« The Weeds

Coronavirus 101


Jane, Dara and Brian Resnick talk about COVID-19 -- how it started, its potential impact, and where we go from here.


"11 questions about the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak, answered" by Julia Belluz, Vox

"If the coronavirus hits America, who’s responsible for protecting you?" by Brian Resnick, Vox

"“This is not the bat’s fault”: A disease expert explains where the coronavirus likely comes from" by Brian Resnick, Vox

"The coronavirus diagnostic testing snafu, explained" by Julia Belluz and Brian Resnick, Vox

"Ebola will make Americans more likely to give up civil liberties" by Shana Gadarian and Bethany Albertson, WaPo


Jane Coaston (@cjane87), Senior politics correspondent, Vox

Dara Lind (@DLind), Immigration reporter, ProPublica

Brian Resnick (@B_resnick), Science reporter, Vox

More to explore:

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Support, for this episode comes from click up. We lose an average of three hours every day, switching between all our work apps, but you can get them back with click up a flexible platform that brings all your essential tools in one place. We can prioritize tasks, collaborated, docks check with your team and track goals, so companies like Oberon web flow use click up as their mission Control Centre, replaced every other, we're using before cook before even guarantees to help to help you save one day a week and get more done. It's completely customizable. It's free forever up, try click up today at com, slash the weeds support for those episode comes from indigo at INDIGO brings together, leading companies committed to activating the full potential of agriculture to address the climate crisis in partnership with innovative businesses, farmer, scientific partners and informed advocates. We can re, imagine agriculture for the benefit of people and the planet. Farmer, Casey, Bryant Bamberger, says our industry hives biggest platform
change our environment and working towards a better future, learn more it Indeed, no act that Tom Slash retailed every time. I can now I'm just second, so I should go. I should just go now, but it's not it's not real coughing. It's just like talking coffin near work were found. Things totally fucked. Hello and welcome to another episode of the weeds on the box media pod cast network, I'm Jane Coast and join me, as always, is pro public as Darlint and Vocs Science Rapporteur Brian Resnick, to talk about corona. Looking out of aerial outbreaks, always superfine see how you seem that this episode is going to be listened to primarily by people who are, for one reason,
another involuntary or involuntary isolation, because I know that if I were quarantine for several weeks, the first thing I would want to do would be to listen to my favorite politics and policy podcast salute like there's a potentially a lot of time to kill the future pretty metal against countries. So you know the more content you can create the better you're actually performing a good public. So this could also be the time I finally learn how to play a card game of any kind and members of the weeds Facebook group. Perhaps while you are a quarantine, this message is for you, as community gross certain topics and conversations occasionally get heated which isn't fund for anyone involved to help you. I can see you too have respectful civil dialogue, we're partners with the University of Texas and spaceship media affair
ass to research project called the weeds conversations, help us develop solutions for quality online conversations and dive into fascinating discussions. But if your fellow weeds listeners in the process, we especially interested in hearing from voices and backgrounds that are traditionally underrepresented, interested in participating head over to our Facebook group, where you can fill out a survey to join so today's conversation uncrown a virus which is probably the thing that you heard the most about if you have been watching any television or any medium whatsoever. But we wanted to put this in context. I think Brian has been doing some really terrific reporting on what colonel virus means, how it started and how this outbreak ends, which I think are basically the questions that I've seen also the random bullshit questions that are caused by people having too much accessed Instagram and not enough access to news. So, let's start out with the very basics.
What is corona virus. And how did we get here so Corona virus, the name Corona Crown it actually is a reference to what the virus looks like under a microscope. It has like. I have this kind of spiky per teens around a centre circle also kind of looks like a groundless that, through them comes from both krona. Viruses are not new to science are not new to people; some of them even affect people. So currently there are five corona viruses that infect people people and they usually presented the common called. These are out there in the environment. It's either four or five Chronos does that are just endemic they're out there in the world, but there are other corona viruses that exist in animal. Does that occasionally make the jump over from animals to humans and they have a lot of potential to cause outbreaks pandemics? If you recall two thousand three Sars outbreak that was actually pretty well contained within a year and then
his murderers, some years later, so this the family of viruses that is known to infect animals and humans, the ones at her and animals are kind of scary to us, because our human immune systems haven't seen them before Scientists are each one is a little different, so this outbreak is a little different than Sars virus seems have different parameters and some of the scariest and the most uncomfortable two to reckon with at the beginning of an outbreak like this. Is that scientists don't ex actually know the complete parameter this virus, they dont know exactly how it spreads they dont know exactly. Very limited, as so the early weeks of an outbreak and keep in mind this virus not known to science like two months ago so We think we ve learned about this virus has been just in may crash course in scientific collaboration
and the world getting together. This is a virus, that's new, but also related to ones that are familiar, and it's interesting. You bring up people coming together to learn about this because part of why this particular virus is so dangerous. This is because people are coming together and large groups. It began in areas of incredible population density of the things about the virus. Is that because it's not like Ebola, it's not like diseases where the infection is itself incredibly dangerous to most people, you can be ambulatory walking around and have this and be able to spread it to people who might be more vulnerable to it written, and I think this is also where what we were saying about the parameters, a super important, because if you think about the responses to the public health responses to infectious diseases like one prevention and to containment and like treatment of people who are
ready or might be infected and monitoring of people who might be infected like in order to know how to deal with the people who might be infected group, you have to know how long it's going to be before symptom start showing up, and so some of the most worrisome, things that we ve seen in the last few weeks as its become increasingly clear that, after what seemed to be a very successful initial containment, this has in fact spread. More countries are stories where people you know were initially tested, untested, negative and then tested positive, because the test wasn't fully developed enough, because science wasn't familiar with enough with the virus cases where people who had been asymptomatic for a long period of time then developed symptoms. All of these are things that, if we understood in a textbook sense what the virus was, we would understand how to respond to, but as it is with learning on the fly, the potential for successful containment starts
being questioned and silly how'd. You successfully contain a virus that you don't you understand and does it seem like the kind of public response is learning on the fly. To this are we still kind of a few weeks behind? Well, we are a few weeks behind in this. That testing in the United States hasn't really been very robust than the CDC encountered. Some problems with the earliest tests that they manufactured they sent them out of some labs the country and the labs couldn't validate them. They were getting inconclusive results, so that kind of put us back, and there is a lot of problems with testing where was only available at a few labs, like their capacity to test was in very big, and then the CDC had them that their case decimal definition for those who qualified for the task was really Arrow, it was just a limited to people who were who had been I'm willing to areas that were that were where the virus spreading, but on your car
like how generally to contain LE? Yes, testing is like we need to know where this thing is to control at perhaps it an example of a virus that was really successfully contained with Sars and whose out two thousand three that outbreak. You know this is a similar errors. The same family viruses? That outbreak was sickly eliminated within a year, which is amazing and the way that happened was worse through isolation of known cases. So, if you get sick, even if you put. In isolation. Eventually, the human immune system kicks in and destroys the virus so and if you can get everyone with the virus away from everyone else, then eventually the human immune system, all do it or the virus will kill the person. Unfortunately, but there were few things about Sars and two thousand three that Arden really hard to replicate here. One is Sars in two thousand three got people sicker
more likely to give people a pneumonia which is really severe symptom of an illness. So those people are more easily identified. This virus seems to hit people and they can have a whole range of them from mild, symptoms, medium and then severe, and so you know Someone hasn't ammonia and they can easily go the doktor and be contained because the symptom is so obvious. Allow. The problem here is that the sum of this look like a common call, they look like a flu. People are used to having sums or cough and going out and doing things and then, at the same time, like the testing capacity states hasn't been at a point where everyone who thinks they might have been exposed to this for some reason or another, can go and get tested for corona virus about this. That capacity has existed and, at the same time, you probably wouldn't want to overwhelm the system of people who want to get krona virus test, who
no originally. This was this was travel related, the Hague? Why should the CDC allow every hypochondriac to get and when they don't have that many tests balancing all these this is really hard, but I've been talking redeeming biologists small this week so far and emphasising. We need to know where this thing is. We need to know the background rate of of, like the most extreme cases always rise, the top. We know
who has died, we know who is like most severely infected, but we need some more surveillance to know like just how prevalent says you got it, something really important, which is that this is particularly challenging, because corona virus looks like a lot of other things, and so one that is a challenging from an epidemiological perspective, but also changing from a public health perspective, because I think one of the challenges that we are facing right now is that there is the actual virus and then there's the societal economic, political impact of the virus and that the secondary impact, the danger, that is panic and the abject panic that I think I've seen people listening, is podcast or probably seen. That seems to me far more concerning because panics people are not smart people and that's generally how humans, what
So I'm interested in hearing from you some of your thoughts on how is that panic impacting testing, for example, people who are like I have a runny nose. What is this is this that especially one of the other challenges is that in the United States, the examples we have of a cross borders epidemic, are diseases that are either far worse or far more likely to be too happening within a specific population, for example, the beginnings of the HIV crisis in the United States, a part of that was like well, it seems meet those peoples. Problem related immunodeficiency, create original name ver HIV folks, I'm familiar with. I am, I add, my own when it was first identified in your people, start writing. But in June nineteen, eighty, what it was like this is happening to homosexuals. This seems to be a homosexual related disease.
One that wasn't entirely true at the time. But people didn't really know that. But the idea that, like ok, this is a separate population and it would seem They didn't fire risk factor right, but also because of how HIV and ultimately aids works. It's a collection of symptoms which sort of like, what's your t, sell count? Are you starting to develop like opportunistic infections like there are things that you're? Ok, all of these things together tell us something with grown a virus. We don't seem to have that at all colonel viruses, Eurofighter, yet I may, and finally we were choking the two weeks ago on the pond castile everybody has had this like vocs flu and I remember my first thought upon getting sick. I was like is this corona virus and obviously the flu is an actual killer. This is
We would have Lucy's than it needs it s, so how're our researchers thinking about this at especially because I think that contributes to the panic that if you hear someone sneeze, no restaurants in people's first reaction should probably not know it's the old saying. If you hear hoofbeats, it's probably horses, not zebras, but in this case it could seemingly the either yeah. So this is something I ve been trying to think a lot about, and it's a hard thing to communicate, link the risk this and right. The way to think about the risk is that the risk is public, so this is a spot virus that you know can attack any population of human being, but the risk is an evenly distributed of like who is most likely to from this, it seems pretty clear from the evidence so far that older people are the ones who get the most then, there are the months most likely to die and actually
Scientists are unsure like why children Don T seem to be very heavily affected by this, so you have to think of the risk as publicly you can get this disease and be ok. It's it's me I'm cold and flew like? Sometimes you will survive mostly by things around eighty percent of people, a mile or moderate symptoms of this, but you could pass it on to somebody who will die format and I think that's what you're starting to see now that this virus can find the most vulnerable people. So the people who died in Washington, state or in a nursing facility, and they had other occasions and other health issues, but that's the kind of danger of this virus? Is that it can overwhelm our health system in and make some sick people even sector It can find the vulnerable if we don't take, means to slow it spread, and so the risk, like guess, flew exist that kills people.
The exact very learned of this virus. Exact rate at which it kills people is, is not extremely well said. It seems to be between one and two percent, but you know, without better surveillance is hard to its puddings ACT, you're on that part of the risk to is just overwhelming our health care system. With enough, I was on the with the around clean, whose whose Obama's a bulldozer in his like hospitals, don't havoc ten ten thousand bed sitting around. So, if is like, like a sudden influx of people who are know it virus finds the vulnerable, and there are a lot of vulnerable like of America, is a lot of people. I signed the lower boy, be if the public grants it harms our health care system and harms people with the flu who then are going to the hospital with flew in their so bad for them and harms people who have no elective surgeon is that they want to get done soon and they have to postpone those. The risk is low.
That you are going to die, though the risk is chaos. So I want to talk about this because it is as on the one hand, there is way Jane. You are about about the panic. Not only like having kind of knock on, and obviously the stock market after having been very insensitive to the early warning signs of corona virus has reacted very late, react it very alarm ITALY. In the last week you noticed of the kind of political concern. About what happens if people are just kind of general They feel the bay in that they can't trust anybody, but, on the other hand, brain it seems like what you're talking about in terms of the the end state. That would be particularly bad for those who are most likely to die if they can track this disease could be induced by over panicking and lake people checking themselves into hospital,
Dont have severe symptoms. People buying face masks who aren't necessarily in a position where that would actually help contain the spread of the disease, but it could also because by under panicking- and you know, people who are in fact contagious, but asymptomatic or under symptomatic, going through their daily lives because they ve heard them isn't that bad, thereby infecting people who are more vulnerable. How do the experts you're talking to kind of navigate? I think there's a key way to think about this when you're preparing for an outbreak like this, you it's natural to think of how to protect myself, but you should also keep in mind the question. Do I protect others, and that includes not hoarding stuff. You don't need, so you a surgeon, general spray. Adamant like you do not need face masks if they are not set like face MAX serve to protect other people from you, they're not to protect you from other people
and so, if you hoard those mass and especially the ones that are used in healthcare settings, the ones that seal around the mouth and like really do help protect, protect health care workers from infectious diseases. And No, that is not helping other people and helping other people could also mean getting your flew shots rang. You don't get the flu and then take up healthcare resources from other people whom who may neither in the krona virus outbreak. It means also, if you have like a sniffle like stay home, because if you so happened to have this colonel virus into be clear, like a thought spreading everywhere in and also to be clear, were not exactly sure words preventing because of the testing, which is a hard thing to manage like so you know if you have a sniffle, your first thought should necessarily be oh, colonel virus. You should think about your situation and what's happening in your community, but if you if you do get a little. Secondly, we do feel signal stay home that is to protect other peoples and inconvenience is for
an inconvenience, and we need to prepare for those inconveniences. We need to prepare for so No doubt you ass before about like how health care workers think about stopping outbreaks. Like that, but really like? Where we're at now is a lot of epidemiologists? I've been talking to say it not going to not going to be contained at this point because seem to be spreading and communities, and it does seem to spread kind of silently, but the measures that could be put into place can be put into place the slow the spread and they call it about flattening the curve. So you know you could have a sudden spike of infections which really would wreak havoc on our health care system, because there aren't a lot of open beds and hospitals where you could potentially spread that spike doubt over a longer period of time, and could be a goal that a lot of community is that are facing this krona virus. Looked toward an you know. Lot of the ways to get that spread of the outbreak spread wider and not to just peek at one point,
our inconveniences, it's the uno, shutting down public events. It is like, basically, they called social distant and the idea to get human being six feet away from each other. So I'll say cancelling concerts, it could be it could involve on in oh you're. Your being closed, it could closed. Convolvuli places, mandate, taught tat Where could can involve an unknown gum, transit times being staggered or or things? that an inconvenience might be placed on a lot of people to slow the spread of this and not overwhelm our systems and cause like the biggest problem of an outbreak like this, which is not. It is death, but has also just CAS. I think we should take a break, and then I want to talk a little bit more about that social issues,
ACT an how how we actually in this country deal with an outbreak support for this episode comes from America's leading beverage companies who are working together to reduce plastic waste in our environment. Not all plastic is the same. America's beverage companies are carefully designing. One hundred percent recyclable plastic bottles, including the cap's their bottles, are made to be remained and their investing in community recycling programmes to help get more bottles back, so they can be turned into materials used to make new bottles that completes the circle and reduces plastic waste. Please help get every bottle back
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evidence for a number of reasons, because I wonder the states that need to respond to this California, Washington State. There are a lot of people, know states who are have already been trying to think about how to deal with this. I'm interested to hear what is that? How is that power shared? This is a classic temper. Men case of a power not give any other federal government has given to the state. So public health is largely in the realm of states and big cities which have the power to enforce Cal, so that the federal government will do things like maintain the cdc which is going to provide hope, they like really good information and and the best guidance it can to the communities and provide funding. It can help, make sure they theirs, come on national stockpile of medical supplies to give hospitals their time and need it can do supportive things like that and give advice, but the enforcement and public Care is at the city and state level.
Actually do have a lot of power. So a public health department has police power to enforce, quarantine orders, you know they can shutdowns, they can shut down schools, it can shut down gatherings. It is interesting in this may be interesting and also chaotic to look at because the public health system in our country is is piecemeal. This is quilt there are different laws and every state. There is different politics in every state and there are different levels of decision makers, so any local school board can shut down a school in Albania. Have to listen to the federal government or even necessarily their state. I'm pretty sure any local school board can do that. So you might see people starting to make decisions that are different. The communities next to them. New York City, which has a really strong health department, can impose different.
Since then, Boston Philadelphia, our Alabama, and you see. This is a lot of outbreaks where the decision that may come through might be more influence by politics and optics. Then it is like science. So, if you're bird two twenty fourteen during a ebola there was this nurse coming back from Africa who had done like heroic work, treating people she had not gotten the disease Wasn't sexual exhibiting symptoms, no health care professional this woman was arrest, bestow. Chris Christie, when he was We are at the time, mandated her into quarantine solution after she returned from Africa and He said, her her rights were violated, actually sued and got a settlement at that, but you know something little schemes are hangers. I was talking with a health care professor a few days ago, done some research and stay quiet he more than just finds that there, like a lot of them, are really there and after a while, so like not austere, quarantine laws will protect you. If you have to stay
home from work, get everything in this review of state Losberne. Twenty sixteen and twenty new. Only twenty percent of states have that and This is in a context where lake only ten states went back after the able outbreak which really see to be a moment, were policymakers realised that state and federal quarantine regulations, hadn't really bad, updated in awhile, because the last few infectious sorry I Sars, I think, was the real last infectious disease panic before that nets. Twenty three, which was over a decade prior and was contained before it had been, ass, insubstantial out in her away. So it really we should Lula drop this into the show notes, because its both a good starting point laws are in your estate in a good way of pointing out kind of where the very real obstacles you're the ineffective the visual would be put under are
there are real considerations about silver civil liberties and, like I said dumb public health is a like. Is the legal power that states have they re could could this will happen like I feel, like everything that will happen with this outbreak was started off. On a voluntary basis, so voluntary quarantines of family members of the of the infected and things like that, and I would guess, o in a lot of people you should think of it. If it comes to this, you should think of it as like yours, the duty to to follow orders on your local public health department kind of, like you would think of jury duty. I get socks to have stay home for two weeks, because you in contact with someone who got the virus, but here you're doing better protect other people but the law allows, like you know, a police officer. Can check on you and make sure you're staying at home. That could happen some places, Much of it come measures ever come to that, but, like the think, like the classic example near
is like typhoid, Mary right out in the second half of Mary Mallon, the onions interesting because there has been a lot of one was she just a scapegoat, essentially for typhoid, which is a disease of? Are you in a high population density area with very poor sanitation? Congratulations, you're, an early Twentyth century Newark, and so it's it's interesting thinking about how we have these specific examples, but especially at a time in which our news has been so effectively nationalized. If something is happening in the deep sea area, I will hear about it eventually, but I think that a lot of people do look to the federal government and to think of them has been the authority on this, and then you have, the federal government is interesting like this is up to the states. Do think that there is. Is there any concern that that kind of panic for one? I do want to make sure that we're clear about this lake. While it is true that a lot of the specifics of things like employment Sensation are exclusively state level,
after the Ebola outbreak in twenty fourteen, the CDC did review its federal quarantine regulations and put out a new version of those in early twenty seventeen and it's actually, it is very. Interesting and moderately whiplash eat? You go from reading about the kind of right now. The tone of a lot of media coverage looking at the Trump Administration is where they really prepared or they're doing enough, and then to go back and look at the articles written when this new quarantine regulation was being finalized in which the tone is wow. This is an awfully aggressive right now, nation. Can we really trust the Trump administration with these kind of power re? Won't they use them overly aggressively, but it is true that the CDC is key, people of doing more to enforce, made a tory quarantines than it has in the past, that does create this weird kind of compensation gap where, as our former colleague, Sarah Cliff has been documenting, people are placed under these federally mandatory quarantines for testing and then get these men,
hospital hospital bills, because their state doesn't them and to be clear about this. Yes, the CDC does have quarantine power, especially particularly of you're during the country and the sea. This that's the cdc and also the CDC like various I'd, lose legal experts. I've been talking to you like, if they deem a local authority is doing enough to stop an outbreak they can, they can make me pull random. And go in and take over- which I am told is is- is very rare and Polly unlikely to happen. Yet it's definitely true that there this is all kind of reliant, especially the extent to which you know what you were saying earlier about it's going to start voluntary and, only if it really ram supple, this become a matter of like policy diktat by the extent to which people are willing to do
Terry activities does rely on their trust in government, and while there is existing political science research that shows that, like people's kind of got reaction in cases of infectious disease outbreak, is to put more trust in people. They consider to be a political experts, like the CDC that there are open questions about that gets refracted if people already fundamentally distrust the government in one of the dogs that I've been a little bit surprised hasn't barked, yet is there is at this point kind of strong incentive, either in a Trump Cruz, big media atmosphere or in a pro from the anti could unquote deep state me right ecosystem to encourage the idea that what officials are telling. You is wrong. They idea the corona virus is a hoax, as lack trump kind of sort of said at one vote,
During a rally it was like. The democratic reaction was a but then you're hearing from people. I think it's almost impossible to have this conversation without talking about the political context, and I think that there are a lot of people. I mean when people talk about the economy, they are. People are talking about. This there is a like, and how will this impact the election in November? And so you see, conservative commentators like Ruslan by another basically saying that this is not as bad as the flew like. This is just something out to get tromp or something like that and like that is not true. But it is also true that there is a context here that people need to acknowledge when they're talking about it. But you can see it in the number of press conferences that Trump has attempted to have in the efforts to rely on the CDC, while the CDC has had its funding cut
and putting the CDC frightened centre in this conversation. Ass being like, you may not trust the White House, but you can trust the CDC. I think we should take another break, but I'm interested, I think, for our listeners. I think it might actually be helpful to just go through some really basic questions and answers about what individuals and families particularly can do. If you, are concerned about the. So, let's take break you having trouble media. Your goals focusing work if you have feeling Strasser having trouble sleeping better help is here for you, it's not a self help. Class inside a crisis line better help is secure online professional. Counseling, with real licensed therapist, to have the tools to help. You feel better. Just fill out a questionnaire about how you're doing and better help will match you with your own licensed therapist in under forty eight hours,
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not a lender terms and programme rules apply. First and foremost, we talked about this a little bit. But how should everyday normal people prepare or prevent converse? The biggest thing that could potentially happen is Those social distancing measures, like I doubt in our whole entire city in United States, would be put under current him. Like you, you know you see in China GRAIL is: are we are not going to speakers on sidewalks yelling stay in your home what is happening is that seems hard to replicate here, but I could see in like schools enclose dacres being closed, tell work and courage. So those are things to prepare for like. So. If there are public places where you have to come into contact with a lot of people and you're going to be told to avoid those public places where you have to come into contact with lab but like how do you prepare for that CDC?
recommended that parents call their schools and asked them about what are your plans, Do offer any tell a school in the case that Now we are not going to send kids school for a few weeks. You should figure out like what you're caught. If you're implying you know like what is your company? Is policy and travel and what is your companies policy antella work? And can you miss in this, though Cavy Miss works in? If you can't be there, you know like? Can you miss work of year? We can't leave your home. I think there are some other caution in the in the realm of acknowledges, protecting yourself, but protecting other people. So I think about Would you really and truly need and link what you should end shouldn't So listen to the surgeon general when they say you don't need face, masks unless you're sick. You know People are going to sort this stock up on. Things like one is problematic good to have like that stuff in your home, always like to have a few gowns water hate know and have the medication. And in their there's, potentially in arguing
for like, if you're going and buying like. Some things now that if this really heads like what you won't need, it then and those materials could be used them in a fair and shortages, but otherwise, like you know, I feel it. We're. Looking for, I go hey like. Is there like a magic necklace? I can where to ward off a virus? and now honestly, The other good precautions are generally good hygiene like wash your hands. You just infect your phone every once in a while. You can just do thou rubbing alcohol, often two year into the crook of you're into the cook of your elbow and stay home if you're, sick and honestly is really is kind of simple, as that basic hygiene, and eventually you may be asked to stay away from other people and to try to prepare for the chaos that my mentor, your life, if you are asked to stay away from other people. So I know that medical Esias has like this galaxy brain through
that this is going to be the thing that convinces white collar businesses that they don't actually need to have people in the office. You know if you have a mass teller policy and no workflow is disrupted, but lake it does seem that a lot of the reason that the elite disco has been so sanguine about this prospect? Is that a lot of white collar workers currently do have enough of an infrastructure there, they want me to go into the office where you are eight and you, a metro, train driver re. You work in the service industry If you are an inhaler at my service industry peeps like- and I think that that's a really good point, because I think that when you talk to people who are in journalism,
media or the impact, or the idea like? Oh I have to work from home for two weeks sounds actually cannot okay and I think for a loan people. It is simply not possible way and there are kind of two particular categories of people who I'm really interested in the public health ramifications of because like for what Paypal. You have gig economy workers who are generally informally employed service industry, so they are likely to see less demand for their services, which means there less likely money and also they don't have health insurance. Probably they certainly don't rather differently. Don't have health insurance through their employer because they have a formal employment situation, and this is kind of as many jokes, as there are in Owen, like San Francisco, about now we're going to learn which Turkey is never learned to cook, because their used to reads like the drivers who make their lives
off goober, it's our in eight are vulnerable in a totally different way. Now. The other question that I have like home care workers who are definitional is supposed to be taken care of the people who are most vulnerable if they in are infected with corona virus, but who are obviously still obligated to provide that care to those people, and so how do you deal from a public health perspective with the fact that the people who are, on the one hand most likely to lake who are, on the one hand, going to continue to be interacting with even under a general lockdown or on the other hand, whose economic well being is really dependent, Exactly the kind of activities that will lock down would stifle. This is, I think, there's some research on this this. This is why there is some like quarantines and restriction of movement doesn't really work because people to a lot of people ignore it because they have to get their email in. This is not a third, an authoritarian state. And where they can use their vast surveillance state to make sure people
staying in their homes. So I thought I think, that's that's a real challenge in, and I think in the the interesting, like big theme that you touch there is that an epidemic outbreak reveals to so many cracks in society. You know you're already seen people like unsure when they ve gone to get their krona virus test. I concur about how to pay and even if they don't have the coronavirus like, if you think, read a story in Miami Herald about someone who went to their house attested engine of getting a flu task than they had the flu and then her. Three thousand dollars bill for fluorescent, which most people would say. I was simply not go, get know no. The answers are to those things, but these are maybe, interestingly, and productively. Alot of this could win form this on presidential cycle, so Kennedy's will have a real. This will expose a lot of cracks.
Idea in and in hours talking before about this hitting the most vulnerable. In terms of like their physical health, this also hits the most vulnerable in terms of their status and Americans. I write one thing that I want to get too is that this is a. This is a global issue and certain other countries have been hit hardest. China, obviously, but also ITALY, and there are cases that are. I think there are five cases in Mexico. There are cases in Canada. We are going to see the disparate impact that this will have on disparate health care systems. The concern about the american insurance system is a massive one, especially for anyone interested in traveling to this country. And so I think that we are starting to learn a little bit about how each country is handling. The chinese example is kind of the. This is not how to do this as in deny it for a really long time and then sort of accepted and then deny it some more, but I'm interested in your thoughts looking at how different countries looking at
said the European Union is handling this looking at how italian government, which appears to have reacted by just you're being like don't go to church, which is China punching in lights that something else workers were entering and season of a lot of religious festivals. That, again, all involve lots of people being in the same place, and so I'm really interested to see how, for instance, the Vatican would handle Easter, Saudi Arabia's telling people if you are not allowed to go on like you are having daily religious life, impacted in a way that has not been on a global basis in a while. So I'm interested to see first, how you think different countries are handling this and second in each of these countries. What are the scenarios for how this outbreak ends yeah, so I haven't necessarily studied each trees response, but seeing the kind of frenzied responses from from different countries kind of shows like why this is probably not going to be contained, because
country. Could be really good and then in, and I think I ran- is having some make some real problems. Something really advocated for four listeners in and for any one thing about. This is tat. You know as well see the numbers of people infected around the world, explode I'd, not to look at those numbers and in fear them that diked, maybe also have a little bit of compassion, These are people if you're infected with this just think of one person who has been infected with a disease. That's new to science, scary and Nero you're, and when you get infected with that Your family members are not allowed to leave the home or they're supposed to be in quarantine because there, because there told that they might be carrying the virus to you not just like tie to take that one family in like multiplied times like seventy eighty fastened and in others, This is a real human diseases are really came in conflict and not conflict, but it's a real the universal Human problem- and I dont
exactly about. You know like how each country is dealing with it, but like a scenario that is emerging merging- is that this to actually doesn't get kind and it doesn't go away. It can do the around the world as much as it wants forget, can I know I'm sure we ve heard the like yo at some point. Seventy to eighty percent of the world's population could have this. Can you explain what that means in a way that doesn't sound world war yeah? So I think that comes from one Harvard epidemiologist and you know nothing because it before a lot of that, like the parameters of this virus, randomly well set unknown, but there are few scenarios that that I've been told that could happen in the best case scenario is out as out the door, the containment of this thing to the places where originated
Where is already done so a few things could happen. One is that it could show some seasonality effects where, as temperatures rise, this how it happens with the flu a variety of reasons, things become less contagious, certain viruses become less contagious and in the summer months ahead and Donald Trump was like this, the summer will kill it that he will kill her. That when, when in higher humility environments. I think it's the case that viruses don't live as long and server there's an also like the human immune response through better so it could be. The is where we get. I got in the northern hemisphere at least gets a break in the summer, and then this kind of goes into the southern miss here when they have their cold and flew season, and then can it comes back. So the scenario is like that seasonality, kind of buys the world some time, and maybe by next year there could be a vaccine that can be broadly distributed. The vaccine races is Han there always spoken to several vaccine manufacturers are hoping to get caught
trials in several months, which is really we really fast. So I think, there's also concurrent research into viral medications that might help slow the spread of the disease. So we have see, unlike the months ahead, like what natural pattern this virus takes, because it's it's, increasingly looking like this is not just an outbreak. This is going to be added to the list of coronaviruses that routinely infect humans, fantastic news, and, if you'd like to discuss corona virus, while in voluntary involuntary isolation. You can do so in the weeds Facebook group. I'd like to thank Mallika brought us are engineer. Jeff elder editor and producer and Brian Resnick, for helping us out this week. The weeds will return on Friday.
Transcript generated on 2021-05-20.