Insights Into Tomorrow

Insights Into Tomorrow: Episode 4 "Outbreak"

February 17, 2020 Season 2 Episode 4
Insights Into Tomorrow
Insights Into Tomorrow: Episode 4 "Outbreak"
Chapters
Insights Into Tomorrow
Insights Into Tomorrow: Episode 4 "Outbreak"
Feb 17, 2020 Season 2 Episode 4
Sam and Joseph Whalen

Coronavirus, the latest pandemic spreading across the world, is this a sign of the end of times? In this episode we look at what the coronavirus is and the impact it's having on the world at large. We also look at past pandemics that have scared the world into thinking the end was near and the impact they have had on how we react to the spread of disease and the evolution of medical technology to cope with unimaginable numbers of victims of these afflictions.

We'll examine what the future holds when the next great pandemic strikes. What can we do to come together and pool our resources to prevent these outbreaks from becoming so widespread and how to humanely treat those stricken by them. Another insightful look at a major issue with far reaching consequences.

Show Notes Transcript

Coronavirus, the latest pandemic spreading across the world, is this a sign of the end of times? In this episode we look at what the coronavirus is and the impact it's having on the world at large. We also look at past pandemics that have scared the world into thinking the end was near and the impact they have had on how we react to the spread of disease and the evolution of medical technology to cope with unimaginable numbers of victims of these afflictions.

We'll examine what the future holds when the next great pandemic strikes. What can we do to come together and pool our resources to prevent these outbreaks from becoming so widespread and how to humanely treat those stricken by them. Another insightful look at a major issue with far reaching consequences.

Support the show (https://www.twitch.tv/insightsintothings)

Speaker 1:
0:02
Insightful pocket by informative insights, a podcast network
Speaker 2:
0:26
[inaudible]
Speaker 3:
0:26
come to insights into tomorrow where we take a deeper look into how the issues of today will impact the world of tomorrow from politics and world news to media and technology. We discuss how today's headlines are becoming tomorrow's reality.
Speaker 2:
1:00
[inaudible]
Speaker 4:
1:00
welcome to insights into tomorrow. This is episode four outbreak. I'm your host, Joseph Waylon and my cohost Samwell. And how are you doing today, Sam? Thank you for joining me today. So obviously, you know, everything that's in the news right now is talking about Corona virus, the outbreak that apparently started in China from all accounts and is a rapidly sweeping the world. Uh, we're going to be focusing on that today. And, uh, not just on that, but on outbreaks in general. Um, we're going to take a look at some historic outbreaks, uh, what their impact was and we're going to look at what coronavirus means today and then what we do best here. And we'll take a look at what the future looks like with epidemics, pandemics, outbreaks, and uh, how the world is handling them. Uh, are we ready to get started? I believe so. All right, let's get into it.
Speaker 4:
2:11
So I think the first thing we need to do is let's get some terms straight here. So one of the things that has been thrown around is the words pandemic and epidemic. So in doing them some very quick research on this, uh, an epidemic is an outbreak of disease that attacks many people at about the same time and may spread through one or several communities. And a pandemic is when an epidemic spreads throughout the world. So I think it's pretty clear right now that a coronavirus is a pandemic. It's on all major continents at this point in time. But Corona virus itself kind of is a bit of a misnomer. Um, Corona virus is a generic term for a certain type of virus. Um, they, uh, uh, rarely infect, um, and their animal viruses that rarely infect humans. Um, and they get their name from the shape of what they look like on our microscope.
Speaker 4:
3:25
They look like a Starburst or a Corona. Um, and the, you know, they're fairly generic in their nature. Uh, they can cause cold symptoms or respiratory issues. And so force, so forth. Um, some other Corona viruses that have been around in the wrist, uh, ha, the recent times has been SARS, the sudden acute respiratory syndrome. And there was another version of it in the middle East called MERS or the middle East respiratory syndrome. So the idea when, when, when the news refers to this as coronavirus, it's kind of a generic idea at this. It's like saying the flu where there's many strains of influenza out there, a Corona virus itself, the one that's going around now has been identified as a new type called 2019 novel Corona virus. And that's really what we're, we're focusing on as a society today right now, which is what this infection that came out of China was. Um, w how much have you heard about coronavirus at this point?
Speaker 5:
4:34
Uh, mostly just what you see in the news and stuff, which is mostly like how they treat a lot of, of epidemics and pandemics. How it's like people just get scared in general, cause it seems like there's no, like it's unstoppable. Um, whereas before it started out where it was just in China, there were a couple of cases. Now you have cases in the U S there's that cruise ship that they just quarantined her. I think they're unloading people. They love the news. Um, so I mean it, it seems really scary cause diseases in general are terrifying cause there's not, I mean there's ways to prevent it, but it doesn't seem like you can do a whole lot to prevent it. Um, but yeah, mostly just as the cases go up, the desk go up, but then you get conflicting reports of, Oh, we're fine. Oh, we're not fine. So it's difficult to sort through, you know.
Speaker 4:
5:19
Well, and the interesting thing is, is yeah, the number of infected is very high. The number of people that are dying is alarming, but it's fractional compared to the infections and deaths that occur from influenza every year. Yup. So coronavirus is getting all the news right now because there's no vaccine for it. There's no cure for it right now. And people just don't understand it. But the death toll from it is really not as impactful as other outbreaks have been. So the next thing I did want to talk about was taking a look at what I found were to be labeled as the 10 worst outbreaks of a disease and viruses in, in history.
Speaker 4:
6:10
Before we talk about those, I think it's important to lay a little bit of groundwork here. So in the news now when we hear about Corona virus or any kind of infection, you hear the involvement of the CDC, the centers for disease control, which is based in Atlanta, Georgia in the United States, um, and world health organization, which I didn't write down but I think is based in Vienna, Austria. Um, so the, the CDC was actually founded in 1946 and the world health organization was founded in 1948. So these are, you know, relatively speaking in the grand scheme of things, fairly new organizations to deal with these things. And we'll talk about these outbreaks. And I think the interesting thing to note here is a lot of these outbreaks occurred before we had these organizations. So he can almost draw a direct parallel to the effect that having these organizations has had on managing outbreaks.
Speaker 4:
7:11
And I think part of that just comes with the science, right? I mean, there wasn't, there weren't microscopes, there weren't any, not the knowledge they had. Even in the forties they were discovering, you know, they had, uh, antibiotics and penicillin and things like that. So until the technology got there, there was no way to unify medicine like sure. Yeah, it's a very good point. So the first outbreak, um, and, and these go back in time from most recent to least on the first one that, that we talk about here is HIV or the AIDS pandemic, which based on numbers alone, um, you know, it came out of the 80s and it peaked in the 2005 to 2012 time with the number of infections and deaths. Um, and this was one where much like the criticism that China is under now, where China kind of tried to hush up the coronavirus thing because they didn't want the news getting out.
Speaker 4:
8:05
And, and other pressure, repressive regimes like North Korea is doing the same thing now as well. The United States kinda didn't pay much attention to HIV and AIDS when we got hit with it. Um, it was sort of stigmatized as relegated to the gay community. Um, but this was a disease that originated in, uh, the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 76 and rapidly spread from there. Um, the death toll total so far we say, uh, is about 36 million and the calls obviously is, is HIV and AIDS. Um, there's currently between 31 and 35 million people living with HIV. And if you look at examples like magic Johnson who was, you know, diagnosed with HIV almost, I think it's over 20 years ago now. Uh, the, the strides in medicine for treating this have been significant, but just from the numbers alone, it's still a pandemic. What are your thoughts?
Speaker 5:
9:13
Yeah, I think using the wrong button. It's all right. I think, uh, using the example of magic Johnson is interesting cause obviously he's got more money than God, so he's got access to the best treatment and the best medicine. But as you'll see, as we're probably gonna see with, with this and as the other epidemics and pandemics, it's often the poor that are most effected by this, that don't have access to that, that re that medical care in those facilities. So ultimately that's what's going to affect them the most. Um, and especially with HIV AIDS, combining it with the stigma taxation of the gay community even further hindered the ability to get treatment because it was, you're, you're almost ashamed to do it. Um, which led to even more death. And I still think that there's someone that today, even though even though care has become easier to get to.
Speaker 4:
9:57
Yeah. And, and that's the interesting thing. Like I remember as a kid in the 80s when AIDS, uh, really came into the mainstream and, and the thing that started the break that, uh, stigmatization of it was when rock Hudson was, was diagnosed with it. So you finally get, again that celebrity status where he's diagnosed with it and then you start getting people like Elizabeth Taylor advocating for, um, AIDS funds and stuff like that. So as much as I agree with you that magic Johnson is an example of what money can do for you for treatment and it shows that treatment has come a long way. The less fortunate the ones that are going to suffer the most. Um, conversely, it didn't become our problem as a society until a celebrity wound up getting diagnosed with,
Speaker 5:
10:53
well, in the cynical part of me wants to say that's because, you know, it doesn't, once the rich and the, the important people start to get affected, that's when the actual, they start funding it and the change actually starts to come.
Speaker 4:
11:03
Yeah. That's the thing. It's not a problem until it's your problem. Right. Um, so it's still an issue. We've, we don't have a cure for it, obviously. I think we all agree on that. Um, but there's longterm treatment for it now.
Speaker 5:
11:19
Yeah. And I, I saw a commercial the other day about, I don't remember the name of the medication, but it was just as you'd see like, you know, a Claritin commercial and something to treat this. And I think that's, that's interesting cause it's like it makes it not normal I guess normal for the people that have it. You're not ashamed about it anymore because it's, it's not like, you know, it's not something genetic where you can prevent it but you're not as ashamed. And the treatment, like I said before, is, is more accessible.
Speaker 4:
11:44
Well and again, going back to the magic Johnson, um, [inaudible] example there, I think magic Johnson became the face of heterosexuals with HIV that you don't necessarily need to lead a homosexual lifestyle to contract this. You get it. People are getting it through blood transfusions.
Speaker 5:
12:03
Yeah. And wasn't there a little boy too, that guy? I don't remember his name, but I don't remember that. I didn't put it in my notes here unfortunately because that was a pretty big one too. That helps. I mean, cause he was just a kid and he, I mean he's still got, I think it was in, if you ever watched the CNN, the 80s document. Yeah, I think it was covered in that. But I mean the kid was obviously made fun of in school because of the time period, but also he kind of became a face just like magic Johnson of, you know, it's not just gay people getting this and it's not, it's everybody and everybody's, uh, potentially able to get it.
Speaker 4:
12:33
Sure. And it's a shame that we had to have multiple examples of things like that before people finally got it. Whereas with the next example, the flu pandemic of 1968, we had a death toll of over a million. This was a flu. Sometimes you refer to the Hong Kong through that emerge out of Asia. Um, this was a derivative of the H three and two strain of influenza a. um, and this one was first reported in July of 68 and this was another one where it swept the countries, you know, the continents very rapidly. Uh, when the 68 pandemic was comparatively low, had a low mortality rate of 0.5%. Um, but that included 500,000 residents of Hong Kong. So it w had had a much more regional impact. But again, this is an example where the flu, and you're going to see this as we go through this list, that this flu epidemic has come up multiple times.
Speaker 5:
13:45
Yup. Especially in places like Hong Kong where there's high population density. It just makes it easier for it to spread, which is why you have here. It took only 17 days before it was reported in Singapore and Vietnam and within three months had spread to the Philippines, India, Australia, Europe, and the United States. So this is like, I mean, every day it's, it's, it's hopping borders and spreading just because people are so packed in together and, and because of that
Speaker 4:
14:08
environment, you also have lower, uh, public health facilities available. You have shared services, you don't have the same, uh, sanitary conditions that you would in a more developed world.
Speaker 5:
14:21
Yeah. And I mean, this is in 1968 where the population of the world was what probably 3 billion less people. So now the closer we get to to modern times, there's even more people packed into these areas and around the world in general spread even further. And you even figure in 68, we had international national
Speaker 4:
14:36
flights available, but not to the extent that we have today, which is kind of one of the reasons why Corona virus and other viruses that got spread so fast today is just the readily available, uh, transportation services that we have between countries now. So going back a decade earlier than that, we look at the Asian flu, another strain of, of flu. This was the age to end to subtype, which, uh, originated in China in 1956. Uh, and this one lasted two years. And uh, and we'll talk about the impact on
Speaker 6:
15:15
ah,
Speaker 4:
15:15
the society and economy a little bit. But you figure this is a flue string where this pandemic lasted two years. No, let's imagine coronal virus lasting two years, given the impact that it's already had on the world. And think about how serious that is. Um, this one cause 2 million deaths, again, primarily in the Asia region of Singapore, Hong Kong. Um, but this also reached out to the United States as well.
Speaker 6:
15:49
Mmm.
Speaker 4:
15:50
And, and this is the flu, you know, this is the same, same flu that we get our shots for all the time now.
Speaker 5:
15:57
Yeah. I think, I dunno, I mean, I'm not familiar with the geography of these regions, but I get the sense that it's a lot of rural areas too, which may not have access to medical care. And even if even if you live in the city, you still might not have access to that. Um, but like I said, I'm not, you know, an expert on these kinds of things. But that would definitely be a cause. But especially if these areas are routinely getting infected and routinely spreading it quickly, you know, there might be common threads.
Speaker 4:
16:23
Yeah. And there've been cholera outlet outbreaks, uh, historically that have had the same type of issues where the collar outbreaks occur in the city. People then try to escape the city. And even [inaudible], we'll talk about bubonic plague too, but these usually occur in cities first because of that sanitary condition issue and the dense population. And then people leave the city to get away from and carrying the plague. And the further you get away from the city, the worse your medical facilities become. And it just continues to spread from there. I'm the one a lot of people are familiar with. Again, another strain of the flu was the influence of endemic of 1918 which occurs right after, you know, the tail end of world war one. It saw millions of lives lost already from war, um, and horrible conditions in Europe as a result of the war where you are, your infrastructure is destroyed, your medical facilities are practically nonexistent. We see worldwide 20 to 50 million, so many people die. They couldn't even accurately keep count of that. Um, up to 20 up to 50 million people die between 1918 and 1920, uh, in what was probably the worst and deadliest outbreak of influenza. Um, that's some serious numbers when you start talking about it, especially in the, in light of millions of people already haven't died in the war.
Speaker 5:
17:54
Yeah. I mean it's, it's obviously tragic, but it's also, you can't even comprehend that those numbers. And, um, I think, and I think I might've been stalling you. It's, you know, one death is a tragedy, but 20 million, I forget what the other number is, but 20 million is a statistic. So it's like, at a certain point, your mind can't even can't even comprehend those numbers. Um, I mean, compared to a world war one, I how many, what was the death hello? I think it was like way above that. I believe so. Yeah. So, but at least like those people were dying in combat, which maybe it wasn't, uh, it wasn't justified. It wasn't a sensible cause, but it was calm. But you weren't just imagine surviving over one and coming home and then tying up the flu, you know, slowly and painfully. It's just, it's obviously tragic and it, and at this time you're getting the beginning of a globalized world. Um, I mean there weren't planes but you had a lot more Naval travel, which helps spread it and make it even worse. And then all the troops coming home spreading it to where they were, they went back to, which was a lot of the calls as well.
Speaker 4:
19:00
And that's the interesting, interesting point here is you know, we just went over three of the 10 worst, uh, pandemics in human history that were all from the same thing. They were all from a strain of influenza and that is a, uh, affliction that we still are stuck with today. Uh, sure we get our flu shots and stuff like that, but they typically only immunize you against a few active strains. Um, but the flu is proven time and time again, how quickly it can mutate and get well outside that containment factor.
Speaker 5:
19:35
Yeah. I'm not sure if you've seen it, but on Netflix there's a documentary series, I think it's called pandemic. I watched like the first two episodes of it, but it deals with this kind of stuff. It's more focused on the people combating the diseases. But they do talk about this 1918 pandemic and how just the number of people that died, words was astronomical for the time and it kind of came out of nowhere and people really weren't prepared for it and there obviously weren't any sanitary conditions in place to prevent it. So it was essentially just pray and I'm going to hope for the best.
Speaker 4:
20:03
And you know, shortly before that you had, you know, what has been termed as the six cholera pandemic from 1910 to 1911. I in cholera itself is another one, another, you know, affliction out there that has reared its head multiple times. Human history in this case here in, in 1910 and 11 it claimed over 800,000 lives. Um, but you know, this was probably the least deadly collar epidemic of the sixth that have been recorded. Uh, American health authorities have learned from the past. They quickly sought to isolate the infected and in the end, only 11 deaths occurred in the U S so this is a good example of how, you know, we're learning from our mistakes. Unfortunately, we learned by the sixth outbreak of this disease.
Speaker 5:
21:02
And even still, I mean the U S learned, but other countries haven't, like at the end you have, um, it's still a constant in India and I, I mean, just because they don't have access to the medical care and, and the amount of population, those diseases spread so quickly. So while the U S might have learned and was able to isolate it, there's still a lot of people that are still getting hit with it.
Speaker 4:
21:20
That's true. Yeah. That brings us to yet another flu pandemic of, um, 1889 and 19 1890. Uh, this was termed the Asiatic flu or the Russian flu. Uh, it was a strain to thought to be the outbreak of influenza a subtype. H two N two again, um, recent discoveries have found it was actually a subtype of age three and eight, which was fairly rare for, for findings on the first cases were observed in may of 1889, uh, in three separate locations in, uh, Turkmen, uh, Turkistan, uh, in central Asia, Canada and Greenland. So pretty geographically varied locations. Um, rapid population growth of the 19th century in urban areas help to spread the flu like we had already spoken about. Uh, and it's the first true epidemic in the era of bacteriology, uh, and much was learned from it. So this is, you know, before 20th century medicine.
Speaker 4:
22:31
This is just the infancy of where we're starting to understand what these diseases can do. And I'm not going to go through all of these, you know, I'll pick out, you know, another key one here, um, was the third collar epidemic in 18, which was between 1852 and 1860. And this one I think was probably significant, not only because it was the most deadly of the seven pandemics that did occur. Uh, but this one, uh, thanks to British physician John Snow, um, they finally understood where it was originating from. He was working in poor areas in London and tracked cases of collar, uh, to contaminated water from a well in this downtrodden Harry of the city that everyone would go to cause no one had running water in their houses at the time. So it turned out that the well itself that this entire community was drawing water from was contaminated and he was able through, you know, at the time cutting edge science to determine based on taking water samples of, of the areas where this was coming from.
Speaker 4:
23:45
Um, so this is a good example of the start of learning how to treat these, uh, epidemics and learning where their origins are and the science of it. Um, and the, you know, the only other one that's I think really worth mentioning and everyone kind of learns about this in history class is going way back to the black death. Uh, and I call this out not because bubonic plague is a, you know, major problem, although it still does exist in parts of the world. Um, this was huge. This literally killed a third of the population of Europe as many as 200 million people were killed during the black death between 1346 and 1353 and it literally changed the face of Western civilization as we know it. Um, and this is well before we had any kind of sense of science. Um, everyone, you know, you look at modern television shows and history shows and you see physicians that are wearing these, you know, Gothic looking morbid outfits with these long protrusions in the front, you know, on their faces.
Speaker 4:
25:04
Um, and these were what doctors wore, you know, this was, this was how the superstitious mind thought that by packing, you know, incense and flowers into that nose and breathing through scented, um, popery basically that you would be safe. Um, but they didn't understand where the nature of this was. And it turned out to be, uh, in fact that fleas that were coming in on ships, on the backs of rats. Um, but no one knew where this was coming from. And this was something that originated probably somewhere on the steps of, of Asian and came through the middle East and on trade ships back into Europe. Um, but it was again just an absolutely devastating plague that occurred before there was even an idea of modern medicine.
Speaker 5:
26:00
Yeah. One of the things I always found interesting about the black death was the art that came out of it. Yeah. Cause it obviously it led cause this was like one of the Heights of, of religion in people's lives. I mean, Oh for a lot of people, all they had was the church. So when something like this happened, it shook a lot of people's faith just because the amount of debt, like you'd have like whole towns wiped out like overnight. So it shook a lot of people's faith and, and the art of the time really reflected that. You see paintings of horror, like just abject horror, either skeletons or people suffering and dying and you'd never really seen that before. Um, in artworks. I always thought that was really interesting cause it's when you face a, a tragedy and a level of death that the mind can't, it's interesting to see how a society copes with that. Um, whether it be through art or, or faith or something like that.
Speaker 4:
26:51
Yeah. I was just, you know, the way that they, they did cope with that was, you know, you see it in the literature, you see it in the liturgy itself from the church. Uh, and you see it carried over. Now, you know, ring around the Rosie is a Bluebonnet plague song that children tell, you know, everything about it is a Bluebonnet plague. Um, so the fact that that emerged from this time period is, is kind of morbid really. Uh, so that's just a glimpse of what we've seen as far as outbreaks in the past. We're going to come back and we're going to talk about what today's outbreak actually looks like. So how is the 2019 at novel Corona virus spread? We have a few notes you're wanting. Why don't you tell us how it's spread?
Speaker 5:
27:47
Uh, so the recent information indicates that the 2019 novel coronavirus also called the 2019 dash N C O V as passed from person to person, just like you'd see with a lot of other flu pandemics. The spread of this new disease, a coronavirus is being monitored by the CDC and the world health organization and health organizations like Johns Hopkins across the globe. Uh, and finally on January the 30th, the world health organization declared that it was a public health emergency. Indeed it is. I mean, it's at this scale, it, it's just you have to, you have to just to, it was more of a political move, I think when I was reading about it, that they did it just to help mobilize actual care because they couldn't get anybody's attention otherwise unless they declared a public health emergency.
Speaker 4:
28:36
And you see that a lot in natural disasters where, you know, a governor has to declare officially a national emergency before a federal government agency will step.
Speaker 5:
28:46
Yeah. I think when I was reading that article, they use Katrina as an example that they, they had to just to get the support they needed. Right. So,
Speaker 4:
28:53
so how did the 2019 novel coronavirus spread to humans?
Speaker 5:
29:00
Uh, so it appeared in wool hun, we have here, um, I'm might be pronouncing that wrong, but you know, Americans, uh, uh, this was in China in December of 2019. So before the new year. And although the health officials are still tracing the exact source, uh, the hypothesis is that it might be linked to the seafood market in a Wu Han, China. Some people who visited the market develop viral pneumonia caused by the Corona, a 2019 novel coronavirus and a study that came out on January the 25th note that the individual with the first reported case became ill on December the first 2019 but had no link to that seafood market. Um, investigations are ongoing as to how the virus originated spread, which you're going to see because it's, it's new, it's developing. People are, and especially with something like disease where it's, it's so amorphous, it's hard to, you know, now, uh, this fire is probably originated from an animal, um, which is often the case, but now it seems to be spreading from person to person. So it's jumped that that species barrier that you know, causes a lot of these pandemics. And finally the virus has been detected and people throughout China and 24 other countries and most recently the United States.
Speaker 4:
30:10
So one of the other speculative sources that I saw this, uh, recently come from was, uh, bats in China. Um, apparently they think the bats may be a carrier of the virus but not the originator of it, which kind of explains why we might have it originating in multiple places at once in the same relative geographical area. Um, but you're right, most of these typically happen, uh, they develop on other animals species and then they wind up mutating and the mutations usually find somewhere to jump to human species.
Speaker 5:
30:48
I mean, bats are rats with brings early. So I mean it's, you're getting flashbacks to the black death of, of how these things spread, especially with batch being a little fly. They can cover a lot more distance than just a rat, you know, running.
Speaker 4:
30:59
Sure. Yeah. What is the incubation period of the current coronavirus?
Speaker 5:
31:05
Uh, according to our notes and the research that we've done, it appears that this symptoms are showing up in people within 14 days of exposure to the virus. It's probably subject to, you know, there's a lot of variables involved with that, but just on average about 14 days.
Speaker 4:
31:17
What was interesting. Uh, there was a lot of concern over travel international travel and they were screening, China was screening passengers getting on a little flights. Um, and they were basically using infrared thermometers to see if anyone was running fevers. It was a very light check. Uh, and just in recent days, uh, they changed the screening process for the symptoms and the number of diagnosed cases has skyrocketed because they're doing a much more, uh, uh, detailed diagnostic.
Speaker 5:
31:49
That's probably because they're facing pressure from the rest of the world. Cause I mean, I don't, I'm not sure if we've got it in here, but they definitely were trying to cover it up. I definitely worry there was that the doctor that tried to break it and I didn't look into it to fact check it as much as I should have, but it looked like there was this one doctor and I can't remember the guy's name, but they basically silenced him and then he ended up dying from this coronavirus. Yep. So,
Speaker 4:
32:11
yeah. So what are the symptoms of the current [inaudible]?
Speaker 5:
32:14
Uh, symptoms include a viral pneumonia with symptoms, including, like I said, the cough, a fever, shortness of breath, and in rare cases, respiratory problems, kidney failure or death. So these are a lot of symptoms you'd find in just your average flu strain, which is part of the reason why it's so hard to, to track into treat because you don't know if it's this new coronavirus it's spreading around the world or just your average flu.
Speaker 4:
32:37
Yeah, yeah. I mean the problem having symptoms that are so similar like that, um, they're quarantining anyone with those symptoms. And when you're quarantined because of the number of diagnostic diagnosed cases, you're not being quarantined in isolation. You're being quarantined with other people. So you may have the flu and, but not coronavirus, but you're being quarantined with people who have coronavirus in the chances of you getting effected have now gone up dramatically. Um, how is the coronavirus diagnosed?
Speaker 5:
33:09
A diagnosis may be difficult with only a physical exam because my old case of the new Corona virus, like we just said, may appear similar to the flu or a bad cold. But a lab test can confirm this diagnosis. Of course when you're dealing with hundreds of thousands of people, lab tests are going to take awhile. And the practicality of it it's, might not be, might not be as effective as just like you said, quarantining, getting people away from the general population,
Speaker 4:
33:33
talking about trying to do this sort of diagnostic at an airport. You know, you're not clinically diagnosing people with, um, blood tests at the airport. Right? I mean, you're trying to find some other way to do this. So the accuracy has to be severely limited and you're going to have people slip through. Um, how is the Corona virus treated?
Speaker 5:
33:58
Uh, there is not a specific treatment so far that we have, uh, done our research. But people who've become sick when this virus should be treated with supportive measures, um, things that relieve the symptoms in general. For severe cases, there may be additional treatment, uh, options including research, drugs and therapeutics. So just like your regular flu, there is not a whole lot they can do.
Speaker 4:
34:18
Yeah. And, uh, a recent article that I had read talked about a vaccine possibly being available sometime in 2021 so clearly no time soon to deal with this. Um, but again, this is one of those things, you know, moving forward, is it a lesson learned and how many people have to pay the price for us to learn that lesson?
Speaker 5:
34:38
See ya, I don't know what you asked me earlier, what I, what kind of coverage I'd seen of it, but it reminds me of when we had the swine flu epidemics and the bird or avian flu epidemics, everybody panics and then it just goes away. Um, and there's, there's also, and I wasn't sure where to fit it in, but my thoughts on this, but the coverage of it, especially in America is very selfish. Um, it's, it's all the media coverage is very toned down until we get reports of it's in America and then everybody panics. And you see that with a lot of things just in general, like, you know, like Wars or crimes or things like that where as long as it's not an American, we're fine. And I think you're seeing that with this too, because there wasn't a whole lot of coverage of it until, Oh, there's 12 cases in America. Immediately the president makes a statement and immediately, you know, reports on this, you know, double or triple just what you see in average day. And I don't know, maybe it's a, it's a human, it's a human thing, but it is very selfish and it is, it's [inaudible]
Speaker 4:
35:40
human nature. It's not, it's not a problem until it's your problem. Yeah. Um, and, and I guess that's kind of why I wanted to talk about the history of epidemics because that type of thinking as a society is so shortsighted because, you know, we jumped all over China for, for covering the sun. We'll have China come out with a day one, what would we have done? Nothing. Nothing until it hit our borders. So you can't complain that they're holding it back unless you're going to provide support
Speaker 5:
36:11
just cause it's China. So the, the, especially with their recent things with, with the Hong Kong protest and things like that, they have a track record of being really shady. So I think that this might've just been lumped in with that, but you're right. Even if it was England or France, somebody would've done anything. Right.
Speaker 4:
36:24
I guess my point is that, okay, so if it's a comp, a country that's, I don't want to say enemy but antagonistic towards us, you know, there's a lot of them out there. Yeah. So if the epidemic that kills a large percentage of the population starts there and can be stopped there and we decide not to do it because we don't like that country, we're just as responsible for it.
Speaker 5:
36:49
Yeah. Yeah. I think, um, I heard on the radio of the day, it might've been someone from the world health organization talking about how it was declared a public emergency and it was like they were talking about the economic impact, which we'll get to eventually, but he was saying that this is a test for the world to come together. And in my head I'm like, we're not going to come together. Like I just don't believe that. And I, it's, it's awful that I think that way, but we don't have a track record of coming together to fight anything.
Speaker 4:
37:16
No, you're right. And people when stuff like this happens, people look at, you know, aliens. Okay, what if the world was invaded by aliens? Is that the one thing that's finally going to bring the world together? Like is it going to be an independence day type thing? It's like, well you don't need aliens don't invade to bring the world together and you've got something here that's killing us now and we're all self interested still. So until we can get over that and actually pull our resources and stop this sort of thing from spreading, the world's never going to come together.
Speaker 5:
37:51
Well see that's the thing. I think you don't ever want to peel the layers back on that alien example. The reason everybody always goes to Allianz is because they're not from any country on earth. Right. So like if the aliens were Russian, then it'd be old. But there's no way to be able to go together. But having this ex, this other that has no affiliation with anything. I think that's the reason why that alien theory is so attractive.
Speaker 4:
38:10
I, I agree. But in this case here, we're talking about a virus that doesn't, it doesn't, doesn't have national borders, doesn't respect national borders. You know, it's no different than alien spores coming down and infecting us. Say, you know, if we can't come together over this and instead we're pointing fingers and blaming people and how they're handling this and China's letting it get out and they're not like, that's not to solve the problem.
Speaker 5:
38:37
Well, thankfully that's why we have things like the CDC and the world health organization that are supposed to be nonpartisan and have no affiliation there for the good of humanity. Of course they're funded by countries that, you know, might not want to fund them. You know, what always comes down to the [inaudible]
Speaker 4:
38:52
and that's the problem. Always follow the money. Yeah. So, as of of February 12th and I had finished my notes for the show, there were 1,115 deaths, which I know have gone up since then attributed to the virus. So that's over a thousand people that died who probably all those people didn't need to die if it was handled better.
Speaker 5:
39:16
[inaudible] and again, we go back to the tragedy versus statistic compared to what we read before, what, you know, the, in the millions, but this is still a thousand people. Like do you even know a thousand people? Like could you name a thousand people that you know, you know, this is still a signal and all these people had families. You know, I think that that often gets lost, especially in the media coverage of it because it just becomes, what's the highest number? What's the most sensationalized number we can come up with?
Speaker 4:
39:39
It's cause that's what you grabbed the headlines off. So, um, you know, it's going on now centers for disease control had published some suggestions, which they're not earth shattering suggestions, which kind of tells you that they really have no idea how to deal with this. But uh, why don't you give us the list of suggestions for preventing, uh, this virus,
Speaker 5:
40:04
uh, wash your hands frequently and thoroughly for 20 seconds. Use alcohol based hand sanitizer if soap and water aren't available, cover coughs and seasons with a tissue. Throw the tissue in the trash. Well that's a novel idea as if you'd like, you know, stuffing someone's mouth, avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth alone. Washed hands, stay home when you are sick, which obviously that is not an option for a lot of people. Um, clean and disinfect services. Basically. This is, I'm pretty sure this is the same thing. They release every flu season, right? This is how not to get the flu basically. Yeah.
Speaker 4:
40:36
And that's my point is like these guys don't have a clue how to stop this
Speaker 5:
40:39
cause I don't think you can. I don't think there is a way. I mean, now that they've classified it and they have a name for it, I mean, a vaccine is, you know, I, I have no idea how any of this works, but it seems like a vaccine will be able to be made because the reason we don't have a flu vaccine, well we do, but the reason we have to make a new one every year is because it's always changing of different streams. Yeah. But then you have to wonder if this vaccine that they're making isn't coming out until 2021 who's to say that this coronavirus isn't going to mutate or change by 2021 and continue infecting people.
Speaker 4:
41:07
You're absolutely right. And that's what's going to happen is by 2021, they're gonna have their come out with probably a broad spectrum version of this, like our current, uh, flu vaccine where, you know, over through studies a regional studies they find out from the flu vaccine for the flu vaccine, uh, what are the predominant strains of the flu? Then they produce a vaccine to address those. The problem is if you get hit with one, it's not one of those ones that flu vaccine does nothing for you.
Speaker 5:
41:36
And I think ultimately the root cause of these issues is, is poverty and lack of medical care, which is then magnified or increased by a constantly growing world population and a constantly more globalized world in general. And I think that we're not, we're not, we're not due for a global pandemic, but it seems like it's only a matter of time until we get something on the scale of a, of a, maybe like a black death or something like that. I mean it just seems like it's inevitable.
Speaker 4:
42:06
Yeah. A lot of people like to jump to the conclusion that Oh well because we're a more globalized society now that international travel is going to be our downfall. And you know, it's nice to kind of point your finger at that. But when I can look back at the 13 hundreds when the bubonic plague hit, we didn't have airlines. Very few people traveled more than a couple of miles from their homes and yet something that deadly could spread across Asia and Europe. And kill 20 some million people,
Speaker 5:
42:40
but there was still poor, there were still four people. And that's the common denominator.
Speaker 4:
42:45
And I think that supports your original, you know, theory that it's not globalization. So let's stop looking at that as the problem. If this problem didn't occur in the first place, and if it was stopped early on when it happened, if we were able to help poor people and treat them better and provide better facilities, it wouldn't spread regardless of how globalized you are. It's not, airlines didn't create pandemics. That's sort of the point, you know. So let's come back and we'll take a look at what the future of infectious disease, what do we have in store coming up? And, uh, we'll look at some of the factors, uh, that today's in a pandemic is causing and Allen's going to affect the future.
Speaker 4:
43:36
So I went down and just created probably three general categories that came to mind right off the bat when I was looking at the research for this. And the first is the human toll. Uh, so one model that I saw and it was, it was an AI based model that has come under some scrutiny. Um, but based on, for the first two weeks of data predicts, uh, as many as two and a half billion infected by coronavirus with up to 53 million dying from it. Um, it's obviously putting a strain on the healthcare system. And if anything, the one thing that China has really impressed people with is the fact that they've been able to spin up entire hospitals within a week of this in regions that are full service hospitals to try to care for this, which has been kind of an impressive feat. Um, but you're seeing communities, uh, you're seeing cruise, you're seeing entire cities being quarantine as a result of this, uh, and even airlines, which is, you know, really the first time this has happened been airlines are stopping flights to certain areas of high infection rate. What do you, what are your think on, uh, what are your thoughts on the human toll?
Speaker 5:
44:48
Uh, I think it's the one that's going to be overlooked the most. Um, I think it's, um, it's often the one that's overlooked the most, unfortunately, but I mean, this amount of people dying is, it's obviously horrible. And even my own, my, my college that I go to, um, we actually got emails saying that if you're going to China or coming from China to notify us, which I thought was interesting cause I had never seen anything like that before. Um, and, and part of that comes with, you know, the paranoia and fear that comes with every, every pandemic and epidemic. Um, but it's, I feel like it's one of those things that's only gonna get worse. And there's really no way we can prevent it other than the basic, how to prevent the flu, um, measure which no one takes seriously. They don't because it doesn't happen to them. And then by the time it's happening to you, it's already too late and washing your hands isn't going to do anything.
Speaker 4:
45:41
So the other thing that, that, you know, I, I see as really having a huge impact from this is the economy. Uh, so estimates right now show a global economic decline of about 0.3%. Over the course of 2020, uh, Chinese expected to see a 0.4% gross Demetric goat gross domestic product hit, um, as opposed to a full 2% hit that they took from the SARS outbreak. Um, few and the ones at almost 20 years now or go, uh, the United States is expected to take as much as a 0.4% hit as well. But provinces in China accounting for more than 69% of China's total GDP will remain closed an extra week after Chinese new year announcement. Important to know that this is happening around Chinese new year where most of China industry closes down for I think, two weeks for new year. So a lot of that's occurring. A lot of the epidemic is occurring in that timeframe, but they're saying it's going to be closed down even longer.
Speaker 4:
46:53
Um, and, and just taking a step back to the human toll again, Chinese new year is similar to the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States where people traditionally, uh, who are spread throughout the country traditionally travel home to celebrate the holiday. Um, so the lockdowns and the quarantines and all that are having an effect on that. But even areas where those aren't in effect, people are still traveling where they wouldn't the rest of the year, which increases the risk of spreading it. Um, going along that same theme, there are travel restrictions on more than 8 million people in China at the moment and share prices for major airlines, cruise lines and tourist companies have dropped since the outbreak. So I know your focus really is more on the human toll, but what are your thoughts on the economic toll?
Speaker 5:
47:46
I think it's the one most likely to get any kind of change or fight towards it. Um, and something that I've been seeing a lot just because I follow a lot of, um, video game and tech news, it's impacting that industry a lot too. Like a lot of, uh, consuls and games coming out. I mean, I got a whole episode for it for video games, so, but, um, they're being pushed back, they're being delayed and a lot of, um, video professional video game tournament's have been either outright canceled or moved because of this, this outbreak. And the tech industry as a whole I think has taken a hit because a lot of this stuff is made in China and so you're getting a lot of laptops and counsels and, and processors being put on, you know, being halted because of this outbreak. So I think you're gonna see a lot of impact in that. Um, in the tech industry as well. I think Apple might have had an impact as well.
Speaker 4:
48:33
Phil is having an issue getting processes for their iPhones. Uh, I have open orders with several PC manufacturing companies that I have two to three week lead times now, which I didn't have, uh, two months ago. Um, I just saw it was announced that mobile world Congress has been canceled because of the danger of the outbreak as well. So a lot of cell phones, manufacturers that would be debuting new products aren't going to have that showcase to do it either. Um, but I think you're right. I think the, the economic side of things is probably gonna take more press than anything else.
Speaker 5:
49:09
Yeah. And I think it's interesting because you can read statistics of deaths and you can see, you know, cases confirmed, but it doesn't really impact you unless you're the one getting sick. Whereas with the economic side, like you just said, you're getting, and obviously it's minor compared to dying from a disease, but you're seeing in your personal life, you know, things being delayed and like companies like Samsung and Apple are some of the biggest companies in the world. So having their economic, uh, ability hindered by a disease is caused for people to look at it in a more serious light maybe.
Speaker 4:
49:42
Absolutely. So the other thing is what does the future bring? So I throw a couple of, of theoretical thoughts out there. Uh, for instance, I could totally see there being travel restrictions and changes to layovers now that typically make Mike go through these exposed provinces in China. Um, they may be going somewhere else if you're going to have a layover. Um, I could also see a decline in tourism, travel worldwide cause of people being scared of this for at least the next several years. Um, and I could, I would hope to see that there's a change in how outbreaks are handled. I mean that's the optimistic side of, um, that we'd see more responsible reporting. Um, you'd see more humane quarantined. I mean, some of the quarantine methods that we've seen are downright draconian. Um, and I'd hope to see, like we talked about earlier, global support for care and vaccination.
Speaker 4:
50:47
Um, but again, I can't get away from the economics, so I have to talk about the economics and I think what you're going to see are companies, tech companies certainly, but manufacturing, cause there's a boatload of manufacturing that comes out of China. But I could see more diversification coming out. A tech has already gone through this as, uh, already with some of it's diversifying its supply chain because of, um, bands on Walway and other companies where the U S government has put a ban on things. Um, so you see people like foam manufacturers, um, infrastructure, networking and so forth. They're trying to diversify. Manufacturing is diversifying already. You're seeing an increase in manufacturing shift to Thailand and Vietnam. So you, you're, you're seeing this move away from the centralization of sourcing material from China already. And I think this might drive it even further. What are your, what are your thoughts on the future? Where do you see this going?
Speaker 5:
51:48
I think it's interesting. I mean with a lot of these stories, I'm not sure if, you know, within two, three weeks time or if we're going to even hear about it anymore. Um, cause that's a lot of, a lot of these, these large news stories that seem really dramatic and important at first. Typically we've already forgotten about them come next month. Um, I am curious though, cause I know fiscal year ends like the end of March Q1 so I'm curious how that's gonna impact things in general, whether it be for tech companies or for, uh, global economies in general. Um, if the, how much of an impact that virus will have, um, for the future? I'm not, I'm not sure how that would go. I could definitely, I agree with, with most of what you said in terms of decline and tourism and travel and all that. I'm not sure about the global support part as much as I'd like to be. I don't think, um, unless we were to have it really impact the United States, um, on the level that it's impacting China, I don't think we're gonna see that much support. And even if it was impacting the United States on that level, I'm not sure what the current administration, how much of that science and hard facts would be believed honestly. So
Speaker 4:
52:57
that's a sad but valid point I would agree with. Uh, what do you think it would take for the international community to act more responsibly and if not proactively at Le, at least a faster reaction to this type of thing?
Speaker 5:
53:18
Uh, I'm not sure if they, they really have, they really have any reason to, I mean, obviously you'd like to believe that they want to human casualty and human death in general. But I think that there's so many variables involved with the beginning stages of an epidemic that it's almost impossible to predict how to, how to prevent it or how to stop it because there's, you know, there's economic conditions and social conditions and even cultural conditions in certain, in certain locations where you, there's just nothing you can do and it's almost inevitable. So I think maybe establishing more a treatment facilities around the world just in case, but then you have to wonder how that's going to be funded if, you know, if they're not treating a certain amount of people, if they're going to be economically viable, it even keep open. So I just think there's too many factors involved to justify a larger global effort.
Speaker 4:
54:12
Is this something that, that we should really be looking at the United nations to spearhead?
Speaker 5:
54:19
Uh, ideally. Yeah, but I don't think that this is a high priority for them, uh, just because I'm not sure what they would do. I mean, they could allocate funds and I think if it gets worse, they might and they probably will cause will have to, um, because they'll look, you know, evil if they don't, like why would you not in the eyes of the public. Um, so hopefully, I mean, obviously you don't want the disease to get worse because that means more people are going to die. But I think if it does get worse, that might spur on people to want to, you know, sued the public and, and, you know, give more money or do more.
Speaker 4:
54:54
Okay. Well I think that was pretty much all we had to talk about. We'll come back and we'll get your final thoughts on the topic before we sign off for the podcast. So we've managed the paint a pretty bleak picture of the world today. Um, we certainly don't have a particularly positive outlook for the coming future either. Um, but I'm curious to get your final thoughts on, on coronavirus outbreaks, pandemics, and, and how we handle those as a, as a global community.
Speaker 5:
55:35
I really have, I just have two things, and I've said the first one a lot before on other episodes, but there's always a cost to these kinds of things. And, you know, we looked at the actual economic cost, but more importantly, I think it's important for people to keep in mind the human costs. And when you see statistics and numbers like that, just remember that there are actual human beings behind that number and that those people have families and friends that are also being affected by that. And the second thing, um, is not to panic. Um, I think that especially with the way media is created today and the way that news is covered today, I think it lends itself towards getting people to get riled up and panicky. But in reality, the world's not gonna end tomorrow. And if it was, you probably wouldn't know then would tell you it would just happen. Um, so, you know, just try to keep, excuse me, a level head when it comes to these things and don't give into the fear that comes, especially with pandemics because it's a lot of unknown factors. Don't let that, that human nature, fear of the unknown, you know, dictate what you do.
Speaker 4:
56:44
Very good points. And I think it's funny, people tend to draw a parallel between what we as an audience demand from our entertainment industry and what the world gives us in reality. Uh, and as you know, there's been, you know, a huge rise in uh, the zombie apocalypse genre and, and I think pandemics like this kind of feed into that of, you know, what's, how are we going to react when the world order sort of breaks down here.
Speaker 5:
57:18
I think, I think part of like some lizard part of our brain kind of wants it and I'm part of it, part of us, one society to break down just to see what, what happened. But I also think another part of us doesn't, can't even comprehend because our parts of the world where society has broken down and you know, parts of the world or the world for those people has ended and it's not the walking dead, you know, it's not romantic. It is barbaric and it is primal and it is a nightmare and a lot of people live that nightmare every single day. And I don't think that people can even grasp that, that lift, you know, hundreds of thousands of miles away.
Speaker 4:
57:53
Yeah. We, we certainly, you know, we can watch it on TV even from a news broadcast standpoint, but, uh, I can't fathom what it's like to live under conditions like that. So I think we're very fortunate where we are right now. So that was all we had for the show this week. Uh, I did want to offer some quick, uh, contact points for you if you want to send us some feedback on the show, uh, any topics you want us to talk about, you can email us@commentsandinsightsintothings.com. You can check us out on Twitter at insights underscore things. You can get us live. Um, randomly with this show once a month. We don't have a set schedule, uh, but we are available on twitch.tv/insights into things. Uh, all of our video podcasts are available on youtube.com/insights in a things you can get our audio podcasts@apodcastoninsightsintotomorrow.com or you can get links to all of that plus show notes and transcriptions on our website, along with the history of all of our web shows@wwwdotinsightsintothings.com. And I think that's it. Another one in the books. And we're out.
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