Friday, 31 October 2014

Embracing Ebola

Real Science
Last week, President Obama hugged a cured Ebola nurse.  ....
This week he traveled to New Jersey to have another nurse released from quarantine, who immediately violated the terms of her at home quarantine agreement and went out for a bike ride. If she gets hit by a car or falls off her bicycle – she is spreading body fluids. I crashed last week on a slippery bridge and had blood pouring down from my knee.
No doubt Obama is on the phone with her, telling her to be responsible and abide by the agreement he made with the governor of New Jersey. If you like your Ebola, you can keep your Ebola."

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Dave's ready to 'do a Thatcher' on EU money-grabbers

Daily Mail
A British Prime Minister defying the law and simply refusing to pay the Brussels bill is unprecedented. But Cameron has no other choice. For if he endorses this cheque, he would be signing away his chances of winning the next Election."

Tattoos: a mark of conformism

Tattooed types, though, still believe they’re bravely striking a blow against buttoned-up conservatives everywhere. In fact, to be part of mainstream society nowadays, you actively have to cultivate your inner hippie. From Tony Blair to Richard Branson, an adolescent disdain for formal dress in formal situations is the new orthodoxy. Good riddance, some may think; what people wear shouldn’t matter anyway. But the whole point of neutral and formal wear is that it’s meant to show that a person is putting the job first and that they respect the position of responsibility they hold. A demand for tattoos to be accepted in a workplace environment is a refusal to take your position or yourself seriously."

Britain's huge debt pile poses risk to UK recovery

At £52.1bn this year, debt interest is projected to be higher than the day-to-day spending budgets of the Business, Innovation and Skills and Defence departments combined, and almost as much as the education budget.
The Office for Budget Responsibility has forecast that debt interest payments will rise to £75.2bn by the end of the 2018-19 fiscal year."

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Remember Obama promising voters they could keep their health cover? And he would stop ebola?

Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun (Australia)
Andy McCarthy tours the astonishing mendacity and incompetence of Barack Obama:

Of course you can keep your health coverage, and your doctor. And we’ll cover everyone while your premiums plummet. Meanwhile, al-Qaeda is “decimated” and these Islamic State guys are just the jayvee team. In fact (fact?), they’re not even Islamic — although they may not be quite as “secular” as the Muslim Brotherhood. Just extremists. (Extreme about what? Don’t ask.) Jihad is just a “purification of the self” . . ."

Friday, 17 October 2014

Ebola: a relentless tide we have to stop while we still can

JoNova (Australia)
The bad news -Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) said the disease was still out of control. Thanks to the mistake with a plane, a few US schools have closed, and whole neighborhoods are being roped off. How fast does a 19Kb string of information spread? Outside Africa, Norway has one case, Germany has had one death, one survivor, and one case. Spain has lost two, and is treating one. France and the UK have a survivor each. Today, at least, Senegal has been declared free of Ebola.
The WHO organization has admitted it botched the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

“In a draft internal document obtained by The Associated Press, the agency says “nearly everyone” involved in the response failed to notice the potential for Ebola’s explosive spread.
The agency acknowledged that its own bureaucracy was a problem, pointing out that the heads of WHO country offices in Africa are “politically motivated appointments” made by the WHO regional director for Africa.”
The good news - CSL have said they will develop a plasma product from survivor’s blood. At the moment this is the most pragmatic possible treatment. There are 3000+ survivors who have antibodies, which appear to save the lives of victims (Brantly, Writebol, an American journalist, and hopefully the Texan nurses). It could still take a long time to produce, and it all hinges on how fast it can be done. It could save the medical staff who are so at risk and so important. That would mean more medical staff and other volunteers would be happy to volunteer. Then it could be provided to some patients and their sole carer to potentially stop transmission from wiping out whole families, or leaving children orphaned, and importantly reduce the Ro rate.
CSL say the biggest problem is getting blood of survivors. Dare I suggest: pay them, and the free market will provide. The survivors will benefit. The GDP per capita in these West African nations is $400 – $800 US a year. Our money makes much more difference there than waiting to spend it on victims here.  Stop it at the source. "

How the World's Top Health Body Allowed Ebola to Spiral Out of Control

Poor communication, a lack of leadership and underfunding plagued the World Health Organization’s initial response to the Ebola outbreak, allowing the disease to spiral out of control.
The agency’s reaction was hobbled by a paucity of notes from experts in the field; $500,000 in support for the response that was delayed by bureaucratic hurdles; medics who weren’t deployed because they weren’t issued visas; and contact-tracers who refused to work on concern they wouldn’t get paid."

Monday, 13 October 2014

Ebola Virus Affected Countries and Areas

WHO says Ebola is 'most severe acute health emergency in modern times'

The Ebola outbreak is the "most severe acute health emergency in modern times", the World Health Organisation has warned.
The agency's director-general Margaret Chan said the epidemic had proved "the world is ill-prepared to respond to any severe, sustained, and threatening public health emergency".
She added that new cases of Ebola are now "rising exponentially" in the three hardest-hit countries, Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.
In a statement to a regional health conference in the Philippine capital Manila, she said: "I have never seen a health event threaten the very survival of societies and governments in already very poor countries.
"I have never seen an infectious disease contribute so strongly to potential state failure."

Doubling Time and the Future

This is a simple posting about what the doubling time of a virus means for our future expectations.
We can expect a 3 week or so doubling of cases of Ebola until such time as we gain control of the spread or develop an effective cure. That may take a while. So what happens until that point? How much worry and how much time?