China’s Wuhan province has began reporting a new category of “clinical cases,” unlike the rest of China and unlike anywhere else in the world.
“Now, patients will be included who exhibit all the symptoms of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus — including fever, cough and shortness of breath — but have either not been tested or tested negative for the virus itself,” says NPR.
As soon as it started to appear this new strand of flu was drifting off, China replaced the governor with a new one who two weeks ago suddenly reported 14,840 new cases in a day, compared to 1,638 new cases the day before.
That was days after a pouring of outrage in China following the death of Dr. Li Wenliang, one of the first to raise awareness of this new strand.
Since then restlessness has grown in China where 100 million people have been locked indoors with drones lecturing them if they go outside.
The crackdown there has intensified to the point even the uttering of the word coronavirus on social media is now a sensitive matter.
Authorities in Wuhan have apparently been going door to door, testing for this new strand of flu. If they diagnose them positive, they take them from their homes and send them off to quarantine.
“China’s virus center vows to find every infected person as reported cases fall,” says LA Times.
Draconian measures ostensibly to contain the virus had authorities there go even to very remote mining regions where they closed a factory despite there seemingly being no reported case.
Now they’re slowly trying to get back to normality as anger grows at the way authorities have handled this, but suddenly after three months of this strand, it pops up in Italy out of all places, as well as in Iran.
Italy has locked down 100,000 people with supermarkets in that area running out of food. Now some hotel in Spain gets cordoned, some cruise-ship there, some airoplane here, some schools close in UK with the mainstream media detailing every new case.
Despite all these measures, the flu is going on about its business without care as initial estimates were 100,000 in China and roughly thats how much there are, with the new flu now starting to die off there.
How it might progress globally is not clear, but once it got out of those few people initially in December, containing this probably became very difficult if at all possible.
Not least because studies estimate 2/3rd of potential carriers that left China have probably not been detected. So it is likely this will just have to run its course with some estimating it should peak now in late February and gradually die off as April comes.
For some people this might not even develop into a flu. Extreme cases are rare for anyone under 60. In addition flu itself is usually pretty good at “quarantining” people as for a few days you don’t even want to get out of bed. The human body too is usually pretty good at dealing with flu.
Before symptoms you can’t really detect it, so it’s not clear how any measures can be effective, or how locking down planes and hotels can do much to contain the spread.
Let alone locking down whole cities where cases still went up anyway as per the estimated natural course.
Yet the media, and in some cases government officials like in Iran where they go on TV saying they have this flu, are doing all they can to scare people, so that might have an effect on the economy and international commerce as well as travel.
But hopefully soon we’ll be able to say this was all an over-reaction, although it remains to be seen whether that is indeed the case.