Coronavirus: The Calm Before The Storm?

Good updates on the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic (aka covid-19) are becoming harder to obtain as governments tighten their grip on news sources.

The data being shared, particularly by the Chinese, are increasingly hard to believe. They don't match the massive response the government is undertaking.

Likewise, outside of China, reported cases remain lower than we would expect given the powerful R0 (i.e., infectiousness) of the virus, as well as its long asymptomatic incubation period.

Are we being intentionally kept in the dark?

Quite possibly. Chris walks through the possible reasons why, and points to the stock markets as a prime example of disinformation.

They’re currently being used to send an “everything is fine” signal, while in reality, the global economy is taking multiple gut punches from the disruption of the many supply chains dependent on China’s (currently quarantined) workers.

Is this current period of puzzling silence from officials the calm before the storm?

Be sure to stay up-to-date on Peak Prosperity’s ongoing full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak by visiting here.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

I think before we see Covid19 take off we’ll see another epidemic come to a head. If it’s true that 97% of pharmaceuticals the US uses are manufactured in China, which is basically grinding to a halt, then Opioids are going to run out long before the virus takes hold of any community in the US.
Honestly just thinking about that is actually more scary to me then the virus at the moment. Can you imagine millions of Americans going into withdrawl at the same time?
Can anybody verify this by looking at some of the more popular opiates (somebody here must have a bottle or 2 at home considering how vast the problem is) and seeing where they are manufactured? I tried the ol’ google, but nothing came up as to where opiates are manufactured.

Great idea Chris, next to a thermometer, a pulse oximeter is one of the most helpful pieces of medical equipment to have around the house.
If all you needed to do was self-check to keep you and your family out of the hospital then this is the way to go.

Personally if anyone is or takes care of any elderly/at risk individuals. A bottle of oxygen a mask and knowledge of how to use it could be life saving if our health care providers get swanped.
Also has anyone else been keeping a closer eye on the global infection rate rather than the chinese one?

Some of the opioids come from KVK Tech. The company claims all operations are in the US, but the company also states that they are in the minority in that respect.
I know the opioid addiction is one of the major problems that our society has chosen to single out for constant attention, but there are far larger problems that remain unaddressed and are not discussed or reported.
When it comes to health issues, the elephant in the room is poor diet/nutrition… hands down. The WHO lists poor diet as the number one cause of death, killing 40,000 people per day world wide. Deaths in the US, per day, due to the American diet, are well North of 5,000 per day.
In 2018, in the US, drug overdoses averaged 185 per day, or approximately 3% of the deaths due to eating pizza, big macs and cheetos.
We constantly read in the news about the opioid crisis. Have you ever read about the diet crisis?
As concerning as the Covid-19 pandemic is, it will have to kill around 15 million people per year, world wide, to take over as the number one cause of death.

I figure the next 2-3 weeks will tell just how far the government is will to go with the cover up. By the middle of March I don’t think they can keep the lid on it.

Just wanted to share that I was recently informed, by someone that I trust who is in a senior position in a multinational travel/medical business, that the official number of persons infected in Australia is being under reported. The number of infected here is 15, which hasn’t changed for weeks. No other information was provided and I assume this will continue while our government attempts to contain the spread. Most likely happening across the globe in my opinion.

I find it hard to believe that New Zealand doesn’t have an infection yet.

In addition to the lack of opiates you pointed out, I’m curious about how many people will be going off their anti-depressant drugs and what that might look like.

Hi Les, I would agree with you that the standard American inflammatory diet (SAD) is in and of itself a train wreck even without the virus and it’s not going to be helpful moving forward.

Well, it goes without saying I’m not a doctor, nor do I play one on the internet, nor did I stay at a Motel 6 last night. So, a question: according to the clinical protocol you referenced, I’d go straight to serious intervention with a SpO2 <93%, which you indicated was not that low? And be considered sickly with a temp of 99.14’, only 1/2’ above “normal”? Seems kind of extreme…Where did this protocol originate? Is this some of that misinformation the WHO is warning us about? ;^) My sweetheart thinks it’s a cheap way to get us all sequestered in FEMA camps…HaHa…Aloha, Steve
ps- but really- origination of that protocol?
Which would put the increase at about a 1.2 degree rise.

I know its hard to not take offense that officials claim all this misinformation, when they actually are the ones spreading misinformation. They speak very hidden and ambiguously. They have redesigned the CDC page on the virus to make no logical sense to compartment different concepts and notes. Its hard to find and understand the importance. Its really gobble gook. It says nothing about nothing. Its basically saying we dont know- but we know enough that its not any different than the flu and dont worry - because its a mild illness. and you dont even have to worry about the spread unless you are in close contact of individual diagnosed and confirmed. or been to china( tell that to the guys that got in a taxi… and the guys at the ski resort) AND that there is no evidence that this can spread from surfaces and that it does live long on those surfaces… In fact just moments… or minutes… ( not the 5-9 days that have been found in studies ) or 28 days found in other corona viruses… ( but according to the CDC - it doesnt even live as long at the flu ( up to 72 hours ) ) … So again, nothing to see here… Everyone else is misinformation… but here we are telling the truth - you cannot get this in a cab or from surfaces - it dies almost instantly. – you have to have been to china in contact with exotic animals or very close contact ( 6 ft or less ) to known victims… AND it is spread when people sneeze or cough on you… !! ( not when people are asymptomatic - as china officials have been claiming for weeks ) Basically you see what that is - its kills only weak sick people. it is not infectious unless you are in china or have direct contact with a known victim. and if you do get it , dont worry its just like the flu… or better yet just another flu. ( that official NON-MISINFORMATION) everything else told to you is just lies…
In the end, what do you want the govt to say. Hey guess what this is the real deal - its a real problem - its a real pandemic - we cannot control it or contain it, we cant vaccinate for it. it does kill , but worse it makes lots of people very sick and need intensive medical care. Which we cant even come close to be able to provide - we cant handle the 1% complication of the flu. and by the way… FLU doesnt kill. its only .1 percent. and the flu only affects about 10% in a given year. but please worry about this, it could affect 30-50% or more and cause high complication rates 20 times the flu .
Will never happen - they wont say even if deadly true, which it is
nothing to see here -
Instead - dont bother with the fear mongering misinformation.
but instead worry about the deadly flu and hurry for your flu shot that will compromise your immunity. Because the flu is a real killer a killer but the corona virus is not. please be scared of something that kills just 1 of 1000 people … its very very deadly. But this corona virus is mild … you may not even know you have it except if you are very ill and elderly and infirm…

Legacy media has been savaged by social media. Print and broadcast used to be the sole channel for “news”, they had a monopoly, and that was a license to print money, as advertisers had to go to them in order to reach the public.
The monopoly is gone, and so is the cash flow. Legacy media is desperate. Of COURSE legacy media will do everything in their power to denigrate sources - other than them - for information of every kind. The storyline: “fake news in social media is killing people” is the story they desperately need to tell - themselves, and us - in order to remain relevant.
Legacy media has zero interest in providing you - Chris - or anyone other than them, any scrap of legitimacy. There will never be a “debate on the merits.” You compete with them for eyeballs. The more they hammer you, the more eyeballs will return to them.
Or so they imagine.
Thanks for the update. Especially the diagnostic flowchart. Something to print out and save. You wouldn’t happen to have a copy you could post…perhaps a pdf?

We are often trying to figure out the serious/critical rate or CFR of numbers that are constantly moving targets. Stuff like how much lag-time , or there are unreported numbers - are always an issue coming to the correct conclusion.
However, with the ship, we have a very random finite sample. It may take 6-8 weeks to have resolution with all parties of this ship. But we should know a total number infected, a total number serious/critical and total number dead. If they give us this numbers… But they will definitely be available whether the public is privy or not. The only thing that I can say may be a problem with the subset is the CFR… I would not put too much value in that - but that may not be important anyway. The reason I would not put too much value in that , is I believe if someone presents to the hospital with severe illness and with history on the ship. , they would probably be treated as famous almost like royalty and would get extraordinary care that would not be available to you or I for two reasons. First, we are not famous and royal or important or news worthy. Second, by the time we get to need treatment , the medical resources may be exhausted. Again, as I said the CFR would likely be skewed… and the severe cases may be more important as the ability to survive would be connected to the ability to receive extraordinary medical treatment… ie saline , antivirals , antibiotics ( IV ) , oxygen, ventilation and careful support for other conditions ( based on hematology. )

93% is actually worryingly low. A normal person with no other health issues such a copd would be very symptomatic with a blood oxygen level of 93%! I’m a nurse btw

Hi! Another coronavirus-driven newbie here from Finland. First of all many thanks to Chris & co for the most valuable Covid-19 updates there are. I’m a physician (specialist in internal medicine) and will likely be very, very busy (and probably contract the virus, too) in the coming months. I share the view that what’s most dangerous about this virus is that so many people are going to get sick at once and that the percentage of seriously or critically ill patients is so high. This will overwhelm our health care system as well. It may become a double hit, when the supply chain disruptions lead to shortages of essential medicines and other necessities.
A comment on the oxygen saturation issue in the algorithm: SpO2 of 93% is actually quite low in otherwise healthy individuals. Since the affinity of hemoglobin for O2 follows a sigmoid curve (oxygen dissociation curve), the partial pressure of O2 falls significantly before SpO2. If one has an underlying pulmonary illness such as COPD, the SpO2 may be much lower at rest to start with (however then the risk for complicated Covid-19 illness is undoubtedly higher). In clinical practice, I find the respiratory rate (number of respiratory cycles per minute) at least as informative as SpO2 to determine whether the patient will need respiratory support. If you wait until the SpO2 starts to fall, you may be in trouble.
Having an oxygen saturation meter at home may be helpful, but I would consider going to the ER when experiencing shortness of breath. That being said, I can’t tell if my advise will be the same when our hospital is creaking under the burden of the pandemic. It will most likely be something we healthcare professionals have not experienced before.
Cheers, FF

I’m looking for some suggestions for our current situation in regards to Covid-19.
As I understand it, with a high R0, 40-70% of the world will get the virus. Since we live in London (we moved within the last year) and that we only have public transportation (bus, tube, train, Uber), I assume we will catch the virus. (Yes, I know London is not a good place to be during a pandemic, but we are here and don’t have another place to go.) My wife and I are 60 and 62. We don’t have any major health problems except being a little overweight. However, our immune systems are low since we’ve been under a lot of stress from the culture shock of moving to a foreign country and from learning new jobs. We have about a month’s worth of food stored up so we’ll save it for supply disruptions or when we’re too sick to leave our flat.
My question is, what do we do once we catch it? I realize that 80% of the cases are mild, but catching it a second time could be fatal. If we’re in the 80%, we will treat it as the flu. But, is there an advantage of boosting our immune systems? It seems that having a strong immune system is good when fighting it the first time, but a suppressed immune system is an advantage during the second time to avoid the Cytokine storm. We have Elderberry syrup and Yin Chiao (Chinese honeysuckle) to help our immune systems but not sure how/when to use them. I’m thinking to start with the Yin Chiao when we first see symptoms and then use the Elderberry syrup when it gets worse, perhaps 5-7 days after symptoms. If we get the virus a second time, we should probably leave our poor immune systems alone so we don’t start a cytokine storm. Is this a correct application of the information Chris has given us?
Note: It’s strange how our situation has changed since I joined the PP community over 10 years ago. We use to live in Texas with months of food supplies, growing our own vegetables, and firearms for protection. Life sometimes take strange turns.

There are two “entertainment” that are worthy of watching. First is a movie After Armageddon. It follows a family that survives a massive viral outbreak. It was the first time I truly began to understand Chris’s point of complex society, Food, water, electricity completely broke down.
Second is a series “The Twelve Monkeys”. The core basis of this TV show is a massive virus outbreak, and society totally collapses. The show is more about traveling back in time to stop the original outbreak, but it’s interesting to how a virus collapses society.

Nordicjack - Agree on cruise ship assessment. Everyone will do anything in their power to try to make this event look as successful as possible, including the best treatment in the world. This event has been front and center and our governments do not want it to become a worse public disaster than it already has been. Not to mention the potential huge liability by the cruise company and/or Japanese government if deaths mount as a result of their insufficient/negligent actions.
Update: 22% of those tested are positive (542/2404)…interesting of the new 88 cases 65 had no symptoms
Japan’s public broadcaster NHK, citing the health ministry, said Tuesday that 65 of the 88 people found to have contracted COVID-19 had no symptoms. A total of 2,404 passengers and crew members have been tested for the virus, the health ministry reportedly said, with 542 infections.