result doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve got it.

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