27 votes

What's the coronavirus like where you are?

The last thread on this was from February 29, and a lot has changed since then. What are things like currently where you are?

45 comments

  1. Bullmaestro
    (edited )
    Link
    In Britain, the Premier League season has been suspended and our government has banned "mass gatherings" from next week, so a lot of concerts, sports matches and other events will undoubtedly be...

    In Britain, the Premier League season has been suspended and our government has banned "mass gatherings" from next week, so a lot of concerts, sports matches and other events will undoubtedly be cancelled. Five cases have been confirmed in my city. Most of the cases are in London or further up north.

    We haven't yet gone into lockdown but are on the verge of going into isolation if the situation worsens. My workplace has ordered company laptops for us to temporarily work from home with if we need to close the office.

    I'm more concerned that Boris Johnson cares more about achieving herd immunity in the UK population, which involves over 60% of the population getting coronavirus, rather than halting the virus's spread through the lockdown that other European nations are doing. Even the WHO have called our government out on their bullshit. I'm honestly surprised that Boris hasn't done more because it's mainly the older generation that is susceptible to the virus who vote Conservative and if millions of them die as a result of coronavirus spreading like wildfire, the Tories are never going to get into power ever again.

    It also makes Trump's travel ban on Europe all the more ironic, because it's the Europeans who are finally getting their shit together and pushing isolation, whereas we as a nation who were exempt from Trump's travel ban are just going to the Winchester, having a cold pint and waiting for it all to blow over.

    20 votes
  2. [2]
    rogue_cricket
    Link
    We have two confirmed cases in my province, both from travel. School has been cancelled entirely for two weeks, my city has cancelled all gatherings of 150+ people (this does not apply to private...

    We have two confirmed cases in my province, both from travel. School has been cancelled entirely for two weeks, my city has cancelled all gatherings of 150+ people (this does not apply to private businesses, just city events), and my workplace is urging people to work from home. I make software for work-from-mobile solutions, videoconferencing, and telephony, so this has been good for business. I mean, normally more business is good, but that's deeply tempered by, you know, the seriousness of the whole thing.

    I am glad to see a large response intended to prevent spread rather than react to it; the legislators and municipal policymakers obviously understand there are probably some unknown cases out there.

    The public reaction has been exasperating. Hand sanitizer has been sold out for weeks; more recently, the weird TP hoarding started here and stores are cleared out of wipes. I thought to stock up on things weeks ago so I'm good personally but I might offer to go out again just so my relatives don't have to.

    This might not be the right place to share, but my biggest worry throughout this whole thing was for the health of my grandparents - not whether they'd get COVID-19, but whether they would be able to receive care for existing things if the health system were severely overtaxed. However, my grandfather - who had already been in the hospital for an unrelated issue - passed away yesterday morning. Obviously I am sad, but in a way I am relieved that he did not die wanting for care in a system that could not accommodate him. I am also comforted by the fact that there were no restrictions in place on visitation at the time, so he was able to have a lot of family around him for the last couple days. I think restrictions on visitation will be coming soon.

    My mother and my aunt both work in health care (nurse practitioner and infectious disease lab tech) so they are both kind of ... girding themselves. My mother works at a long-term care center that is already being hit by influenza so she's told me she's more worried about that at the moment than she is about COVID-19 in our area, just because it's more immediately present.

    17 votes
    1. patience_limited
      Link Parent
      Condolences on your grandfather's passing... even when it's expected, it's painful. It sounds like your family is in positions of risk, and that's another source of anxiety. I hope you're able to...

      Condolences on your grandfather's passing... even when it's expected, it's painful. It sounds like your family is in positions of risk, and that's another source of anxiety. I hope you're able to receive the comfort and support you need when everything else is going crazy.

      11 votes
  3. post_below
    (edited )
    Link
    Western US... Schools closed, sports and gatherings of 250+ people cancelled. Only about 30 confirmed cases in the area but lack of testing and comparison to spread in places where testing is...

    Western US... Schools closed, sports and gatherings of 250+ people cancelled. Only about 30 confirmed cases in the area but lack of testing and comparison to spread in places where testing is available makes it reasonable to assume there are 100's or 1000's of actual cases and that a much larger outbreak is inevitable.

    Stores sold out of some dry goods, hand sanitizer, things you'd expect. Long lines at gas stations.

    The weirdest thing, everywhere it seems, is the toilet paper panic buying. Apparently the first thing people think about in a crises is their asshole.

    14 votes
  4. Algernon_Asimov
    (edited )
    Link
    Things are going insane here. Panic-buying is more endemic than the virus. It's impossible to buy toilet paper, tissues, or paper towel without conducting a determined planned mission. Hand...

    Things are going insane here.

    Panic-buying is more endemic than the virus. It's impossible to buy toilet paper, tissues, or paper towel without conducting a determined planned mission. Hand sanitiser is worth its weight in gold (it's being sold on eBay at highly inflated prices - and, yes, I bought some). Pantry staples like flour, rice, pasta, and canned goods are very difficult to come by.

    This has only accelerated this weekend after the federal government released guidelines on Friday that recommend people neither arrange nor attend non-essential public gatherings with more than 500 people from Monday. It's not a ban. It's just an advisory. But people are taking the hint. Major events are being cancelled: Sydney Easter Show, Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Australian Grand Prix (at literally the last minute!). Theatres are shutting down. Cinemas are reducing their sessions and their available seating. Football codes (football seasons are just starting) will play games with no audiences in stadiums.

    The government has announced a $17 billion economic stimulus package to keep people spending and to help companies keep people employed through the coming downturn. And, partly, to make sure that this coming quarter does not experience negative growth, so we don't have two quarters of negative growth in a row. The March quarter is expected to be negative due to the bushfires, so they're spending billions of dollars to make sure the June quarter is not negative (even if the growth is only 0.01%). They don't want to have a recession happen on their watch.

    Part of the stimulus package involves improving the availability of a sickness payment for casual workers who aren't entitled to paid sick leave (casuals make up about a third of our workforce). Permanent employees have paid sick leave. Professional contractors should have enough money put aside to get through. Casuals, who are mostly low-skilled, hospitality, and/or retail workers, do not have either paid sick leave or enough money put aside. The concern is two-fold: one, that they'll go broke if they have to stop working for a few weeks; two, that they'll therefore decide to continue working even if they're infected with the coronavirus, and spread it to their customers.

    Major employers are telling people to work from home. One of our largest companies, Telstra (a telco), has ordered 20,000 employees to work from home until at least the end of March. Other companies are making similar arrangements where & when they can.

    I was discussing the situation with my manager and she ended up practically ordering me to work from home as much as I can (I have a slightly elevated risk of complications if I catch the coronavirus, as does my housemate). The management will discuss similar arrangements for other people in the near future (it's only a small office - about 10 people).

    Some schools have closed, but only where there's a suspected case of the coronavirus. We've had no mass school closures yet, but medical experts are already hinting that these will happen.

    We've gone from "distant threat on the horizon" to "It's here!" in only 2 weeks. We have 200 confirmed cases here, and everyone knows we're on the brink of major community transmission (rather than importing cases). The panic button has been well and truly hit.

    EDIT: Pantry staples are very difficult "to come by", not "to come buy". Although, coincidentally, the typo worked!

    14 votes
  5. [6]
    moocow1452
    Link
    SE Michigan, it's bad. We have 25 confirmed cases, school's out for three weeks at least, and every restaurant I've ever visited is emailing me saying how they tote legit have my safety in prime...

    SE Michigan, it's bad. We have 25 confirmed cases, school's out for three weeks at least, and every restaurant I've ever visited is emailing me saying how they tote legit have my safety in prime concern. On top of that, my brother's surgery is cancelled, so he's taking it... well, and our internet is down to 1-4Mb depending on the speed test were using. On the other hands, I got a text from my boss that a work from home solution is in play and we will get details soon, and I set my computer to fold@home towards the coronavirus, cause it ain't doing nothing right now.

    I don't remember that much about 9/11, but I remember a bit more about the blackout two years later, and how there was this shared sense of, "what do we do now" and sitting out under the stars that night wondering if the world would come back on tomorrow. I guess that this is a little more turned on it's head, with the internet being available and your neighborhood a little more walled off to you, but I have a general sense of the same difference in the air. Mom's now off of teaching, robotics mentoring, and our Grandma's home is on lockdown, so she's doing Costco runs and stress watching Hallmark movies. Bro is still doing the college but online now, and I'm kinda being at the moment, trying to convince myself that normal sinus stuff that I have to deal with isn't necessarily the new plague.

    12 votes
    1. patience_limited
      Link Parent
      Fellow Michigander here, in the northern part of the state. There are no confirmed cases in the immediate area yet, but it's likely only a matter of days. All the current cases are in cities along...

      Fellow Michigander here, in the northern part of the state. There are no confirmed cases in the immediate area yet, but it's likely only a matter of days. All the current cases are in cities along the entire I-96 corridor, which implies community spread via local road travelers, not just from other countries or high-prevalence states.

      Schools, libraries, and public offices are closed by state order. Most local organizations have cancelled all events for the next month. Toilet paper is in now in short supply, no hand sanitizer to be found. 🙄

      Spouse was scheduled for a flight downstate this morning. A close friend is not doing well with chemotherapy, and he was determined to go because it may be a "last chance to see" situation. The airline cancelled the flight two hours before departure, and I'm not going to lie about feeling relieved.

      We went for a drive to walk in a state park instead, and were surprised at what was open and what wasn't in the towns we passed. It's clear many small businesses are desperately trying to make a little bank before everyone locks themselves indoors for the next few weeks. Seasonal businesses were still closed for the winter, and may reopen for tourists (if any) later than planned. The region's economy has significant dependence on tourism, and the lockdown could have serious impacts on people's livelihoods.

      We're both working from home, and the labile broadband availability/quality is painful. We're supplementing with 4G cellular service, but expect that may become erratic as well.

      5 votes
    2. [4]
      Algernon_Asimov
      Link Parent
      Pardon my ignorance, but I can't make head nor tail of what this means.

      I set my computer to fold@home towards the coronavirus

      Pardon my ignorance, but I can't make head nor tail of what this means.

      2 votes
      1. [3]
        moocow1452
        Link Parent
        The Folding@Home project is prioritizing Coronavirus projects right now. We have a team going if you're interested in starting out and you have a PC that you're willing to donate idle time for the...

        The Folding@Home project is prioritizing Coronavirus projects right now. We have a team going if you're interested in starting out and you have a PC that you're willing to donate idle time for the cause.

        8 votes
        1. [2]
          Algernon_Asimov
          Link Parent
          Thank you. If I understand this correctly, you've downloaded software onto your computer so someone else can use it to perform calculations. Is this like that SETI project where they used people's...

          Thank you.

          If I understand this correctly, you've downloaded software onto your computer so someone else can use it to perform calculations. Is this like that SETI project where they used people's computers to make a virtual super-computer?

          9 votes
  6. mrbig
    (edited )
    Link
    Brazil has now 121 confirmed cases. This is not much for a country with 209 million people. But God only knows how many cases we have that were not diagnosed. My state, Bahia, has a total of 7...

    Brazil has now 121 confirmed cases. This is not much for a country with 209 million people. But God only knows how many cases we have that were not diagnosed.

    My state, Bahia, has a total of 7 cases. Our paranoia right now is low to nonexistent. I went to a transportation center (bus + subway) today and saw exactly one person using a mask. And a dude in the spiritualist center was using a mask, but he was administering treatment to a bunch of people, traveled recently and was only concerned with possibly contaminating other people.

    President Jair Bolsonaro supposedly got the virus.

    11 votes
  7. [3]
    smoontjes
    Link
    Denmark went from 35 to 801 in 5 days. On Wednesday the government said that all schools and universities would close for 14 days (so far - everyone thinks it will be prolonged to at least a...

    Denmark went from 35 to 801 in 5 days.

    On Wednesday the government said that all schools and universities would close for 14 days (so far - everyone thinks it will be prolonged to at least a month). Restaurants, bars, cinemas, events, etc. are also closing/being cancelled. Everyone has been told to work from home if they can.

    Today they closed all borders and all hospitals must cancel unnecessary operations and whatnot. Only urgent matters will continue, such as cancer treatment and pregnancy related things etc.

    There have also been quite effective information campaigns from the health department which has helped quite a lot. Here's a graph of the spread of the past week or so - looks like it's plateauing as it went from 35 -> 90 -> 262 -> 514 -> 674 -> 801 -> 827. https://i.imgur.com/LeZKQq2.png

    Personally I have been doing school from home (teachers are putting assignments online) which really sucks as I miss my classmates, but it's of course better than going to school and then getting sick because of it.

    11 votes
    1. DanBC
      Link Parent
      Or going to school, and not feeling sick, and passing it to relatives who get sick.

      but it's of course better than going to school and then getting sick because of it.

      Or going to school, and not feeling sick, and passing it to relatives who get sick.

      8 votes
    2. vektor
      Link Parent
      That is a very quick turnaround for government measures. According to this, the chinese, due to diagnosing bottlenecks, had a 1.5 week delay between infections plateauing due to the lockdown and...

      That is a very quick turnaround for government measures. According to this, the chinese, due to diagnosing bottlenecks, had a 1.5 week delay between infections plateauing due to the lockdown and the slowing down of new diagnoses. Seeing as you were at 514 cases when strong measures were taken (my reading of your post), that's a really quick turnaround. That is to say, the fresh cases are being identified quickly, so that the drop is noticable quickly. Says good things about the number of unidentified cases.

      Argh, I'd really wish to see up to date stats on how many tests are being done in each country.

      5 votes
  8. imperialismus
    Link
    I got home to Norway on Tuesday after a short vacation abroad. In hindsight, I wouldn’t have gone, but the situation here has escalated extremely rapidly just in the past week. It was the first...

    I got home to Norway on Tuesday after a short vacation abroad. In hindsight, I wouldn’t have gone, but the situation here has escalated extremely rapidly just in the past week. It was the first real vacation abroad I’ve been on in five years, so it’s kind of a bummer. Like I said, I wouldn’t have traveled today, but it didn’t seem like an issue only one week ago. I was joking with my mother before going about the possibility of being quarantined when I got back, with the understanding that it was unlikely. On Thursday I found out I’m to isolate myself at home for two weeks. At least it’s still winter here, and I tend to spend a lot more time outside in the summer.

    Quoting myself from a different thread:

    This country is pretty much in lockdown right now. All the schools are closed from kindergarten up through university, all public events banned (the only thing that seems to gather people right now is press conferences about the virus), all the bars are closed as well as hairdressers, massage parlors and other businesses that require close physical contact, large parts of the population including myself are quarantined, everybody else is strongly encouraged to work from home if at all possible. Foreign nonresidents are turned away at the borders. All nonessential travel, domestic and abroad, is strongly discouraged. We’ve started rationing paracetamol.

    Thankfully my parents live in the same town and they’re not quarantined, so they’ll be bringing me groceries as needed. I didn’t see much hoarding in the stores when I got back, before I found out I’m to self-isolate, but my brother who lives in Oslo says the hoarding is pretty crazy there. Not just toilet paper, but also bread and other foodstuffs. Supermarkets were doing more business on Thursday (when the government announced far-reaching preventative measures) than they they do during before major holidays.

    Norway’s been hit pretty hard, we have over 1,000 confirmed cases and more cases than any other country per capita except Italy and a couple tiny countries like Iceland and San Marino. Most of the initial cases seem to have come from Italy and Austria, where a lot of people went on winter break, but it’s now endemic to the population. I hope the economy’s not hit too hard, as a huge number of businesses are currently considering layoffs.

    10 votes
  9. onyxleopard
    Link
    I live in Massachusetts in the northeastern US. The state’s website has a lot of information about COVID-19, including a monitoring page that lists a number of helpful statistics and is updated...

    I live in Massachusetts in the northeastern US. The state’s website has a lot of information about COVID-19, including a monitoring page that lists a number of helpful statistics and is updated daily. There is also a page about the State of Emergency declared by the governor on March 10th.

    Many schools and universities have closed for two weeks, or for the semester, and many businesses are asking employees to work from home. Still, I feel very confident that Massachusetts is acting responsibly and effectively to the situation. We have some of the best hospitals in the world here, and despite the large population in the Boston metropolitan area, I think given our strong local economy and communities, that we’ll weather this pretty well. I have much more faith in the MA state government at this point than the Federal Government, so I consider myself lucky to be where I am.

    9 votes
  10. JXM
    Link
    I’m in Florida (USA) and we’ve had a few confirmed cases in our area but it hasn’t been nearly as bad as some bigger metro areas. We have a major university here with a massive population of...

    I’m in Florida (USA) and we’ve had a few confirmed cases in our area but it hasn’t been nearly as bad as some bigger metro areas. We have a major university here with a massive population of foreign students (over 10,000). Luckily, we have one of the best hospitals in the country here. They just announced that schools (including the university) and libraries would be closed for the next two weeks.

    The big issue at the moment is finding supplies. Everyone made a run on the stores and cleaned out all of the fresh products (fruit, veggies, etc.) and the cleaning supplies.

    7 votes
  11. NoblePath
    Link
    Raleigh, NC checking in. Schools closed, state of emergency. Church closed. No tp anywhere, but plenty of food, people still out and about, restaurants open. We don’t shake hands or hug anymore. I...

    Raleigh, NC checking in.

    Schools closed, state of emergency. Church closed. No tp anywhere, but plenty of food, people still out and about, restaurants open. We don’t shake hands or hug anymore.

    I think our confirmed cases are in the tens statewide, I haven’t been paying attention because due to the lack of testing apparatus, they have to be wildly deflated.

    The awareness of this as an unusual, and scary, situation is totally in the air.

    7 votes
  12. [4]
    monarda
    Link
    This is what it has been like for me: I'm in the Puget Sound region (Seattle area). About two and a half weeks before our schools shut down, I got really sick and didn't have energy to go to...

    This is what it has been like for me:

    I'm in the Puget Sound region (Seattle area). About two and a half weeks before our schools shut down, I got really sick and didn't have energy to go to school for a week. By the time I was feeling like I could go to school, my school had sent out an email saying if you're sick stay home, and I sent a tart reply, "As long as the consequences of staying home if sick is solely on the student (time, grades, money), then then you will have sick students in school." A few hours later I got an email from the head of the my department who wanted to work with me to make sure I was able to finish out the quarter. I sent another email to the president of the school letting them know that if teachers had been instructed to work with students they might want to let their students know this. The next day they sent out another email letting students know if they are sick to reach out to their instructors and they will work with them. I like to think my email made a difference. In the end my school kept classes open but urged teachers to do online instruction if they could. All my classes moved online two weeks after I got sick, so I missed basically two weeks of school. One of those classes is a field based class where I had missed four field tests. I went from a 108% in the class to 54% and was stressing the heck out.

    In the mean time, I hadn't been shopping in over a month. I keep a pretty stocked house since we often lose power and we rely on wood heat. So my pantry is generally filled with dry goods since my county does a lot of panic buying every time the power goes out. We also have a chest freezer, but I hadn't been shopping in a while and needed things like OMG toilet paper. I was able to get one of the last 12 packs in the store. Upon check-out we were behind a man who had 3 carts filled with toilet paper, soda pop, and corn dogs. As soon as I saw it I had to turn away and started crying from holding in the laughter.

    On a more serious note, there was a thread in the Seattle subreddit where a student was wondering if they should go home since their school was closing and they needed to leave their dorm. They were worried about bringing corvid home. This prompted me to email my representative, my senators, the newspaper and the governor. Why the fuck are we sending young adults back to their states without testing them first if they desire? We're sort of an epicenter here in the states and it seems morally reprehensible to push thousands of young adults back home without offering them the opportunity to stay put until they are tested if they desire to be tested. I haven't heard anything back but that was Friday.

    My family praised trump's actions this week. I can't even.

    I have a friend going everywhere sick as shit who tells me her naturopath said she is fine. No she had no flu test. Her family believes god is using this to take out sinners. Again, I can't even.

    On a local level, my county here in the Puget Sound hasn't been hit that hard, but many are preparing for it, while others are poo pooing it. My family is hunkered down and know how to shower if we run out of toilet paper.

    7 votes
    1. [3]
      skybrian
      Link Parent
      So a bit of clarification: there are no screening tests that will prove you're safe. These are diagnostic tests, which are like a magic eight ball with only two choices: "Signs point to yes", and...

      So a bit of clarification: there are no screening tests that will prove you're safe. These are diagnostic tests, which are like a magic eight ball with only two choices: "Signs point to yes", and "Situation cloudy, ask again." In China, they often had to test sick patients multiple times to get a positive result.

      Here's example wording from a test's fact sheet for healthcare providers:

      When diagnostic testing is negative, the possibility of a false negative result should be considered in the context of a patient’s recent exposures and the presence of clinical signs and symptoms consistent with COVID-19. The possibility of a false negative result should especially be considered if the patient’s recent exposures or clinical presentation indicate that COVID19 is likely, and diagnostic tests for other causes of illness (e.g., other respiratory illness) are negative. If COVID-19 is still suspected based on exposure history together with other clinical findings, re testing should be considered in consultation with public health authorities.

      Risks to a patient of a false negative include: delayed or lack of supportive treatment, lack of monitoring of infected individuals and their household or other close contacts for symptoms resulting in increased risk of spread of COVID-19 within the community, or other unintended adverse events.

      They are still very useful for doctors who can combine them with other symptoms and for the government monitoring the situation, but for individuals they don't give the clear answer that we wish they did.

      It is an incredible failure that the US isn't doing much, much more testing, like South Korea. By testing all the students they maybe would have found some of them are carriers. But for the healthy individual, even if you got a negative test result, you shouldn't take it all that seriously. You still need to be careful and assume you could be a carrier.

      They said President Trump tested negative. So what? He could still have it. He shouldn't be shaking hands. None of us should.

      4 votes
      1. [2]
        monarda
        Link Parent
        Thank you for the information. I had no idea that there were so many false negatives. Is that just our testing, or is it worldwide?

        Thank you for the information. I had no idea that there were so many false negatives. Is that just our testing, or is it worldwide?

        2 votes
        1. skybrian
          Link Parent
          I have not seen any numbers about what the false negative rate actually is, and it seems like it would depend on the specifics of how they do the test. For example, one thing they're doing to try...

          I have not seen any numbers about what the false negative rate actually is, and it seems like it would depend on the specifics of how they do the test. For example, one thing they're doing to try to keep it down is taking multiple samples and testing both. Under the circumstances it seems like there isn't enough time to do a study, and it's somewhat besides the point. After all, you could catch it the day after the test for some other reason.

          3 votes
  13. moonbathers
    Link
    There are currently sixteen cases in Nebraska, all in and near the two major cities. Two or three weeks ago I made a run to the grocery store to stock up on some things just in case and it turned...

    There are currently sixteen cases in Nebraska, all in and near the two major cities. Two or three weeks ago I made a run to the grocery store to stock up on some things just in case and it turned out to be a good idea. I did that again on Thursday. I'm fortunate enough to be able to work from home so I'm going to start doing that this coming week.

    6 votes
  14. minimaltyp0s
    Link
    Small town in the North West of England. We have one official confirmed case so far. I just heard this evening of a death in a neighbouring area (this won't have been officially acknowledged at...

    Small town in the North West of England.

    We have one official confirmed case so far. I just heard this evening of a death in a neighbouring area (this won't have been officially acknowledged at the time I'm writing this though).

    Next week my work will go into BCP mode and we'll be asked to work from home for 7 days officially. Unofficially this will likely go on for 2 months at least.

    We were told that our local primary school is "ready to close" from next week. Nothing more on this yet though.

    My PT session in the gym this morning was a bit like a ghost town. My local sports club are "considering" their options - we expect the governing body will force their hand, as has happened with other sports like football.

    There's a lot of talk of panic buying in our supermarkets, but other than pasta and hand sanitiser things have been pretty much business as usual round here. I was talking to some of the staff in a Tesco and they were telling me that most people just seem to be buying 2 of things they might normally buy one of with only a small number of lunatics needing to be reigned in.

    6 votes
  15. spit-evil-olive-tips
    Link
    Checking in from Seattle, which has been the biggest hotspot in the US so far. All schools in Seattle and the neighboring counties are closed until at least April 24th. I've been stocking up on...

    Checking in from Seattle, which has been the biggest hotspot in the US so far.

    All schools in Seattle and the neighboring counties are closed until at least April 24th.

    I've been stocking up on food, which I really should have done anyway given the high risk that Seattle will eventually experience a catastrophic earthquake. The way things are going I'll be quite surprised if we don't have a "voluntary but strongly encouraged" type of restriction on unnecessary trips out in public within a week or two.

    There is some adaptation happening, which gives me a bit of hope. Canlis, for example, is an Old Seattle institution, one of the only restaurants around here which actually enforces a dress code (our symphony, for example, says it's just fine to wear Birkenstocks). Canlis closed their main dining room and are now doing drive-thru burgers and meal delivery.

    5 votes
  16. Kuromantis
    (edited )
    Link
    Looks like the state government here in São Paulo is gradually shutting down all the schools over next week. More free time for me I guess, although I have no idea what will happen to all those...

    Looks like the state government here in São Paulo is gradually shutting down all the schools over next week. More free time for me I guess, although I have no idea what will happen to all those school projects they passed me (awaits rant). Otherwise Noone (still) really cares all that much here.

    Edit: looks our state government will shut down all our museums, theaters, libraries and 'cultural centers' next day tomorrow and everyone over 60 that's working in anything funded by the government will work from home unless they work in the medical or police-related sectors and has advised (but not obligated) the private sector to do the same thing. Granted this still means most normal people will still go to work but it's definitely better than the US.

    Also I found an official statement and it appears that all those school projects will need to be ready when schools reopen so yeah.

    4 votes
  17. emdash
    (edited )
    Link
    New Zealand (the world's doomsday bunker), 8 cases, 0 deaths, all cases from tourists/imports. Life is pretty normal, but there's definitely less people out and about than normal. Lots of hand...

    New Zealand (the world's doomsday bunker), 8 cases, 0 deaths, all cases from tourists/imports.

    Life is pretty normal, but there's definitely less people out and about than normal. Lots of hand sanitiser and awareness posters out and about. I usually work from home or from a cafe anyway though, so my personal life won't change all that much. We had two new cases in two new regions yesterday though thanks to stupid people who decided it was a good idea to travel despite having been previously tested and awaiting results, so I suspect with today's announcement, the first local transmission cases will be announced.

    We're extremely lucky to be so isolated from the rest of the world, and have had time to watch this unfold in Europe, Australia, and the U.S. that I feel we're going to be significantly more prepared to spread the pain and stockpile healthcare resources for when inevitability strikes and the infection rate finally increases here too.

    We get updates at 1PM my time (in about 3 hours) so I'll update with the latest from our government then.

    EDIT: 0 new cases today. Tally remains at 8 cases, 0 deaths. We're very lucky.

    4 votes
  18. Grzmot
    Link
    Austria has gone pretty much on lockdown over the weekend: Schools and universities are closed, albeit children under 14 still can be dropped off at school if you have an important job to do and...

    Austria has gone pretty much on lockdown over the weekend:

    Schools and universities are closed, albeit children under 14 still can be dropped off at school if you have an important job to do and can't watch them yourself. Jobs that can have switched to home office, those that can't have given employees a forced vacation. Restaurants and bars are to remain closed till further notice, which has obviously dire consequences for a lot of places and employees, their future is still uncertain.

    People are to remain at home, unless they are doing vital tasks like buying groceries (supermarkets and pharmacies are the only stores permitted to remain open) or drugs, or helping someone who can't help themselves. You can only walk around alone in public or you might be fined.

    Toilet paper is kind of hard to come by, but it's definitely not as bad as in other countries. Food is well stocked.

    Austria still has military and civil service for men, and those of us who served in civil in the last five years have been called to volunteer back to our positions, with forced reactivation on the horizon, should the situation become more dire. Those currently serving have to keep serving until further notice. I completed my civil service 4 years ago in a hospital, I currently don't plan on volunteering, but there's a chance I might get called back in.

    4 votes
  19. Diet_Coke
    Link
    I'm in Virginia, in the US, about 120 miles south of D.C. Schools are closed, public spaces like museums and libraries are closed, businesses are choosing to close. Everyone gives March 31/April 1...

    I'm in Virginia, in the US, about 120 miles south of D.C.

    Schools are closed, public spaces like museums and libraries are closed, businesses are choosing to close. Everyone gives March 31/April 1 as their time they'll re-open but that's an incredibly optimistic timeframe IMO. We've gone from 18 confirmed cases to almost 50 in a few days, but that mainly speaks to the availability of testing. Grocery stores are crazy, people are definitely stressed out.

    It really seems to have gone from "it's just another flu" to being taken really seriously very quickly. My office hasn't started work from home yet but I'm hoping we will by the end of the week, even though I hate working from home. There are only about 30 of us but plenty of people have kids and several of my coworkers are old or obese and more likely to have complications from covid. Lots of cancelled vacation plans showed up on my calendar. Had to cancel my own trip to Texas which I planned for the week after next.

    4 votes
  20. cwagner
    Link
    Germany (5388 cases), Schleswig-Holstein (SH; 103), Lübeck. Just came back from a 70th birthday party by Bremen (53 cases). Around 25 people, 6 cancellations (including my sister and her boyfriend...

    Germany (5388 cases), Schleswig-Holstein (SH; 103), Lübeck.

    Just came back from a 70th birthday party by Bremen (53 cases). Around 25 people, 6 cancellations (including my sister and her boyfriend with their baby; Hamburg, 158 cases). There was some elbow-shaking, but many people hugged.

    SH closed all schools (with a 1-week exception for parents working in critical infrastructure), all pubs, bars and clubs are closed as well as pretty much all public events. Not sure if the (federal) legal limit is still 1000 people.

    For us personally, Saturday a friend was supposed to come from Hamburg, now we’ll have to see as with the current rates a lot can change in 6 days. End of the month a buffet with the English Stammtisch was planned, I’d say there’s a 0.1% chance of that happening. My wife and I wanted to have our late honeymoon in Italy next month, obviously we were able to stop even the planning a while ago.

    Otherwise, at least for us, not much will change. I work from home, my wife studies from home. We rarely go to big events (I hate large groups of people, she doesn’t care for them) and our only contact is grocery shopping.

    3 votes
  21. [8]
    Soptik
    (edited )
    Link
    Czech republic, 214 cases out of 4065 tested, first infected on 2020-03-01. The reaction here was... scary. When we reached about 30 infected (that's 0.000003% of our population), all schools were...

    Czech republic, 214 cases out of 4065 tested, first infected on 2020-03-01.

    The reaction here was... scary. When we reached about 30 infected (that's 0.000003% of our population), all schools were closed and all events over 100 people were banned. Everyone made fun of our government that they overreact. Two days ago, they banned all public places - such as pubs, cinemas, libraries, etc - except for certain shops and banned all events over 30 people. Yesterday, they closed our borders. Today, there will be meeting in about 4 hours when they'll decide whether to issue nation-wide quarantine.

    I'm angry about the school closing. Yes, it's scary, I get it. But I think that what they do is too much. I know, I'm the part of population that's extremely unlikely to get harmed by it, but still. I was about to have an equivalent of high school graduation in few months, which includes large and scary tests over everything I learned in past 8 years. And then they decide to close schools. I get why they are scared, but IMO, closing schools means that while we meet fewer people, we meet much more diversified set of people. And what about parents that can't work from home with young children? The people who will care about those children will be the elderly, which is the most endangered demographic. Why not make school optional, or at least allow people who are about to graduate to have classes in there. We still meet and learn together, but instead of school, where we have all the equipment we need, we meet in pubs and libraries. Which is much worse from every perspective in my opinion.

    Other than that, I stay at home pretty much all the time and try to learn over the internet (which is sooo annoying and much harder) or meet with friends. The global school closing achieved that pretty much everyone has time, so I can meet with people from the other end of our country easily. Those are people that I see twice a year, and I'm not going to give this up because of few hundred cases in our whole nation, and most people I know do the same. General population in my age views this as an inconvenient illness, not a dangerous pandemic that will kill everyone they love. And they are angry at the government for being this radical this early.

    3 votes
    1. [3]
      kclk
      Link Parent
      The whole mentality of "Me" or "This inconveniences me" is what will perpetuate this whole thing. I am in my 30's, and I will likely get COVID-19. I also have heart disease, so its a little scary...

      The whole mentality of "Me" or "This inconveniences me" is what will perpetuate this whole thing. I am in my 30's, and I will likely get COVID-19. I also have heart disease, so its a little scary for me.

      Social Isolation isn't about you, its about everyone. These may seem like "over-reactions" but the inverse of this would absolutely lead to even more deaths.

      If you flatten the curve, people who really need help can get it. We buy time for vaccines and learn better ways to combat the virus.

      Personally, I think closing bars/restaurants/theaters/etc is the best things we can do because people refuse to self-isolate. It sucks because the economy will take a hit, people lose their jobs, etc. But its necessary.

      9 votes
      1. [2]
        Soptik
        Link Parent
        I get why they close bars, restaurants, pubs. But I don't think closing schools was a good idea. IMO this endangers the most vulnerable part of population, because grandparents are those who are...

        I get why they close bars, restaurants, pubs. But I don't think closing schools was a good idea. IMO this endangers the most vulnerable part of population, because grandparents are those who are going to look after young kids when their parents have to work. I'd have no issue if this ban wasn't targeted at young children, but this brings more risk than reward.

        2 votes
        1. kclk
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          I am sorry that this has impacted you. I know that school is a big deal. You have worked very hard to get where you are right now and its unfortunate. However we have to do our best to stop...

          I am sorry that this has impacted you. I know that school is a big deal. You have worked very hard to get where you are right now and its unfortunate.

          However we have to do our best to stop putting our blinders up and breathe in the whole scope of it. This ban, or any bans doesn't target just one group. It targets all of us.

          My fiancée is a medical student. She was about to take a very important medical board examination in two weeks.

          It was cancelled.

          She is going to be applying to residencies very soon, so having this delay on a crucial board exam is quite the blow. I also have to fight with the airline company to try and get some of my fare back, which likely won't happen and I will be forced to take a voucher for a trip I really do not need/want to take. So I am out money.

          There are risks no matter what we do, but inaction or being too lax will only make it worse.

          Please take a look here if you haven't already. It does a great job explaining how this all works:

          https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/world/corona-simulator/

          6 votes
    2. vektor
      Link Parent
      Wuhan pulled the plug at ~500 or so confirmed cases. They now have 3000 dead bodies. Your government is being responsible. Your country is 2 weeks behind Italy, at your current infection rates....

      Wuhan pulled the plug at ~500 or so confirmed cases. They now have 3000 dead bodies. Your government is being responsible. Your country is 2 weeks behind Italy, at your current infection rates. (x2 every 2 days)

      A partial lockdown now is better than a full lockdown and 1000 dead in two weeks.

      Be responsible and encourage your peers to do the same.

      6 votes
    3. [2]
      Tygrak
      Link Parent
      Czech here too, I was a bit angry at the beginning, but I think banning the big events was a good move. The nation-wide quarantine is now confirmed, btw. I think our PM is trying to look really...

      Czech here too, I was a bit angry at the beginning, but I think banning the big events was a good move. The nation-wide quarantine is now confirmed, btw. I think our PM is trying to look really good, and I think in the beginning it actually even were sensible things to do. But the nation-wide quarantine is really really stupid, it really is a publicity stunt. First of all, it basically doesn't change anything, basically everything was banned already. Secondly Babiš (our PM) is trying to push a sneaky law (https://www.seznamzpravy.cz/clanek/babis-schytava-kritiku-ze-si-ve-stavu-nouze-pomaha-se-stretem-zajmu-93136) while everyone is distracted by this, which is disgusting. Thirdly, Babiš should be making sure that enough respirators and masks are ready for when more cases come, instead of doing this stuff.

      Is your Maturita going to be postponed because of this? I guess, we'll see how the world looks in a month or in how long Maturitas happen.

      5 votes
      1. Soptik
        Link Parent
        Oh hello Tygrak, nice to see you again. When they announced they were restricting free movement, I was scared that it’ll look like in the game This War of Mine, but as it is, it’s completely...

        Oh hello Tygrak, nice to see you again.

        When they announced they were restricting free movement, I was scared that it’ll look like in the game This War of Mine, but as it is, it’s completely unenforceable and has very small effect. Police is even banned to do traffic controls, altough I have no idea if that extends to normal in person checks as well.

        The restrictions are actually quite mild as well, it has the same effect as simply banning all events.

        I know about the law he tried to pass, and I’m just... angry, but not even that much surprised.

        We know nothing about Maturita. I personally think so, as the first part of exams is scheduled in three weeks. I do not believe we will handle this in time. But we have no guarantee yet.

        3 votes
    4. zptc
      Link Parent
      Keep in mind that 30 confirmed cases means the actual number of infections is definitely higher than that, including those who can transmit the illness but don't have symptoms.

      Keep in mind that 30 confirmed cases means the actual number of infections is definitely higher than that, including those who can transmit the illness but don't have symptoms.

      3 votes
  22. knocklessmonster
    Link
    Work closed, school is going all online as of Tuesday (still have to report tomorrow, and turn in one paper). Toilet paper is being hoarded, the stores are empty and closing early because people...

    Work closed, school is going all online as of Tuesday (still have to report tomorrow, and turn in one paper). Toilet paper is being hoarded, the stores are empty and closing early because people are flipping out. California is suggesting bars close.

    3 votes
  23. krg
    Link
    business as usual for me in Los Angeles, CA, USA. so far, no more than a new hot topic to discuss at bars. but, I'm single and live alone, so i don't really have to deal with school closures or...

    business as usual for me in Los Angeles, CA, USA. so far, no more than a new hot topic to discuss at bars. but, I'm single and live alone, so i don't really have to deal with school closures or worry about running out of toilet paper.

    2 votes
  24. [3]
    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link
    I won't share my general location since that's too identifying for me to be comfortable, but I'm in an area of the United States where this coronavirus has quickly gone from distant possibility to...

    I won't share my general location since that's too identifying for me to be comfortable, but I'm in an area of the United States where this coronavirus has quickly gone from distant possibility to latent threat. We went from a school administrator saying they didn't believe we would be impacted by it at all to schools shutting down a mere 48 hours later.

    I have a wonderful and forward-thinking husband who started preparing us weeks ago, so I feel okay in my household, but I have to admit that, before they called off school, I was a bundle of nerves. I actually fought off a panic attack during one of my classes on my last day there. In November, I was out of work and bedridden for over a whole week with a debilitating respiratory illness which got joined by opportunistic ear and eye infections. It was awful, excruciating, and the sickest I've ever personally been. This week, all I could see was how many surfaces students were touching and sharing, how crowded the hallways were, and how quickly something like this novel coronavirus can spread here, with flashbacks to my severe similar illness from a few months ago. Given our geographic proximity to confirmed COVID-19 cases, I think the likelihood that it was already in my school was high, so all I could picture was its potential spread across all of these children and, consequently, all of them taking it home to their families -- especially because many of my students live with or are under the care of their grandparents, who are especially vulnerable. It made me physically, debilitatingly ill to think about it.

    After fighting off my panic attack, I put in for sick days moving forward, partially because it was clear I was in no place to be leading classes of students, partially because I wanted to limit my own personal exposure (and consequently exposure for my husband), and also because I thought it was irresponsible of leadership that we hadn't closed schools by now. I felt much more comfortable once I got home and especially after our schools closed. Both of these eased my mind considerably, but I will continue to have a low-burn anxiety throughout all of this. I really hope I am overreacting.


    My husband and I are going all-in on social distancing. We have enough food and supplies that we could probably survive a full month in our house without feeling stressed, and we've cancelled all optional in-person plans. My husband's work is attempting to figure out a distance work plan, but we're considerably less worried even if he has to go in, as he shares an isolated building with only a few other people, each of whom has their own space. As a teacher, I was at a very high risk for acquiring the virus, so I feel infinitely better now that I am not going into work. We're not out of the woods yet, as I could still be exposed/carrying and in the asymptomatic period, but I've also spent all week limiting my contact with seemingly everything, washing my hands, and teaching my students about proper hygiene and social distancing practices. Hopefully that pays off for me and them as well.

    Beyond my personal situation, I'll say that one of my frustrations this week was my attempt to communicate the potential severity of this situation to all audiences. Aside from the developmental factors behind kids having a limited scope and understanding of something like this, my students also live on digital diets of memes and junk information. As such, they value jokes and entertainment in such a way that it inhibits their ability to take anything seriously. In fact, paradoxically, coronavirus has an alluring quality for many of them, because in their socially-driven world, attention is oxygen, and this is something that is getting a lot of attention.

    Adults, on the other hand, seemed to politicize the issue, turning it into a sort of right vs. left, red vs. blue, Dems vs. Trump thing. I spent a lot of time telling my coworkers "this has nothing to do with where we are politically and everything to do with the idea that I want you, your kids, and your parents all to be safe." A lot of them put stock in the low number of reported cases and point to the ratio of confirmed infected to population size as a comfort.

    I tried to explain the issues with this kind of thinking in a lot of different ways before landing on one that seemed to resonate, even among skeptical people. I would say to someone that I wanted to measure an object (e.g. a desk), but all I had was a ruler. I'd then lay the ruler out and note that the item was longer than the ruler, but I don't know by how much. I'd then explain that if I report the length of the object as "only a foot", then that's a junk mismeasurement based on the limitations of the tool I was using. We can clearly see that the length of the item is greater than a foot, even if we don't know by how much. This, I would then explain, is exactly what is occurring right now with regard to tests, because we know they are in limited supply, and we know that there is a delay in the onset of symptoms after exposure. After doing this with one coworker, her response was simply "shit -- those numbers were the last comfort I had in all of this."


    By Thursday people were starting to take my evangelizing seriously, and by Friday a lot of my coworkers were seeing the need to acquire supplies and cancel travel plans. I still don't think they get the full gravity of social distancing, but I'm going to continue to nudge where appropriate now that everyone is more receptive. I sincerely hope I'm overreacting, but at this point I'm not willing to take chances. When I pull up the map, I see confirmed cases in nearly every country now, When I pull up the news, I see country after country having to take increasingly severe measures to limit its spread. Its global presence and response are completely unprecedented. I haven't experienced anything close to it in my lifetime.

    The "business as usual" mindset has pervaded a lot of leadership decisions both in government and companies, and it's clear that many in management are acting like this will be a simple one or two week disruption. I don't know whether this is done out of ignorance or as a way of easing a rising panic (likely both), but at this point I think it's clear that things will be disrupted for much longer at a minimum. I would honestly be surprised if I returned to school before May at this point.

    2 votes
    1. [2]
      vektor
      Link Parent
      Pleeease tell me this was one of the conservatives politicizing this thing, completely on a Fox News diet. Please tell me the mainstream media are reporting on how atrocious your govt's knowledge...

      After doing this with one coworker, her response was simply "shit -- those numbers were the last comfort I had in all of this."

      Pleeease tell me this was one of the conservatives politicizing this thing, completely on a Fox News diet. Please tell me the mainstream media are reporting on how atrocious your govt's knowledge of the situation is.

      1 vote
      1. kfwyre
        Link Parent
        No, she's just a busy new mom juggling a full-time job and caring for her child. I did talk about the political divide I saw with my coworkers here. Right now I actually think that politicizing...

        No, she's just a busy new mom juggling a full-time job and caring for her child. I did talk about the political divide I saw with my coworkers here.

        Right now I actually think that politicizing it, even to criticize Fox News or Trump or people hoarding toilet paper or people being ignorant or people going into panic or any other finger-pointing that is popular, is the wrong move. It makes the outbreak blend in to the constant drone of partisan noise and scapegoating that Americans have been hearing constantly for years now and are effectively numb to. It memes this outbreak, creating cathartic micro moments (I didn't hoard toilet paper like those other scumbags!) which feel like action but do nothing of substance in the grand scheme of things. I'm of the belief that the only important message right now is to convey to people what they can do to contain the spread of this and protect themselves, their families, and their communities.

        This does not mean that anyone is above criticism -- only that I feel that criticism can come at a later date. Any time spent criticizing is better spent right now informing others and emphasizing the severity of this instead, because we are at a point where every moment we delay makes things worse. I understand fully that much of our delay comes from people who have willfully downplayed what's occurring, and that's unconscionable, but focusing messaging on them still doesn't prepare the general public for what they need to do, and that is by far the most important message at this point.

        3 votes
  25. Kuromantis
    Link
    Mildly offtopic but this should probably be a recurring thread.

    Mildly offtopic but this should probably be a recurring thread.

    8 votes