I live in the states, though not in Seattle. My wife's best friend teaches ESL at a major university. She has several Chinese students in her class who went home over the semester break in December and January. In mid-to-late January, the teacher, her husband, my wife, and I all came down with the "flu" in swift succession, we all rode it out at home and none of us were tested to see if we actually had the flu virus. We just assumed flu because what else could it be? At that point, we'd never heard of novel corona virus.
The illness we all got was characterized by a deep and persistent cough and chest congestion, brutal sore throat, and a fever with teeth chattering chills and soaking sweats. We all had various levels of relapses of the cough and chest congestion (generally without fever) after the initial recovery.
I stayed home from work, of course, when I was ill, but a few people I had contact with at work also came down with something similar right after me. Many had had the flu shot since we get it for free at work. The general sentiment was that this years flu shot was a dud. I've been wondering if it wasn't actually flu going around.
The flu shot is a guess at which viruses will be most prevalent this year. A recent study I saw (sorry, I don't have a link) suggested that a single flu shot has little impact on your likelihood of getting the flu this year. If you regularly get flu shots, however, after 4 years, your immunity is significantly increased (I presume because you have be immunised against enough different viruses).
No comment on your situation, exactly; I just thought it was an interesting and relevant factoid.
Seems pretty straightforward. They look at which strains people have been testing positive for and how successful the previous vaccines were.
This is why we need to perfect much more expedient vaccine production technology other than the attenuated virus method
The by far most likely scenario? Not the flu, but any one of the numerous upper respiratory viruses (hundreds but likely rhinovirus) that cause the “common cold”
Notably absent from your description of symptoms is fast onset weakness and body aches. Colds can cause short high spiking fever though.
I felt okay in the morning and was in bed shivering by dinner time. My wife reported body aches. They are not typical for me even with flu, but I was on ibuprofen almost the entire time anyway. I had a fever for four days, and felt unbearably horrible as soon as the ibuprofen would start to wear off.
There was nothing "rhino" about this virus. None of us had any nasal congestion.
If my wife hadn't started to feel somewhat better when she did, I would have taken her to the hospital for pneumonia. But it's lucky that she did start to feel better when she did because almost as soon as she was up I was down. Still, even through the next week or so when she was up and moving around again she said she never really felt like she was breathing quite right.
The cough was different than any cough I've had before. Since my nose and sinuses were clear, there was no drainage from my nose and sinuses into my chest. It was all originating in my chest.
Doctors thought about a coronavirus, but since we didn't travel to or have direct contact with anyone who did travel to China, they knew the CDC wouldn't approve the test.
In either case, I have pneumonia to go with it and gotta day it was awful - 5 days of 105 fever, cough, I could hardly do anything.
With that said, my family has indeed suffered from the same kind of persistent cough you describe, so I don't know what to make of that.
I no longer work there and am looking for a new job now, but these are tough times. I couldn't have picked a worse time to be looking for work. I wonder how things are gonna go for people such as me who work in jobs that inherently need people at a physical location interacting with people. We can't just remote into work and make coffee for people.
We might end up worse than China with so many not having access or being able to afford a doctor or hospital visit.
Also, it's only been two months since christmas, not three, and many schools' winter breaks last into January, so maybe more like 1.75 months for it to spread from the hypothetical vector of returning Chinese students?
Alos, I don't know what typical air quality is like in Wuhan in the winter, but given what I've heard about Chinese cities, more severe impact of respiratory symptoms in China seems plausible too.
In any case, I agree that there's a fair amount of uncertainty, but a verdict of "certainly not" seems unwarranted.
We suffered from it for nearly a month, we had to take mild tranquilizers - valerian extract - to fall asleep, only to get up coughing for 10-20 mins non stop in tge middle of the night.
There are loads of nasty chest infections out there.
I wonder if that name is derived from "the King's Evil".
The King's Evil was scrofula, which is basically infected/inflamed lymph nodes cause by tuberculosis.
We’d be seeing a number of deaths in older people who would have otherwise been fine
We should have better estimates in a couple of months, once more numbers come out of countries outside of China.
Also, mortality rates are impacted not just by the disease itself but things such as how overwhelmed the health care system is, what measures are used to treat the disease, how many people actually get treated, population-specific or location-specific factors, etc.
All of these factors could vary widely from place to place and cause different mortality rates, even if the virus infecting everyone is the same.
They also announced that interviews will be conducted via VC going forward during the outbreak.
I wonder if they 'shut down' campus and encourage everybody to work from home after this, self quarantine kind of thing.
IMO it's the right thing to do. Not all sectors can have all of their workers stay home, but Amazon employees (in Seattle, fulfillment centers are a totally different thing) can easily work from home in almost all cases.
We were only half joking when we said the company could FedEx us each a top of the line video conference setup, and then throw it in the trash afterwards, and it would still be cheaper.
The other thing I do is live a fairly carbon efficient lifestyle. I travel much less than other folks in my income bracket, and I live in the most carbon efficient city in the U.S. I take mass transit to work and don't own a car. There is of course more that I could do, but if I zero out my usage it will make precisely no difference to the outcome. So I also vote with my dollars and my actual votes for political candidates who will push in the right direction on this issue.
But more than anything, I think if I'm honest, I don't justify it. I just do it. These scales cannot be balanced -- the human mind cannot encompass actions whose harms are so incrementally minor and diffuse, but corporately so major and severe. Our social heuristic engine is not equipped to process it, and mine isn't an exception.
They justify it by convincing themselves their actions are necessary to feed their families, or they think what they do isn't as bad as what someone else does, or everyone else is doing it, or they'll compromise for now but do better later, or they just don't care about most others and are looking out for themselves, their friends and family.
I personally hate doing VC interviewing. It's already hard enough to make a decision from an hour long in person meeting, but VC complicates that more.
Source: I work in Google, spending up to half of my working time in VC. Still need to hop in a plane when something is important enough.
No, they don't. They communicate more, but not better.
I find that the lack of massive volume of communication that is face-to-face can be beneficial, but often it needs to be more structured. Without this structure, non-FtF communication is just FtF without the nuances.
One exciting prospect is the advent of AR/VR, where instead of streaming 30 1080x720 frames a second, we can stream 60 virtual character positions a second (a la multiplayer FPSs like CS:GO) that operate as stand ins for real bodies / faces. I think games such as VRChat will have a real impact on the enterprise teleconferencing space once the proper market is targeted: replace the childish characters with more "indifferent" avatars, add in some "business casual" background environments, etc.
Same at Toyota. At least for international travel.
I love that it took a global virus outbreak for these companies to take these actions that they should have taken long since in an effort against the climate disaster.
Finding solace of potential human loss of life through a lens of reduced carbon footprint is tonedeaf to those who have lost loved ones to this disaster, and furthermore alienates an enriching dialogue between climate deniers by providing a scapegoat to keep heads in sand.
"Look at those climate cry babies, celebrating loss of life"
I find it great that companies and governments are taking actions to reduce harm (like I said, I love it), but these actions should have been taken long ago to prevent a far greater harm being caused by another disaster.
Not much information in this article, but given they only just reported new cases that makes me wonder if this person didn’t come to a hospital until they were in severe condition - probably because they had no idea it was coronavirus and were thinking “it’s the flu, it’ll pass.” If so it likely means many more cases in the community than we currently know about.
Even among people with health insurance, the costs of visits combined with the likelihood of being told "it's viral, just wait it out" mean that many people simply won't bother with going to get a diagnosis from a doctor.
It feels like we're teetering on the verge of hysteria, but a little acceptance about the situation would go a long way.
Social distancing will flatten the epidemic curve, which means that hospitals will be less likely to be overwhelmed. It will cause economic pain so it will be anything but easy. Mitigating that economic pain would be an absolutely good use of government stimulus.
So let’s say there is no political will to be proactive with social distancing. Then we enter reactive mode - schools And offices close when a cluster is detected. Perhaps a larger scale quarantine must be enacted by the government (aka martial law). The economic pain is worse, and the end result is more deaths and an overwhelmed hospital system. Plus Wuhan style images of hospitals in major Anerican cities flooding the media.
Having said that, I'm not panicking either, and I think it's still too early to assume it's going to be fully uncontained -- hell, once the weather starts warming it could all change dramatically. (But then again, I have the advantage of living in a first-world developed nation with strong health care; the massive numbers of people living in 2nd- and 3rd-world countries have a lot more reason to be concerned I think.) But the concerns here go well beyond the simple individual experience of contracting the illness.
If the health care system gets overwhelmed as we've seen in China (and as it already nearly does in the US every year due to seasonal flu), then even those 15%-20% (according to current estimates) with severe symptoms that could have been saved had the health care system not been overwhelmed are likely to die.
Also, people with other life threatening illnesses that could have been kept alive may die when the health care system gets overwhelmed.
Here is a recent post from a doctor expressing his concerns:
"The hospital beds are most of the time at full capacity. Usually I had to send on Friday 30% of my patients home to make place for the new ones that were coming over the weekend, and this without any major epidemic. The reserves of protective gear are low. A lot of doctors and nurses don’t want to work in these conditions and most probably won’t show up at work anymore after they see how many people are going to die ( especially if young ones are also gonna start dying left and right ). We don’t have enough personnel. We don’t have enough beds. We don’t have enough machines. I expect that the CFR will be around 10%."
 - https://old.reddit.com/r/Coronavirus/comments/fbbr3b/r0_betw...
Let's take "most" people to be 50% of the population. The Seattle Metro area had ~3.9 million people in 2017. The virus death rate is currently estimated at 2%.
So just accepting that 3.9m * 0.5 * 0.02 = 39,000 people will die in the the Seattle area alone seems a bit extreme
Why would you think most people will get it?
Until that changes it’s a fair assumption that a lot more people will get it
Other countries are already trying to slow down spread via cancellation of events and closures of schools. The same needs to happen here so that our hospital system has a chance to cope. The real danger is what happens when the 19% of people who get infected that require some level of hospital care can’t get it. The death rates will then rise considerably. Those are preventable deaths if we slow this down.
There needs to be clear and fact based communication from authorities every day about the current situation and what the public can do to play their part. People panic when information is hidden from them, they aren’t stupid they will see what’s going on. They need to know that all the correct things are being done.
Oh please. There's likely absolutely nothing the CDC could have done to prevent it from entering and spreading within the US, given the nature of the virus. What would have been an ideal situation in your mind, have the CDC order a complete halt to domestic/international travel early January?
Having said that you’re right that the CDC and health systems in general have mainly and advisory and coordination, rather than a direct role in preventing the spread of a disease. However they need to have the funding, focus and senior representation in order to do that quickly and effectively.
The CDC, or some agency in each country anyway, has four roles in this I think.
The first is as part of international monitoring, research and co-ordination efforts. Pandemics are by definition international phenomena and the countries they are most likely to start in are the ones with weak governments or health care infrastructure. This is the first line of defence.
The second line of defence is advice and information, supporting other government institutions and agencies in co-ordinating their resources. Medical expertise is needed to support border control, diplomatic efforts, internal transit networks, government policy, law enforcement, logistics, the list is endless. These all have a role to play in limiting the transmission of the disease and preparing for the eventuality that is reaches populations. They all need expert advice and that advice needs to be prepared in advance and consistent.
Thirdly if the disease does take a grip, co-ordinating local and regional medical resources and efforts. Collecting data from health care networks to track the disease and direct resources where they are needed most, and ensure those resources are used in the most effective and efficient way possible.
Finally, research. This is a long term commitment to developing new equipment, treatments and techniques. This, and all the previous functions operate at the national or even really international level and can't effectively be progressed by fragmented regional or local health care systems. If it's not the CDC it needs to be somebody.
Also there used to be a CDC expert on the National Security Council until 2018. Of course you can bring in an advisor as needed, but that’s not the same as having someone you know, and that knows you and how you work, and knows the resources and capabilities you have right there on staff in the NSC.
On the ball would be treating the CDC and pandemic response as national defence, not charity welfare.
The point isn't to prevent it from entering and spreading within the US, but to slow down its spread to give the medical community more time to study it and develop treatments and vaccines, and for the US health care system to prepare by increasing capacity, equipment, training, and staffing.
Sadly, little preparation has been happening because people haven't been taking it seriously, and have been squandering the advanced warnings we've gotten from China.
Something else to consider is that a slowly spreading disease is much easier to manage than a fast-spreading, uncontrolled outbreak. The latter leads to an overwhelmed health care system and many more unnecessary deaths.
Preparedness begins in the household, to the community, to the state. We should all do what we can to spread the impact of this and prevent a strain on resources.
That does not pass the smell test. According to the CDC, in the 2017-2018 flu season, there were an estimated people 14.4 million cases of the flu for people 18-49 years old, of which 2,803 died. That's a fatality rate of 0.02%.
The latest fatality rates coming out China show a 0.2% to 0.4% CFR for that age group. Which is 10-20x higher.
It seems like you reached the 2-3x lethality factor by comparing against the flu's overall CFR of 0.1%, which includes a lot of elderly people.
> especially not since lethality goes down with spread
there is no guarantee of this
I have chronic Bronchitis and Asthma and am on biological drugs witch lower my immune system.
Had pneumonia last year, wasn't fun.
Somehow my portfolio is not high on my list of concerns.
> A person in Washington state infected with coronavirus has died, according to the Seattle and King County Department of Health.
Was this one of the reported cases on Friday, or yet another new one?
Unfortunately, I suspect we've already moved past the point of worrying about individual cases.
 Estimate that the case to fatality ratio is between 5-8%. The transmission rate is between 2 and 3. Both of these numbers are similar to the earlier SARS outbreak in the early 2000s.
 The death rate in Wuhan is significantly higher than that outside. We want to buy time so our healthcare facilities can handle the volume of patients.
Take precautions everyone! This may not seriously affect you but you can help prevent the spread to people you love.
That's 2-3 times higher than most estimates that I've seen.
We're better than this at HN. There are stats on the mortality rates, and given you are younger than 50 there is a less than 0.4% mortality rate.
Furthermore, recent autopsies have shown this is a virus that hits the lungs more than anything else. China with it's incredible pollution, might have skewed mortality rates that are higher than we may expect in Europe/US.
Yes, we should do all we can to prevent the spread. The biggest risk is health facilities not being able to handle the amount of patients. This is very contagious. So please don't spread panic, more people going to the ICU without case doesn't help
Please let's stop making assumptions about who is over/under 50 and implications about how un/important their lives are. This has come up too often already, and it's leading to flamewars.
But yes, main takeaways, don't panic, slow down spread as much as possible (aka wash your hands)
Generally speaking, people younger than 50 probably know someone older than 50 and might even be in daily contact with them. You know, parents, grandparents, uncles and all that. I'm not afraid of dying from the coronavirus, I'm afraid of being an infection vector for someone else higher at risk.
> more people going to the ICU without case doesn't help
In a sane healthcare system, this would actually help. Because ideally, we'd have cheap, easily accessible tests for the coronavirus and people could get tested in a safe environment without fear of spreading or catching it.
But alas, it seems we're more comfortable with turning away potential coronavirus patients and letting them spread it on their own. Especially because people don't have the option to self-quarantine.
I'm advocating that you take precautions by not touching your face, washing your hands, and avoiding public places. Stocking up on food so you can avoid the grocery store later is a great idea. Avoiding people when you don't feel well and self quarantining are also great ideas.
I get that you feel strongly about coronavirus and are trying to be helpful, but these comments are starting to become repetitive, so if you'd pull back a bit, we'd be grateful. Repetition is the enemy of curiosity, which this site exists for.
Seems like a bogus theory to me, but I suspect that was the reason for the question.
Largely plays into the "escaped bioweapon" theory.
All of the speculation comes from a single non peer reviewed paper, which had literally one data point. That paper was posted to a preprint server where scientists could comment on it. And the first comment was somebody doing a quick followup study with 100x more data, which found no significant difference.
I have a gut feeling it would be impossible to contain or manage the media if this virus or any other pathogen was killing only those of asian heritage so we would know if it actually was happening.
There is no indication any one particular ethnic group is hit harder at this time as there is no adequate comparison
between the asian and other than asian people
So some people may have different constituative expression of particular properties such as a cellular receptor protien [eg ACE2] and this information could be used to predict the degree of deleterious effect a virus may have for any one person.
with that being said, there is no need to suspect this is a bioweapon, as a serial passaging of mutable pathogens will begin to create a selective effect [naturally of its own ].
ordinarily communicability is the direction of drift as lethality or debilitating morbidity inhibits communicability [in the simplest scenario]
a bioweapon cant be quite so communicable to everyone that has ACE2 receptors as it must be strategically controlled so its lethel effect will only go so far.
Honestly, we should probably all start working remotely as well until this is better understood.
We need to slow the transmission of the virus.