The coronavirus polity that is Australia

And, despite not knowing what threat the SETREP-ID would be enacted for, the group had pre-emptive ethical clearance to immediately gather samples from patients – something which would take weeks or months in other countries.

It is believed that this has saved thousands of lives, here is the full story, via Rohan Claffy.


...and Mussolini got the trains to run on time

authoritarian governments have so much more freedom of action

Many U.S. state governors & countless local officials are now eagerly competing to see who can issue officials decrees the furthest outside the U.S. Constitution limits.

Australia spends over $20 billion US dollars every year on its armed forces, so of course the country is going to put some resources into epidemic prevention. The two things aren't separable.

However, the constitutional monarchy parliamentary representative democracy that is Australia does separate the two and provides epidemic control with a pittance compared to the resources allocated to the rest of Australia's defence forces. So the real question is why is Australia so woefully under prepared when, through history, epidemics have killed more Australians than wars or banditry combined?

Lovely for Australia, but I would hope that it is OK in the US to ask a patient to be sampled. If not, that's another strike against CDC + FDA +???.

The important thing is the systemic angle. The point is not to blame theCDC for wishing to make its own test. Rather, it's the problem of a single supplier, for anything can go wrong.

See this from a [very] early inventor of a test:

Christian Drosten, a researcher at the German Center for Infection Research who developed one of the first COVID-19 tests, told Business Insider that it's helpful for countries to develop multiple tests in case one laboratory test turns out to be faulty.

"If we are in doubt about our test, or if there is something wrong with the test targets, the virus mutates or something, we could still switch to the test that another lab uses," Drosten said. "These are all in the public domain, and it's quite easy to switch."

That’s it excellent readiness ! And it’s not that expensive.
It’s called insurance folks. It’s that or spend 50 trillion dollars a month later.

if one reads an actual factual informative nonpolitical article about
the covid 19 pandemic
then you know it will not be from american media
cheers Australia!

Depends on what you mean by American media.

But as anyone is free to read the American president's twitter feed or watch his live appearances, there is no need for any media reporting to realize he is in way over his head. And that his actions over the past two months are those of the sort of person who has filed for bankruptcy repeatedly, due to a lack of any competence in leading a large organization in a time of severe challenges.

Unfortunately, there is no way for the American people to hope he files for a presidential Chapter 11, and lets a competent administrator salvage what is possible to salvage.

That his company will also likely be filing Ch 11 is something else, and at least he is in a rare position to attempt to bail himself out. Much like several Republican senators in terms of rearranging their stock portfolios, disregarding Trump's repeated previous pronouncements of no cause for alarm.

"Depends on what you mean by American media."
we mean the usual unserious suspects with low signal/noise ratio
nyt cnn msnbc ….

Gosh, that gives me an idea for a pithy saying: "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." I'm getting lots of "volunteer" requests from the AAAS (Am. Soc. Adv. Sci.) for diversity, climate change, and 'evidence based' science. I think it's noteworthy that AAAS has been so slow to refocus on something which, while not existential, is clearly a large acute risk. On the plus side, all this decline in the GDP will result in less CO2 (short term) injected into the atmosphere. #Silver_lining

But the virus probably dies in the heat. More CO2, more warming is needed!

Yes, it's all coming together now as the universe reveals it's grand plan...

what exactly did they "do" that saved thousands of lives?

You have to read the article. Here is an excerpt

But with global travel making it only a matter of time before pandemics threatened the entire world, they decided to set up a way to immediately characterise infectious diseases in returned travellers.

The result was the Sentinel Travellers and Research Preparedness for Emerging Infectious Disease platform – or SETREP-ID – overseen by The Doherty Institute with a network of investigators scattered throughout Victoria’s major hospitals.

Made up of virologists, immunologists and public health experts, the network was able to rapidly share samples, analysis, diagnostics and related information to scan for potential outbreaks.

And, despite not knowing what threat the SETREP-ID would be enacted for, the group had pre-emptive ethical clearance to immediately gather samples from patients – something which would take weeks or months in other countries.

Last decade: China has lifted more people out of poverty than any country in history!

This decade: China has thrown more people into poverty than any country in history!

Whoops, responding to wrong story.

Impressive , but on the other hand in an earlier post today "why-such-a-large-difference-in-fatality-rates", Australia showed up 4th in CFR%

As mentioned in the comments of that section, it's 0.7% today. Those numbers aren't very useful.

The latest case numbers announced from the states and territories throughout the day means 1,049 cases of Covid-19 have now been confirmed in Australia, including seven deaths.

There were 80 new cases reported in New South Wales overnight. Of them 74 were contracted locally with vector unknown. This is not good and without further action things could get as bad as in Italy -- after adjusting for the younger overall population.

In some good news, I saw my first public health message on the Coronavirus in Australia the day before yesterday.

Why are people ignoring these news?

Of the 3200 deaths, only nine were under 40. A deeper analysis of a sample of about 10% of the dead showed this:

"A deeper analysis of 481 of the deceased showed that almost 99% of them were suffering from one or more medical condition before catching the virus. Some 48.6% had three or more previous pathologies."

You realize that older people and those with underlying conditions are being left to die while the ventilators are being used to keep younger and healthier people alive?

The old are dying first - but a number of the people put on ventilators become terminal cases, which means waiting for the numbers over a month or two. The number of younger deaths is very likely to rise as the disease continues to kill its victims. The old are the first wave, not the only wave.

As an island continent Australia has long had strong biosecurity arrangements, primarily for the agricultural industries. In more recent times the resources employed in agricultural and environmental biosecurity have also focused on human health issues. One of the world's leading biosecurity laboratories is the Australian National Animal Health Laboratory which has been operating for many decades. It developed the vaccine for one of our own domestic zoonoses, the Hendra virus, which was being transmitted to humans from horses. There have been exercises in planning measures for countering animal disease incursions and the lessons from those exercises was containment was the quickest, most effective means of defeating exotic disease incursions. Animals are easier to control than humans but the lessons learnt from those exercises could be employed for countering pandemics for humans.

But hopefully not all the lessons.

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