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Tourism in Tanzania, Covid edition

DannyTS

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I'm not sure how a picture of Africans dancing shows that covid testing in Oman was necessarily inaccurate. As far as covid in Africa, I suspect the numbers are not totally huge, but are higher than reported. (There are articles explaining why Africa has not been hit as hard as more northern countries.) Here is an article that was published in the British Medical Journal just yesterday that found that 15% to 20% of the deaths in a hospital in Zambia last summer were traceable to covid.


Anticipating Danny's response, he will want to suggest that this is all due to (not a maybe, but due to) the use of the inaccurate PCR tests, probably using too many repetitions. Here is a USAToday fact checker published a week ago on claims that the use of PCR tests are unreliable.


While the article mentioned a lot of social media claims to that effect, the tests are in fact accurate. If anything, they underestimate the number of false negatives, not false positives. A high number of repetitions does not produce false positives, but is useful in estimating how infectious the disease is. The article does admit that the test procedures need to be strictly adhered to. So I guess the new out is that the lab technicians in Oman and Zambia are necessarily incompetent. Personally, I would find such a claim insulting.
Instead of relying on the "fact checkers" that many times have a predetermined conclusion, you can look at the actual science. In the previous comment I posted a link from the UK government.

Your article mentions that there were reports of problems and we do not know how widespread. According to your article:

"WHO's investigation into these reports revealed the tests were not being used appropriately in compliance with the manufacturer's instructions. Laboratories especially ran into problems "when they did not apply the recommended positivity threshold," or the number of PCR cycles needed to amplify the DNA enough to see a positive signal."

"This can result in either false negative results (if the threshold applied is lower) or false positives (if threshold is higher).



Coincidence or not with the WHO changing (more like clarifying) the guidance, the number of new cases has started to plummet in the US from 308,000 to 72,000 ( 77%!!!!) :

1613679834563.png


It is not just the US, the same in Canada and Mexico as well if you believe in coincidences.
 
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DannyTS

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Oh, please. Time to expand your selective reading list.
Well my hospital just closed it's covid ward-and was never on brink of "collapse" or "overwhelmed"-serves a large region. So perhaps YOU are the one who needs to expand? I could never find how many the Milwaukee "field hospital" ended up serving either-maybe the most was 26 one day? Remember when that was in the news daily about the system on "brink of collapse"?
 

Ken555

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Well my hospital just closed it's covid ward-and was never on brink of "collapse" or "overwhelmed"-serves a large region. So perhaps YOU are the one who needs to expand?
Such as youtube "experts" from Bakersfield?

I could never find how many the Milwaukee "field hospital" ended up serving either-maybe the most was 26 one day? Remember when that was in the news daily about the system on "brink of collapse"?
Well, your area was luckier than mine. Your indifference to factual reporting is truly disheartening.
 

Ken555

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WHO Director-General's statement on Tanzania and COVID-19



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Ken555

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Tanzania President Creeps Toward Acknowledging Presence of COVID-19



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Ken555

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Ken555

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Tanzania’s COVID Denialism Harms its Economic Future



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Why would they only have a problem now 12 months after the pandemic started? It does not pass the smell test. WHO should better explain why the country did not reach herd immunity already since they denied the virus and did not implement any mitigation for close to a year. Or maybe they did reach herd immunity . But if they did not, what would that tell you about the infectiousness of this virus that was supposed to infect everyone in 2 months and kill a large number of people without mitigation?

Do not forget to post a copy of the CFR article about the economy in the "stay at home humor" forum. How much has the US printed so far including the current bill? Like 4 trillion dollars? Let's see what happens next, why stop here when printing is the solution? People will only have to pay the money back in the future so why worry now?
Canada has a deficit of close to 400 billion dollars (vs 20 billions pre-covid), we have spent 17 million dollars for every person who died from (or in some cases with) Covid. Why stop at 17 millions pp Canada, we can do better than that!

These are people who continue to live their lives, they did not get the memo from the VOA that they should have died months ago already.


 
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"Roger"

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Here is a New Yorker Magazine article on why covid does not seem to be hitting Africa and India as hard as other countries.

I suspect, like the author, that it is multiple reasons. One that intrigues me the most (and I suspect that there is something to it) is that there have been all sorts of covid out there in the past. (Remember, that even the common cold is a kind of covid). The supposition is that Africa and India were hit harder with these prior forms of covid, and, while this is a new form, there has been some transference of protection from Africans having had prior more exposure to some prior forms of covid that led to some antibodies giving them a modicum of protection against covid-19.
 

Ken555

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Here is a New Yorker Magazine article on why covid does not seem to be hitting Africa and India as hard as other countries.

I suspect, like the author, that it is multiple reasons. One that intrigues me the most (and I suspect that there is something to it) is that there have been all sorts of covid out there in the past. (Remember, that even the common cold is a kind of covid). The supposition is that Africa and India were hit harder with these prior forms of covid, and, while this is a new form, there has been some transference of protection from Africans having had prior more exposure to some prior forms of covid that led to some antibodies giving them a modicum of protection against covid-19.
Very interesting - thanks for posting. There are lots of unresolved questions but this does indicate a possible cause for the disparity between regions. And if accurate, it may also mean that those of us without such inherent protection should avoid these regions since many of us may be more susceptible to an unfortunate outcome, and if true then this would have a potential long-term impact on travel and tourism in these areas.
 

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Very interesting - thanks for posting. There are lots of unresolved questions but this does indicate a possible cause for the disparity between regions. And if accurate, it may also mean that those of us without such inherent protection should avoid these regions since many of us may be more susceptible to an unfortunate outcome, and if true then this would have a potential long-term impact on travel and tourism in these areas.
No, you should not avoid these regions since, as you stated many times, you would only start to travel when you are vaccinated.
 

DannyTS

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Here is a New Yorker Magazine article on why covid does not seem to be hitting Africa and India as hard as other countries.

I suspect, like the author, that it is multiple reasons. One that intrigues me the most (and I suspect that there is something to it) is that there have been all sorts of covid out there in the past. (Remember, that even the common cold is a kind of covid). The supposition is that Africa and India were hit harder with these prior forms of covid, and, while this is a new form, there has been some transference of protection from Africans having had prior more exposure to some prior forms of covid that led to some antibodies giving them a modicum of protection against covid-19.
We call them lockdown deaths, certainly underreported in the West:

“Is that because the number of covid deaths in the country has been vastly underestimated?” I asked.

“It’s impossible to have a decisive answer,” Shah told me. “But the pattern of the excess deaths doesn’t really shout out covid as the cause. It just doesn’t.” When his researchers analyzed the data by age, location, and gender, they found that excess deaths tended to be observed in younger cohorts, and in rural rather than in urban settings; nor was there evidence of the usual coronavirus skew toward greater lethality in men. “The telltale signatures of covid just aren’t there,” he said. He won’t venture any hypotheses about the cause of the excess deaths. But among the possible candidates are indirect consequences of the pandemic: wage loss, displacement, malnourishment, forced migration, and disruptions in health care—the skipped clinic visit for malaria, diabetes, TB, or hypertension. According to World Health Organization analyses, disruptions in medical care and prevention programs related to malaria, TB, and H.I.V. will have cost many more lives in sub-Saharan Africa in the past year than the coronavirus. In poorer regions, especially, infection isn’t the only way that the pandemic can cost lives.
 

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wedding in Nigeria. As far as I can tell, life is pretty normal

 

Patri

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Good thing they didn’t get married in NY. They would have to stay 6 feet apart, even during slow dances, and be masked. The news clip didn’t say if that applied to spouses.
 

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During a project phone call with our Tanzanian team members this morning and it was reported the Tanzanian President has now begun to formally recognize COVID in country. The reports signify the change is a result of the death of at least one cabinet member and a ministry head who is currently gravely ill. For our team this means new levels and types of research can be commenced; scientific articles attributing findings to COVID, COVID symptoms, death and country specific outcomes can be published; data can be collected to understand impact; mitigation has restarted and new public messaging has begun. This is dramatically different than the monthly calls for the past 10-11 months, the most recent of which was in February 2021.
While deaths and grave illness remains all around, for those of us (the team) in health care, health professions education and health-related research the effects have resulted in deep professional ethical conflicts and clinical depressive experiences as a result. Friends, neighbors, students, and colleagues dying and it was seemingly impossible to intercede. Today, the team was almost giddy on the phone. They know things will not turn around on a dime, but now, there is hope.


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DannyTS

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During a project phone call with our Tanzanian team members this morning and it was reported the Tanzanian President has now begun to formally recognize COVID in country. The reports signify the change is a result of the death of at least one cabinet member and a ministry head who is currently gravely ill. For our team this means new levels and types of research can be commenced; scientific articles attributing findings to COVID, COVID symptoms, death and country specific outcomes can be published; data can be collected to understand impact; mitigation has restarted and new public messaging has begun. This is dramatically different than the monthly calls for the past 10-11 months, the most recent of which was in February 2021.
While deaths and grave illness remains all around, for those of us (the team) in health care, health professions education and health-related research the effects have resulted in deep professional ethical conflicts and clinical depressive experiences as a result. Friends, neighbors, students, and colleagues dying and it was seemingly impossible to intercede. Today, the team was almost giddy on the phone. They know things will not turn around on a dime, but now, there is hope.


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How do you explain that Tanzania has not reached herd immunity already in 12 months after completely ignoring any mitigation measures? Are you saying that the virus is not that infectious? By now, half a million people should have died there from Covid if you were to believe a fraction of what the models have told us here.

How about the other African countries that could not care less about Covid (unofficially of course) ? I posted here videos from Ghana, Nigeria, etc. Life is normal there folks. What do your teams know about those? Are your teams more giddy? Less giddy?
 
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DannyTS

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As we already know, life carries on normally in Ghana


 

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Maskless Canadian nurse is slammed for refusing to take a COVID test or quarantine after trip to Tanzania - insisting she's 'a frontline worker and a HERO' so she 'can do what she wants'
  • Jessica Faraone, 29, arrived back home via Toronto Pearson Airport last week after spending a month in Tanzania
  • She didn't wear a mask and told border security agents that she refused to quarantine or take a COVID test, getting into a 'screaming match' with them
  • Jessica told the agents: 'I'm a frontline worker, actually, I'm considered a hero. I'm a registered nurse. I have freedom of speech, I can do what I want'
  • The College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO), her province's nursing regulatory body, has said that it has notified the appropriate people to investigate
  • Nurses are publicly accountable to the CNO and have a responsibility to not 'communicate anti-vaccination, anti-masking, and anti-distancing statements'
  • Jessica said: 'I would be genuinely disgusted if my license got taken away for having an opinion and exercising my rights'
 

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Still haven't seen your snapshots from Tanzania
 

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DannyTS

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@DrQ

"In Tanzania, Faraone lived among the general population and with zero COVID health protocols — no masking or distancing required. The issues where she was were malaria, dehydration, typhoid, parasitic infections and wounds; COVID is in the country, but she didn’t see any cases."

 

DannyTS

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@DrQ maybe you can consider contributing to the cause she worked for 5 weeks in Tanzania. You can see more pictures of her, delivering medicine, since you seem to be a visual guy

 

TravelAmore

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How do you explain that Tanzania has not reached herd immunity already in 12 months after completely ignoring any mitigation measures? Are you saying that the virus is not that infectious? By now, half a million people should have died there from Covid if you were to believe a fraction of what the models have told us here.

How about the other African countries that could not care less about Covid (unofficially of course) ? I posted here videos from Ghana, Nigeria, etc. Life is normal there folks. What do your teams know about those? Are your teams more giddy? Less giddy?
DannyTS - I am not commenting on countries where I do not have direct access to information or folks I am working with on the ground in country. And, I do not judge what is happening in any country on the basis of YouTube videos or FaceBook or Instagram. We know from data in our country people post what they want and do not post what they don't want to share publicly. That means the filter used for decision-making of what is posted and what is not is inconsistent and non-representative of life events in context. If I hang a picture on the wall, looking at it, what do you know about the context surrounding the photograph or drawing? Just because you see movement, does that fill in what is happening in the household, community, region, state, country, or world? No. Just as I decide what to hang on the wall, people post on social platforms what they want others to see.

Your question about herd immunity is a valid one. No one can answer the question because we do not know if countries ignoring COVID have herd immunity or not. These countries are not reporting data and they are not performing any serology or immunology testing, so we have no way of knowing. We know epidemiology models in the U.S. are not generalizable or transferable to other countries. Epidemiological modeling must be done with populations and communities using in country data to be valid. Those entities doing direct work with and in those countries and the African CDC are able to develop appropriate models; however, they need data to do so. Again, no data, no applicable models and no answers to the bigger questions you raise.
 

DannyTS

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Your question about herd immunity is a valid one. No one can answer the question because we do not know if countries ignoring COVID have herd immunity or not. These countries are not reporting data and they are not performing any serology or immunology testing, so we have no way of knowing. We know epidemiology models in the U.S. are not generalizable or transferable to other countries. Epidemiological modeling must be done with populations and communities using in country data to be valid. Those entities doing direct work with and in those countries and the African CDC are able to develop appropriate models; however, they need data to do so. Again, no data, no applicable models and no answers to the bigger questions you raise.
What bothers me is the lack of scientific curiosity in many areas. Or maybe they are just afraid of being proven wrong so they would rather look the other way.

I never saw Dr Fauci, Redford or Birx on TV (just not to pick on one) explaining why Sweden did not have 10-20 times more deaths as the models predicted. Or why they have not reached herd immunity already, if they didn't. Most of what we have been doing is based on the idea of a wild and fast spread. This does not seem to be the case if they did not reach natural immunity yet. This in not just a small error in the models, it is fundamental considering all they have been telling us for a year. We already know a lot about the immunity provided by the vaccines, every little detail imagined is published every day. After just few weeks! How come these same scientists, as far as I can tell, are not very interested when it comes to the natural immunity in many of these countries?

Maybe the Tanzanian president is extreme, I understand that. But has anyone tried to approach him for herd immunity studies? You say it is a valid point. You probably cannot share too many details of your project but is there any focus on why 500,000 people have not died of Covid there, which would be impossible to hide? Are you focusing at all on data and estimates about their herd immunity or we do not want to inconvenience the modelers?

I want to make one more point. We know now that 90% of the global deaths come from countries where obesity is over 50%. Is this a surprise? NO, we found out this was a major risk from almost the very beginning. Where on earth was the policy of the medical establishment to promote well being for the sake of this pandemic and the next. If everybody claims it is about saving lives, how come the policies had no focus on the the most important factor of all?
 
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