Monday, April 27, 2020

Victor Davis Hanson: COVID-19 and the Lessons of History

HooverInstitution - Recorded April 9, 2020, 11AM PST

Hoover Institution Fellow Victor Davis Hanson on COVID-19 and the Lessons of History.

The Hoover Institution presents an online virtual briefing series on pressing policy issues, including health care, the economy, democratic governance, and national security. Briefings will include thoughtful and informed analysis from our top scholars.


Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution; his focus is classics and military history.

12:05 COVID-19 is the first epidemic where models were developed without knowing the actual number of people that are affected. Models are used to predict potential impact in terms of number of deaths and are used in developing public policy. If the model is not based on good (or no) data, its predictions are off and public policy decisions have the potential to be wrong. If the number of affected people is 10 times higher than predicted, the number of deaths per thousand is 10 times less.

14:20 Models have consequences. Dire warnings make people hysterical and they take drastic measures.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Doctors provide differing opinion on shelter-in-place order, say county ...

Bakersfield, California (April 23, 2020) - DOCTORS DISAGREE WITH SHUTDOWN: Doctors Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi of Accelerated Urgent Care refuse to wear masks outside. They say the longer people stay inside the more their immune system drops. They're calling for Kern to reopen immediately. PART 2 of the interview is HERE: Link to the original article.

Tonight (April 27, 2020) Laura Ingraham interviewed Doctors Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi of Accelerated Urgent Care in Bakersfield, California, who claim that Californians should no longer be required to shelter-in-place because of COVID-19. At the end of Ingraham's show, she indicated that a YouTube video of the doctors which had gone viral had just been removed by YouTube. See the report at my MediaFile blog. Because YouTube might also censor this video of the doctors' interview, I'm providing a summary below. (Any errors in the transcription are my fault.)

0:00 - Dr. Erickson indicated that he and Dr. Massihi are providing findings from their own research and observations of the COVID-19. Their company is the main COVID testing center in Kern County, California. They have done over 5000 tests for COVID-19 in Kern County.

Since the beginning of the Coronavirus pandemic, more data has been gathered including a study in Santa Clara County, California. Their study and the study from Santa Clara show that the number of people with COVID-19 has been under reported, so that in fact the per capita death rate is much lower than feared.

2:30 - Because hospitals in Bakersfield are not seeing patients with other diseases or doing elective surgeries, the hospital floors are shutting down and doctors and nurses are being furloughed. When COVID is over, there may be a backlog of patients, many with serious illnesses. Patients with cancer and hypertension are not coming in because they are afraid they might get COVID at the hospital, Erickson said.

3:20 - Typically in an epidemic, the sick are quarantined, not the healthy. With COVID-19 the land was shut down when not all the facts were known. Now that more data is available the country should be opened up.

In Kern County 5213 people have been tested. There were 340 cases, 6.5% of those tested. These numbers are similar to the ordinary flu. In California over 200,000 people have been tested. Of these 33,865 tested positive, about 12%. If these figures (12%) were used to extrapolate to the larger population of almost 40 million, there would be about 4.7 million cases in California. There have been 1227 deaths in California, 0.03 percent of those infected. No more than the common flu. 

6:13 - As more tests are taken it might show that more people test positive, but the death rate would stay the same. 

New York State has had 256,000 cases. Of those tested 39% were positive. If the figure 39% were used for the population of 25 million, the number of deaths (19,410) in New York would be 0.1% of those infected.  92% have recovered without going to the hospital. 

In the USA of 4 million people tested, 19.6% have been positive (802,590 cases). The numbers are similar to the flu, which kills 20,000 to 50,000 people a year. Business is not shut down for the annual flu. 

11:20 - A flu vaccine is available, but how many people get the vaccine - maybe 50%.

12:34 - In Spain, of a population of 47 million, 930,000 have been tested with 22% positive. The death rate is 0.05% (21,282). 90% recovered without going to the hospital.

16:30 - Sweden has not been quarantined; businesses have stayed open, while the sick have been told to stay home and others have followed social distancing guidelines. Of a population of 10.4 million, there have been 15,200 cases and 1765 deaths. Twenty-one percent have tested positive, suggesting the total with the virus was 2 million cases. In California, where the people have been isolated, there have been fewer deaths (about 1220). The population is almost 4 times greater.

14:04 - In neighboring Norway, where people were quarantined, of 71,000 tested, 4.9 % were positive. Of a  population of 5.4 million, there were 182 deaths (0.03%). Did these figures necessitate a shut down and furloughing doctors?

15:15 - The secondary effects of COVID-19 have been devastating and long-lasting. The amount of child molestation and spousal abuse has increased. Alcoholism and suicides have increased. Education has been dropped and the economy with millions of unemployed has been devastated. And this because of a flu that has been no worse than the common flu. (Numbers of deaths are not over the figures from 2017-2018 when 40,000 to 50,000 people died.)

17:30 - Another effect of the quarantine of healthy people has been the impact on immune systems. When people are not allowed to get out among other people, they do not build up immunity to the virus. Immunity is developed by touching objects and other people and by touching the face.

32:00 - More testing is needed because maybe up to 25% of people will prove to be asymptomatic. Typically, people develop resistance to disease through herd immunity, where people are exposed to the virus and most survive. By locking down people are not protected against opportunistic infections. 

36:00 - Conclusions - We no longer need to shelter in place; we no longer need to keep businesses closed. Measures need to be taken to prevent this kind of closure from happening again. The secondary effects have been devastating. We need to quarantine the sick, not the healthy. We should do more testing of people, so the sick can be isolated. 

43:00 - Testing of workers should start with the food industry. The virus remains for three days on plastic. The virus has been brought into homes on packaging when shopping or fast food pickup. There is no sense behind the decisions to keep big businesses open when small businesses are closed.

Monday, April 06, 2020

Chicago Fire Dept. & The Snorkel (circa 1965)

A special thanks to our first responders who are making a difference during the COVI-19 pandemic. 

Consider a career on the front line. 

Go to UVU Emergency Services Department for more information.

Grocery Shopping Tips in COVID-19 Revised (March 31, 2020) www.DrJeff...

Grocery Shopping Tips in COVID-19 Revised (March 31, 2020)

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Coronavirus - Protect yourself and family by supporting your immune system

Start viewing at 12:10 minutes to find out more about techniques to manage stress and support immunity.

March 25, 2020 - On this edition of LifeWave NOW, cohosts Jim Caldwell and Paula Shaw bring on LifeWave CEO David Schmidt to talk about what steps the company is taking regarding the Coronavirus and its effects, and what viewers can do to protect themselves and their families.

For more information, contact

Monday, March 23, 2020

Pandemic Case Study: 35 die in Washington state nursing home

Use the Wall Street Journal article to provide background information for a pandemic case study.

A case study should have the following sections.

  • Background information
  • Problem statement
  • Data analysis
  • Alternative solutions
  • Evaluation of solutions
  • Recommendations
  • Implementation plan
  • References
  • Appendices (other related information, charts, tables, etc.)

Reference: Elizabeth Koh, Jon Kamp and Dan Frosch. (March 23, 2020). One nursing home, 35 Coronavirus deaths: Inside the Kirkland disaster. The Wall Street Journal. 

Thursday, March 19, 2020

What to do in an earthquake

Fallen debris is seen at a building in Salt Lake City after an earthquake on Wednesday, March 18, 2020.Spenser Heaps/The Deseret News via AP
Salt Lake City, Utah (March 18, 2020) - An early morning 5.7 magnitude woke up some residents along Utah's Wasatch front. Aftershocks continued throughout the day. By the evening some 60 aftershocks had occurred. 50,000 residents were without power. Damage was minimal and no injuries were reported.

However, a number of buildings were damaged and some falling debris landed on the streets and sidewalks. Downtown workers who were not home already because of the corona virus were told to stay home.

In an earthquake, the best advice is DROP,  COVER, and HOLD ON. Get under a desk or a table, not in a doorway.

Even in a taller building, Utah Emergency Management recommends it is better to stay indoors until the earthquake has stopped. Then, go out only if you are going to move to a safer location.

When thousands of people were evacuated from the Salt Lake City airport, it was only after it was deemed safe to go outside.

Utah responds to 5.7 earthquake: Salt Lake International Airport closes ...

Scientist David Schmidt provides COVID-19 options


Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Utah has a magnitude 5.7 earthquake

Utah PIO Association (March 18, 2020)

Dr. Keith Koper of the University of Utah Seismograph Stations explains the magnitude of the 5.7 earthquake in Utah today.

The best sources for information are:

@UtahEmergency on Twitter
UtahEmergency on Facebook
University of Utah Seismograph Stations
Utah Geological Survey


Myth: Officials are predicting a larger earthquake in the next 30 minutes.
Fact: Earthquakes cannot be predicted. However, we are 95 percent certain that the earthquake this morning was the main quake.

Myth: Officials (FEMA) are telling people to evacuate
Fact: They are not. This was a strong earthquake, but see actual sources above. We expect to see some damage, but we will get through this

Myth: Shut off your natural gas
Fact: Only shut it off if you hear or smell gas escaping.

Myth: Get in a doorway.
Fact: It's better to get under a table or desk.

Myth: Earthquakes can be predicted. They cannot be predicted, however, we expect that the earthquake we felt today was the largest one of the sequence. That is true in 95% of earthquakes.

Preparedness tip:

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Utah plans to combat Coronavirus

Announcements from Gov. Gary R. Herbert, the Utah COVID-19 Community Task Force, the Utah Department of Health, and the Utah Association of Local Health Departments

March 12, 2020

These proactive measures to limit the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Utah communities are effective for the next two weeks beginning on Monday, March 16, 2020. At that time, the Utah Coronavirus Task Force will re-evaluate these recommendations to determine the most appropriate actions we need to take as a state to keep Utahns healthy. 
Limit mass gatherings of more than 100 people if everyone in the group is healthy, including church. 
This includes gatherings such as church and religious services, concerts, conferences, and other events or places where large numbers of people gather together. 
This recommendation does not currently apply to public K-12 grade schools. We ask that local school districts and schools with closely with their local health officers on a case-by-case basis to determine if or when it is appropriate to close schools. 
If you are immunocompromised or have underlying medical conditions which put you at an increased risk for severe symptoms of COVID-19, you should not attend any mass gatherings. 
Stay home if you are sick. We ask employers for leniency and tolerance for employees who are sick and need to stay home to help prevent the spread of this disease. 
If you are older than the age of 60 or are immunocompromised, you should limit your participation in groups of more than 20 at a time. 
Anyone who is immunocompromised or who has underlying medical conditions which puts them at an increased risk for severe symptoms for COVID-19 should avoid gatherings with 20 or more people. This recommendation does not apply to businesses. 
If you can work from home, we are asking business leaders to implement teleworking as soon as possible. 
Businesses should allow employees to telework immediately, if feasible. We encourage business leaders to make teleworking available to as many employees as possible and expand what they may already be doing in this regard. 
Long-term care facilities will have restricted or screened access. 
Local health departments must protect our most vulnerable citizens. We ask that local health departments work closely with long-term care facilities to restrict visitor access and monitor employees and visitors for symptoms of COVID-19. 
All Utah Systems of Higher Education institutions are ‘going digital’. Campuses and campus services will remain open. Labs will still be held. 
Encourage social distancing and travel restrictions for students, employees, and staff. Restrict nonessential travel for employees. School-sponsored events and gatherings should be canceled. Classes will be conducted online as immediately as possible 
K-12 schools (public, charter, private) are being asked to prepare to close. There is a 3 tiered plan in place for this, called “Ready, Set, Go.” 
Closing a school is a local decision supported by the state and public health officials. The decision to close a school should not be made out of fear or anxiety but rather in close coordination with your local health officer. Do not close schools unless there is an imminent threat to students and staff and in close coordination with your local health officer. Additional guidance on school closures is forthcoming. 
All school related out-of-state travel is canceled. Extracurricular activities will be evaluated by local health officers in consultation with schools. Schools should begin planning to postpone or cancel large school-sponsored events and gatherings, such as assemblies, conferences, sporting events, etc. again, in consultation with their local health officer. Consider staggering recesses, lunch times, and the start and end times of school dismissal so students aren’t gathered in large numbers at one time. 
Teachers and staff should amplify hygiene measures in the classroom such cleaning high-touch surfaces regularly and having students wash their hands more frequently before and after lunch, recess, etc.

Mardons: Science shows benefits of prayer and meditation

Mardons: Science shows benefits of prayer and meditation

When used in conjunction with other healthy habits, such as a nutritious diet and regular exercise, spiritual practice can bolster the immune system and quiet the mind. If Canada follows suit with Europe and Asia by closing public spaces, solitary prayer and meditation is a compelling alternative to social worship and may help Canadians stay healthy in body and mind.

Austin and Catherine Mardon

Utah response to Coronavirus