Harvard Professor Says Global Coronavirus Pandemic is Likely

Mish

Coronavirus data and anecdotes from China is increasing disturbing. Nearly everyone questions the data we do have.

Don't Panic

What does that even mean?

There are no signs of panic in the US. If and when conditions merit panic, it will be too late to panic. Assuming of course we can accurately define "panic".

Harvard Professor Says Global Pandemic Is Likely

Here are a few pertinent snips from the Wall Street Journal Report How Many People Might One Person With Coronavirus Infect?

“Right now, coronavirus is much more of a concern than SARS ever was,” said Steven Riley, a professor of infectious-disease dynamics at Imperial College, referring to the global outbreak in 2003, when 8,096 people got sick and 774 died. “The main reason is our estimate of the number of people who are currently infectious is higher than the maximum who were ever infectious at one time with SARS.”

“Where we’ll look next is Hong Kong and Singapore,” Dr. Riley said. “We may see a growth phase there next,” although, he added, researchers haven’t yet seen exponential growth outside of mainland China.

“I think it is likely we’ll see a global pandemic,” said Marc Lipsitch, a professor of epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “If a pandemic happens, 40% to 70% of people world-wide are likely to be infected in the coming year. What proportion of those will be symptomatic, I can’t give a good number.”

Beijing Sets Stringent New Quarantine Rules

The New York Times Reports Beijing Sets Stringent New Quarantine Rules

The mandate came as the national Chinese government disclosed that hundreds of medical workers who had been helping combat the coronavirus outbreak had become infected and at least six had died.

Beijing demands that all who enter its territory isolate themselves for 14 days, or “be held accountable according to law.”

For the first time on Friday, China disclosed figures that drove home the risks faced by those on the front line: 1,716 medical workers have contracted the virus and six of them have died. Of those people, 1,502 were in Hubei Province, with 1,102 of them in Wuhan, the provincial capital and the center of the outbreak.

Leadership Fear in Beijing

Cruie Ship Update

Lights Out

Terrifying

First, they covered up the truth, second, they said this disease was preventable and controllable, third, they locked you up. Now they terrify you like this.

I am not even sure what's going on, but yes, it looks terrifying.

Facebook Cancellation

Procrastination Likely

I panic is warranted, it will happen too late to do any good.

Nurse Denied Entry to Her Own Home

Mislabeled Deaths

Full Article Translated: Why Is Aspergillus Pneumonia Listed as the Direct Cause of Coronavirus infection?

Caught Red Handed

How Self-Quanatines Work in Practice

Stay Home No Food in the Market

Cell Phone Trap!

If you inadvertently respond to a text message and you have been to Wuhan, thay have you.

Just Try to Get Answers

Move Along, Nothing to See

Move along. There is nothing to see, nothing to do, nothing to fear.

It's all under control.

This is not as bad as the flu.

Don't let that Mish guy, Harvard professors, Chris Martenson, Jennifer Zeng, Jim Bianco or anyone else scare you.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (114)
No. 1-32
awc13
awc13

"Beijing demands that all who enter its territory isolate themselves for 14 days, or “be held accountable according to law.”"

hmmm. china will need to ensure the bullet factories are staffed and producing

Roadrunner12
Roadrunner12

"Right now we're in an aggressive containment mode," CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield told CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta in an interview on Thursday.
"We don't know a lot about this virus," he said. "This virus is probably with us beyond this season, beyond this year, and I think eventually the virus will find a foothold and we will get community-based transmission."

Tony Bennett
Tony Bennett

"If and when conditions merit panic, it will be too late to panic."

...

Yes. Hopefully, a cure / vaccine becomes available in not too distant future.

The one thing I have done is stock up on disposable gloves / masks. I've noticed in short supply or out in stores. Good luck finding any if large scale outbreak occurs.

davidyjack
davidyjack

It will probably be a bad situation in the USA by late March. :-(

Blurtman
Blurtman

Should open up housing inventory.

Casual_Observer
Casual_Observer

I think a vaccine is on the horizon by this summer. Even without it there won't be a pandemic. HIV antivirals and tamiflu appear to cure the illness in about 3 days in Thailand even for high risk patients.

CautiousObserver
CautiousObserver

Don't feel bad, Mish. The way the mainstream media in the U.S. is run today, they always attack and marginalize anyone who does not toe the line, regardless of the rationale. People are pack animals. The MSM are masters at using that to manipulate behavior.

Casual_Observer
Casual_Observer

People calm down. The world is not China. China has some of the worst health risks at a baseline because of the polluted food supply and lack of handwashing. This is a problem in general in Asia and even parts of Western Europe. Biotech companies have already sequenced a vaccine for the virus and are trying to fast track production by this summer. The risk as always is the virus adapts in the meantime and changes to become stronger.

njbr
njbr

For those of you counting on warmer weather to tamp down the virus...

It was 82 degrees in Singapore today--and there is an outbreak there.

It was 74 degrees in Hanoi today--and there is an outbreak in northern Vietnam.

It was 54 degrees in Wuhan today--and there is an outbreak there.

It was 52 degrees today in Yokohama--and there is an outbreak there.

....WASHINGTON -- Never mind China; how the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak progresses in Singapore is key to understanding the danger to the rest of the world, said Scott Gottlieb, MD, at a Senate committee hearing.

"So far, in Singapore with 50 cases identified... eight are in the ICU. That's deeply concerning to me," said Gottlieb, the former FDA commissioner and now a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, at a Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs hearing Wednesday.

Of particular importance is how many of those infected with the virus develop severe disease, he said.

Local transmission now appears to be established in Singapore, the densely populated tropical city-nation at the tip of the Malaysian peninsula.

He acknowledged the importance of continuing to watch the epidemic in China. But regardless of what happens there, places such as Singapore, Japan, and Hong Kong, will offer a better idea of how the virus could spread around the world.

The outbreak's advancement in Singapore during a time of warm weather (currently 80°F) is especially alarming, he said, because summer weather would ordinarily be "a backstop" against coronavirus transmission.

Latkes
Latkes

It's funny. Everybody I know is preparing. Most of my friends have 2 months worth of food. Is that panic? Even I am prepared and I don't even think it will be that bad.

Roadrunner12
Roadrunner12

The saying don't listen to what to what they say but watch their actions definitely applies here.

But don't worry" its all good" has been and will continue to be the narrative for the Chinese govt.

thimk
thimk

Did China created a WMD from technology/knowledge obtained stateside ? ZH reports that the plasma of recovered patients is possibly curative. Gee How would you like be a recovered patent ? USA should prepare for implementing quarantine centers asap.

Latkes
Latkes

Jennifer Zeng is a "human rights activist" with an agenda and Jim Bianco posted the debunked SO2 cremation story, Chris Martenson is a perma-doomer...

Harvard professor, sure that is someone I can take more seriously.

We'll see where this goes in the next few weeks. No matter what happens, it's better to be prepared.

sangell
sangell

Assuming the CFR can be kept at 1% or so in the developed world the question will be accept that and just push your way through the outbreak as best you can or bring on a brutal economic depression with Chinese style public health measures. My guess is, once infections become widespread, governments will just have to accept large numbers of deaths rather than an economic catastrophe.

Losing a few millions of the over 65 population in the West ( I'm one of them) would protect pensions, transfer lots of wealth to the young, reduce housing costs etc. Politicians would weep crocodile tears of course but it would get them off the hook for a decade or two.

SMF
SMF

Since viruses can mutate rapidly, could this become deadlier or less harmful just like that?

I mean, the Spanish Flu was killing left, right and center, and then suddenly it just sort of vanished.

njbr
njbr

Vaccines?

Inovia created a computer model of what a vaccine could be. Is it effective--who knows? The real substance needs to be developed and run through animal and human testing where effectiveness vs problems are analyzed. Then enough needs to be produced and administered to provide herd immunity.

It's be a year or more, if you read beyond the PR release.

Irondoor
Irondoor

I read the reports by medical and disease experts who say that it is possible that the COVID-19 will eventually gain a foothold here and become a community disease potentially infecting 2/3 of the world population.

Then I read the comments here by posters who apparently don't have any medical or research training and they say that they "don't think" that will happen. They say that a vaccine will probably be found. In fact, Inovio says it developed a vaccine in just a few hours. Where is this vaccine? Has it gone through clinical trials? What was the result? Does it have FDA approval? What are the side affects? When will it be produced in enough volume to vaccinate the population? What is the cost?

Here is an analog: Do you think a recession (minor or major) is on the horizon? If you don't think so, you have nothing to worry about and you should continue to be fully invested in stocks. But, if you believe it is inevitable that we will enter recessionary territory (brought on the Corona virus or just due to the business cycle) then perhaps you should make some changes and preparation in your investments.

All of this aside, my concern is that if the projected infected rate forecast by the experts does in fact come to pass, our healthcare system, like that in China will be overwhelmed and we don't have their authoritarian system to isolate people or quarantine them. Hospitals and insurance companies will be bankrupted. The FED will have to print record amounts of money to fund Medicare and Medicaid. Businesses will lose employees to the virus and be unable to service customers. People will avoid restaurants and other places where people congregate. Business bankruptcies will inevitably follow. There is no good news other than hope and prayer.

I live in NW Montana in a geographic area of around 190,000 population. We have one hospital with 343 beds. If the infected rate is as high as has been mentioned by these experts (2/3 of the population), well.... you see the problem. It's no wonder now why China built those two 1,000 bed facilities in Wuhan.

Irondoor
Irondoor

If you are calculating the "death rate" by dividing the number of cases by the number of deaths, you are mistaken. The death rate is the number of deaths plus the number of recoveries divided by the number of deaths. While the number of cases is significant to follow (since if there was no increase in cases, we would expect the death rate to eventually go to zero), until there is a known outcome (death or recovery) we won't know the actual death rate.

FloydVanPeter
FloydVanPeter

I don't envy does under martial law in Whuhan.

The CCPP should have respond timely, should have been maintaining transparency, should collect the actual stats, and should publish them as-is (with accurate meta-info!).

That said: @Mish, given the bad situation of the PRC and Whuhan, what would you recommend they do differently and practically?

wootendw
wootendw

The Black Death (a bacterium) reached Venice about 670 years ago. Eventually, according to estimates, between 1/4 and 1/3 of the European population perished. The plague began not long after the medieval warming period which enabled a rise in human population from about AD 900 to about AD 1300.

The corona virus is different from a bacterium but it is possible that human population is in a bubble whose growth was enabled by the benefits of capitalism starting with the Industrial Revolution and which has now reached the space age or computer age or whatever you want to call it. In any case, large population increases began with the advent of the Industrial Revolution starting about 1760 (in England).

If so, the corona virus could end up being the 21st century equivalent of the Black Death, except that it may become a world-wide thing as 6 or 7 billion people represents a lot of 'food' for 'hungry' pathogens. I doubt that any government measures would be able to stop it. It would be every man for himself and family and a few close friends.

So how many are likely to die in such a case? If the plague is any guide, about 2 billion or more may die while 4-5 billion survive.

The silver lining? The Renaissance began not long after the plague. Although the depleted population also meant a drop in production (depression), those who survived had plenty of gold and other assets to divide up among smaller numbers of people. Wealthy persons commissioned great works of art, much of which you can see in Florence. The Reformation began, followed by the Enlightenment and all that other good stuff.

The key here is, how long the corona virus will take to kill off a few billion of us if that is what it is going to do. Things happen much faster today than 670 years ago but it could take generation or two before things get great again.

LouisianaFriend
LouisianaFriend

The key is to manage the rate of infection, so that the available resources are adequate. Probably 80% will manage with little or no serious symptoms and should remain home to avoid spreading the virus. About 15% will need hospital or at least home based oxygen care as they will have a serious pneumonia. The 5% or so who develop acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) will need intensive care with many of them intubated. That may save most of their lives. Maybe only 1% will die. If there are not sufficient ICU beds available because the virus is affecting too high a portion of the population, then the death rate may more than double, maybe increasing four-fold because there is no ability to treat the patients.

So, we're looking at voluntary social distancing. In the US, it will be mostly from media advice and abject fear, but may require full pay for workers to stay home (even gig workers) when ill. If managed well, this may not create panic, and the impact may be mitigated until more effective treatments can be tested and hopefully allow eradication. There will be a major economic impact, especially if curative treatments take a long time to become accessible.

The Third World will have a worse time, as they already have minimal health care resources and less well trained health care workers.

crazyworld
crazyworld

Following ZENG posting (and some comments here and there by Chinese doctors who said that recovered people are not cured and may still be infectious so they must take an anti-viral cocktail)
this virus could be a combination of a flu virus with the AIDS virus.

I WOULD PREFER NOT TO BELIEVE THAT UNTILL IT IS PROVEN
because if that is the case like with the AIDS disease when it has been caught it is not yet curable. AIDS patients still wait (for more than 20 years)
for a vaccine. In the meantime the AIDS virus remain in a NICHE (the
T lymphocyts) and are impeded in their replication thanks to a daily cocktail of anti-virus.

Baiyaproduction1
Baiyaproduction1

bullshit. More ppl are recovery from corona than sars.Unless someone tries enhance the virus and make it hard to destroy the virus

Roadrunner12
Roadrunner12

“There’s likely to be a period of widespread transmission in the U.S., and I hope we will avert the kind of chaos that some other places are seeing.”

njbr
njbr

The things that we do know.

There is an elevated death rate with this virus.

Reducing the elevated death rate requires intensive medical input.

In China, the need for intensive medical input has broken the medical system.

The virus is virulent--it spreads like oil on water.

Quarantines have slowed but not stopped the spread.

Iowan
Iowan

A note about the empty buildings, that's not really virus related. I remember seeing a special from some guys in China about their empty buildings. People buy up property and then leave it unfinished. Why? Because it's worth more to the next buyer in their property bubble. If you finish a property, it is considered "used" and isn't as valuable.

So those few lights are just what is normal, people living in buildings that are primarily property investments (people owning 3-4 or more homes to get in on the crazy values).

rum_runner
rum_runner

Harvard Professors believe in climate change so I don't see why I should trust them on this either. Right, Mish?

Carl_R
Carl_R

A reminder on vaccine hopes: They did develop a vaccine for SARS, but it failed in animal testing. Animals who were vaccinated over-reacted when exposed to SARS, and were more likely to die than those not vaccinated. Will the same thing happen to COVID-19? We will have to wait and see what happens when the various vaccines are tested.

klausmkl
klausmkl

They have no cure for common cold


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