As Dr. Duchin̵
Do you remember back in March when the city felt deserted? How few if any cars drove down the street? When the whole world felt like it was covered in an invisible, deadly substance that could instantly kill you and who do you like to make? When you knocked on pots and pans every night at. 20:00 in recognition of the sacrifices that health professionals brought every single second every single day?
Given the recent “explosion of COVID-19 cases, “as Seattle and King County Public Health Officer Dr. Jeffrey Duchin put it during a news conference on Friday, we need to slip back into this headspace.
“The risk of acquiring COVID-19 is higher now than it has ever been locally,” said Dr. Duchin. “Every day that we fire the necessary actions to stop the spread of COVID-19 leads to further preventable ailments and pains.”
“We do not have to follow the path to pain that so many other societies experience,” he continued, sounding more metal than I have ever heard him sound before. “And we’ve already gone too far down this road for my comfort.”
The news conference more or less corresponded to a thoughtful, cordial, understanding, empathetic, epidemiologically sound version of Duchin pointing to the publicly available COVID-19 data, staring directly into the camera with a rictus grin and then just holding it in pose. half an hour without flashing.
King County had an average of 581 new cases per year. Day last week, when the positivity rate rose from 2% in September to around 7% recently, Duchin said. The increased test rate, he added, does not account for this large increase in infections.
The increases affected people of all ages, but 70% of the cases came from people aged 20 to 60, where people of color were still affected with disproportionately high prices.
Admissions have increased by 50% over the past two weeks with “215 confirmed and suspected patients at King County hospitals compared to about 100 in most of September and October,” Duchin said.
Hospitals have activated their emergency response mechanisms to deal with the waves. Contact tracking and outbreak teams are “congested”. And although the number of deaths remains relatively low at the moment, Duchin said the death toll typically comes three weeks after the rise in cases.
We want the transmission rate well below 1, and right now it’s 1.4, which means that this caseload will continue to grow exponentially until hospitals overflow and the county begins to price refrigerated vehicles for use as mobile mornings.
Fortunately for us, there are only a few things that really need to be done right away:
• Stop gathering indoors with people we do not already live with. Restrictions on restaurants and bars and gyms “will not be enough to reverse this outbreak,” Duchin said. We have to nix the dinner parties, the brunch, the weddings, the church gatherings, the fucking Halloween parties, the fucking indoor Thanksgiving festivities and the funerals – otherwise there will be many more of them.
• Do not go and get a COVID-19 test just so you can attend Thanksgiving. Test centers in Seattle are filled with people doing this, and that underscores the system. A negative test does not necessarily mean that you are not infected, you can be infected between the time you take the test and receive the results, and you KNOW that your ass does not have actually in quarantine for 14 days.
• Wear good masks and wash hands. We all still do this, right?
• Narc on our favorites when we catch COVID-19. Duchin said COVID-19 patients will tell contact trackers that they attended a party with “10, 30, 50 others, and they will even say that some of these people caught COVID after the party,” but they will not say , who threw the virus party in the first place. Ditto restaurants and fitness centers. That is, they will say they have visited restaurants and gyms while they were contagious with COVID, but they do not list the places because they worry about getting their favorite places “in trouble.” Duchin said public health officials could provide clearer and more accurate information on outbreaks to communities if only people would be more forthcoming, but right now he “has no solution” for people who hold on.