The You&Me Blog

You all have that Facebook friend, right? The one who responded to virus news with posts like “We should shut down the country now!” and so on. Probably, you realized that there wasn’t any point in responding and let it go. But you thought something like this. Okay, let’s shut down the country. But wait, we need police and firefighters and EMS to respond to life threatening emergencies. And we need hospitals for the sick people. And then we need the roads to stay clear and repaired, and gas and tires and auto repair to be available so that those police and firefighters and EMS and hospital...
It occurs to us that some of our latter posts about the current virus situation have been somewhat negative in tone at times. They may be heartfelt, but it also occurs to us that there is already plenty of negativity to be found on this topic. So, today we are going to focus on some positives that might have gotten buried in the noise. The United States, and many other countries, have successfully “flattened the curve” of viral transmission. Remember, that was the goal of all these stay at home orders and lock downs. It was never to have no virus, or sadly, no deaths, because that is simply...
We aren’t here to criticize Dr. Anthony Fauci, an extremely accomplished government leader who is also extremely knowledgeable in the field of infectious diseases. The man has already been the target of ridiculous, uninformed attacks, much to our nation’s shame. This post is not about Dr. Fauci. This post is about the problem of our media repeating things that they don’t understand or which simply are not true. Specifically, we have noted an unfortunate tendency of media outlets to describe Dr. Fauci as “the nation’s top expert in infectious diseases.” Now to be clear, although Dr Fauci doesn...
Probably we are just belaboring the obvious at this point, but another bulletin from the world of social rather than scientific thinking. From a U. S. News report on the Governor of New Mexico getting salty with the town of Gallup. “She also required that businesses in Gallup close from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. in the city of about 70,000 people along Interstate 40, which remained open to through traffic. Gallup is a hub for basic household supplies, liquor sales and water-container refills for people living in remote stretches of the Navajo Nation — often without full indoor plumbing — and...
An exit plan is a good start, but if you are a government you may actually have to do something to make it happen. Let’s pick on North Carolina for a moment. They have a nice informative website; ( https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/covid19/covid-19-nc-case-... ) where they lay out some metrics related to “re-opening” the state. One of these is having 30 days of “PPE” (another buzzword like “ventilators” that one gets the impression the few of those using the term really know what it means) on hand included “N-95” masks (ditto.) Unfortunately, as of this writing (April 30, 2020)...
We’ve already talked about how our media, with it lust for clickbait, and our disorganized leadership, both politicians with political agendas and bureaucrats with bureaucratic agendas, have stoked unnecessary fear and anxiety in the United States (and probably in other countries too), over “coronavirus” and “COVID-19.” This is not to say that there should be NO concern over this or, indeed, any other infectious agent. Sometimes people get mad when this respiratory virus is compared to other very serious respiratory viruses, such as influenza. Maybe this is because they think that this...
It may be that you have been checking those “coronavirus trackers” on line, wondering what’s up with that virus you may have heard a little bit about. Although interesting, this raw data has some limitations. For one thing, it’s a tally of every assumed/known/reported/estimated case ever, so it’s never going to go down, unless you have access to a time machine somehow. (And you can ignore that silly “recovered” statistic, as no one is tracking that. If a person didn’t die, they recovered in 1-2 weeks, although a bad case of respiratory illness can leave you feeling pretty worn out for a few...
New on the scene; antibody tests for the coronavirus family of viruses. Just the other day the ever-excitable Governor Cuomo of New York (and to be fair, he’s had plenty to be excited about recently) was talking about rolling out an “aggressive” antibody testing effort there, which would help determine how many people had been exposed, and might be immune, to COVID-19 viruses. Filtered through the news media, it is not immediately apparent that the Governor is completely clear on what antibodies actually are, which again, to be fair, is not in his job description. But with the media...
The response of the United States’ plethora of governments and bureaucracies has been severely lacking. Instead of a prepared disaster plan, or even any kind of actual scientifically based, risk assessed guidance, US residents have been subjected to mostly panicked reactive restrictions, based more on fears of losing elections rather than fears of overwhelming the US health care system. The latter issue, you might recall, was the main reason that restrictions were felt necessary for a virus that for 90 percent or more of people infected, causes no symptoms or only mild symptoms. Because if...
In fact, maybe it’s a little late. In any case, it is definitely time to start thinking about the world’s regions/countries/entities respond to infectious diseases. This should not be a political exercise. Instead we need to look at what works, what works but at too great a cost, and what does not work, and what does not work at too great a cost, and PLAN accordingly, from the information we have gained from an unprecedented amount of worldwide data. We should have a plan for this type of agent (low virulence, easy spread, can impact vulnerable populations) and also for other infectious...

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