You mean to tell me that China’s claim of having only 80,000 coronavirus cases is probably a lie? I am shocked:

A leaked database from a Chinese military-run university suggests the country may have at least 640,000 COVID-19 cases — a figure substantially higher than Beijing’s dubious claim that it has seen just 80,000 coronavirus infections.

The virus tracker, compiled by China’s National University of Defense Technology and leaked to Foreign Policy magazine, appears to confirm fears that the nation’s Communist government is hiding the true nature of the outbreak that originated in Wuhan late last year.

According to the report, the virus tracker consists of more than 640,000 rows of cases in 230 cities ranging from early February to late April and confirms the location of each infection.

The data includes locations for hospitals, train stations, hotels, restaurants and schools and was compiled by a professor at the university that is run by China’s Central Military Commission, the report said.

Convalescent Plasma May Become a Treatment Option

Researchers at Mayo Clinic, Michigan State University, and Johns Hopkins University reviewed a study in which doctors gave patients suffering from the Wuhan coronavirus plasma from people who recovered the virus.

The doctors found using the plasma is safe without “an excessive mortality rate.” The results have the potential to expand the study and maybe use the plasma as treatment.

The plasma went to 5,000 hospitalized patients. The doctors “found serious adverse events occurred in fewer than 1% of the treated patients, and the mortality rate seven days after transfusion was 14.9%.”

More from The Wall Street Journal:

Researchers hope transfusions of antibody-rich plasma from recovered Covid-19 patients can help neutralize the coronavirus in patients who are sick. Investigators cautioned that it isn’t possible to determine from this study if the plasma was the cause of improved health outcomes, because every patient received the plasma. Proving that a drug works involves comparisons with a group of similar patients who don’t receive the experimental therapy.

The safety data is likely to bolster efforts to conduct more controlled clinical trials to test if convalescent plasma is an effective treatment for Covid-19, the investigators said. The findings also could reassure clinicians who want to give convalescent plasma to patients as a stopgap measure until vaccines or more targeted therapies are developed.

A similar study at Houston Methodist hospitals used the plasma on “25 patients with severe or life-threatening” coronavirus infections:

That study, at the Houston Methodist hospitals, found no adverse events associated with the therapy, and investigators indicated safety risks were comparable to what any seriously ill patient getting a transfusion would face.

The Houston study reported the death of one patient who received plasma, but investigators don’t believe it was related to the transfusion. The patient was severely ill, and the transfusion was a last-ditch lifesaving effort, said James Musser of Houston Methodist Hospital, the senior author on the study. “We feel comfortable giving additional patients the transfusions,” he said.

WHO: Coronavirus May Never Go Away

Do people honestly think viruses go away? Measles, smallpox, polio, Ebola, chicken pox, etc still exist. We don’t have outbreaks (at least not here) thanks to vaccines. So no DUH coronavirus won’t go away.

I don’t even know why WHO phrased it this way because coronavirus isn’t a super special virus. You cannot cure a virus:

“It is important to put this on the table: this virus may become just another endemic virus in our communities, and this virus may never go away,” Dr Ryan told the virtual press conference from Geneva.

“HIV has not gone away – but we have come to terms with the virus.”

Dr Ryan then said he doesn’t believe “anyone can predict when this disease will disappear”.

There are currently more than 100 potential vaccines in development – but Dr Ryan noted there are other illnesses, such as measles, that still haven’t been eliminated despite there being vaccines for them.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stressed it was still possible to control the virus, with effort.

“The trajectory is in our hands, and it’s everybody’s business, and we should all contribute to stop this pandemic,” he said.

WHO epidemiologist Maria van Kerkhove also told the briefing: “We need to get into the mindset that it is going to take some time to come out of this pandemic.”

Coronavirus Might Shift Everyone to E-commerce

We have detailed the fall of physical stores as more people use Amazon or shop from a store’s website.

The coronavirus might be the straw that breaks the camel back:

Even as malls and stores begin to reopen, the Covid-19 pandemic has taken a toll on an industry already battered by the shift to online shopping. More than two million retail jobs disappeared in April as many stores closed. The damage will be clear Friday when the U.S. government reports what is expected to be one of the worst months for retailers since World War II.

Roughly 100,000 stores are expected to close over the next five years—more than triple the number that shut during the previous recession—as e-commerce jumps to a quarter of U.S. retail sales from 15% last year, UBS estimates. The turbocharged shift to e-commerce is expected to further depress profit margins and accelerate a shakeout in a country that already had too much bricks-and-mortar space for an increasingly digital world.

Neiman Marcus and J. Crew filed for bankruptcy protection. J.C. Penney is almost ready to take that step.

Gap “will likely reopen fewer stores.” Gap’s CEO admitted the company will use “this as an opportunity to refashion the company for what we want it to look like over the next 50 years.”

Other retailers that might go down the same road as Neiman Marcus: Abercrombie & Fitch, Foot Locker, and Macy’s. Those three stores “had their debt rated junk before the pandemic” by S&P.

McDonald’s Sets Conditions for Restaurants to Reopen Dining Rooms

McDonald’s Corp. released guidelines for restaurant owners to reopen the dining room.

Service workers must wear a mask and gloves. They must clean the bathrooms every 30 minutes and wipe down digital kiosks after every use.

Someone needs to monitor the public soda fountains. If that cannot happen then the restaurant must close it down.

It’s not going to be easy, especially since the owners will have added costs to maintain social distancing rules and other regulations. This includes installing foot-pulls on restroom doors, automatic towel dispensers, touchless sinks, and face shields “for customers in jurisdictions requiring them.”

The corporation will help out cash-strapped franchise owners:

McDonald’s said Wednesday it would help restaurants particularly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic to reopen operations by contributing to owners’ marketing funds. The company also is allowing owners who are strapped for cash to apply for help from a “distressed restaurant team,” according to a protocol document for owners.

Applicants are asked to specify their sales and customer losses during the pandemic, the impact to their geography and the specific financial help requested from the company, the document stated.


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