Francis Collins, the head of the the National Institutes of Health also reveals himself to be a mask nut, saying very explicitly that parents should mask in their home around unvaccinated children, and then, just like the Surgeon General, later tried to deny that that was what he said.
Going to put up an Active Cases post, maybe a YOY one. Interesting that we are seeing a slight swell in cases in Minnesota, little earlier than last year, when it was around the middle of August. Testing relatively comparable. The weather has been different this year, I believe warmer, so maybe that plays a role. And we have been having very bad smoke from Canadian fires, really bad over several weeks, and it appears that particulates may in some way help the virus travel and irritates upper respiratory, and lower, tracts, which may create a better opportunity for the virus to get a foothold. And of course, the general level of contacts this year is much higher.
Five deaths reported today, three from February. What is going on, lately a very large percent of deaths are from quite a ways back? Very misleading picture gets painted. Here is DD’s summary of how hard it is to figure out what day data relates to, what reporting lags look like and how hard it is to line up events on the same day:
“Actually, with their (DOH’s) new reporting policy of not processing data on weekends, tests are per 4 am the prior business day, and cases are per 4 am 2 business days ago. So, todays reported tests are through 4 am last Friday, and today’s reported cases are through 4 am last Thursday. When I report active cases now I am using these dates. Since the data is for 4 am it effectively is really for the prior day, but I am ignoring this because it is complicated enough. I am crediting the reported No Longer Needing Isolation number to the prior business day. Hospital admissions data lag 2 business days, so today’s data is through last Thursday. Until the last few days they listed data tables for both death by date, and death by reported date, on the Situation Update page. Now however they no longer publish the date of reported death data table. Last Monday, 7/26, the data table went through 7/26, and the weekend dates were zeroes. I am keeping the same system for date of reported death, meaning the day it hits the Situation Update page is when I am recording the reported deaths, which includes LTC and other places of residence. Hospital beds in use are listed up to the prior business day. Today’s data goes through last Friday.
In other words, nothing really matches and I’m not really sure what day anything is valid for.”
Another excellent article from Dr. Ionnidis on the issue of attributing deaths to CV-19. An excellent discussion of the problems and possible solutions. He suggests that US deaths are likely over-estimated, but are under-estimated in other countries. Somewhat mathematically complex, but his observations are just outstandingly useful. (Ionnidis Article)
Asymptomatic transmission is a big problem, right. We don’t really know that. Here is systematic review of the literature by the eminent Centre For Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford University. Bottom line; a few studies may show the existence of transmission from asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic persons. In general the quality of the research is not great and there is great variability in findings. (Medrxiv Paper)
Another study which emphasizes the importance of knowing viral load for tracking an epidemic. (Science Study) (Science Comment) The authors point out that knowing the viral load in a population is a better indicator of epidemic status than are raw case counts. This is similar to the notion that what matters is how many people are active cases–capable of infecting others. Trends in average viral load will give a good picture of whether cases are likely to be growing or declining. Knowing viral load is also important for clinical reasons, as it is a clear reflection of disease severity. Governments don’t share this data intentionally because they know it will show they are treating positives as cases that are almost certainly not infectious, but that lack of transparency is a serious problem. In addition to releasing PCR cycle numbers, governments should do random culturing to correlate cycle number and virus viability and release that analysis as well.
Another vaccine safety study comparing rates of clotting disorders between the Pfizer vaccine, the Astra-Zeneca one, infected people and the general population. (Medrxiv Paper) Rates among vaccinees were generally similar to background rates in the population, although there was a slightly higher risk of pulmonary embolism among Astra-Zeneca vaccine recipients. But the risk of pulmonary embolism among those with a CV-19 infection was around 15 times greater than in a vaccine recipient.
At a micro-level, as I have frequently pointed out, where the rubber really hits the road with CV-19 is in the upper respiratory tract. So a strong immune response to the presence of the virus is important in that region. And, consistent with past research, it appears that vaccination causes a localized immune response capability in the mucosal passages in the URT. (Medrxiv Paper).