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Will you be one of the lucky ones to get a ventilator?

(weekend blog)

I suppose I should start by paraphrasing Dickens’s Mr Micawber: “10,000 serious cases of Covid-19, 12,000 ventilators – result happiness. 12,000 serious cases of Covid-19, 10,000 ventilators – result misery”.

There seem to be a few things becoming clear about Covid-19:

  • The figures for numbers of cases in each country are worthless as they depend on testing policies and thus the amount of testing being done. Obviously, the more people a country tests, the more cases it will find
  • 90% or more of people catching the Coronavirus will only experience mild symptoms
  • In a ‘normal’ flu season there will be about 110 deaths a day in the UK from the flu. We should always bear this figure in mind when the media reports the number of Covid-19 deaths each day
  • It’s the 5% to 10% who have serious Covid-19 symptoms who will overwhelm our healthcare systems causing chaos and unnecessary deaths

Here’s a brief (5 minutes) video from Spain.

It seems that in Madrid, older people (over 65) are not being given a ventilator and the chance to live as the few ventilators hospitals have are being reserved for younger Covid-19 sufferers.

Older people (those over 65) are just being sedated and allowed to die.

Though from what little I understand, even those who do get a ventilator will often suffer permanent organ damage which will leave them crippled for the rest of their lives.

It’s possible that serious Covid-19 cases in London will next week overwhelm NHS ventilator capacity. Other areas of the UK have about another couple of weeks to prepare for an expected surge in serious Covid-19 cases.

Here’s what is happening in Madrid and probably many areas of Spain and Italy.

This is what the UK Government is desperately trying to avoid happening here:

(apologies, the original 5-minute video in which the doctor goes on to accuse Spanish politicians of incompetence and genocide and demands they give up their salaries to provide money to buy more ventilators has been removed from YouTube – no doubt on the orders of Spanish politicians and healthcare bosses. So, here’s a shorter version which has so far managed to avoid being censored)

 

8 comments to Will you be one of the lucky ones to get a ventilator?

  • Mike Green

    The video has been taken down.

  • David Craig

    Yes, the original video has been taken down. But this shorter version is still available

  • Stillreading

    And similar choices as to who shall live and who shall die are relentlessly coming our way! Certain readers of this blog who regularly comment and who have said this is the same as, or very similar too, normal seasonal flu are deluding themselves and risk grossly misleading the poorly informed who are looking for an excuse to disregard instructions to socially distance or isolate. A highly qualified and experienced member of the medical profession, who also happens to be a close member of my family, is already seeing general wards in a leading London hospital being converted to Covid-19 only wards and describes patients on oxygen, exhausted by ceaseless hacking coughs and high temperatures, who are ill for far longer than the “few days” described by the more fortunate. And these are not the worst, since they do not require actual ventilation. Ventilators are already at almost 100% occupancy by those who would certainly die without them and many ventilated patients will die anyway. Medical and nursing staff are reduced to tears, just as is the doctor in the video, by the knowledge that patients are dying alone and without family around them because the wards are closed to visitors. Doctors saw all this coming – the need for protective clothing and ICU equipment and actual staff – and were quietly doing their best to prepare by the first week in January but, as always, were constrained by lack of political motivation and money. One wishes ill on no one but I cannot help reflecting that it may take the deaths of one or two high-profile individuals – I name no names! – to focus minds on the need for the individual UK citizen to take all preventative measures available right now to reduce further spread of this obnoxious Chinese-made killer and for this and future governments to divert tax-payers’ cash from where a significant amount of it is currently spent – African dictators’ annual handouts aka “foreign aid” comes to mind – to our own shamefully underfunded NHS. Our National Health Service, once the envy of the world, needs money, not a burst of sentimental applause at 8 p.m. on a Friday evening to appease the national conscience!

  • A Thorpe

    Even in “normal” circumstances it is difficult to distinguish truth from fiction. Do we know this video is genuine? I have seen many similar ones. I am inclined to view them as propaganda from socialist organisations that benefit from more by extending state control. What is the slogan “Protect our NHS” about? Is it to protect them from the embarrassment of not being prepared for an event that has been discussed for years? Blame is being placed on the current government but issue has been building for decades and the NHS has made no provison for it. Governments can only rely on experts and they are working in the NHS and in universities, and we cannot trust academics anymore. And why did Boris and Hancock in their videos show no signs of the persistent cough they claimed to have?

    I used to work for the CEGB and we did not sit on our arses complaining about the government, we worked to ensure the security of the electricity supply system. Now the government is interfering in electricity supply through climate change polices, taxation and pricing and we now have a situation that is far worse than inefficient nationalisation. The grid system is becoming as dysfunctional as the NHS.

    When there are limited resources then difficult decisions have to be made. Governments in a democracy do not want to admit to letting people die and this results in poor decisions, and that is what we are now witnessing. All Emily Thornberry has to say is that we have to make the right decision – this sounds good but is meaningless because she has no idea what that is. The key issue is that we have never had unlimited resources – materials, people or money. Anybody born before about 1950 knows this very well and we knew how to live and survive without panic. Recently we have lived through times of plenty and excessive consumption based on the trivia being more important than essentials because essentials are provided by the state. The one essential everybody wants in an emergency is health care and when they have to depend on a government to provide it they will eventually end in the situation we have today. Socialist policies always fail and people suffer as a result. People now have to face the reality of government dependence rather than self sufficiency.

    Stillreading makes a comment that might refer to me. The issue I have been stressing is that the death rate of this virus and seasonal flu looks similar. All the evidence supports this and I have given links to support this. The disease itself seems to be different to seasonal flu in many ways from country to country. One of the other concerning issues about this virus is that it is discussed without any reference to any other causes of death. This is how fear and panic is spread. We have never been told how many deaths there have been anywhere in the world from other viruses in the same period. In the UK I have no idea what the circumstance are with the average of 17,000 a year who die from seasonal flu and we do not have a mass panic every year. I assume those who die from it are also hospitalised and may need ventilation. Why is this not mentioned and more importantly why are far higher numbers of dead not mentioned, even now. The modelling is clearly wrong the professor who claimed high numbers of dead is now saying the numbers could be similar to seasonal flu as one of the links I provided yesterday reports.

    My biggest fear is not the virus but the state of the country afterwards as a result of the government policies due to incorrect advice given to them by academics. We do not even know when it will end because it may be back next year and we may not have a vaccination. Shutting down the country is not the answer and Trump seems to be the only politician who realises that we have to get back to work. There will be no work for many after this.

  • twi5ted

    Important to keep a sense of perspective as every day 1600 people die in the UK regardless and its more than likely as the country is shut down that deaths are lower than average as no car accidents etc. We do not know if these corid19 deaths are even preventable as most have preexisting conditions and are very old. They are likely within normal range of average deaths which is sad but that’s life.

    Parts of the country have no cases at all and resources are not stretched everywhere but because of the ridiculous scare mongering within the initial data projections these are not being shared in anticipation of huge escalation down the road that will never happen. London is clearly the centre in UK, like New York and Madrid etc, and no doubt some hospitals are under pressure not helped by large numbers of staff self isolating or reporting in sick. Beth Rigby on Sky asked Gove the numbers of NHS staff not at work at yesterday’s press briefing and he ignored the question.

    We need to know real facts and data to understand this situation. It is hard to come by though but the estimated death keeps dropping and is now 5700 which is almost the number of ICU beds in UK before all the new resources are deployed.

  • Roy Hartwell

    Once more very serious decisions are being made on the basis of ‘computer models’ (see Climate change!)
    Computer models rely on the input of known data but cannot guess unknown data. If we take climate change as an example, climate / weather is a highly chaotic system with very many variables non of which can be fully explored (i.e. all possible variations of all possible variants). Maybe the current Covid-19 is not quite so chaotic but there are still many unknowns about how it spreads and how and why it affects different people.
    To get over these problems in modelling, computer modellers use a technique going back to the very early days of ‘computing’ (i.e. Bletchley Park) where code breakers faced with millions of possible variants of the Enigma codes used a ‘cheat’ which effectively was a ‘best guess’ for a portion of a message to see if it would provide the code key.
    Any modelling of complex systems requires the input of a ‘cheat’ the nature of which will inevitably involve a bias on the part of the modellers ( ‘CO2 is a greenhouse gas therefore our models must use CO2 as the prime warming factor’).
    It’s clear this is what happened originally at Imperial and there has been some revision but there are still unknowns!!

  • A Thorpe

    We are living in strange times when facts and the truth are difficult to establish and the above comments illustrate how difficult it is to get answers. Why does the media let politicians get away with not answering questions? If they don’t know why can’t they say so? At least we would know where we stand.

    In the case of climate change I know nothing about the climate but I do know about the laws of thermodynamics and therefore I know that the claims about carbon dioxide are wrong. I have read endless paper and can find nothing that supports the claims. But now, like many others, I am asking why supposed scientists are lying to us. There is only one answer which is their motivation is political and the only objective that makes sense is that they are Marxists aiming to disrupt every aspect of life to achieve a totalitarian world government. The Marxist connections to the UN and academia are there to see.

    However, I don’t know about medicine so how do I know who to believe? Science is about facts and evidence and scientists have a duty to explain the science in terms we can understand. Gove was telling us that they are taking advice from scientists but there is a range of views and a lot of uncertainty. Action where there is doubt can be worse than doing nothing. It is now obvious that most governments are in a state of panic and that means rational decisions are not being made. The media is spreading the panic. We get daily reports of deaths but with no context of deaths from other causes. The deaths from COVID-19 so far are significantly lower than deaths from seasonal flu in a bad year. Our government has not said a word about this and the media is selective about the flu deaths. The BBC selected a year with the lowest number of flu deaths to spread panic about the coronavirus.

    Is there any truth in this report?
    https://principia-scientific.org/uk-us-healthcare-workers-says-covid-19-testing-kits-do-not-work/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+psintl+%28Principia+Scientific+Intl+-+Latest+News%29

    It is obvious that the people dying from flu or COVID19 have several illnesses contributing to it, so it is impossible to isolate the risk of death from any one of these illnesses. The only facts are people identified with flu or COVID19 and the fatality rate. Even though there will be other illnesses involved in many of the cases, it is the only way we can compare the two and From this comparison COVID19 does not have a higher fatality rate. Why then is there a panic with untold damage to the economy? Only a few lone voices in the media are asking this question. I can only see this as more Marxist activity. I also expect to see mass civil unrest as this goes on. People are not going to accept the isolation rules for 3 months, let alone 6 and it could be even worse when it finally dawns that getting back to normal will not be possible. I hope the armed forces are loyal to the Queen.

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