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Meduza has done a good job in systemically compiling regional data on ventilator/ECMO machine availability across Russia’s regions (see below).

Russia also has plenty of beds, thanks to the Soviet legacy (as I pointed out a couple of months ago).

So in the event the epidemic is not contained, it probably won’t do too much worse than the rest of the OECD, high smoking rates regardless.

Incidentally, Germany is much better stocked with beds than Italy, and also has MUCH better ventilator numbers (Germany has 25,000 and is procuring another 10,000). I suspect this is one of the reasons why its death rate remains so much lower than Italy’s, aside from classification differences – Germany only ascribes a death to COVID-19 if it occurs as a result of pulmonary complications – and the initial wave of infections being more concentrated amongst young people. [AK: correction]

Back to ventilators. According to Meduza, at least in terms of raw numbers, Russia actually compare favorably with the the comparator countries of Ukraine, Italy, and the UK (confirming an observation I made in a recent post).

The actual number of US ventilators, including older models in hospitals – but it’s not like Russia’s are all modern – is around 160,000 (“62,000 full-featured ventilators, and 98,000 more basic ones”). Perhaps another 20,000 more can be dredged up from old military stocks, etc. The Russian counts include all kinds of ventilators, so that’s the more appropriate comparator.

Why the very good American performance relative to, say, the UK? I am not sure, but if I had to take a guess, I would say that the paranoid neocons under Dubya were obsessed with the possibility of bioweapons attacks on the US – I have the impression it was their second biggest WMD-related obsession after a nuclear EMP attack. In the event, the instructions for hospitals to retain their old ventilators has worked out happily, in the end.

Haven’t been able to find a unified source on European ventilators/capita but it will probably be correlated to their ICU density.

Yeah, I really don’t think that the Netherlands – the last major country to continue holding to the “herd immunity” strategy – is being smart about this.

Ventilator production capacity:

Incidentally, I noted that the factory producing most of Russia’s ventilators was upgraded in 2015. Would be ironic if Western sanctions helped Russia improve its COVID-19 resilience in this most direct of ways.

***

So there’s differences in the extent to which different countries need to “Flatten the Curve” in order to remain within system capacity.

It’s relatively high for the US, Russia, Germany (South Korea, probably China, too – average Chinese hospital has 50-60 ventilators).

It’s relatively low for the UK, Ukraine, and – especially unfortunately, given that they are 10 days ahead of the rest of Europe – Italy.

Countries in the latter group need to be even more panicky about containing the epidemic within their borders than the others as they can be expected to suffer more from it.

I am not actually sure that doctor quality – which would generally privilege Western Europe and the US over Eastern Europe – will play a very big role. Doctor quality is a big deal when you’re treating individual, complicated cases… the sort of thing you need to have an average life expectancy of 83 instead of 78. Treating epidemics is more of a battlefield situation. No time for individualized treatments, where medical virtuosity is given space to shine. Once you need to go the triage stage, lots of people aren’t getting any treatment at all. Doctors can be as world-class, but what difference does it make if there’s not enough ventilators.

Anyhow, just throwing some numbers and thoughts into the air. Discuss.

 
• Category: Economics • Tags: Corona, Disease, Public Health, Russia 
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  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

  2. songbird says:

    Why the very good American performance relative to, say, the UK?

    I wonder if it might have something to do with organ donation rates (higher in the US, perhaps due to car ownership rates?), or the NHS pulling the plug on braindead people. Might be as you say though.

  3. Yup, looks like a situation where a Soviet style decent-quality-high-capacity healthcare system should outshine a Western high-quality-low-capacity healthcare system.

    • Replies: @UK
  4. Wife and I were actually talking about whether it is a wise idea to hole up here or in Russia. From your chart her relatively simple home province (oblast) has significantly more ventilators than our state here in the USA. Not that I anticipate having the flu, but it is interesting. Lower population density and a population used to hardship and privation are also advantages.

    Not that I have had much experience with the Russian medical system, but when we took our child for pediatric care in Russia at a private clinic we found it to be on par with facilities in the USA, but at substantially lower costs. Not sure I would want to test out which nation has better open heart surgery.

    In 30 years, Russia should have better doctors. They don’t suffer from ‘diversity-mania’, nor are they importing the ugly brown certificate-fakers from India and other South Asian countries. I would much rather be treated by some severe woman from Novosibirsk than by some Paki who cheated his way through school.

  5. There are 15,801 infected in New York state alone, but only 1,914 infected in the second most infected state.

    If this reflects lack of interest in testing, then America’s situation looks completely hopeless at this point. The virus is running rampant, and we are going to see just how much damage it can do.

    • Agree: Aedib
  6. IMPORTANT PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT FOR ALL READERS AND READERESSES OF THE KARLIN BLOG!, courtesy of the New York City Department of Health

    You are your safest sex partner. Masturbation will not spread COVID-19, especially if you wash your hands (and any sex toys) with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after sex.

    https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-sex-guidance.pdf

  7. LondonBob says:

    Tractor stats.

    Nurse lives on my street, four wards now been converted for coronavirus at her central London hospital, only one being used at the moment, despite London being an epicentre. Suspect the new treatments will have a strong impact.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  8. @jbwilson24

    Plenty of Indian and Sri Lankans who have and are studying/training to be doctors in Russia, outside of Moscow and SP.
    I’ve noticed a few in Kazan (where I’m from) and I’m sure there are plenty in Novosibirsk.

    There are plenty of Tajik and kavkaz doctors around also.

    Not that I disagree much with the rest of your post

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    , @Svevlad
  9. @jbwilson24

    Wow, I guess congratulations are in order that you people have the financial ability to uproot yourselves at the drop of a hat. If only the rest of the rich had stayed in place instead of jet-setting with Corona Chan at their heels.

    • Replies: @Anonymous (n)
    , @AP
  10. EldnahYm says:

    Studies of healthcare systems between countries is complicated and is often based around measures like life expectancy for which genetics and lifestyle choices have a large impact. One benefit of this coronavirus being so contagious, is that it may provide a useful empirical test between countries.

  11. @for-the-record

    As I’m sure Karlin could remind you too, robotic sexual analogues would certainly be able to be even cleaner through automated sanitary procedures.

  12. UK says:
    @AnonymousCoward2

    Totalitarian governments were always good at total war.

    • Replies: @AnonymousCoward2
  13. @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    You should have worked harder or been smarter and maybe you too would have a life worth living.

    • Replies: @iffen
  14. Ventilators help with gunshot wounds so the US has quite a lot of them.

    • Replies: @songbird
  15. @Ms Karlin-Gerard

    Lots of Pakistani junior doctors in Saratov not to mention Tanzanians.

    • Replies: @Ms Karlin-Gerard
  16. “Why the very good American performance relative to, say, the UK?”

    the private medical system, and Trump closing borders as best as he can, with Democrats interfering constantly and relentlessly.

    versus socialized medicine and open borders. a dangerous combination now. this was the UK approach at first. of course the performance of the socialized medicine systems is varying largely by how smart the citizens are. the smarter they are, the better they’re doing.

    the US won’t be overwhelmed by this virus. a lot of states will be only marginally affected. for the outbreaks, primarily NYC, appropriate resources can be channeled there.

    but of course as a dissident rightist, i ask, why should we help NYC.

    • Replies: @216
  17. @LondonBob

    London shares with South Wales and Bristol the highest number of critical care beds in England and Wales.

    BTW I have picked up an uncomfirmed rumour on Twitter that 25% of UK victims are Muslim although they are only 4% of the population. Multigenerational families and the mosques are still open (unlike Churches even in Lent!). Many muslims are writing against mosque openings. It would explain a particularly heavy male bias in the UK. I can’t find confirmation.

  18. AP says:
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    I’m assuming his wife is from there so he has a place to stay.

    He may be laid off or working from home so in that case it is only the cost of a plane ticket and visa.

    • Replies: @JL
  19. songbird says:
    @Philip Owen

    They also help with stabbings.

  20. @jbwilson24

    I don’t want to rain on your expating ideas, to the contrary I support it, but I think you’d agree that undertaking this during a pandemic is probably not a great idea. 🙂

  21. 216 says: • Website
    @prime noticer

    the US won’t be overwhelmed by this virus. a lot of states will be only marginally affected. for the outbreaks, primarily NYC, appropriate resources can be channeled there.

    I don’t have a lot of confidence that the US can impose an effective quarantine. The longer the economy is put in pause, the greater agitation for ending the quarantine at risk of civil unrest.

    The Governors have also been reluctant to order full mobilization of the National Guard.

    but of course as a dissident rightist, i ask, why should we help NYC.

    I think there are some questions that shouldn’t be asked, even if the remote odds that a Jared Holt type will run riot with them.

    Staten Island gave a strong majority to New York’s greatest son. I think that’s reason to help. Despite the improbable odds of victory, the President should make an effort to win his native state and deligitimize the one party rule there.

    • Replies: @songbird
  22. @Philip Owen

    Interesting to know! I had no idea about the Tanzanians.

    Not ususual for those medical students from Ind/Pak/SL to use their doctor qualification gained in Russia…. to then go and live and work as a medic in the UK. That seems to be the aim of the few I have talked to

  23. Fortress Russia Begins to Show Cracks as Coronavirus Spreads

    https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/03/18/fortress-russia-coronavirus-spread-covid-pandemic/

    TRUE OR NOT?

    • Replies: @melanf
  24. melanf says:
    @NazBolFren

    Fortress Russia Begins to Show Cracks as Coronavirus Spreads
    https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/03/18/fortress-russia-coronavirus-spread-covid-pandemic/
    TRUE OR NOT?

    Quote from the article:
    The recent speed of the government response may in part be due to recognition that the virus is, in fact, spreading throughout the country.The recent speed of the government response may in part be due to recognition that the virus is, in fact, spreading throughout the country. While official figures remain low, evidence is emerging that that reality is more severe, with many cases of the virus being misdiagnosed as other ailments. A report published last week by RBC, a Russian business newspaper, found that Rosstat, the country’s official statistics agency, has recorded an increase of 37 percent of cases of “community-acquired pneumonia” in January as compared to January 2019, which could fit similar symptoms to the coronavirus. Such an increase would represent nearly 2,000 cases.

    Another example of using the same fake.
    If in Moscow in January there were more than a thousand patients with coronavirus pneumonia (without any quarantine), by now the coronavirus epidemic in Russia should have surpassed the scale of China, Iran and Italy combined. Such an epidemic cannot be hidden by any means.
    Since it is obvious that there is no such epidemic ( in particular there were in January-February-March no tourists from Europe, America, Japan, etc. who returned from Moscow with coronavirus ), all this “exposure” about “coronavirus ” pneumonia in January is just a propaganda fake

    • Agree: AP
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    , @Beckow
  25. Mr. XYZ says:

    Why does Romania have such a high ratio of critical care beds to population? It’s almost as high as Austria’s in spite of Austria performing astronomically better on the PISA exam than Romania and presumably having much less of a brain drain than Romania has. It can’t be Romania’s Communist legacy, since some other ex-Communist countries–such as Poland and Latvia–are severely under-performing in comparison to Romania in regards to this–and this is in spite of these two countries’ higher average IQs (as measured by their results on the PISA exam in comparison to Romania)! Was it something about Ceaucescu’s rule in particular? Or is it another factor entirely?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  26. LondonBob says:
    @Philip Owen

    You will find a link to the article in the Independent in an earlier comment of mine with the twenty five percent are Muslims.

    https://www.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/f94c3c90da5b4e9f9a0b19484dd4bb14

    The natives areas of London are the least hardest hit, mine has however gone from two confirmed cases to twenty five in a week.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    , @iffen
  27. neutral says:

    https://www.rt.com/news/483800-russian-aid-italy-covid19/

    More Russian naivety on display, do they seriously believe that Italy will not return to its usual zio world order puppet mode after this has passed?

  28. JL says:
    @AP

    Consulates have stopped issuing visas and Russia has closed its borders to foreigners, full stop (with exceptions for permanent residents, diplomats, and a few others). He has no choice to make, he’s not getting into Russia.

    • Replies: @AP
  29. At last some good news from the CDC: the last few weeks have seen a dramatic decline in deaths from influenza in the US, from 600 per day to 150 per day.

  30. @melanf

    LOL, these journalists are all just copy pasting each other.

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/corona-wishes/

  31. @Mr. XYZ

    I assume Chad Ceausescu fantasized more about wars, epidemics, and other cool post-apocalyptic scenarios than the neoliberal optimizing bugmen who’ve run post-Soviet Latvia.

    If you look at that table, generally speaking, the more neolibs the govts, the more hospital beds per capita have dropped.

    • Replies: @Haruto Rat
    , @Mr. XYZ
  32. Imho, ventilators might be quite overrated anyway during this specific disease – if I’m not mistaken, there was some recent Chinese study of a patient cohort mortality during specific timeframe and over 97% of people hooked on ventilators died anyway. Also, there was recent TV reporting from Italy hospital when nurse said that all people on ventilators have died. Might add, that ventilators itselves have negative effects on lungs too.

    • Agree: JL
    • Replies: @iffen
  33. Annatar says:

    In terms of overall doctors, this WHO report has some data, France has 3.2/100, Germany has 4.2/1000, the UK is at 2.8/1000 and the US is at 2.6/1000. For comparison Italy has 4.1/1000.

    I agree that the quality of doctors likely doesn’t matter in this case, the quantity matters more.

    https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/324835/9789241565707-eng.pdf

  34. I would like to know which percentage of “ventilated” patients actually recovered? I’ve never seen any stats. It seems like over 95% of them just die, especially elderly co-chan victims.

    • Replies: @utu
  35. AP says:
    @JL

    He might have as multiple-entry visa, as I do. Those are the kinds that are mostly issued nowadays.

    • Replies: @JL
    , @The Big Red Scary
  36. JL says:
    @AP

    Sure, but it doesn’t matter, he won’t even be able to get on a plane, let alone make it through passport control in Russia. The borders are closed to foreigners (with the exceptions I already listed).

    • Agree: AP
  37. @AP

    I’m already in Russia, with a multiple-entry visa, and am here indefinitely, since if I were to leave, I don’t know when I’d be let back in. Not only is Russia denying entry to foreigners (with the exceptions JL gave), but the US State Department is advising all Americans to either return to the US as soon as possible, or to stay put where they are, since they might not provide the usual assistance if you have problems.

  38. @Anatoly Karlin

    the neoliberal optimizing bugmen who’ve run post-Soviet Latvia.

    Have neoliberal bugmen escaped Mr. Hudson’s fantasies and are now roaming the streets of Riga? Damn. I’d better be looking for that old can of Dichlorvos in the attic.

    In reality, Latvian governance mechanisms are rather like classical Mussolini-style corporatism (just more corrupt), with the “health”-“care” mafia holding above average clout; although “optimization” is often spoken of, it typically means “centralization so that we don’t have to share the loot”.

  39. Svevlad says:
    @Ms Karlin-Gerard

    Yeah, there’s “diversity” but done correctly – they must meet qualifications, and won’t be allowed excuses for incompetence like elsewhere

  40. Marko9 says: • Website

    “Germany only ascribes a death to COVID-19 if it occurs as a result of pulmonary complications”

    Do you maybe have a link for this for either Germany or Italy?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  41. @UK

    Or making sure that the whole population is covered. Free of charge too.

    • Replies: @UK
  42. Beckow says:
    @melanf

    They desperately want the neighbour’s cow to die. If it doesn’t, they will claim that it did anyway.

    Maybe off-topic, but it seems to me that we are focusing on the wrong stuff, all the minutia in a middle of a collapse, like re-arranging of chairs on the Titanic.

    The math based on the already disappeared economic activity is absolutely brutal. In heavily financialized societies like US or UK, this is taking away 20% of activity overnight and devaluing all virtual assets by more. Now it can still be controlled if the panic stops within 30-45 days, but it is more likely that we are heading into a materially new world. That also means that the ruling ideology will become meaningless overnight.

    If the assorted money-creating institutions can create trillions overnight, how is it still money? Something has to give. More ventilators won’t fix it.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  43. UK says:
    @AnonymousCoward2

    Free of charge? I didn’t realise I was conversing with an infant…

    • Replies: @AnonymousCoward2
  44. Jatt Arya says:

    Meds, Persians, Han, Anglos.

    Fk all we need is the Jews & we have a Merchant Epidemic while everyone chills & drinks Bhang||

    https://www.manglacharan.com/post/out-of-all-drugs-cannabis-is-the-best-guru-gobind-singh

    edit – Sry, 4got Jews are incl in Anglos.

    Onward Corona-Chan!

    • Agree: neutral
  45. @Jatt Arya

    Seems like you are practicing what you are preaching.

    • Replies: @Jatt Arya
  46. @Marko9

    It was doing the rounds on Twitter a few days ago, but I think it’s fake news. No authoritative sources that I could find, anyway. Will fix it in the post.

    Guardian does have this: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/22/germany-low-coronavirus-mortality-rate-puzzles-experts

    Unlike in Italy, there is currently no widespread postmortem testing for the novel coronavirus in Germany. The RKI says those who were not tested for Covid-19 in their lifetime but are suspected to have been infected with the virus “can” be tested after death, but in Germany’s decentralised health system this is not yet a routine practice.
    As a result, it is theoretically possible that there could be people who may have died in their homes before being tested and who do not show up in the statistics.
    Practising medical specialists such as Addo do not believe this number of unreported cases to be statistically significant. “I have yet to see any data that would suggest a large number of untested corona-related deaths that don’t show up in the statistics,” she said.

  47. @Anatoly Karlin

    How much are you willing to bet that the editors at the Guardian don’t understand the meaning of “statistically significant”?

    The contrast is not just between Germany and Italy but also between Germany and Spain. According to

    https://gisanddata.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6

    Italy has 59,138 confirmed cases with 5,476 deaths, Spain has 33,089 confirmed cases with 2,206 deaths, while Germany has 22,289 confirmed cases with 115 deaths. That’s a striking difference, requiring an explanation.

    Smoking doesn’t seem to explain it. According to

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_cigarette_consumption_per_capita

    Germans consume 1599.5 cigarettes per year, on average, while Spaniards consume 1499, and Italians 1493.3.

    Age doesn’t obviously explain it, either, though I suspect this is part of an explanation. Median male age: Spain 41.5, Italy 44.4, Germany 46.0.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_median_age

    Also, just eye-balling the population pyramids doesn’t suggest an explanation to me.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Italy#/media/File:Italypop.svg

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Germany#/media/File:Germanypop.svg

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Spain#/media/File:Spainpop.svg

    Someone with a better sense for demography is welcome to step forward.

    However, Russia does stand out from these three examples in at least two ways. 1) A higher rate of smoking (2295.0 cigarettes per year), and 2) a lumpier population pyramid.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Russia#/media/File:Russiapop.svg

    I don’t know what to make of this. In particular, mean number of cigarettes per year is not an especially informative statistic, since smoking rates within the population are unlikely to be distributed in the same way from country to country.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @SafeNow
  48. songbird says:
    @216

    The Governors have also been reluctant to order full mobilization of the National Guard.

    Probably true, but the other day, I saw a video clip of a seemingly endless line of armored vehicles on flatcars rolling into my state.

  49. Jatt Arya says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    Hong Kong Christcuck = Anglo Jew Han.

    Super-charged target for Corona!

    Christcuck = Persian Larper.

    This is great, lol.

    Anyway, Idgaf I think this mass quarantine is fake & gay||

    • LOL: Daniel Chieh
  50. Dmitry says:

    According to reports I read, USA has 170,000 medical ventilators, so around 52 per hundred thousand people.

  51. @LondonBob

    I saw that. The Independent has altered the article to remove the statistic.

  52. Dmitry says:
    @The Big Red Scary

    My guess, the coronavirus is just circulating with younger people in Germany, compared to in Italy, and this will explain the main difference in numbers of deaths so far.

    People usually most socialize with friends in their same age-group, so this kind of epidemic could have a “path dependent” aspect as well in terms of average age of the population who is first being infected.

    In Russia, Denis Protsenko was saying somewhere that people tested positive with coronavirus in his clinic, are on average a lot younger than average for the population.

    • Thanks: The Big Red Scary
    • Replies: @The Big Red Scary
  53. @Beckow

    The loans will be repaid at interest. Another 10 years of austerity. Inflation, to be precise, stagflation is a likely outcome. There will be little growth with every surviving business paying off loans rather than expanding into the gaps left by the bankrupt.

  54. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    But wasn’t Romania also run by neoliberal optimizing bugmen after the end of Communism and the Cold War, though?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  55. @Mr. XYZ

    I assume not as much as Latvia, as more of the Romanian bureaucratic bugmen would have remained sovok types who’d just let the system slowly degrade instead of energetically optimize.

    There’s nothing even all that wrong about neoliberal optimizing bugmen. Apart from in pandemics, wars, and other extreme scenarios that demand large space capacities.

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  56. @Dmitry

    “My guess, the coronavirus is just circulating with younger people in Germany”

    This is precisely one of the claims made in the Guardian article to which Anatoly links: the early German cases were among young, healthy people returning from ski trips in the Alps.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Swedish Family
  57. iffen says:
    @LondonBob

    The natives areas of London

    When you are using natives here, do you mean natives or natives?

  58. @for-the-record

    Why is it written as if the default scenario is having dozens of sex partners.

    This guide seems to be exclusively written for homos.

    • Replies: @NazBolFren
  59. utu says:
    @Bardon Kaldian

    The ones who die are most likely not ventilated. Median age of dead in Italy is 80 and 80% of dead are over 70. The old and sick are triaged away and given death sentence in Italy. They can do it because of the lockdown and no friends or family members are around to pester doctors to resort to not just heroic but even basic decent measures.

    Israeli doctor in Italy: We no longer help those over 60
    https://www.jpost.com/International/Israeli-doctor-in-Italy-We-no-longer-help-those-over-60-621856

    Peleg said that, from what he sees and hears in the hospital, the instructions are not to offer access to artificial respiratory machines to patients over 60 as such machines are limited in number.

    • Thanks: Bardon Kaldian
  60. half the people who end up on a ventilator under normal conditions eventually die, so they only save about 50% of patients under regular conditions.

    so not sure what effect they will have on the death rate under virus conditions. it might be worse, but it also might be better. but supposing it stays about the same, it still cuts the death rate in half.

  61. Dmitry says:
    @The Big Red Scary

    Apparently lot of the deaths in Madrid, are because the virus is circulating in 72 of the elderly homes of the city.

    In addition, many of the old people are cared in the elderly home (instead of the hospital), to reduce flooding in the hospitals. As a result, the number of deaths from coronavirus is undercounted, as many die without being tested. So their inside their deaths inside the elderly homes are recorded simply as pneumonia.

    Sorry I don’t know if you can read Spanish
    https://elpais.com/espana/madrid/2020-03-21/el-dano-del-coronavirus-en-las-residencias-de-mayores-sera-imposible-de-conocer.html

    So according to the video 19 people had died from coronavirus in one of the elderly homes (Monte Hermoso) in Madrid, and they are investigated for hiding this from authorities. (Since this video is made, the number is raised to 25 deaths in this single elderly home from coronavirus – according to the El Pais article).

  62. @Anatoly Karlin

    Professor Wieler from the German Robert Koch Institut, which is closely related to the goverrnment, declared in a press conference in Berlin about ten days ago that yes: what the terrible brown owl Alice Weidel from the AfD said in the Bundestag is correct: dDoctors in Germany do not test for CO-19 routinely if patients have died – whereas they do so in Italy.The reason, Professor Wieler said is, that routine testing would produce too many false positivies and might thus induce a panicky feeling into the average German soul…

    • Thanks: Anatoly Karlin
  63. @The Big Red Scary

    This is precisely one of the claims made in the Guardian article to which Anatoly links: the early German cases were among young, healthy people returning from ski trips in the Alps.

    I’m sure there are more fluke occurences than this lurking in the European data. For instance, as of Monday evening, Swedish state media reports that “at least six of the fifteen Corona victims so far in the Stockholm region have been Somali immigrants,” which would make nearly every fourth Swedish casualty so far a Somali-Swede.

    Still, I suspect it will take at least a month before we can make any sensible guesses about the effects of close social contact, smoking, drinking, and so on, on mortality rates.

    https://www.svt.se/nyheter/inrikes/lakarforening-larmar-over-halften-av-de-doda-ar-svensksomalier

  64. Surely hotels could be commandeered and used as extra bed capacity? All large hotels near hospitals should be used. They probably have very few bookings right now anyway.

  65. @LoutishAngloQuebecker

    because young women nowadays like to engage in promiscuous sex

    • Replies: @LoutishAngloQuebecker
  66. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    I assume not as much as Latvia, as more of the Romanian bureaucratic bugmen would have remained sovok types who’d just let the system slowly degrade instead of energetically optimize.

    Why was Romania more inclined to remain sovok? Because it’s lower-IQ and more corrupt in comparison to Latvia?

    Also, what about countries such as Poland?

    There’s nothing even all that wrong about neoliberal optimizing bugmen. Apart from in pandemics, wars, and other extreme scenarios that demand large space capacities.

    Well, yeah, but we need to be prepared for all contingencies, now don’t we?

  67. SafeNow says:
    @The Big Red Scary

    Regarding the Italy vs. Germany infection rates, my hypothesis is loud, close-proximity talking. A loud, exuberant Italian speaker emits a greater aerosol plume than does a phlegmatic German, whose spritz is minimal.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @songbird
  68. @for-the-record

    This is going to be the default method of intimate activity during lockdown for all the non-Chad men that don’t have a good face, good physique, good openers, and fun photos of themselves in exotic locations in their online dating profiles.

    All those non-Chad men should begin stocking up on K-Y and praying for free xHamster premium access.

  69. @Philip Owen

    Many muslims are writing against mosque openings.

    Shouldn’t they be praying harder? Isn’t that what Allah and his prophet would want?

    • Replies: @anonymous coward
  70. Dmitry says:

    I have a feeling this epidemic matches too much our pre-existing clichés – it feels like some bad Hollywood film.

    1. Epidemic created by Chinese with their unhygienic behaviour, involving an incorrect relationship to animals (such disease is either going to come from a market in China or a monkey in Africa, as in the opening scene of disaster films).

    China’s government subsquently lies about its statistics, and those high-trusting Western countries which are naive enough to believe China’s government are vulnerable and ignore the danger.

    2. Axis powers of Japan and Germany (joined in this version by South Korea) will manage the epidemic most efficiently.

    3. Spain and Italy fall into chaos. So also some primitive Middle Eastern country – Iran was selected in this version.

    4. … ^ so this is cliché story we have seen until now, how would such clichés continue?

    Superpowers – USA, UK, Russia – respond less efficiently than Axis powers in the early stages of the war, but do not fall like Romance countries? After some time, the vaccine is unveiled by a sinister American pharmeceutical company, which price-gouge everyone (or is promoted by its capitalist-oligarch president, despite questions about safety etc)?

    • LOL: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  71. Dmitry says:
    @SafeNow

    loud, exuberant Italian speaker emits a greater

    Maybe also something with waving hands and spaghetti.

  72. songbird says:
    @SafeNow

    But doesn’t that work two ways? I have seen old Italian people talk to each other on opposite sides of a street – and I do mean that they are having conversations.

  73. @The Wild Geese Howard

    Muslims don’t pray in any conventional sense of the word.

    Allah is not our God; Allah is more akin to an inscrutable force of nature, so praying to Allah is like praying to gravity or to natural selection.

    That said, yes, the Muslims do have religious rituals. They are not meant to supplicate Allah or to engage in dialogue with him. They are exactly that: rituals.

    • Replies: @Jatt Arya
  74. Jatt Arya says:
    @anonymous coward

    Wb shaving your armpits & sitting when you pee?

  75. 128 says:

    I wonder if anyone can make a study as to whether red states are expected to outperform blue states?

  76. @NazBolFren

    Is that a new thing though. It sounded pretty common from 15 years back (pua heyday), and the abortion rate was sky high from the 80s and 90s.

    Young women being hoes isn’t anything new, but the lifestyle is being glamorized and pushed more than ever by the usual suspects. And they are more picky tham before which sucks for the uglier males.

    On the plus side once you hit 45 you betas will be better off than the childless and drugged up stacies.

  77. @UK

    You are welcome to provide a source that either the Soviet or modern Russian healthcare system presumed payments by the patients. Or you simply can stop going ad hominem when facts don’t match your beliefs.

    • Troll: UK
  78. @Philip Owen

    I saw that in the Independent. Article was written by some thick person complaining how Muslims were getting a raw deal due to the pandemic and included that 25% rate without any support. I have plenty of Muslim family members and friends who are doctors in London and elsewhere, no indication death rates are abnormal as yet. UK Muslims and south Asians are a higher risk group though due to hypertension, heart disease and diabetes being quite common among the older generation.

    • Thanks: Philip Owen
  79. @Jatt Arya

    Has this blog ever had a good comment from an Indian?

  80. @Kent Nationalist

    All of Singh’s poasts are highest energy, though he still needs to poast physique

    • Replies: @Jatt Arya
  81. @Kent Nationalist

    There have been several good Indian commentators over the years Rec1man comes to mind.

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/rec1man-on-indian-iq/

    For you’re reading pleasure.

  82. Jatt Arya says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    Soon, gotta finish this cut & my arms only 15″..

    3/4/5 pl8 tho. 🙂

  83. Dmitry says:

    The problem is closing down too much of the economy for the virus, might kill almost as many people as the virus.

    The solution is simple as well – people just need more PPE.

    If everyone was wearing masks, goggles, and antiviral gendine-coated gloves (the gendine will deactivate any viruses), then they could go shopping, and to the cinema. People can go to the office without much risk. It might be impossible putting food in the mouth, but a lot of gas masks have drinking tubes so you could still drink a beer.

    Modern respirators are also including voice diaphragms so you can talk clearly although wearing them at the same time.

  84. Rosie says:
    @Dmitry

    then they could go shopping,

    The thing is, I have no choice but to go shopping. I could send Mr. Rosie, of course, but then that never ends well. Besides, I’m more disposable than him at this juncture, anyway.

    There should be masks and gloves available when I walk into the grocery store.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  85. @Dmitry

    Quality poast.

    Russia’s response seems much better than the UK’s right now, while the UK’s is leagues better than the schizophrenia in the US.

    North Korea and Israel living up squarely to the World War Z template.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  86. @Anatoly Karlin

    Thulean Friend deserves a mention too. 😂😂😂

  87. @Dmitry

    Modern respirators are also including voice diaphragms so you can talk clearly although wearing them at the same time.

    I look forward to a wonderful world where they are made from horse heads and speed forth – shiny and chrome.

  88. Dmitry says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Everything is happening like a compilation of bad Hollywood screenplays so far, just in some mild form… we have to wait if there will be any “plot twists”, but probably the writers are too lazy.

    to the World War Z template.

    In the original first draft conception of World War Z film, the zombies are defeated in Moscow. http://www.movies.com/movie-news/world-war-z-original-ending/12638

    I haven’t read the book (World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War) or tried the video games. Book predictably seems to be bestselling atm.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  89. @Dmitry

    The problem is closing down too much of the economy for the virus, might kill almost as many people as the virus.

    If the shut down drags on for any length of time, it may kill far more people than the virus. Almost 80% of Americans report living paycheck to paycheck:

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2019/01/11/live-paycheck-to-paycheck-government-shutdown/#c209d304f10b

    By and large, the US is a nation of grasshoppers, not ants.

    Since no one can maintain China-style quarantine, you will lose some of the people that would have been killed by the virus without the shutdown.

    The Japanese, Taiwanese, and Singaporeans seem to be doing well through consistent mask use.

    The idiot US Gov told people, “Masks don’t work.”

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  90. @Dmitry

    I haven’t read the book (World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War) or tried the video games. Book predictably seems to be bestselling atm.

    I tried reading the book.

    I had to put it down midway through when the eye-rolling Political Correctness became too overwhelming.

    At least it was not very gory, horror and gore are not really my thing.

  91. Dmitry says:
    @Rosie

    You can go to the supermarket with a respirator and it’s quite amusing to be the only person.

    Unfortunately, gendine-coated gloves are not in production for consumers yet.

    However, you can easily buy respirators that fit with P100 (this is American classification) filters.

    P100 will protect you from inhaling viruses even as aerosol (while coronavirus is mainly droplets), and then you just need to protect your eyes from something less than 5 microns.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24011377

    Full face mask is the easiest way IMO.

    In America, there are suppliers like Air Gas that online sell to businesses American equipment from Mine Safety Appliances, Honeywell and 3M, although they might not ship to outside America anymore after this week.

    If you are in Europe, then equipment of European companies like Dräger and Moldex, are also quite easy to attain.

    Full face protects your eyes like (these are actually very convenient to put on and off, and light to wear).

    In this context, just wear with a hood or hat that covers your head and ears, and you can easily take it off when you are home, and leave it couple of days (when all viruses will deactivate).

    Alternatively you could also just use this kind of a cheap disposable half mask and combine with goggles.

    This is a bit inconvenient though. And unlike people using it for construction industry, to stop viruses you will also have to have correct classification of goggles (that seal from intrusion of particles less than 5 microns – in Europe such goggles have a code saying EN166, 5).

  92. Jatt Arya says:
    @Kent Nationalist

    V few promoting sodomy, race mixing or cuckoldry.
    Indians have different tastes from Anglos, sry.

  93. @The Wild Geese Howard

    The US is the wealthiest large population in history. For people not to have money put by is greed of the most stupid sort.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  94. @Philip Owen

    The US is the wealthiest large population in history. For people not to have money put by is greed of the most stupid sort.

    For sure, but since the ’60s US culture and society have spent a lot of time, money, and effort incentivizing people not to save for a rainy day.

    A lot of it has to do with the abdication of personal responsibility. The two most important types of self-care that the individual is responsible for are their 1) health and 2) wealth. Few are pointing this out in today’s America.

    On top of this, there is a widespread attitude that it is rude to discuss money, even between parents and children. My folks never talked to me about bank accounts, loans, credit cards, investments, etc. I got an allowance to do a wide range of chores, and that was the extent of my financial education growing up.

    The schools are no help either. I’ve never heard of a basic finance course being taught in middle or high school. I can faintly remember talking about finances for a day or two in Home Ec or Government class.

    So, I’m not surprised that almost 80% of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck. I’m also not surprised that they sign up for all kinds of loans without really understanding the obligations they are taking on.

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