Learning to live with it

Covid-19 discussion, bring your own statistics
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shpalman
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Learning to live with it

Post by shpalman » Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:13 am

Christina Pagel on twitter:
A plan should *not* mean long national lockdowns, which represent a failure of public health systems.

In fact, refusing to do the *learning* in "learning to live with Covid" is the biggest risk for such future lockdowns.
That's tweet 11/13 but I've linked to the first in the thread.

There seems to me a sense in which the attitude of "learn to live with covid" actually means "accept your fate so we can get on with our lives; if you're vaccinated you should be fine but if not, well, that's unlucky, people die all the time after all".

But as Christina points out, there are things we should have actually learnt by now otherwise the "new normal" is going to be considerably worse than the old one.
Fundamentally, world is different now. Acting as if it isn't, which UK seems determined to do, may feel good in short term but will result in a new normal worse than the old one.

I prefer for us to build a new normal that's *better* than frequent sickness & disruption.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by shpalman » Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:17 am

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by shpalman » Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:36 am

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Trinucleus » Sat Feb 12, 2022 1:26 pm

shpalman wrote:
Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:36 am
Ending most free testing won't help
Yes it will. There will be fewer reported infections.....

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Herainestold » Sat Feb 12, 2022 8:05 pm

We need to develop the ability to test everybody twice a week.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by shpalman » Sun Feb 13, 2022 12:26 pm

Herainestold wrote:
Sat Feb 12, 2022 8:05 pm
We need to develop the ability to test everybody twice a week.
What would the UK or the people in it actually do with that information?

A future variant of Covid-19 could be much more dangerous and cause far higher numbers of deaths and cases of serious illness than Omicron reckon some guys.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by IvanV » Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:04 am

shpalman wrote:
Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:13 am
There seems to me a sense in which the attitude of "learn to live with covid" actually means "accept your fate so we can get on with our lives; if you're vaccinated you should be fine but if not, well, that's unlucky, people die all the time after all".
That is pretty much our attitude to most other infectious diseases continuously circulating in the population.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by shpalman » Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:37 am

IvanV wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:04 am
shpalman wrote:
Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:13 am
There seems to me a sense in which the attitude of "learn to live with covid" actually means "accept your fate so we can get on with our lives; if you're vaccinated you should be fine but if not, well, that's unlucky, people die all the time after all".
That is pretty much our attitude to most other infectious diseases continuously circulating in the population.
It seems you're fine with it causing 50-60,000 deaths in a season; without any kinds of restrictions just about everybody is going to catch it (the R_0 of the more recent variants is quite high) so you need an IFR of the order of around 0.1%. That may just about be achievable in a vaccinated population with increased immunity from regular infections. The CFR in the UK was possibly about 0.15% at the recent peak of cases (whereas it's about 2% in an unvaccinated population). Yes, it depends on the age profile of the infections and all that, and relies on the next variant not being more virulent.

If a variant is able to outcompete Omicron then of course it's more contagious than Omicron (or at least it's more contagious than Omicron in a population which has most of its immunity from either vaccines developed on the original strain or from recent Omicron infections) but there's also the possibility of covid dropping to a very low level in Europe over the summer and then next winter's wave is whatever variant happens to get here from the southern hemisphere's winter.

There's always the possibility of a new variant being more virulent, but you'd hope enough red flags would be raised early enough if young people suddenly started ending up in hospital in some part of the world. Rather than the local authorities trying to ignore it / play it down / "not cause alarm" until it's too late for the travel restrictions to have much use except to annoy people.

The worst case would of course be a longer and milder mild/asymptomatic phase but then suddenly a more severe outcome after a relatively long period.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Woodchopper » Mon Feb 14, 2022 12:07 pm

IMHO there's a middle way between legal restrictions and everyone letting it rip and partying like its 2019.

Among people I know most aren't behaving like they did pre-Covid. Middle aged people seem to be choosing to work from home unless they need to go into the office, they're also going to bars or restaurants much less. I went into the office today for the first time in months and my usual train was at about 1/4 the pre-Covid capacity. Its also become normal to test yourself before coming in contact with someone you now to be vulnerable.

Older or vulnerable people are still being careful, eg meeting friends and family outside and not going to crowded poorly ventilated spaces.

Clearly this safety net has a lot of holes, for example vulnerable people who can't avoid close contacts. But it'll probably reduce or at least spread out infections in vulnerable people over a longer season and so limit pressure of healthcare services.

That said, I don't know how long people will keep being careful, or whether complacency will set in.

Aside from the deaths, long covid is my other big worry about learning to live with covid. We need to wait and see what are the effects of multiple infections in populations that have high levels of prior immunity.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Sciolus » Mon Feb 14, 2022 7:53 pm

IvanV wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:04 am
shpalman wrote:
Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:13 am
There seems to me a sense in which the attitude of "learn to live with covid" actually means "accept your fate so we can get on with our lives; if you're vaccinated you should be fine but if not, well, that's unlucky, people die all the time after all".
That is pretty much our attitude to most other infectious diseases continuously circulating in the population.
In the early days, covid was qualitatively different from other diseases, partly because so much was unknown, but particularly because the abruptness and severity of the outbreak created the risk of collapsing health services, causing disproportionate harm. We've now moved to a phase where covid is only quantitatively different from other diseases, and we can use our experience of those to decide how much we're prepared to pay to prevent it. We could do that in an objective way, or in an emotional way as we seem to do with most other causes of harm and death.
Woodchopper wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 12:07 pm
Aside from the deaths, long covid is my other big worry about learning to live with covid. We need to wait and see what are the effects of multiple infections in populations that have high levels of prior immunity.
Speaking for myself, I could cope with a week of feeling crap ending in a 0.1% chance of death and a 99.9% chance of complete recovery. I'm much less happy about the thought of a week of feeling crap ending in a 0.1% chance of death, a 90% chance of complete recovery and a 10% chance of serious long-term ill-health.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Hunting Dog » Mon Feb 14, 2022 8:26 pm

Sciolus wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 7:53 pm
Speaking for myself, I could cope with a week of feeling crap ending in a 0.1% chance of death and a 99.9% chance of complete recovery. I'm much less happy about the thought of a week of feeling crap ending in a 0.1% chance of death, a 90% chance of complete recovery and a 10% chance of serious long-term ill-health.
Exactly, I don't particularly care about the chance of death, it would be all over... The having to stick around and cope with long-term ill-health is the thing keeping me cautious.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by IvanV » Tue Feb 15, 2022 9:14 am

shpalman wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:37 am
IvanV wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:04 am
shpalman wrote:
Sat Feb 12, 2022 11:13 am
There seems to me a sense in which the attitude of "learn to live with covid" actually means "accept your fate so we can get on with our lives; if you're vaccinated you should be fine but if not, well, that's unlucky, people die all the time after all".
That is pretty much our attitude to most other infectious diseases continuously circulating in the population.
It seems you're fine with it causing 50-60,000 deaths in a season;
I didn't say that. I said only that is precisely how we treat everything else.

What is the reasonable incidence of death, hospitalisation, and people suffering, that justify additional measures to reduce it. No one seems to have asked whether the typical 30k per year deaths from flu-and-pneumonia is reasonable, and justifies additional measures beyond the vaccinations offered.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by shpalman » Tue Feb 15, 2022 9:27 am

IvanV wrote:
Tue Feb 15, 2022 9:14 am
shpalman wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:37 am
IvanV wrote:
Mon Feb 14, 2022 11:04 am

That is pretty much our attitude to most other infectious diseases continuously circulating in the population.
It seems you're fine with it causing 50-60,000 deaths in a season;
I didn't say that. I said only that is precisely how we treat everything else.

What is the reasonable incidence of death, hospitalisation, and people suffering, that justify additional measures to reduce it. No one seems to have asked whether the typical 30k per year deaths from flu-and-pneumonia is reasonable, and justifies additional measures beyond the vaccinations offered.
For "you" I intended a plural You referring to the UK population in general, not that you personally were fine with it. Sorry if it came across that way.

I think we were all a bit taken aback by the news that Boris Johnson privately accepted up to 50,000 deaths a year but that's the sort of death rate the UK has been having recently and people do seem fine with it. Yes it gets to the point at which we need to put that figure into context; if 100,000 people die despite stringent measures it's not logical to say ah well it's not so many might as well open up, but if 50,000 die with everything more or less opened up because vaccines work then we might as well carry on.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by snoozeofreason » Tue Feb 22, 2022 10:37 am

Mrs. Snooze and I both have mothers in care homes. Both care homes lock down whenever they get a Covid case, which happens regularly. I have been able to see my mother because I am her essential care giver (although I have been her only regular visitor over the past few months). Mrs. Snooze, on the other hand, hasn't been able to physically be in the same room as her mother since November (BiL is the ECG). All the talk of "Learning to live with" the virus is making her furious, because it results in most of the population feeling at liberty to spread the virus around, with the result that it inevitably finds its way back to her mother's care home.

I haven't seen any guidance on how care homes are supposed to operate in the future. If legal restrictions are lifted, but care homes are still free to privately adopt policies that are as restrictive as they wish, then Mrs S will be very unhappy indeed.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Herainestold » Wed Feb 23, 2022 4:06 pm

Should be " Learning to die of it".

Covid has totally changed the expectation of growing old. In the future we wont see many octogenarians. Unless we put them into bubbles.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by WFJ » Wed Feb 23, 2022 4:38 pm

Herainestold wrote:
Wed Feb 23, 2022 4:06 pm
Should be " Learning to die of it".

Covid has totally changed the expectation of growing old. In the future we wont see many octogenarians. Unless we put them into bubbles.
Nonsense. Even in the first wave, with no vaccines and no idea on treatment best practice, the vast majority of people of all ages survived infection. If covid has had any significant effect on life expectancies over the past two years, it will be a small blip on an upward curve.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Herainestold » Thu Feb 24, 2022 6:02 am

Vaccines offer little protection to the over 80s, unfortunately.
Both ends of the age spectrum are very susceptible to covid, which is a huge problem. We need to keep some restrictions to defend these vulnerable people.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by bob sterman » Thu Feb 24, 2022 7:22 am

Herainestold wrote:
Thu Feb 24, 2022 6:02 am
Both ends of the age spectrum are very susceptible to covid, which is a huge problem.
Both ends of the age spectrum are NOT equally susceptible to COVID. We have an entirely unvaccinated population of young children and infants who are not experiencing anywhere near the level of morbidity and mortality that we've seen in the elderly.

In the UK there are single care homes which saw more deaths from COVID in the elderly than there have been deaths of infants from COVID across the whole pandemic.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by WFJ » Thu Feb 24, 2022 7:47 am

The stated 'fact' about vaccines in the over 80s is also clearly b.llsh.t.

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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by Chris Preston » Thu Feb 24, 2022 10:14 am

WFJ wrote:
Thu Feb 24, 2022 7:47 am
The stated 'fact' about vaccines in the over 80s is also clearly b.llsh.t.
I posted this pictorial previously. viewtopic.php?f=19&t=3127&p=112556#p112556

The data set in the bottom left is the number of cases per death in Australia from the original and delta variants. On the right, the omicron variant. The big thing that happened in between is vaccination. Very few 0 to 10 were vaccinated prior to January 20th when vaccination was opened up for the5 to 11 age group. There was relatively little shift in cases per death for 0 to 10, but a big shift for every other group. For >90s it is five fold protection, for 80-90s nearly 7-fold. Still, I am not sure I want to be a 90-year old with COVID-19.
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Re: Learning to live with it

Post by shpalman » Thu Feb 24, 2022 11:33 am

So to just make explicit the information in the infographic Chris linked to, specifically the lower left corner:

Image

1 in 34 vaccinated 80-89 year olds die if they get covid; 1 in 15 vaccinated 90+ year olds die if they get covid.

That inverts to ~3% and ~7% CFR in those age groups.

In 2020, life expectancy at age 80 years for Australia was 9.87 years.

We've tried to discuss how many years covid can take off your life but it depends on what you're comparing to what so I'm still confused by it.

What did COVID do to life expectancy?
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