Author Topic: Past Pandemics.  (Read 436 times)

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Offline Id82

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Past Pandemics.
« on: March 19, 2020, 10:44:42 am »
So now that this coronavirus has shut everything down through out the world. I was looking into past pandemics and was shocked to see that the H1N1 pandemic aka swine flu from 2009 infected 700 million to 1.9 billion people. With between 150 to 500 thousand fatalities. 125 thousand dying in the US alone. Now as of today Covid-19 has infected 280 thousand people with nine thousand deaths world wide and it has the potential to be as bad as the swine flu. My question is how come the world didn't come to a screeching halt with the swine fu pandemic. I had no idea it was that bad. I remember hearing about it on the news a lot and the news sensationalized the hell out of it. But I had no idea that many people died from it. Why didn't the world go into hoarding supplies, hunkering down and causing the economy to crash over that pandemic? I guess I'm just trying to look at things in perspective because the world is in a scary uncertain place right now.
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Offline dpareja

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2020, 11:37:57 am »
You're off on the US deaths by a factor of ten, about 12,500 per the CDC.

And I think this is at least in part to do with incompetent governmental responses.

I'd be interested in seeing the data on SARS infection and mortality rates at this point in its spread. Comparing the final totals for SARS to the current totals for COVID-19 is an apples-to-oranges comparison.
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Offline Id82

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2020, 12:10:06 pm »
The sars outbreak spread to 29 countries with only a total of 8 thousand ninety six cases and Seven hundred and seventy four deaths. That's a 9.5% mortality rate. That outbreak started in November 2002 and flattened around June 2004. Yet that one came to a stop and I remember hearing a lot about it in the news, but the world didn't go into a panic over it. South park even made fun of the epidemic in an episode.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2020, 12:12:26 pm by Id82 »
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Offline Vanto

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2020, 03:00:47 pm »
Deadlier diseases generally don't spread as much, especially nowadays.

Also, I'd like to take a moment to recommend China Uncensored's videos about the Wuhan coronavirus. The CCP's attempts to disavow responsibility and spin things in their favor are as repugnant as they are blatant.
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Offline Sigmaleph

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2020, 03:31:07 pm »
So now that this coronavirus has shut everything down through out the world. I was looking into past pandemics and was shocked to see that the H1N1 pandemic aka swine flu from 2009 infected 700 million to 1.9 billion people. With between 150 to 500 thousand fatalities. 125 thousand dying in the US alone. Now as of today Covid-19 has infected 280 thousand people with nine thousand deaths world wide and it has the potential to be as bad as the swine flu. My question is how come the world didn't come to a screeching halt with the swine fu pandemic. I had no idea it was that bad. I remember hearing about it on the news a lot and the news sensationalized the hell out of it. But I had no idea that many people died from it. Why didn't the world go into hoarding supplies, hunkering down and causing the economy to crash over that pandemic? I guess I'm just trying to look at things in perspective because the world is in a scary uncertain place right now.

Given those numbers, the worst case scenario for swine flu (high end of deaths, low end of infected) is a fatality rate of 0.07% (using numbers i found in Wikipedia it's a little higher, at 0.08%). That's comparable to regular flu (not to minimise it; flu kills a lot of people and having an extra flu-like disease going on is still pretty bad)

WHO were talking about a fatality rate for covid-19 of 3.4%. There is evidence now that this was inflated, because serious cases are more likely to get detected than milder ones, and testing rates in many parts of the world have been abysmal. But they are still talking about something in the neighbourhood of 1%, an order of magnitude more serious than swine flu.

This is a somewhat unfair comparison; people who were worried about swine flu as it happened did not know how bad it was going to be. It's harder to find out what the estimates were back then (and I am lazy) but one thing I noticed is that the R0 of the swine flu virus was estimated as 1.4-1.6 not long after the initial outbreak while current estimates for SARS-CoV-2 are between 1.4 and 3.9.
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Offline Radiation

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2020, 04:44:04 pm »
My state is one of those states that have passed a partial lockdown so I am just sitting here in my apartment as usual hoping this will all pass.
I have been somewhat following the news of this pandemic but do they know when they think they will have this virus under control, if at all?
So far I haven't gotten sick.
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Offline SCarpelan

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2020, 06:12:51 pm »
My state is one of those states that have passed a partial lockdown so I am just sitting here in my apartment as usual hoping this will all pass.
I have been somewhat following the news of this pandemic but do they know when they think they will have this virus under control, if at all?
So far I haven't gotten sick.

I think the length of the pandemic depends on the actions taken. Fewer and shorter limitations on people mean that the virus goes through the population faster so health services will be overburdened and more people will die but the actual time scale will be shorter. More limitations mean that the virus spreads slower but is around for a longer time which decreases burden on the health care system and saves lives. This is why there are people who are willing to sacrifice human lives to get the normal situation back as fast as possible.

The estimation about the situation here in Finland is about 6 months to reach the peak after which the situation should start to settle down. Of course, then we will have to start worrying about a potential second wave being on the way....

Offline Askold

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2020, 04:38:14 pm »
6 months is a long time and perhaps there is a cure out by then or we have at least built enough treatment rooms to be able to handle the next wave.
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Offline niam2023

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #8 on: April 01, 2020, 04:57:43 pm »
I don't think I could survive 6 months being shut indoors.
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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #9 on: April 01, 2020, 07:38:45 pm »
Look at it this way: its a chance to up your cooking game.  I know its certainly given me a lot more opportunities to get creative in the kitchen.
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Offline SCarpelan

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Re: Past Pandemics.
« Reply #10 on: April 02, 2020, 06:18:53 am »
I take that 6 months estimate back. It was based on a pessimistic evaluation by an expert that gave an explanation of why the officials are underestimating the virus. Now that I've seen other takes I'm leaning towards believing the official estimation which is a much shorter scale where the peak will be reached about 9 weeks from now. Of course, only time shows what direction the situation really takes.