Author Archives: Andrea

Helpful or harmful?

Ein einfaches Beatmungsgerät bauen? Das geht!. “Kreativität ist in Krisen besonders wichtig. Physiker an der Marburger Universität sind auf die Idee gekommen, Geräte aus der Schnarch-Therapie so aufzurüsten, dass damit Corona-Patienten weltweit beatmet werden können.”

The Breathing Project hat allerdings nach eigenen Angaben noch keine Zulassung für ihr medizintechnisches Produkt.

NPR: CPAP Machines Were Seen As Ventilator Alternatives, But Could Spread COVID-19.

Different ways to model a pandemic

Numberphile: The Coronavirus Curve. (YouTube, 22:17min) “Ben Sparks explains (and codes) the so-called SIR Model being used to predict the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).”

I played along at home and created my own version with Geogebra, but you can also find Ben Sparks’s version here: SIR Model.

Be sure to also check out the links in the description of the video.

3Blue1Brown: Simulating an epidemic. (YouTube, 23:11min)

“While here we looked at what you might call an “agent-based” SIR model, if you want to see what it looks like as a set of differential equations, Ben Sparks just did a lovely video on the topic over at Numberphile [see above].

There are a few reasons I like the agent-based model here, for demo purposes at least. It’s a bit easier to understand for those who are not comfortable yet with ODEs, for one. It also conveys how things are not deterministic; no real-world curve will look as smooth as the differential equations. It also makes it way easier to ask questions and bake other assumptions into the model. Introducing things like travel or community centers into the differential equations would get very hairy very quickly. For those who want to go much more deeply into this, the Institute for Disease Modeling has a lot of models free for people to look at and play with.”

“Gerät für Arztpraxen und Krankenhäuser”

Deutsche Welle: Bosch stellt Coronavirus-Schnelltest vor. “Weltweit wird derzeit mit Hochdruck an einem Schnelltest auf das neuartige Coronavirus geforscht. Der deutsche Technologiekonzern Bosch meldet nun einen ersten Erfolg.”

“Bislang beträgt die reine Testzeit laut Robert Koch-Institut (RKI) etwa vier bis fünf Stunden. Allerdings kann es zwischen Probenentnahme und Ergebnismitteilung dauern, auch weil die Tests oft von externen Laboren gemacht werden. Der Bosch-Test soll auch direkt in Arztpraxen oder Krankenhäusern durchgeführt werden können.

Das Analysegerät ist den Angaben zufolge bereits erhältlich, die Testkartuschen für den Sars-CoV-2-Virus sollen ab April zunächst in Deutschland und danach dann auch in anderen Ländern verfügbar sein. Die jeweils erforderlichen Zulassungen stehen einem Sprecher zufolge noch aus. Laut Bosch hat der neue Test auf Sars-CoV-2 eine “Genauigkeit von über 95 Prozent” und erfüllt die Qualitätsstandards der Weltgesundheitsorganisation (WHO).”

“Look to your backyard and recreate there”

The Washington Post: Thousands are crowding into free national parks. And workers are terrified of coronavirus.. “A park ranger at Grand Canyon National Park had 600 close contacts with visitors in a single day, greatly increasing his exposure to infection, according to a staff member at the attraction.”

“Two days before he cursed a supervisor and quit the National Park Service job he loved, Dustin Stone arrived to work in a foul mood. A decision by Interior Secretary David Bernhardt to keep national park sites open despite the coronavirus outbreak left him angry and in disbelief.
The virus hasn’t reached Skagway, a tiny town on the Alaskan panhandle where Stone lives and worked at the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park. But if it does, he said, it could be a disaster. “I’ve lived here year-round through eight flu seasons, and I’ve seen how quickly an infection can spread,” he said. “When one of us gets sick, most of us get sick.” There’s no full-time doctor and no hospital in Skagway. A single community health clinic has a registered nurse and assistants.
“This is a political game being played with people’s lives by leadership at the highest levels of the Department of Interior, and, I believe, the White House,” Stone said. “President Trump is the one who announced the fee waiver. I don’t think he knows what a national park is. I would be so surprised if Donald Trump ever set foot in a national park.””