Coronavirus : Bug could infect two-thirds of globe, research shows
GENEVA (BLOOMBERG) - As the number of coronavirus cases jumps dramatically in China, a top infectious-disease scientist warns that things could get far worse: Two-thirds of the world's population could catch it.. Read more at straitstimes.com.
So says Ira Longini, an adviser to the World Health Organisation who tracked studies of the virus' transmissibility in China.His estimate implies that there could eventually be billions more infections than the current official tally of about 60,000.
If the virus spreads to anywhere near that extent, it will show the limitations of China's strict containment measures, including quarantining areas inhabited by tens of millions of people.WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has credited those steps with giving the rest of China and the world a"window" in which to prepare.
Quarantines may slow the spread, but the virus had the opportunity to roam in China and beyond before they went into effect, Longini said.The country boosted its count of those infected by almost 15,000 on Thursday after widening the diagnosis methods.
Longini's modelling is based on data showing that each infected person normally transmits the disease to two to three other people. A lack of rapid tests and the relative mildness of the infection in some people also makes it difficult to track its spread, he said.
REDUCING TRANSMISSION Even if there were a way to reduce transmission by half, that would still imply that roughly one-third of the world would become infected, Longini said."Unless the transmissibility changes, surveillance and containment can only work so well," Longini, co-director of the Centre for Statistics and Quantitative Infectious Diseases at the University of Florida, said in an interview at WHO headquarters in Geneva.
"Isolating cases and quarantining contacts is not going to stop this virus."He is not alone in warning of the possibility of a far greater spread.Neil Ferguson, a researcher at Imperial College London, estimated that as many as 50,000 people may be infected each day in China.
Gabriel Leung, a public health professor at the University of Hong Kong, has also said close to two-thirds of the world could catch the virus if it is left unchecked.The estimates of spread are part of a spectrum of possibilities that could unfold as the epidemic progresses, said Alessandro Vespignani, a biostatistician at Northeastern University in Boston.
The next few weeks may provide more information about how easily the disease spreads outside China, particularly if more measures are put in place to control it, he said."People change behaviours" in response to disease, he said."This is kind of a worst-case scenario. It's one of the possibilities."
More data needs to be gathered to gain a better idea of how far the virus is likely to range, said David Heymann, an infectious disease expert at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine who oversaw the WHO's response to Sars in 2003."We're seeing countries outside of China that have been able to contain the outbreak pretty well," he said.
"I'm not saying they're wrong," he said, of estimates from the likes of Longini and Leung."I'm saying the models will be refined as more information comes to light." Read more: The Straits Times »
2/3rd thats bogus. thats 4.7 billion ppl. with noisy limited data making tall claims. read dubious intentions. and seems intentional to add to hysteria. Interesting to see if any countries or even their own gov in UK would pay heed to such analysis for future prep.
Coronavirus: Britain says has found ninth case of bug in the countryLONDON (REUTERS) - Britain said on Wednesday (Feb 12) the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the country had risen to nine, saying the latest patient had caught the virus in China.. Read more at straitstimes.com.
Coronavirus: 10 Hongkongers stranded on Diamond Princess cruise ship confirmed to have deadly bug as city’s total number of cases rises to 53Ten Hong Kong passengers stranded aboard a quarantined cruise ship docked off Japan’s coast have contracted the deadly coronavirus, the government revealed on Thursday, as the number of confirmed cases in the city rose to 53.The passengers, among 218 cases of infection detected on the Diamond Princess
Wei Bird's Singapore and KL concerts will proceed as plannedWei Bird will first bring his 'Wei Bird 'At Thirty' World Tour' to Singapore next month, on 28 March.
The Straits Times @STcomTHE BIG STORY: Coronavirus : 300 vacated from DBS office | Coronavirus : The impact on businesses | Coronavirus : Quarantined at sea | Singaporean of the Year :( 李显龙关于香港中国和病毒均有不当误导性言论，造成新加坡银行在香港被砸，美国参众议员批评！近来也有大批新加坡年轻选民纷纷上网请愿！其兄妹也重炮轰击他！😀😀😀估计李显龙要步杨文荣后尘，落选败逃？ Very gloomy
At least 500 Wuhan medical staff infected with coronavirusHONG KONG — At least 500 hospital staff in Wuhan had been infected with the deadly new strain of coronavirus by mid-January, multiple medical sources have confirmed, leaving hospitals short-staffed and causing deep concern among health care workers.
Another 39 people on Japan cruise ship test positive for coronavirus; 1 quarantine officer also infectedTOKYO (AFP) - An additional 39 people on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship off the Japan coast have tested positive for the new coronavirus, Japanese Health Minister Katsunobu Kato said on Wednesday (Feb 12), bringing the total to 174.. Read more at straitstimes.com. Oh no...can't they do something...? This cant go on