Posts Tagged ‘death rate’

The H1N1 Pandemic: Is a Second Wave Possible?

The H1N1 Pandemic: Is a Second Wave Possible?

Since early November, cases of H1N1 have continued to decline nationwide, and scientists keeping track of the numbers say that as pandemics go, 2009 H1N1 may turn out to be a mild one — at least for the time being.

The question now on health officials’ minds is: Will there be a second wave of cases in the new year? The answer depends on whom you ask. "We took an informal poll of about a dozen of some of the world’s leading experts in influenza," Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), told reporters recently. "About half of them said, Yes, we think it’s likely that we’ll have another surge in cases. About half said, No, we think it’s not likely. And one said, Flip a coin."

It is an accurate reflection of how unpredictable the influenza virus can be. Although flu activity has been waning for the third week in a row, health officials warn that there are still four to five months left in the official influenza season, plenty of time for the virus to make its rounds and find new hosts. "The story of pandemics, and the story of H1N1 in general, is the story of persistent uncertainty where we never quite know what we are going to get or when," says Dr. Irwin Redlener, director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.

How severe the current H1N1 pandemic seems depends on what you use as a measuring stick. Compared with previous pandemics, like the 1918 Spanish flu, which killed 20 million people and infected up to 40% of the world’s population, or even the far less deadly 1957 and 1968 bouts with a strain of H1N1 influenza similar to the 2009 strain, things don’t seem as bad this time around. Fewer people are getting severely ill when infected, and fewer have died or required hospitalization from the flu than in previous pandemics.

Marc Lipsitch, an epidemiologist at the Harvard School of Public Health, and his colleagues studied the course of the 2009 H1N1 pandemic last spring in two cities — New York and Minneapolis — and determined that 0.048% of people who developed symptoms of H1N1 died, and 1.44% required hospitalization. Based…
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H1N1 Flu Perspective

H1N1 Flu Perspective

By Ilene at Phil’s Stock World

Below are excerpts from a number of articles regarding the H1N1 flu pandemic in the Ukraine and the Norway mutation.  The "Norway" mutation was found in three cases in Norway, and throughout other countries as well. Due to its ability to bind to receptors deeper in the respiratory tract, it is speculated that it may confer greater virulence to the H1N1 virus.  It has not been proven to be spreading wildly throughout the Ukraine and other regions – it may be endemic however, as part of the mixture of circulating flu.  More research needs to be done to learn the extensiveness, communicability of, and significance of this form of the H1N1 virus.

First, for perspective, here’s a entry in Wikipedia about deaths in the 1918 flu pandemic:

The global mortality rate from the 1918/1919 pandemic is not known, but it is estimated that 10% to 20% of those who were infected died. With about a third of the world population infected, this case-fatality ratio means that 3% to 6% of the entire global population died. Influenza may have killed as many as 25 million in its first 25 weeks. Older estimates say it killed 40–50 million people while current estimates say 50—100 million people worldwide were killed. This pandemic has been described as "the greatest medical holocaust in history" and may have killed more people than the Black Death.

As many as 17 million died in India, about 5% of India’s population at the time. In Japan, 23 million people were affected, and 390,000 died. In the U.S., about 28% of the population suffered, and 500,000 to 675,000 died. In Britain as many as 250,000 died; in France more than 400,000.[18] In Canada approximately 50,000 died. Entire villages perished in Alaska and southern Africa.[which?] Tafari Makonnen (the future Haile Selassie) was one of the first Ethiopians who contracted influenza but survived, although many of his subjects did not; estimates for the fatalities in the capital city, Addis Ababa, range from 5,000 to 10,000, with some experts opining that the number was even higher, while in British Somaliland one official there estimated that 7% of the native population died from influenza. In Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia), around 1.5 million assumed died from 30 million inhabitants. In Australia an estimated 12,000 people died and in the Fiji Islands, 14% of the population died during only two weeks,


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Swine Flu News

Swine Flu News

By Ilene

The good news is that the number of new cases appears to be dropping off in most of the United States. More good news is that the swine flu vaccine appears to be reasonably safe, with no increases in serious events, including death, above the expected baseline rate. The not-so-good news is that a currently noted "peak," in flu language, is temporary. Additional waves of increasing illness are expected.  Other bad news is that pediatric deaths from the swine flu are already considerably higher than in seasonal flues, and the numbers are expected to continue rising. In addition, viruses with specific mutations, D222G or D225G, and a mutation resulting in tamiflu resistance, are being isolated from cases in multiple locations. 

Estimated Statistics:

Update from the CDC, Weekly 2009 H1N1 Flu Media Briefing, Anne Schuchat, director of vaccination and respiratory disease at the C.D.C

these estimates will give a single number and then a range, a lower and upper estimate around each number….  So for April through October 17th, we estimate the 22 million people have become ill from pandemic influenza.  We estimate 98,000 people have been hospitalized so far through October 17th.  And the upper and lower estimates on hospitalizations are from 63,000 to 153,000. We estimate that 3,900 people have died so far in the first six months of the pandemic from this virus.  And the estimates there are from 2,500 up through 6,100 people having died so far.  We’ve been talking a lot about this pandemic being a younger person’s disease, that it’s disproportionately affecting children and young adults and relatively sparing the elderly, very different from seasonal flu… [In] children under 18, we estimate 8 million children have been ill with influenza, 36,000 hospitalized, and 540 children have died…

I do believe that the pediatric death toll from this pandemic will be extensive and much greater than what we see with seasonal flu…The numbers I’m giving are through the first six months through October. We have had a lot of disease since then and we’ll probably have a lot of disease going forward…

What does this look like compared to previous pandemics.  The estimates I’m giving you are the first six months.  This is April through the middle of October.  We have a long flu season ahead of us.  In typical seasonal flu we see disease from


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Double-Edged Sword: Swine Flu and Vaccines

By guest author Terry Doherty and Ilene, your editor

Terry Doherty is the Research Program Coordinator in the Depts of Biomedical Sciences and Academic Affairs at Cedar Sinai in Los Angeles, California.

Double-Edged Sword: Swine Flu and Vaccines

There’s plenty that is unknown about the swine flu and the swine flu vaccine.  If searches on the internet are any indication, deciding whether or not to be vaccinated may be a tough, emotionally charged decision for many people.  So how – without having the background to write a swine flu grant proposal, conduct the research, and get the thing published in the New England Journal of Medicine – do we decide whether or not to get a swine flu shot?  

One way is to attempt to evaluate and weigh the risks of the vaccine against the risks of the flu.  That is how I approach the subject, but it’s easier said than done.  As is often the case with medical interventions, the risks are not fully known. And even if we could carefully assess the risks, our underlying assumptions may be wrong.  Percent risks are averages collected by studying large populations.  We may not be one of the statistical average.  Then there are the gaps in the available data, and own biases and belief systems.  Our view of the world affects our analysis and often we are not even aware of how large of an effect those biases may play.   

In Vaccine War: Autism, Flu and Science, TIME, Maia Szalavitz discusses how emotion and biases play a large part in our risk-benefit assessments:

Just in time for the national roll-out of the new H1N1 flu vaccine, Wired Magazine and the Atlantic have weighed in on the ongoing vaccine war: Wired has a profile of Paul Offit, a vaccine researcher and pediatrician who has consistently spoken out in favor of vaccination and pointed to the lack of evidence linking vaccines and autism; the Atlantic checks in with a piece questioning the science suggesting that flu vaccines and antiviral drugs prevent people from dying.

Both articles have elicited heated debate all over the Web: Amy Wallace, who wrote Wired’s piece, excerpted below, has received vitriolic criticism and attacks from vaccine opponents, setting records for page views…

This debate over vaccination doesn’t seem likely to end any time soon. For critics, vaccines…
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Swine Flu Chart

I found this at Barry Ritholtz’s The Big Picture’s "H1N1 (swine flu) Fatality Rates: Overreaction?" and had a few comments:

1.  The chart compares death rates in persons infected (or known to be infected) with various pathogens. The total numbers of people who are or will be infected with these diseases are different.  For example, in the U.S., the percentage of people infected with HIV is much smaller than the percentage of people who contract the flu each year; i.e., the chart shows the death rate per infected person, not death rate per person in the population.

2. The death rate reflects virulence, but is not a measure of transmissibility – or contagiousness.

3. The course of the swine flu hasn’t played out yet, so we don’t know what’s in store.  Hence, to answer the question, "overreaction?" – perhaps "we’ll see" is the best answer. – Ilene

flu chart

A couple more swine flu vaccines stories:  here and here.

 


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U.S., Other Nations Stop Counting Flu Cases

Looking for detailed statistics on the prevalence and death rate for swine flu? Forget it. – Ilene

U.S., Other Nations Stop Counting Flu Cases

swine fluBy AP / MIKE STOBBE, courtesy of TIME

(ATLANTA) — U.S. health officials have lost track of how many illnesses and deaths have been caused by the first global flu epidemic in 40 years.

And they did it on purpose.

Government doctors stopped counting swine flu cases in July, when they estimated more than 1 million were infected in this country. The number of deaths has been sitting at more than 600 since early September.

Other nations have stopped relying on lab-confirmed cases, too, and health officials say the current monitoring system is adequate. But not having specific, accurate counts of swine flu means the government doesn’t have a clear picture of how hard the infection is hitting some groups of people, said Andrew Pekosz, a flu expert at Johns Hopkins University.

The novel H1N1 flu seems to be more dangerous for children, young adults, pregnant women and even the obese, according to studies based on small numbers of patients. But exactly how much more at risk those people are is hard to gauge if the overall numbers are fuzzy.

"This wasn’t as critical early on, when case numbers were low," said Pekosz. But now, it’s hard to say exactly how swine flu’s dangers vary from group to group, he said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is relying on a patchwork system of gathering death and hospitalization numbers. Some states are reporting lab-confirmed cases. Others report illnesses that could be the new swine flu, seasonal flu or some other respiratory disease.

Some say that’s a more sensible approach than only counting lab-confirmed cases. Many people who got sick never get tested, so the tally of swine flu cases was off almost from the very beginning, they say.

"It was a vast underestimate," said Dr. Zack Moore, a respiratory disease expert for the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

What’s more, as the initial panic of the new virus ebbed, fewer people were fully tested, so the results weren’t as accurate or comprehensive. "The kinds of numbers you were getting later in the summer were different from the numbers early on," said Dr. Daniel Jernigan, deputy director of the CDC’s influenza division.

That’s why the CDC shifted…
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Phil's Favorites

Divisive economics

 

Divisive economics

Courtesy of David Brin 

Let's step away from politics.... till the end of this missive... and look instead at economics:

Fiscal Management

The Evonomics site -- where Adam Smith would post, today -- offers this: Economists Agree: Democratic Presidents are Better at Making Us Rich. Eight Reasons Why.

The differen...



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Zero Hedge

Indian State With 600,000 People To Conduct World's Largest Experiment In Universal Basic Income

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

A tiny Himalayan state bordering China is about to embark on the world's largest experiment in universal basic income. 

All 610,577 citizens living in Sikkim will receive a guaranteed income, unconditionally, in lieu of cash a myriad of confusing social assistance schemes currently offered, according to...



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ValueWalk

Whitney Tilson Wants You To Know He Might Not Be The Best HFM But His Finger Grip Is 95 Percentile

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Whitney Tilson’s email discussing his plans to climb El Cap and training his grip strength.

With my plans to climb the Nose of El Cap later this year, I’m starting to train for it: I joined a rock gym (Steep Rock Bouldering) a few blocks from my house and try to stop by for a half hour o...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Stock declines did not break 9-year support, says Joe Friday

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

We often hear “Stocks take an escalator up and an elevator down!” No doubt stocks did experience a swift decline from the September highs to the Christmas eve lows. Looks like the “elevator” part of the phrase came true as 2018 was coming to an end.

The first part of the “stocks take an escalator up” seems to still be in play as well despite the swift decline of late.

Joe Friday Just The Facts Ma’am- All of these indices hit long-term rising support on Christmas Eve at each (1), where support held and rallies have followed.

If you find long-term perspectives helpf...



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Digital Currencies

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

 

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

Blockchain technologies can empower people by allowing them more control over their user data. Shutterstock

Courtesy of Ajay Kumar Shrestha, University of Saskatchewan

Blockchain has already proven its huge influence on the financial world with its first application in the form of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. It might not be long before its impact is felt everywhere.

Blockchain is a secure chain of digital records that exist on multiple computers simultaneously so no record can be erased or falsified. The...



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Insider Scoop

Cars.com Explores Strategic Alternatives, Analyst Sees Possible Sale Price Around $30 Per Share

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related 44 Biggest Movers From Yesterday 38 Stocks Moving In Wednesday's Mid-Day Session ...

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Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Jan 13, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

In last week’s recap we asked:  “Has the Fed solved all the market’s problems in 1 speech?”

Thus far the market says yes!  As Guns n Roses preached – all we need is a little “patience”.  Four up days followed by a nominal down day Friday had the market following it’s normal pattern the past nearly 30 years – jumping whenever the Federal Reserve hints (or essentially says outright) it is here for the markets.   And in case you missed it the prior Friday, Chairman Powell came back out Thursday to reiterate the news – so…so… so… patient!

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell reinforced that message Thursday during a discussion at the Economic Club of Washington where he said that the central bank will be “fle...



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Members' Corner

Why Trump Can't Learn

 

Bill Eddy (lawyer, therapist, author) predicted Trump's chaotic presidency based on his high-conflict personality, which was evident years ago. This post, written in 2017, references a prescient article Bill wrote before Trump even became president, 5 Reasons Trump Can’t Learn. ~ Ilene 

Why Trump Can’t Learn

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore (...



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Biotech

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Reminder: We are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Bacteriophage viruses infecting bacterial cells , Bacterial viruses. from www.shutterstock.com

Courtesy of John Bergeron, McGill University

Today, the scientific community is aghast at the prospect of gene editing to create “designer” humans. Gene editing may be of greater consequence than climate change, or even the consequences of unleashing the energy of the atom.

...

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Mapping The Market

Trump: "I Won't Be Here" When It Blows Up

By Jean-Luc

Maybe we should simply try him for treason right now:

Trump on Coming Debt Crisis: ‘I Won’t Be Here’ When It Blows Up

The president thinks the balancing of the nation’s books is going to, ultimately, be a future president’s problem.

By Asawin Suebsaeng and Lachlan Markay, Daily Beast

The friction came to a head in early 2017 when senior officials offered Trump charts and graphics laying out the numbers and showing a “hockey stick” spike in the nationa...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 2017

Reminder: OpTrader is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current  trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).

We also indicate our stop, which is most of the time the "5 day moving average". All trades, unless indicated, are front-month ATM options. 

Please feel free to participate in the discussion and ask any questions you might have about this virtual portfolio, by clicking on the "comments" link right below.

To learn more about the swing trading virtual portfolio (strategy, performance, FAQ, etc.), please click here ...



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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

This chapter isn’t about risk or leverage. Phil present a few smart, practical ideas you can use as a hedge against inflation as well as hedging strategies designed to assist you in staying ahead of the markets.

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:

 

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About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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