For those who think that the US (and possibly others) are overreacting to Coronavirus:

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OverTheTop

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Large amounts of spreading due to lack of social distancing measures, large events still happening, lack of government preparedness (they had a year to work it out). Many people are setting up impromptu medical clinics with the bare equipment to keep family members alive. They cannot rely on the State to provide for them. Between Google searches and some resourcefulness they are coping as best they can.

A fellow engineer here on my team lost his sister to covid this past weekend in India.
 

timbucktoo

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What I don't understand is why was it not dire much earlier there.
They had pretty serious lockdown early on but then there was a recent religious holiday and some politicians also had some fairly large political rallies.
 

modeltrains

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Update from Mona, there near Delhi,
Ya know, when you know people who are living the serious situation it puts a whole new spin on international news.
And remember, she got vaccinated several weeks back.

"Sorry for not replying but my oxygen levels have been fluctuating and I was busy just trying to keep breathing. I am on steroids now since a week. The fever has reduced. Today the CRP levels have reduced for the first time and I am relieved. Oxygen is a trouble in the first half of the day but I am learning to manage it better. "
"My husband and daughter are semi out of quarantine. That is they can move around the house in a mask. "
 

afadeev

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I understand that the US and several other countries are sending ventilators, PPE, and medical supplies to India to cope with the crisis.
Pardon my ignorance, but why is the situation so dire in India?
Slow vaccination of the population?
Vaccine not effective against new variants?
Something else?
It's all of the above, and then some, but the greatest common denominator among all the factors is gross political leadership malpractice:
"New COVID-19 cases reached an all-time low in India as recently as February, prompting people to resume attending sporting, religious and social events. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for example, held massive political rallies, with crowds of tens of thousands of people."

Basically, India now is where the US was in the spring/summer of 2020:
 

Sandy H.

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I have a friend from the US that is in India right now. He's trying to get home. Hopefully early part of the week. I hope they don't completely shutdown travel from India to the US before he can make it home. I'm sure he will voluntarily quarantine in whatever way is needed once he gets here, but I hope its sooner than later.

Sandy.
 

modeltrains

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I have a friend from the US that is in India right now. He's trying to get home. I hope they don't completely shutdown travel from India to the US before he can make it home.
Oh dear. Yes, am hoping that for him too.
 

boomtube-mk2

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The low-ball estimate for the world wide death toll from the "Spanish Flu*" pandemic was 65,000,000** and the reason it was an poor estimate is because nobody had any real data from many of the nations/regions affected, India, China and most of the African continent among them.
It makes one wonder if we'll get any valid data from those same places with regards to this pandemic.

*Had nothing to do with Spain, it just happened that the Spanish media was the first to pick up on it.

**This at a time when the World's population was apx 1.8 billion vs 7.8 billion today.
 

modeltrains

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It makes one wonder if we'll get any valid data from those same places with regards to this pandemic.
Well, let's see what can be found about what India currently says about India ...
Hmm, I'm looking for currently but only finding 2020 ...
Given that India substantially undercounts deaths from tuberculosis, malaria, diarrheal diseases and many such infectious diseases, it will remain to be seen if Indian states are accurately counting their dead from coronavirus.
Here's a general overview from April, 24, 2021,
 

Bowman

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I have a friend from the US that is in India right now. He's trying to get home. Hopefully early part of the week. I hope they don't completely shutdown travel from India to the US before he can make it home. I'm sure he will voluntarily quarantine in whatever way is needed once he gets here, but I hope its sooner than later.

Sandy.
Sounds like travel shutdown will come too late.
I hope your friend escapes the infection but I have to wonder why he was there in the first place?

My company would not send anyone abroad after April 2020 just as general policy and hopes of keeping employees safe.
Not to mention the potential to bring a variant back that may impact the rest of the world.
This is serious business and people need to get over the "oh just this one trip will be ok.." attitude.
Travel is not that important!

Doctors without borders is one thing but the rest of us need to keep focus and assess our priorities realistically.
 

modeltrains

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Travel is not that important!
There may be room for travel which is important, depending on the specific nature of the travel.
And ...
A spot of travel which I'm declaring important is next month or so making the 100 drive to visit my 80 year old parents, Mom, who had a stroke in 2019, and Dad, who has a bunch of service-connected ailments and is in the beginning of dementia and/or Alzheimers.
(that and/or is the doctor's phrasing)
so ...
visit them while they are still alive to be visited.
and ...
all 3 of us have messy health and are high risk for covid.
Oh, well, such is life.
And ...
none of us can drive the distance any more
so,
Mom & Dad called Friday and asked if I would call Hometown Homecare to hire a person to drive as we have done a few times in recent years.
I expect ...
a factor in their calling me and requesting that is Mom turning 81 next month, & my birthday & Father's Day being clustered close by Mom's birthday.
It will have been 9 months since we last visited.
 

Bowman

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There may be room for travel which is important, depending on the specific nature of the travel.
And ...
A spot of travel which I'm declaring important is next month or so making the 100 drive to visit my 80 year old parents, Mom, who had a stroke in 2019, and Dad, who has a bunch of service-connected ailments and is in the beginning of dementia and/or Alzheimers.
(that and/or is the doctor's phrasing)
so ...
visit them while they are still alive to be visited.
and ...
all 3 of us have messy health and are high risk for covid.
Oh, well, such is life.
And ...
none of us can drive the distance any more
so,
Mom & Dad called Friday and asked if I would call Hometown Homecare to hire a person to drive as we have done a few times in recent years.
I expect ...
a factor in their calling me and requesting that is Mom turning 81 next month, & my birthday & Father's Day being clustered close by Mom's birthday.
It will have been 9 months since we last visited.
I truly hope you can coordinate your visit safely for all of you.
So many good reasons for us all to be done with this.

My mom passed at 82 in August 2020 in the ICU under COVID precautions. She was in a negative pressure room as a precaution until labs came back. I saw her there for two days, me and my second brother, gowned-up and masked.
She was never awake aside from opening her eyes twice when we shouted her name.

I hadn't seen her in person for over a year. My brother and I were the only two of 12 family members to be allowed to see her.
So COVID affects us all adversely, not just those who are infected.
That's why I have negative feelings about those who take unnecessary risk and potentially prolong or worsen this for us all.
 

OverTheTop

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Hmm, I'm looking for currently but only finding 2020 ...
I hear they have started enacting laws that prevent fearmongering and this has the possibility of putting anyone, even journalists, who speaks out about the pandemic or is overtly negative in jail. That might be a factor in the lack of current info.
 

modeltrains

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I hear they have started enacting laws that prevent fearmongering ... That might be a factor in the lack of current info.
Could be, could be. Well, let's see what can be found in English ...
Last Updated: January 25, 2021, 17:21 IST The Centre on Monday instructed States and Union Territories in a letter to take penal action against those spreading misinformation about the efficacy of Covid-19 vaccines currently in circulation. Any such persons or organisations should be punished under the Disaster Management Act and the Indian Penal Code, it said.

Concerned that "unfounded and misleading rumours" are circulating in the social media and creating doubt about the safety and efficacy of these vaccines, Bhalla stated that there was a need to check such scare mongering.

"I would like to strongly emphasize that the National Regulatory Authority in the country has found both the vaccines safe and immunogenic" the letter stated. The Centre was also concerned over "rumour mongering by vested interests" , which could create doubts among the people at large. The letter further urged the state governments to counter the spread of misinformation and also disseminate factual messages.
Wow, our own Library of Congress has quite and article about misinformation in India and how it interacts with relevant laws, if any,
"Last Updated: 12/30/2020"

🇮🇳 In relation to covid and covid vaccines it would indeed count as that, "The problem of “fake news” appears to be significant in India with some commentators even describing it as a “public health crisis.”"

https://www.loc.gov/law/help/social-media-disinformation/india.php
The problem of “fake news” and misinformation appears to be a substantial problem in India. However, unlike the United States, where the focus is mostly on foreign based misinformation campaigns, India has more of a domestic misinformation problem involving major political parties and associated “cyber-army” groups. There is no specific provision in Indian law that specifically deals with fake news. However, there are several offenses in India’s Penal Code that criminalize certain forms of speech that may be relevant to fake news and may apply to online or social media content, including the crimes of sedition and promoting enmity between different groups.
The Information Technology Act 2000, which regulates electronic commerce and provides for certain cybercrimes, contains a provision (section 66A) prohibiting the ...
I. Background
The problem of “fake news” appears to be significant in India with some commentators even describing it as a “public health crisis.”[1] 'Indians were most likely to encounter fake news and internet hoaxes among the twenty-two countries surveyed as part of Microsoft’s Third Digial Civility Index.[2] An article in the Atlantic describes the situation as follows:
 
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Sandy H.

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Sounds like travel shutdown will come too late.
I hope your friend escapes the infection but I have to wonder why he was there in the first place?

My company would not send anyone abroad after April 2020 just as general policy and hopes of keeping employees safe.
Not to mention the potential to bring a variant back that may impact the rest of the world.
This is serious business and people need to get over the "oh just this one trip will be ok.." attitude.
Travel is not that important!

Doctors without borders is one thing but the rest of us need to keep focus and assess our priorities realistically.
I agree with you completely. I am not in a decision making role at the company. I would not have traveled to a foreign country if I had been asked.

Sandy
 

modeltrains

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21 April 2021
India’s massive COVID surge puzzles scientists
The virus is spreading faster than ever before in India despite previous high infection rates in megacities, which should have conferred some protection.

Smriti Mallapaty

Researchers in India are now trying to pinpoint what is behind the unprecedented surge, which could be due to an unfortunate confluence of factors, including the emergence of particularly infectious variants, a rise in unrestricted social interactions, and low vaccine coverage. Untangling the causes could be helpful to governments trying to suppress or prevent similar surges around the world.
European countries such as France and Germany are also currently experiencing large outbreaks relative to their size, and nations including Brazil and the United States are reporting high infection rates at around 70,000 a day. But India’s daily totals are now some of the highest ever recorded for any country, and are not far off a peak of 300,000 cases seen in the United States on 2 January.
Well, let's look at Europe, https://www.euronews.com/2021/04/06/france-and-spain-ramp-up-covid-19-vaccinations-as-cases-surge

France and Spain ramp up COVID-19 vaccinations as cases surge
By Euronews with AP • Updated: 07/04/2021
 

Mike Haberer

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It's not hard. Variants, plus low vaccination rates plus large gatherings plus not wearing PPE = high infections rates. After over a year of living with The Covid, the only reasons for the pandemic continuing as it is, is 1) poor government response and bad messaging, 2) personal denial believing this is real, 3) idiots believing in conspiracy theories, 4) "infringement of personal liberties" nonsense in the U.S. and a dozen more stupid things I could regurgitate. Just wear a damn mask already.
 

modeltrains

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A friend in India where she, her husband, and one of their two college age daughters have covid just sent me this from one of their news outlets,
Patients Turning Serious in 3-4 Days, Havoc in Vizag: New AP Strain Might be 15 Times More Virulent
The Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) has discovered N440K variant, that might be responsible for creating havoc in Visakhapatnam and other parts of the State, experts said. Though it is too early to conclude that the new variant, which is being called the AP strain, is behind the huge surge in some parts of state.

The strain first discovered in Kurnool, is considered to be at least 15 times more virulent than the earlier ones, and may be even stronger than the Indian variants of B1.617 and B1.618, a report in The Hindu said.

“We are still to ascertain, which strain is in circulation right now, as samples have been sent to CCMB for analysis. But one thing is certain that the variant at present which is in circulation in Visakhapatnam is quite different from what we have seen during the first wave last year,” District Collector V Vinay Chand, who is updated about the developments by senior doctors in the health department said.

District COVID Special Officer PV Sudhakar said that they have observed that the new variant has shorter incubation period and the progress of the disease is much rapid. In the earlier cases, a patient affected with Covid-19 would take at least a week to reach the hypoxia or dyspnea stage, but now patients are reaching the serious condition stage within three or four days. Sudhakar added that it has led to pressure on beds with oxygen and ICU beds.

Unlike the first wave, a shorter exposure is enough to acquire the virus, experts say adding that it could further infect four to five people within a shorter span.
 
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