Tuesday 24 March 2020

Where we are now

Italian coronavirus cases are likely to be ‘10 times higher than reported’, the head of the Italian Civil Protection Agency Angelo Borrelli told La Repubblica. This would bring the estimated number of coronavirus cases in Italy is closer to 640,000 rather than the confirmed number of 63,927 of which 6,077 have died. A mortality rate of less than 1% is very much more credible than almost 10%. Fortunately the death and infection rate has recently slowed, no doubt because people do not go outdoors.

Romania is in a state of emergency and the President decreed today that as of tomorrow we have something like the 'lockdown' Boris imposed last night on the UK. 

A canny and experienced British nurse I know told me a week ago that she thought we would be over the worst of this in two weeks. I never thought that likely. In London the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (minister without portfolio) Michael Gove told Sky News this morning that ‘in three weeks’ time we’ll be able to say whether or not the path we’ve followed needs intensification’.

In an interesting article in Haarretz by Professor Ran Balicer, Founding Director of the Clalit Research Institute, which researches non-communicable diseases, said this about the prospects for

"If we can halt the rate of multiplying deaths within three weeks, we can start a gradual exit from the closure, until we reach the new status quo. We won’t return to the routine of two months ago, but life will return slowly but surely under a new routine. And who knows – maybe the summer will bring a significant easing of the disease, and we will join the countries that succeeded in avoiding disaster."

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