Hydroxychloroquine Rated ‘Most Effective Therapy’ for CCP Virus by Doctors in Global Survey

Courtesy The Epoch Times

A drug used around the world to treat malaria has been rated the “most effective therapy” in treating CCP virus patients, according to a new survey.

Sermo, a healthcare polling company, asked 6,227 physicians across 30 countries which therapy they’d list as the most effective. More than one out of three, or 37 percent, chose hydroxychloroquine.

The most commonly prescribed treatment given to patients with COVID-19, the disease the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus causes, was analgesics, followed by azithromycin and hydroxychloroquine.

“This survey of frontline doctors shows the value of critical information sharing between countries. That is the only way that a new insight from one country can rapidly save lives around the world,” Dr. Murali Doraiswamy, professor of psychiatry and medicine at Duke University School of Medicine and a scientific adviser to Sermo, said in a statement.

Two preprint French studies have shown hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin, an antibiotic, are effective in treating COVID-19 patients. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says both hydroxychloroquine and the closely-related chloroquine can be used to treat COVID-19 patients under an emergency use authorization.

India, Hungary, and the United Kingdom have banned export of hydroxychloroquine while doctors in a number of countries, including France and Bahrain, were known to be prescribing the drug.

Hydroxychloroquine usage was most prominent in Spain, followed by Italy, Brazil, Mexico, France, the United States, Germany, and Canada, according to the global survey.

American doctors mostly prescribed hydroxychloroquine to high-risk patients, while outside the United States the drug was used equally for patients with mild to severe symptoms.

The most common treatment regimens both included 400 milligrams twice daily on day one, but some doctors then went to 400 milligrams daily for five days while others prescribed 200 milligrams twice daily for four days.

The survey contained “a treasure trove of global insights for policy makers,” Sermo CEO Peter Kirk said.

“Physicians should have more of a voice in how we deal with this pandemic and be able to quickly share information with one another and the world,” he added. “With censorship of the media and the medical community in some countries, along with biased and poorly designed studies, solutions to the pandemic are being delayed. We invite global physicians to contribute to help inform policy makers, their colleagues, and the public.”

Just How Many Infected Came from Wuhan?

From Wikipedia, in 2018 an estimated 2,004,400 travelers flew into and out of Wuhan-Tianhe International Airport every month, according to statistics provided by the airport. That’s a little more than an average of 68,000 per day who typically came and went from what became, on January 21, 2020, the epicenter of our current global pandemic.

On January 31, when the U.S. begin restricting flights from China, we can know that, based on its own data, over a million travelers flew in out and out of Wuhan.

What remains to be known is if the government of China was aware of the fact that hundreds of thousands of travelers, possibly more than a million people, were unwittingly helping to spread a known contagion to other parts of the world.

As early as January 20, according to the Washington Times, screening stations (somewhat ineffective, since no tests were conducted or even available) had already been set up in airports in San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, JFK in New Jersey, and in Atlanta, a time when 566 flights a day were coming from China – and were subsequently cancelled when China finally admitted there was a coronavirus.

By January 24 there were already 457 cases confirmed in Wuhan, according to the World Health Organization, which indicates thousands may have had already been infected, remembering that for three weeks China had denied there even was a virus, allowing it to spread in Wuhan, a city of 11 million people.

if 1.4 million people were leaving China in those first three weeks in January from Wuhan, it is easy to understand why places like Italy, Iran and South Korea were hard hit, as these three places (as well as much of the Middle East and Europe) allow for the free flow of Chinese citizens, and for that matter, provides a favorite vacation spot for people from these countries.

For six weeks infected people from Wuhan were getting on airplanes planes and taking the virus to all corners of the globe.

There is no way of knowing just how many infected carriers left Wuhan during those crucial three weeks when the virus was in incubation, or even during the weeks to follow, but as we saw in South Korea with one woman who infected a thousand fellow church members, essentially causing the epidemic to spread very quickly in Seoul, it doesn’t take but a few key-placed “super-spreaders” to cause havoc, which is why there is an explosion currently happening in Europe – but not the U.S.

In the words of Jordan Peterson, who speaks of how little we understand our own personal impact in the world, “you will meet a thousand people in your lifetime, and each one of those people will meet a thousand people, which puts you and I one person away from affecting a million people in our lifetime.” 

Do not underestimate the power of each individual.

Self Isolate and keep your damn hands clean. Millions of people are depending on you.

Globe braces for long battle against virus as cases spread

By KIM TONG-HYUNG and MATT SEDENSKY

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Scientists raced to find a treatment, crews scrubbed everything from money to buses, and quarantines were enforced Wednesday from a beachfront resort in the Atlantic to an uninhabited island in the Pacific as the world fought the spread of a new virus.

Worries over the ever-expanding economic fallout of the COVID-19 crisis multiplied, with factories idled, trade routes frozen and tourism crippled, while a growing list of countries braced for the illness to claim new territory. Even the Olympics, five months away, wasn’t far enough off to keep people from wondering if it would go on as planned.

“We don’t expect a miracle in the short term,” said Kianoush Jahanpour of the health ministry in Iran, where an official tally of infections of 139 was doubted by some who thought the problem was far bigger.

About 81,000 people around the globe were sickened by the coronavirus that kept finding new targets.RELATED STORIES

In Europe, where Germany, France and Spain were among the places with a growing caseload, an expanding cluster of more than 200 cases in northern Italy was eyed as a source for transmissions. In the Middle East, where cases increased in Bahrain, Kuwait and Iraq, blame was directed toward Iran. In Asia, where the crisis originated late last year in China, threats continued to emerge around the region, with South Korea battling a mass outbreak centered in the 2.5 million-person city of Daegu.

Though the virus pushed into countries both rich and poor, its arrival in places with little ability to detect, respond and contain it brought concern it could run rampant there and spread easily elsewhere.

“We’re going to be trying to slow down the spread so that our hospitals are not overwhelmed in one big gulp, one big hit,” said Ian Mackay, who studies viruses at the University of Queensland in Australia.

In South Korea, workers sanitized public buses, while in China, banks disinfected banknotes using ultraviolet rays. In Germany, authorities stressed “sneezing etiquette,” while in the United States, doctors announced a clinical trial of a possible coronavirus treatment.

Around the world, as Christians marked the start of the holy season of Lent with Ash Wednesday, worshipers found churches closed and rituals changed by virus fears. Even in St. Peter’s Square, many of those gathered for Pope Francis’ weekly audience wore face masks and clergy appeared to refrain from embracing the pontiff or kissing his ring.

Services in Singapore were broadcast online to keep people from crowded sanctuaries where germs could spread, bishops in South Korea shuttered churches for what they said was the first time in the Catholic Church’s 236-year history there, and in Malaysia and the Philippines, ashes were sprinkled on the heads of those marking the start of Lent instead of using a damp thumb to trace a cross of ashes.

“We would like to be cautious so that the coronavirus will not spread,” said the Rev. Victorino Cueto, rector of the National Shrine of our Mother of Perpetual Help in Manila in the Philippines.

Major gatherings were eyed warily, with organizers scrambling to respond in the face of the epidemic. Looming largest of all are the Olympic games, whose opening ceremonies are scheduled for July 24 in Tokyo. A member of the International Olympic Committee, Richard Pound, sounded alarms a day earlier, saying the virus could force a cancellation of the games. The Japanese government, in turn, gave mixed signals, insisting they would go forward yet urging that sports events now be curtailed.Full Coverage: Virus Outbreak

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called for major sports and cultural events in the coming two weeks to be canceled or postponed to stem further infections. Meanwhile, the top government spokesman said Olympics preparations would proceed and the games would go on as planned.

Among the other crowded places that had officials worried: Military bases.

The South Korean military announced additional infections among its troops, with 20 cases on its bases and some 9,570 people in isolation. The U.S. military, which has 28,500 troops in South Korea, confirmed the first infection of an American soldier, a 23-year-old man based at Camp Carroll near Daegu, a day after Americans said a military spouse also had contracted the illness. Bowling alleys, movie theaters and a golf course on four American bases in the country were closed.

“This is a setback, it’s true, there’s no getting around that. But it’s not the end of the war,” Col. Edward Ballanco, commander of the U.S. Army Garrison Daegu told troops in a video message. “We are very well equipped to fight this thing off.”

Italy recorded 52 new infections on Wednesday and Greece became the newest country to see a case of the virus. South Korea announced 284 new cases, largely in Daegu, bringing its total to 1,261. China, still the epicenter of the crisis even as new outposts caught the world’s attention, reported 406 new cases and 52 more deaths. The country has a total of 78,604 cases of the virus and 2,715 fatalities.

China said Wednesday that those sickened by the virus included 555 prisoners who officials said likely became infected by guards using the same bus station as a nearby pulmonary hospital. In a twist, China is now heavily regulating arrivals from abroad, with authorities placing South Koreans under monitoring, state broadcaster CCTV reported, after five people on a flight showed signs of fever.

Indonesia said it evacuated 188 crew members from the World Dream cruise ship and planned to take them to remote Sebaru Island. The workers were released from quarantine in Hong Kong after finding no infections, but authorities mandated an additional observation period.

And on the opposite side of the world, the MSC Meraviglia was denied permission to land in Grand Cayman, where it was due to arrive Wednesday, following a decision by Jamaica to refuse it entry. The cruise line expressed frustration with the moves, which came after it reported one crew member from the Philippines was sick with common seasonal flu.

It brought reminders of the MS Westerdam, which was repeatedly denied entry to Asian ports before Cambodia welcomed its passengers.

MSC Cruises said the Meraviglia was sailing onward to Mexico.

___

Sedensky reported from Bangkok. Associated Press writers Jim Gomez and Joeal Calupitan in Manila, Philippines; Hyung-jin Kim in Seoul, South Korea; Stephen Wade and Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo; Nicole Winfield in Vatican City; Aniruddha Ghosal in New Delhi; and Jon Gambrell in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, contributed to this report.

US Health Officials: Human Trials on Coronavirus Vaccine Will Start in 6 Weeks

BY JACK PHILLIPS February 25, 2020 Updated: February 25, 2020

(Courtesy The Epoch Times)

Testing trials of a potential COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine are expected to start in about six weeks, coming ahead of schedule, according to a top U.S. health official.

“We are on time at least and maybe even a little bit better,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the head of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), told reporters on Tuesday. However, he cautioned about potential “further glitches.”

The National Institutes of Health has been working with Moderna, a biotechnology company, to produce a vaccine that uses the current strain of the coronavirus.

U.S. health officials are fast-tracking development on a coronavirus vaccine, Fauci suggested.

“The gene has been expressed in the platform, in this case, a messenger RNA. The material has been produced, it’s been put into mice. It’s immunogenic,” he said. “It’s now getting ready to go through the regulatory issues of getting it to go.”

Fauci noted that it’s possible the virus might be seasonal and said this vaccine may not solve any problems in the coming months. However, it would be “an important tool” in the future, Fauci said.

On Monday, Moderna confirmed that its vaccine, mRNA-1273, was sent to the NIAID, and the vaccination trial will start with 20 to 25 healthy subjects by the end of April, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal. That would mark a three-month period between the design of the vaccine and testing, with the first results becoming available by around July.

“It is possible it’s going to work, but we have to wait and see,” Moderna’s CEO Stephane Bancel told the news outlet.

An antiviral drug that was designed to treat Ebola patients, remdesivir, is now being subject to a clinical trial, said the NIAID on Tuesday, adding that testing has begun on patients who were evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship currently being housed at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

“This is the first clinical trial in the United States to evaluate an experimental treatment for COVID-19,” the agency said. Remdesivir, produced by Gilead Sciences Inc., has been tested on virus patients in China starting in early February, according to U.S. and Chinese officials.

Noting that the clinical trial is being conducted on a voluntary basis, the NIAID stated that participants have to have COVID-19 lung infection and “evidence of lung involvement,” and individuals who have mild, cold-like symptoms won’t be included in the study.

Earlier in the day, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said schools and businesses will have to take preparatory measures if the coronavirus turns into a U.S. epidemic, while stressing that Americans should stay alert.

“We are asking the American public to work with us to prepare for the expectation that this could be bad,” Dr. Nancy Messonnier, with the agency, said in a conference call.