Category Archives: Around the World

““This is a flu. This is like a flu,” Trump said on Feb. 26.”

The Washington Post: Fact-checking Trump’s letter blasting the World Health Organization.

“In previous administrations, a letter to an international organization signed by the U.S. president generally would have been carefully vetted and fact-checked. But President Trump’s May 18 letter to World Health Organization Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus contains a number of false or misleading statements. Here’s a sampling, as well as a guide to some of his claims”.

See also: NPR: Fact-checking And Assessing Trump’s Letter Of Rebuke To WHO.

“Still, Trump’s threats are already causing substantial damage to the global agency tasked with coordinating the world’s response to the pandemic, said Benjamin Mason Meier, associate professor of global health policy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

“For the United States to blame the World Health Organization for its own months and months and months of inaction seems factually untrue and designed to divide the world at a moment when global solidarity is needed most,” Meier said. “It undercuts the World Health Organization’s efforts to provide a collective response to this common threat [of the COVID-19 pandemic].””

“A Robust Public Health Care System”

The New York Times: A German Exception? Why the Country’s Coronavirus Death Rate Is Low. “The pandemic has hit Germany hard, with more than 92,000 people infected. But the percentage of fatal cases has been remarkably low compared to those in many neighboring countries.”

“All across Germany, hospitals have expanded their intensive care capacities. And they started from a high level. In January, Germany had some 28,000 intensive care beds equipped with ventilators, or 34 per 100,000 people. By comparison, that rate is 12 in Italy and 7 in the Netherlands.

By now, there are 40,000 intensive care beds available in Germany.

Some experts are cautiously optimistic that social distancing measures might be flattening the curve enough for Germany’s health care system to weather the pandemic without producing a scarcity of lifesaving equipment like ventilators.

“It is important that we have guidelines for doctors on how to practice triage between patients if they have to,” Professor Streeck said. “But I hope we will never need to use them.”

The time it takes for the number of infections to double has slowed to about eight days. If it slows a little more, to between 12 and 14 days, Professor Herold said, the models suggest that triage could be avoided.

“The curve is beginning to flatten,” she said.”

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.