New Coronavirus threat

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
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  • #701
The NYT reports the UK COVID for the last 14 days increased by 80% versus 30% for France. This difference combined with concerns about the new strain sort of makes France’s decision a little more understandable after all.
 

swerve

Super Moderator
Look at where UK is charting, for death rates per 100k. Care for French drivers of goods vehicles? I am really confused by the motivation to close the border to trucks.
That graph dates from August 3rd - 4 1/2 months ago. For something that's up to date, try this - updated daily.
Coronavirus Update (Live): 77,663,876 Cases and 1,707,853 Deaths from COVID-19 Virus Pandemic - Worldometer

Those are officially reported, & most are probably underreported, some of them by a huge amount. Russian figures, for example exclude everyone who died with covid-19 & also something else, or classify deaths according to proximate cause (e.g. pneumonia) without looking beyond it. A lot more people than usual have died of pneumonia in Russia this year . . . .

For a more recent graph, with various ways to view the data -
Our coverage of the coronavirus | The Economist

The Economist has been endeavouring to collate excess death statistics & compare them with official covid-19 deaths. Some countries appear to have had a few times the officially reported number of deaths. Ignore the date at the top. Scroll down & you see it's been updated & includes much more recent data.
Tracking covid-19 excess deaths across countries
 

StobieWan

Super Moderator
Staff member
The NYT reports the UK COVID for the last 14 days increased by 80% versus 30% for France. This difference combined with concerns about the new strain sort of makes France’s decision a little more understandable after all.

And let's not forget - a stack of other countries closed their borders as well - about 40 in fact. We're running with a new variant of Covid which appears to be much better at infecting people and I can't at this point blame people for reacting rapidly.
 

swerve

Super Moderator
Nor me. Even if the death rate among those infected is no worse, a more infectious strain is more dangerous, since more people are likely to catch it.
 

tonnyc

Active Member
Brazil experts claim China’s vaccine is not as effective as advertised by China, just over 50% compared to a 78% Chinese claim. CCP marketing at its finest.


Chinese Covid-19 vaccine far less effective than initially claimed in Brazil
Concerns grow as Chinese Covid-19 vaccine far less effective than initially claimed in Brazil
For those who's interested in reading a Brazilian coverage of the same issue, this article may be of interest. Naturally, it's in Portuguese.

Basically it's disappointing but usable. It is after all 100% effective in reducing the severity of cases, with zero hospitalization and zero death among those who received this vaccine. The choice then boils down to whether you use something that will save people now, or wait six months or longer for a better vaccine while people get sick and die during those six months.

Countries who managed to contain the virus such as New Zealand should not buy and use this vaccine since they can get better ones. Countries who already bought and have this vaccine should use it and save lives now. They can switch to other vaccines as they become available. Countries who hasn't managed to contain the virus and yet still haven't secured vaccines for their population... well, they better get their hands on anything that's available ASAP.

Indonesia likely will use all the CoronaVac vaccine they have secured so far but shift toward other vaccines as they become available. There's a possibility that Sinovac may be able to improve their vaccine's effectiveness (e.g., by looking at varying the doses and intervals, or using a different adjuvant, or using a later strain of the virus), but eh, between firm orders and options, Indonesia has secured access to 666 million doses from 5 different manufacturers (Sinovac, Astrazeneca, Novavax, Pfizer, Moderna) plus from the COVAX Alliance (several different possible vaccines but we don't get to pick which). There is also the possibility of a locally developed vaccine (there are actually 7 different effort, but chances are only one will be selected). So in the long run we're fine.
 

Ananda

Well-Known Member
It is after all 100% effective in reducing the severity of cases, with zero hospitalization and zero death among those who received this vaccine. The choice then boils down to whether you use something that will save people now, or wait six months or longer for a better vaccine while people get sick and die during those six months
Yes, country like Indonesia is just one of the countries that has high and increasing infection rate. That kind of Countries need to get to vaccination drive ASAP. Sinovac Vaccine is not the best around, however it's good enough to reduce severity cases. That's the most important thing, reducing the severe even the medium cases. This will reduce the strained in the medical infrastructure, and the financial cost following. Most importantly make people confidence again to move around and running the Economy.
 

StingrayOZ

Super Moderator
Staff member
Australia is finding that its AstraZeneca vaccine it had previously acquired and ordered 50million doses of may not meet its needs, as its only 60% effective. Different trials give various results.

It had already started local production of the vaccine.
Front line workers are expected to get the pfizer vaccine

To be fair, I don't think China stuffed up the CoronaVac. Traditional vaccine methods like CoronaVac and the Oxford-Astrazeneca vax are just less effective with this particular virus. Everyone needs a vaccine and needs it today. Arguably for lower risk groups the vaccine is still loads better than nothing and does help prevent hospitalizations. It may be more efficient to vaccinate front line workers with a more effective vaccine and everyone else with what ever is available.

The Pfizer vaccine also doesn't lend itself to use in 3rd world or hot climate countries or long travels, as it must remain at -70 degrees C while being stored. This is going to be tricky to roll out even in 1st world countries.

Given the rate of mutation and sheer number of infections, it may be that another vaccine will be required to deal with new strains in the future. While most believe two shots will give immunity, its not known for how long for.

Australia has been somewhat caught out with antiquated capability with no Cellular or mRNA vaccine production capability. While a billion dollars for a new facility in Melbourne has been announced, further investment seems likely.
 

Ananda

Well-Known Member
The Pfizer vaccine also doesn't lend itself to use in 3rd world or hot climate countries or long travels, as it must remain at -70 degrees C while being stored. This is going to be tricky to roll out even in 1st world countries
I got information from Indonesian new health Minister. He's an ex Banker, thus he's still talking to our group from time to time. Pfizer is the preferred vaccine by Indonesian government for people above 60 or people with accompany condition like diabetic, heart or lung problems. However since it need to be stores in deep freezers, then they (the health ministry) still try to solve the problem to distribute them to area outside provincial cities or cities at same class. So far the hospitals up to C class has facilities to handle the storage of Pfizer or other RNA type vaccine. However it will create problem if the vaccine has to send to rural areas.

That's why for wide distribution to rural and outlying area, they're still relying to non RNA type vaccine like Sinovac and Astra Zeneca.


This is what people must understand, this type of corona virus like influenza will not disappeared. How the vaccination do is to prevent as much as possible the severe hospitalisation cases.

I remembered few years ago, I went to US during flu season. My doctor already warned me to get flu shot before going, as that period (in winter), is during flu season. I don't take it, as I said to my self, is only flu no worries. Turn out I got problematic flu strains in New York. Need hospitalisation for three days.
The doctor there reinstated what my doctor in Jakarta told me. Since I come from outside US better prepared with Flu shots, as the Influenza strains in US bit different with Influenza strains in tropics that my body already used to.

So in future, there will be COVID shoot that we will needed to take for traveling toward some area, just like Flu shoot needed now. Influenza kill tens of thousands people each year in North America alone. This COVID will stay, and I suspect some fatalities will still happen from COVID in future, just like Influenza did. What the vaccine needed is to give our bodies immune system help to prevent severe cases. Just like Influenza, it will never disappeared. Our bodies with the help of vaccine, hopefully will learn to adapt.
 
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swerve

Super Moderator
....
To be fair, I don't think China stuffed up the CoronaVac. Traditional vaccine methods like CoronaVac and the Oxford-Astrazeneca vax are just less effective with this particular virus. ...
I don't think you can call a vaccine made by modifying an existing virus from another species to make it harmless & then adding new DNA to it to stimulate the immune system to recognise another virus "traditional". That's what the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is.
 

StingrayOZ

Super Moderator
Staff member
The mRNA vaccines needs -70C storage, so a two stage freezer operating in an airconditioned room. In transport, normal refrigerated transport isn't enough and should be packed with dry ice. This basically requires any distribution point to have dry ice facilities. Can work in the US or Europe, but beyond that is going to be challenging.


The pfizer vaccine has come under criticism due to its instability.

The monderna vaccine only requires -20c, its based around a more stable molecule even though its also a mRNA vaccine. -20 is far more doable, and single stage freezers will generally handle that, as will portable cold boxes. It shows that not all mRNA are so delicate.

I don't think you can call a vaccine made by modifying an existing virus from another species to make it harmless & then adding new DNA to it to stimulate the immune system to recognise another virus "traditional". That's what the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is.
Traditional in the sense of growing vaccines in eggs. mRNA developed from cellular synthesis is a whole different ball game. I don't want to understate what Oxford-AstraZeneca did, what they did is amazing, particularly in the time they had. But its like Michael Angelo doing art with Crayola crayons.


mRNA is just more nimble, you will develop a vaccine faster because you don't have to optimize the egg growing virus production and you will have greater flexibility and not be bottlenecked by egg production. (also think about the vulnerability with bird flu - kill chickens - chickens lay eggs - no eggs - no vaccine).

Rather than stock piling pre made egg based vaccines, cellular can respond and produce to threats much faster.
The US had this problem with their Swine flu vaccine, which was soon out of date and provided no protection against later variants, so they had to start stockpiling for the new variant as well as the old one. This soon becomes unmanageable, because viruses keep changing.

Which is why the Australian government has just announced a $1.2B CSL facility near the airport in Melbourne. We need this capability, the game has moved on and we need to keep up with it.

UK has just stopped travel from South America, due to concerns about a new strain coming from there.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #712
Probably should have stopped international long ago. There are now so many large pools of infection that increased occurrences of mutations will be unavoidable now. Hopefully more deadly strains don’t emerge. Only a massive worldwide vaccination effort will reduce the number of new strains.
 
As predicted earlier. 2021 is another lost year with a lot of trial and error of vaccines produced in a hurry. It remains to be seen how effective these vaccines really are. How long they can protect and against which variants etc. Nothing is certain at the moment.
 

StingrayOZ

Super Moderator
Staff member
It seems unlikely that these vaccines will offer permanent immunity.

The rate of mutation is also key, with 100 million with the virus, it seems highly likely that new strains will develop, and vaccines are unlikely to remain effective for long periods. Also the deaths in Norway have governments looking at the vaccine and its roll out.
 
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