This Is Known about COVID: It Is Deadliest Where No Hospitals or Public Health Exists
July 6, 2020 (EIRNS)— Media and popular discussion of the coronavirus concentrate on locations—this state is a hot spot, this one controlled it, this country didn’t control it, this one is where it started, etc. But fundamental questions of when the virus was present, and whether the “confirmed infection” numbers we follow are even of the right order of magnitude, keep being raised. They merely point out that a great deal is still not known about the pandemic, let alone the virus.
• A team of researchers at the Oxford University Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine was led by Dr. Tom Jefferson, who is interviewed in various British media today about evidence that the coronavirus causing COVID-19 was detected in significant quantities between March and December 2019, at least in Spain, Italy, and Brazil. Its presence is confirmed by tests as being in sewage samples taken at those times in those places, before any outbreak in China.
• A study of U.S. surveillance data on influenza-like illnesses, conducted by epidemiologists at Penn State University and published June 21, concluded that there were likely between 5 million and 9 million novel coronavirus infections in the United States already in March—numbers still not recorded by tests for COVID-19 in July. Epidemiologists in many countries in the developing sector have estimated that real COVID-19 infections were an order of magnitude higher than official ones; but this may also have been true in one of the leading “superpowers."
• On June 25 the journal Cell released its lab-based study of the mutated “4G” version (D614G) of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, estimating that it is between three and six times more infectious than the version which spread in Asian countries from December 2019 on. The earliest “4G” samples appeared in Italy around Feb. 20 and spread quickly throughout Europe within days. This was not the first study to show that it has since become the dominant version in the world. It infects people with higher loads of viral particles than the earlier version, but doesn’t necessarily cause more severe disease.
• Confirmed infections in the United States have escalated at an accelerating rate for a full month, reaching the range of 50,000 new tested cases per day, while the number of COVID-19 deaths has declined up to July 5 when the seven-day average of deaths fell below 500 nationally. Marked improvements in the medications and techniques available for treatment and hospital staff skill in using them may have been offsetting rising infections and rising hospitalizations.
One thing has remained clear throughout: A fully capable and well-staffed system of hospitals, clinics, and laboratories is essential to fighting the pandemic. Therefore, the right policy has been, from the beginning: Build such a system in every country in the world! Employ tens of millions in the well-paid, productive work of building and staffing a new world healthcare system, in which the principles of public health protection can be observed.
This can only be launched by a summit meeting of major world leaders such as those of the UNSC Permanent Five (President Putin’s proposal) or United States-Russia-China -India (Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s proposal).
This has been the policy of the LaRouche Political Action Committee and the Schiller Institute throughout.