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Independent Community & Health Concern Caring for the Community in Wyre Forest
Coronavirus Wash your hands more often
Find out more at nhs.uk/coronavirus
Coronavirus is a serious illness that can make you very ill. The best way to not catch it is to wash your hands more often for 20 seconds. Use soap and water or a hand sanitiser when you: Get home or into work Blow your nose, sneeze or cough Eat or touch food PROTECT YOURSELF & OTHERS
CORONAVIRUS
Neil Morris Ferguson OBE FMedSci
Professor Neil Ferguson of Imperial College (or “professor lock-down” as he is now known) has had the code he used to form the basis of “the Boris science” described as “deeply riddled” with bugs, “a fairly arbitrary Heath Robinson machine”, with “huge blocks of ‘bad practice code’ “.. quite possibly the worst production code I have ever seen”. Not only that, but the model’s software is a 13-year-old, 15,000-line program that simulates homes, offices, schools, people and movements which, according to a team at Edinburgh University which ran the model, gives different outputs (results) if it is run on different machines, and even if it is run on the same machine using different numbers of central-processing units. Worse, the code does not allow for large variations among groups of people with respect to their susceptibility to the virus and their social connections. Still, such disparities will come as nothing new to “professor lockdown” .. his previous ‘guesstimates’ include .. the culling of 6 million livestock (2001) – which was criticised by epidemiological experts as “severely flawed” the prediction of up to 136,000 deaths from mad cow disease 200 million deaths from bird flu 65,000 deaths from swine flu. The final death toll in each case was in the hundreds. Swedish experience of the modified model that Imperial put into the public domain predicted 40,000 deaths by May 1. Just 15 times too high. The proper use of models is to test theories of complex systems against facts. The use of models for forecasting and policy requires that they are accurate. People are losing confidence with the Imperial College model. At the time of the lockdown, the model had not been released to the scientific community; then, when Ferguson finally released his code - last week - it was a reorganised program - quite different from the version he used on March 16th. So .. changed methodologies, no peer review, hardly any disclosure .. hardly ‘science’ .. more “Weird Science” Almost two centuries ago Thomas Huxley described the “great tragedy of science is the slaying of a beautiful hypothesis by an ugly fact.” Have we based one of the biggest peacetime policy decisions on crude mathematical guesswork? With thanks to Matt Ridley .. 'How Innovation Works' (published in June) & David Davis MP (Con) ____________________________________________________________________________

Statistics can also be casualties

The UK virus ‘casualty’ figures (now) include deaths outside of hospital – which makes the UK appear to be worse-performing than other European countries – and which some biased politicians are exaggerating the importance of. Italy. “Because Lombardy’s intensive care units were already filling up within days of Italy’s first cases, many primary care physicians tried to treat and monitor patients at home, putting patients on supplemental oxygen (commonly used for home cases in Italy) but which strategy proved deadly. These home deaths are unrecorded in the nationally published figures.” [Associated Press] Spain 57 per cent of the country’s Covid-19 death toll is care-home-related [Spanish government report] and, once again, such figures are not published alongside the hospital statistics. Data reveals that the majority of Spain's death tolls came in their care-homes and, like Italy, investigations are being launched into their “care-homes massacre” (their description). Last month, a leaked estimate was considered so devastating that the public prosecutor in Milan is now formally investigating what the WHO has described as a care-homes ‘massacre’. The Milan prosecutor regards official mortality totals as representing “.. a staggering underestimate of the true death toll.” So when “politicians” (and certain “newspaper reporters”) pontificate about the situation in British care homes, be sure that we are comparing like statistics with like. ___________________________________________________________________________

“Weird Science” ?

Lockdown - Act Two

[It’s rather like being transferred from Belmarsh to Ford . it looks different .. fewer bars .. but you’re still in prison.] New Lockdown Rules and Regulations The Prime Minister has announced a three-step lockdown plan that will see the UK released from the current restrictions. Step One begins tomorrow, Monday, with unlimited exercise allowed and the public encouraged to go back to work if they cannot work from home. From Wednesday, people will be allowed to spend unlimited amounts of time outside for leisure purposes, as long as they practice social distancing. Boris Johnson urged people to avoid using public transport when they start to return to work, warning them that capacity on trains and buses will be severely reduced to comply with strict social distancing measures. Bicycle racks will be increased in number with £2bn funding to scale up the country's cycling infrastructure .. and extra car-park spaces provided by employers (?) A new logo is revealed _ The old, ‘dangerous’ logo The new, ‘friendlier’ logo There is a 5-point, colour-coded scale indicating our position between disaster and the return of ‘normality’ _ “Simples” _________________________________________________________________________
From Wednesday [13/05/20] all workers are being urged to return to duties in sectors such as food production, construction, manufacturing, logistics, distribution and scientific research in laboratories. Work From Wednesday, people in England should work from home 'wherever possible' for the 'foreseeable future', to 'minimise the number of social contacts across the country' - although the rules in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will not necessarily be the same. The only exceptions to this are those workplaces such as hospitality and non-essential retail which during this first step the Government is requiring to remain closed. Businesses should follow 'COVID-19 Secure' guidelines 'as soon as practicable'. Anyone who displays symptoms should isolate as was advised before. Schools The 'rate of infection remains too high' to allow reopening of schools 'for all pupils' but there is a 'large societal benefit' from vulnerable children and the offspring of key workers attending school. Local authorities and schools should urge more children who would benefit from attending in person to do so.. Travel Everybody (including critical workers) should continue to avoid public transport wherever possible' & cycle, walk or drive. Moves are under way to widen pavements, create pop-up cycle lanes, and close some roads in cities to traffic to enable other social-distancing friendly transport methods. Face coverings “Face coverings will help people avoid transmitting the disease to others if they have it without any symptoms,” even using home-made cloth face-coverings (but not to be used by those with respiratory conditions). Public spaces Once-a-day restriction on exercise is lifted and you can spend time outside with one other person outside your household, as long as you stay two metres apart. Tennis or golf with another person is now allowed. Team sports are still off limits, as are playgrounds and outdoor gyms. People may travel as far as they want to get to outdoor spaces, and are permitted to stop and sunbathe as long as they keep two metres from anyone not in their own household, meaning people can drive to the beach and park, before sunning themselves. Step Two will not be implemented until June 1 at the earliest and the Government will give at least 48 hours notice that changes are to be made. __________________________________________________________________________