Tag Archives: Wuhan Virus

So much good news in the battle against the Chinese Wuhan virus

Our best bet right now for slowing and stopping the pandemic
Our best bet right now for slowing and stopping the pandemic

I keep having tabs open in my browser with all sorts of good news stories, so I decided to just dump some of them in this one post so I can finally close the browser tabs.

April 4th: Doctors Rate Hydroxychloroquine ‘Most Effective’ Coronavirus Treatment:

An international poll of more than 6,000 doctors finds that the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine has been deemed the most highly rated treatment for the novel coronavirus.

The survey, conducted by Sermo, a global health care polling company, asked 6,227 physicians in 30 countries to find out what is the most effective against SARS-CoV-2. The poll finds that 37% of those treating patients suffering from the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 rated hydroxychloroquine as the “most effective therapy” out of a list of 15 choices.

On Monday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave chloroquine and its derivative, hydroxychloroquine, emergency-use authorization, although many physicians were already using the drug.

Azithromycin, known by the brand name Zithromax or Z-Pak, came in as the second-most effective therapy at 32%, followed by “nothing.”

The study I looked at from Science Direct said that the best results are obtained by using a combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin, which is (I think) what Trump had recommended earlier. In fact here’s an example story about a doctor who is using the combination of the two drugs:

April 2nd: Dr. On Malaria Drug: ‘Absolute Game Changer,’ ‘Beginning Of The End Of The Pandemic’:

An infectious disease doctor told Fox News on Wednesday night that using hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin to treat patients that have the coronavirus was an “absolute game changer” and that it was “the beginning of the end of the pandemic.”

The model used by the White House to calculate infection and death rates is being revised downward – twice.

April 6th: Influential Coronavirus Tracking Model Shows Steep Decline In Death, Bed Shortage Projections:

An influential prediction model, referenced routinely by White House coronavirus task for leader Dr. Deborah Birx, has been updated to reflect a major change in death and bed shortage projections, according to the Associated Press.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation University of Washington’s School of Medicine now says they’re COVID-19 projection model shows a sharp decline in anticipated deaths, anticipated bed shortages, and even anticipated infections — a change made as new data about the virus’ real-world spread becomes available and analysts are able to monitor epicenters, like New York City, in real time.

April 6th: White House Coronavirus Model Gets Another Update, Downgrading Estimated Deaths:

A model heavily relied upon by the White House task force responding to the China-originated novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, has again been updated.

On Sunday night, a model from the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington dropped its estimated death projection for the first wave of the pandemic to 81,766 deaths, down from 93,531.

“The 11,765 fewer deaths would mark a 14% decrease for the model’s target projection, and a 30% decrease for the worst-case scenario,” The Daily Caller noted Monday.

Some countries are starting to scale back their quarantining and social distancing:

April 6th: First European Country Announces Multi-Step Plan To Ease Coronavirus Lockdown:

On Monday, Austria became the first European country to announce its plan to begin easing “lockdown” measures amid signs that it has made it through the worst stages of the initial wave of the coronavirus pandemic. Other European countries are reportedly beginning to look with hope toward taking similar steps.

Austria has experienced “three consecutive days in which the number of coronavirus recoveries have exceeded the number of new cases,” The Washington Post explains. “On Monday, Austrian authorities reported 241 new infections over previous 24 hours, but 465 recoveries.”

Things are going so well, that even the Democrats have taken notice.

April 6th: Thousands Of N.Y. COVID Patients Being Treated With Anti-Malarial Drug Hydroxychloroquine:

As many as 4,000 people in New York are currently being treated with hydroxychloroquine, the New York Post reports:

A state Health Department official said the [Department of Health] has shipped doses of hydroxychloroquine to 56 hospitals across New York, distributing enough “to treat 4,000 patients to date.” Patients have received doses as part of four- or 10-day regimens, officials said. The University of Albany’s School of Public Health is observing the drug’s impact on the patients, and its preliminary study could come back in weeks instead of the usual months, officials said.

Cuomo has been criticized for prohibiting pharmacists from dispensing hydroxychloroquine outside a hospital.

April 6th: Cuomo: New York Coronavirus Deaths Have Been ‘Effectively Flat’ For Two Days:

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said Monday that the number of daily coronavirus deaths in his state has been “effectively flat for two days,” which he said may signal the pandemic is beginning to wane.

New York had 599 new deaths, up from 594 on Sunday but down from 630 on Saturday.

“While none of this is good news, the possible flattening of the curve is better than the increases that we have seen,” Cuomo said.

The governor also said the number of hospitalizations and intensive care admissions have also hit their lowest points in more than two weeks.

April 6th: Michigan Democrat With Coronavirus Credits Trump With Saving Her Life: ‘I Do Thank Him For That’:

A Michigan state Democratic lawmaker who was suffering from the coronavirus credited President Donald Trump with saving her life, saying on Monday that his constant touting of hydroxychloroquine is what led her to ask her doctor for the malaria drug.

Rep. Karen Whitsett (Detroit) “said she started taking hydroxychloroquine on March 31, prescribed by her doctor, after both she and her husband sought treatment for a range of symptoms on March 18,” The Detroit Free Press reported. “‘It was less than two hours’ before she started to feel relief, said Whitsett, who had experienced shortness of breath, swollen lymph nodes, and what felt like a sinus infection.”

April 4th: Biden Endorses Trump’s China Travel Restrictions — Two Months Late:

[O]n Jan. 31, the president declared coronavirus a U.S. public health emergency and issued a travel ban between the United States and China. Campaigning in Iowa that day, Biden criticized Trump’s China travel ban, saying, “This is no time for Donald Trump’s record of hysteria and xenophobia.”

On Feb. 1, Biden again criticized Trump for the move.

[…]Presumed Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden now backs restrictions on travel from China — two months after President Donald Trump put them into place to stem the spread of the coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan, China.

It took a few months, but the Democrats and their mainstream media allies are starting to credit Trump for taking the Wuhan virus seriously early on.

And of course the stock market was up 7.5% on Monday. I hope you bought the dip in March. I was out of the market since last summer when the markets crossed over the 52-week highs. I just got back in last month. So far, I’m up 10% in my portfolio, and my nerves are steady. It’s a risk I’m willing to take because the reward is worth it.

Swiss pharma company pledges to donate 130 million doses of drug touted by Trump

Data: Covid-19 testing in the United States
Data: Covid-19 testing in the United States

There’s been a lot of good news last week, and I tweeted some of it. A lot of private sector companies are stepping up to manufacture the tools needed to defeat the Chinese Wuhan virus. They’re making hand sanitizer, respirator masks, ventilators, and even prescription drugs for testing and treatment. One company really stood out to me, though, so let’s read about them first.

Daily Wire reported:

Novartis Chief Executive Vas Narasimhan said Sunday that the Trump-touted drudged hydroxychloroquine, often used to treat malaria, is our biggest hope in combating the China-originated coronavirus, or COVID-19.

Narasimhan pledged to donate a stunning 130 million doses of hydroxychloroquine and will support studies of the drug as a treatment against COVID-19.

Reuters reported:

Novartis Chief Executive Vas Narasimhan said his Sandoz generics unit’s malaria, lupus and arthritis drug hydroxychloroquine is the company’s biggest hope against the coronavirus, Swiss newspaper SonntagsZeitung reported on Sunday.

Novartis has pledged to donate 130 million doses and is supporting clinical trials needed before the medicine, which U.S. President Donald Trump also has been promoting, can be approved for use against the coronavirus.

“Pre-clinical studies in animals as well as the first data from clinical studies show that hydroxychloroquine kills the coronavirus,” Narasimhan told Swiss newspaper SonntagsZeitung. “We’re working with Swiss hospitals on possible treatment protocols for the clinical use of the drug, but it’s too early to say anything definitively.”

According to Reuters, pharmaceutical companies Bayer and Teva “have also agreed to donate hydroxychloroquine or similar drugs, while Gilead Sciences is testing its experimental drug remdesivir against coronavirus.”

As noted by The Daily Wire on Sunday, France officially sanctioned this weekend chloroquine for certain patients infected with COVID-19.

“The French government has officially sanctioned prescriptions of chloroquine to treat certain coronavirus patients,” France 24 English reported Saturday.

“This ensures continued treatment of patients who have been treated for several years for a chronic condition with this drug, but also allows a temporary authorization to allow certain patients with coronavirus to benefit from this therapeutic route,” said Jérôme Salomon, France’s director general of health.

According to a report from Trustnodes, France’s move comes after infectious disease specialist Didier Raoult announced new clinical results… that show 78 out of 80 patients treated with chloroquine recovered within five days.

Trump is trying to get the FDA to move quickly through testing so that these drugs can be made widely available. 

The Daily Wire reported on Sunday night that the FDA is doing everything they can to get these drugs available:

On Sunday night, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine, drugs often used to treat malaria and recently touted by President Donald Trump as a possible “game-changer” in the fight against the China-originated novel coronavirus, or COVID-19.

The United States Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced in a statement on Sunday that the FDA will allow the drugs to be “donated to the Strategic National Stockpile to be distributed and prescribed by doctors to hospitalized teen and adult patients with COVID-19, as appropriate, when a clinical trial is not available or feasible,” a Politico report said.

The statement noted that “Sandoz donated 30 million doses of hydroxychloroquine to the stockpile and Bayer donated 1 million doses of chloroquine.”

Trump made it clear weeks ago that his administration would work to fast-track promising drugs like hydroxychloroquine with the FDA, all in an effort to combat COVID-19.

The drugs are already being tested in New York state:

Democratic New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is on the same page as President Trump when it comes to the popular anti-malaria drugs, permitting trials of hydroxychloroquine, chloroquine, and azithromycin to commence in his state.

“Let’s see how it works,” Trump said Sunday, with regard to the New York trials. “It may. It may not.”

But wait! There’s more good news.

I’m currently tracking 5 different drugs to see how they perform during tests, but here is a sixth one that I didn’t even know about.

The New York Post reports:

Two coronavirus patients in New York City are off ventilators and out of intensive care after they received an experimental drug to treat HIV and breast cancer.

[…]The drug, leronlimab, is delivered by injection twice in the abdomen, the Daily Mail reported.

Of seven critically ill patients who received the drug in New York, two were removed from ventilators and two showed significant improvement.

[…]CytoDyn, the drug’s manufacturer, could get FDA approval in six weeks if leronlimab continues to show promise. No drugs currently have FDA approval to treat the novel coronavirus.

Other private sector companies are developing faster methods to test for the Wuhan virus.

CNBC reports:

Abbott on Friday announced it received approval for a test that is capable of delivering positive results of the coronavirus in as little as five minutes, and it will begin making those tests available to health care providers next week.

The Food and Drug Administration issued emergency use authorization for the point-of-care test on Friday, the company said in a statement. The test can detect negative results in 13 minutes. The company said it plans to ramp up manufacturing so it can deliver 50,000 tests per day.

And finally, this from the Daily Wire:

Scientists studying the coronavirus have some good news: as it is transmitted through the human population, it is not undergoing significant mutations, meaning it will not become more dangerous as it spreads, and once a vaccine is developed, it could be as effective as vaccines for measles or chickenpox are. Peter Thielen, a molecular geneticist at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory who is one of the scientists examining the virus, told The Washington Post,, “I would expect a vaccine for coronavirus would have a similar profile to those vaccines. It’s great news.”

So, the Trump administration is actually doing a pretty good job of cutting red tape to get people help faster. But a lot of the actual work is being down by private sector companies who are making donations and developing tests and drugs to solve the problem. Just keep that in mind when you here doom and gloom from fake news journalists and Democrat politicians.

102 Americans died Monday while Democrats blocked Wuhan virus relief

United States Wuhan virus infections and deaths
United States Wuhan virus infections and deaths

While Nancy Pelosi was away, Republicans and Democrats co-operated to produce a bipartisan bill to provide relief to suffering Americans. But Nancy Pelosi returned and threw the bill out and instead demanded the relief legislation must contain socialist policies unrelated to relief. Meanwhile, people in America are getting sick and dying, and workers are losing their jobs.

The Daily Wire reports:

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) unloaded on Senate Democrats on Monday for continuing to play partisan games in trying to reach an agreement for a massive stimulus bill to provide relief to American families and the economy.

It had looked like the two sides were going to come to an agreement on Sunday to move the proposed $1.8 trillion stimulus bill along in the process until Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ruined talks.

“It was one party — the Democratic Party saying to this chamber and the American people, ‘Hell no. We won’t even take this up and discuss it,’” Cruz said on the Senate floor. “At a time of crisis, at a time when people are dying, that’s wrong. That’s shameful.”

He added, “When we awakened this morning following the Democrats’ obstruction, worldwide, there were 372,563 reported cases of the coronavirus. In the hours since then, just today, there have been an additional 23,352 cases reported today. While the Democrats are blocking the bill 23,000 new cases today.”

“In the United States, when we started this morning, there were 35,224 cases this morning. Right now, as of the latest numbers, there are 41,708 cases in the United States today,” Cruz continued. “That means we’ve had an additional 6,484 four cases today, while the Democrats are blockading.”

Cruz noted that Senate Democrats were not even in the chamber as he talked because they had all left.

“They’re not showing up for work,” Cruz said. “They’re not doing their job.”

“In the United States, as of this morning, there were 471 deaths reported due to coronavirus. As of right now it’s 573,” Cruz continued. “That means today 102 Americans died while the Democrats were blocking consideration of this bill.”

I was watching Dan Crenshaw tweet out screenshots of the Democrat proposals yesterday. It was astonishing: they wanted to include all sorts of things that have nothing to do with protecting Americans from the threat of the virus, and the economic damage caused by people being forced to stay home.

Here’s a list of their demands:

  1. Corporate pay statistics by race and race statistics for all corporate boards at companies receiving assistance.
  2. Bailing out all current debt of postal service
  3. Required early voting
  4. Required same day voter registration
  5. 10k bailout for student loans
  6. For companies accepting assistance, 1/3 of board members must be chosen by workers
  7. Provisions on official time for union collective bargaining
  8. Full offset of airline emissions by 2025
  9. Greenhouse gas statistics for individual flights
  10. Retirement plans for community newspaper employees
  11. $15 minimum wage at companies receiving assistance
  12. Permanent paid leave at companies receiving assistance

Those things have nothing to do with the coronavirus, or the declining stock market, or the mass unemployment caused by quarantining workers. Those things might be good, but they’re not related to the immediate problem of helping Americans impacted by the virus.

By the way, I’m not sure that everything in the spending bill is great, or that we should be spending so much money. But I do know that conservatives like Tom Cotton, Dan Crenshaw, Ted Cruz, etc. have been pushing the bill, and they worked hard on negotiating it.

What should we do about the Wuhan coronavirus?

The economic cost of making workers stay home
The economic cost of making workers stay home

I think by now most people have realized that there is an economic cost to shutting Americans of all ages into their homes. If people can’t work, then businesses can’t make money, and they have to furlough or lay off workers. We can’t keep up this policy of making everyone stay home forever – it would lead to another Great Depression. Is there a way to get people back to work?

This article from The Federalist explains, and comes up with a different solution. The author argues that the Wuhan virus is most dangerous to the elderly, and people with pre-existing conditions. And therefore they should shelter in place securely, while the rest of us who are under age 50 keep the economy from sliding into a depression by going back to work as soon as possible.

It says:

Richard Epstein at the Hoover Institution… points out that South Korean data, which is more complete than most other countries’ data, shows huge disparities in risks between old and unhealthy and young and healthy. “Clearly, the impact on elderly and immunocompromised individuals is severe, with nearly 90% of total deaths coming from individuals 60 and over. But these data do not call for shutting down all public and private facilities given the extraordinarily low rates of death in the population under 50,” Epstein writes.

[…]The costs Americans are being forced to bear may be more than is rational to impose. Already one-fifth of working Americans are being laid off and having work hours cut due to not even one week of suspensions.

“[T]he massive curtailments of the U.S. economy can have as many health consequences as the virus itself—if millions lose income and jobs, become depressed in self-isolation, increase smoking, and drug and alcohol use, and postpone out of fear necessary buying and visits to doctors and hospitals for chronic and serious medical conditions unrelated to the virus,” writes Victor Davis Hanson.

What if the real scenario is one of these: 1) We plunge the nation into a depression that kills many businesses and addicts millions to welfare, in a nation that has already pledged more welfare than it can afford for at least the next three generations. Because of this depression, many people die due to poverty, lack of medical care, and despair. Millions more transform from workers to takers, causing a faster implosion of our already mathematically impossible welfare state.

2) The nation quarantines only at-risk populations and those with symptoms, like South Korea has, and ensures targeted and temporary taxpayer support to those groups, goes nuts cranking out ventilators and other crisis equipment such as temporary hospitals using emergency response crews, while the rest of us keep calm, wash our hands, take extreme care with the at-risk groups, and carry on.

Why would the entire nation grind to a halt when the entire nation is not at a severe risk? I would rather have a flu I am 99.8 percent likely to survive than the nation plunged into chaos indefinitely because we pulled the plug on our economy during a stampede.

At the very least, Congress should wait a week or two, while half the nation or more is home, to see how the infection rates look as millions of test kits go out. The worst-case scenario they are predicating their actions on may not be the one we’re facing. Prudence suggests a measured, wait and see approach to policy until we have better information, not chucking trillions of my kids’ dollars out the window “just in case.”

Right now, I think we should expand testing so we understand the problem better, fast-track whatever drugs are known to work, expand hospital capacity, build more N95 masks, build more ventilators, and get people under 50 back to work. This is in addition to proper hand-washing, social distancing and working from home where possible.

The cost of a depression seems to me to be much higher than what is happening to South Korea right now. They have massive testing effort and they are only quarantining people who are at high risk or who show symptoms. That makes more sense to me than shutting the economy down, or pass massive spending bills with bailouts for businesses that should not be shut down more than a month.

Wuhan virus: communist China destroyed samples, silenced doctors, and disappeared critics

The Wuhan Virus started in China
The Wuhan Virus started in China

I’m not a big fan of National Review these days, but I wanted to link to this article because it quoted a bunch of pay-walled articles to make some good points about how we got the Wuhan virus. Not only is China to blame for the Wuhan virus, but they are actually trying to cover it up now, and shift the blame to the countries that they are damaging.

Here are the main points of the article:

  • China destroyed samples and suppressed information about the Wuhan Virus since December 2019, leaving other nations in the dark and unprepared
  • Chinese doctors who warned about patients with the Wuhan virus were silenced by the communist regime in China
  • In January, Chinese authorities denied that the Wuhan virus could be spread between people, and allowed huge gatherings of people in Wuhan
  • The President of China knew about the Wuhan virus for weeks but refused to tell anyone about it
  • The communist China government let 5 million people leave Wuhan without screening them
  • Critics of China’s handling of the Wuhan virus – even rich businessmen – are disappearing

I love the article, because it links to articles behind paywalls from the UK Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the New York Times, etc.

Here’s the UK Times:

Chinese laboratories identified a mystery virus as a highly infectious new pathogen by late December last year, but they were ordered to stop tests, destroy samples and suppress the news, a Chinese media outlet has revealed.

A regional health official in Wuhan, centre of the outbreak, demanded the destruction of the lab samples that established the cause of unexplained viral pneumonia on January 1. China did not acknowledge there was human-to-human transmission until more than three weeks later.

The detailed revelations by Caixin Global, a respected independent publication, provide the clearest evidence yet of the scale of the cover-up in the crucial early weeks when the opportunity was lost to control the outbreak.

And here’s the Washington Post:

As word of a mysterious virus mounted, Li Wenliang shared suspicions in a private chat with his fellow medical school graduates.

The doctor said that seven people seemed to have contracted SARS — the respiratory illness that spread from China to more than two dozen countries and left hundreds dead in the early 2000s. One patient was quarantined at his hospital in Wuhan, China, Li said. He urged people to be careful.

Li and seven other doctors were quickly summoned by Chinese authorities for propagating “rumors” about SARS-like cases in the area — but their warnings were prescient. Soon, health officials worldwide would be scrambling to combat a novel virus with a striking genetic resemblance to SARS.

Here is something else I found on the Daily Wire – the response of the atheistic communist Chinese regime to being caught:

The National Security Council blasted the Chinese Communist Party on Tuesday for expelling journalists from the country and spreading false information about the origin of the virus instead of focusing on stopping the virus, which originated in China.

“The Chinese Communist Party’s decision to expel journalists from China and Hong Kong is yet another step toward depriving the Chinese people and the world of access to true information about China,” the NSC said in a statement. “The United States calls on China’s leaders to refocus their efforts from expelling journalists and spreading disinformation to joining all nations in stopping the Wuhan coronavirus.”

The statement from the NSC comes after China announced it would expel American journalists working for The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal.

“It also demanded that those outlets, as well as the Voice of America and Time magazine, provide the Chinese government with detailed information about their operations,” The New York Times reported. “The announcement went on to say that the American journalists now working in mainland China ‘will not be allowed to continue working as journalists in the People’s Republic of China, including its Hong Kong and Macao Special Administrative Regions.’ The two territories are semiautonomous and in theory have greater press freedoms than the mainland.”

Rather than admit responsibility, apologize and make restitution, they are responding by throwing out the journalists who criticize them. And you can bet those journalists would be murdered in secret if they were not American citizens. After all, the communist Chinese regime has been credibly accused of a massive organ harvesting operation – including harvesting the organs of living victims as they are being killed:

Last week, the Independent Tribunal into Forced Organ Harvesting from Prisoners of Conscience in China issued its final report concluding that China engages in the systematic human-rights atrocity of killing political and other prisoners and harvesting their organs.

[…]The Judgment convincingly concludes that China is guilty as charged. According to the report, beginning at page 415, there are four methods by which China kills prisoners and harvests their organs.

  1. Organ harvesting from prisoners incompletely executed by shooting;

  2. Organ harvesting from prisoners after lethal injection;

  3. Execution by organ explanation (killing by organ harvesting);

  4. Organ harvesting under the pretext of brain death (taking organs from people not really dead).

The United States is not alone in suffering major economic and public safety consequences because of the decisions of the communist Chinese government. There is even talk of demanding reparations. We are already in a bear market, and there is likely to be a recession because of their suppression of the evidence. And I also think that there is a lesson there for our election in November – this is what people on the secular left always do when they fail to deliver on their promises. They deny responsibility and silence or destroy those who warned them. It’s standard operating procedure for communists. Communism requires atheism. And without God, any immorality you can imagine is possible.