Posts Tagged ‘corona virus’

Photo Marketwatch.com. Supermarkets are the leading location to catch the virus in towns where most businesses are closed.


4/4/20:    This video and text  is by Joe Schwarcz, PhD from the McGill (Canada) Office for Science and Society:



“The current COVID-19 pandemic is a prime example of how rapidly evolving observations can impact conclusions. Studies about micro-droplets in the air visualized by special photographic techniques, coupled with observations of disease transmission among asymptomatic people in indoor environments, are causing scientists to reconsider the value of masks for the general public.

“One impactive episode that has come to light is that choir practice in Washington state in which 45 of 60 people became infected despite no physical contact with each other.

“The issue is not about wearing a mask when out for a walk. Contracting the virus in that situation is virtually impossible as long as you exercise physical distancing.

‘However, being indoors with a significant number of people, such as in a supermarket, may be a different story. In such a case a mask may reduce the risk since there are two factors that seem to be important: the concentration of viral particles in the air, and the contact time with these particles. In the Washington choir episode, the singing, which does involve more expectoration than just talking, went on for more than two hours.

“So, as we stretch towards that finish line, we are making changes in our stride and it is likely that we will hear recommendations that wearing masks in indoor commercial spaces offers some protection. But remember that science rarely has a final word and what we say today may change by tomorrow. Or in this instance, an hour from now.

“As that great philosopher, Yogi Berra, said, “you can observe a lot just by watching.” And now I’m watching Zorro and wondering if a bandana mask is of any use. At least it doesn’t take a mask away from a health care worker.”


Editor’s note: Paul Goldfinger, MD:  April 4, 2020.

I have discovered that nearly everyone I talk to in the last few days is a medical science expert.  And they care little about my opinion, even though they are aware of the MD after my name.  Of course they are merely spouting information that they heard, some of which is gibberish, on the Internet, radio, and/or cable news.

For some reason Dr. Oz is suddenly the prime expert for everything medical.  I think he is a quack—a celebrity doctor; an entertainer.  When he was a heart surgeon at Columbia P&S he was already famous as a purveyor of nonsense as he promoted all sorts of alternative and complementary medical  advice including a study he did on the power of bedside prayer to improve post-op. survival.  (Does it work?  He said, “Yes.”)

The current mask story is a bit bizarre;  it boils down to a home remedy, since the home-made cloth masks currently recommended are of unproven value.  The idea that it would block the outgoing virus-loaded droplets but not the incoming droplets makes no sense. Nevertheless, if you imagine tiny germ-bombs enclosed in micro-drops of spit, it makes sense that a mask might be helpful, so go for it, but don’t expect the expert scientists to be very enthused*.

You Tube is full of  “how to make masks” to combat the Coronavirus. Some say that you can do it using a sheet for material and without any sewing—done in 10 minutes.

The Internet is full of all sorts of baloney such as washing your hands with Listerine will kill Corona bugs, but Listerine only has about 20% alcohol, an inadequate dose of virus killer.  In this regard we will have more to say about antimalarial drugs for Coronavirus.

*The World Health Organization and the CDC have continued to stand by their recommendations from earlier in the coronavirus outbreak. They argue that mask usage should be limited to people who have COVID-19 or may have contracted the illness and their caregivers, including health-care workers.

But on April 3, the CDC said to go ahead and wear masks when out and about, but do not use the most effective masks (N95 and surgical) which are to be reserved for healthcare workers.  The advice is not mandatory at this time, but there are some nations that have done it for the entire country  (like South Korea and Singapore.)

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Covic-19 virus under an electron microscope.

Paul Goldfinger.  Blogfinger.net   3/25/20

Blogfinger:     New Jersey Governor Murphy fired the first round on the subject of second homers in a tweet last weekend when he asked that second homers not come to the  Shore during this difficult time.

Only one OG citizen, a second homer, has contacted Blogfinger to complain about Murphy’s  second-homer decision, but we have heard of complaints from Long Beach Island and the Atlantic City area.

This topic related to second homes may explode as “the tension grows.”  One woman from LBI said that the risks to her family include “physical and emotional health.”  She feels that she is entitled to stay in her 2nd home without interference.  It is unclear how such a mandate could be enforced.

But Murphy’s requirements soon expanded via Executive Order which says that everyone in the state (9 million) should follow his “near lockdown” order to stay at  home except for “essential travel” such as going for “essentials” such as food or for medical reasons.  He also asked for non-essential businesses around the state to close and for most people to “stay off the roads.”

You can go outside for walks or other forms of exercise and you can visit family or close friends.  If you go outside you must follow the “social distancing” 6 foot rule and do not assemble in groups. No parties.

APP:  NJ has had 62 Corona deaths so far and 4,402 cases.  New Jersey has the second highest number of cases in the country  (Daily News Roundup. Montclair University.)

Monmouth County has 207 cases and 2 deaths.   Ocean Grove has had only one case so far documented with a positive Corona test.   Asbury Park has 4, Belmar 1, Bradley 1,  and Ocean 4. Ocean County has  Jackson 18 and Lakewood is highest with 69.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced via a  March 23 Executive Order that passengers flying from the New York area would be subject to mandatory isolation (self-quarantine  for 14 days)  to slow the spread of the virus.

Later it was announced that the Governor’s Executive Order would be expanded saying that anyone flying to Florida from New York, New Jersey or Connecticut would be subjected to 14 days of self quarantine or face misdemeanor charges.   This was reported by the News Press  (Ft.Myers)

The report said that the self quarantine order was not for car or rail passengers.

“It is critical people adhere to the Federal Government’s request so New York City does not become “another seeding point” for the rest of the country, said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.”

Politico:  The Federal Government is mandating that anyone from New York who travels out of the state should “shelter in place” for 14 days no matter where they go.

VP Pence said, “We have to deal with the New York City metropolitan area as a high-risk area, and for that reason we are taking these steps and asking for the cooperation of the American people,” Pence said.

So far 11 states have passed mandatory “stay at home” orders including New Jersey and New York.  These also have mandatory closing of nonessential businesses.

Residents of New Jersey may still leave their homes to head to the grocery store, seek medical care, visit close family or someone you have a “close personal relationship” with like a romantic partner, report to work or go outside for exercise. However, Murphy urged everyone to continue to practice safe social distancing by staying at least 6 feet away from others.

New Jersey Patch report regarding Asbury Park says,

Asbury Park officials want people to adhere to social distancing or they’ll close the beaches and boardwalk during the coronavirus crisis. The Asbury Park Police Department will be monitoring the Asbury Park boardwalk and beaches to ensure social distancing practices are being followed per Gov. Phil Murphy’s executive order.  Should residents and visitors fail to follow guidelines, the boardwalk and beaches are subject to closure, officials said.    Running and walking on the boardwalk is permitted.  Bicycles are not permitted on the boardwalk from 10 a.m. to midnight. Groups of two or more and congregation on the boardwalk are not permitted.

Seaside Heights has closed its beaches. (along with Pt. Pleasant, and Ocean City.)  The Seaside Mayor there has asked people with vacation homes in that town to “stay away.”   (NJ.com)  As of Monday Seaside Heights became the first shore town to shut down its beaches — even for casual walks for year-round residents — to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus.


Other notes, reading between the lines: 

a.    Morristowngreen.com   According to  a Morristown infectious disease specialist,  “We still are learning about how the virus is transmitted, its life span, the kinds of surfaces on which it lingers, and how long it can survive in a variety of conditions     “It makes good sense to wash your clothes in general,” he said, adding, “If you come into contact with someone who appears ill or you think is ill, it’s a good idea to wash your clothes in hot water.”  So routine clothes washing is not essential.

Still, “social distancing measures are the most effective part the mitigation strategy as it currently exists,” he emphasized.

b.    In Italy they are studying the use of lung ultrasound exams to look for evidence of viral invasion into lung tissues.  this is being done to help physicians decide on who must be hospitalized.  Not everyone who has a positive Corona test needs the hospital.

Screening in emergency rooms remains a challenge since patients with mild symptoms, even with a positive test, usually can go home.

For those with positive tests and mild symptoms, the ultrasound has been useful for that kind of triage.

c. NBC News reports that plasma taken from recovered Corona patients might help those who are very sick. It is the antibodies in the plasma which may be found to help. Studies are ongoing.

d.  NBC News:   The use of drugs: anti-malarial hydroxychloroquine  and the antibiotic zithromycin in combination has been found to be helpful in reducing the severity of disease.

e. Shortage of nurses is developing, especially for ICU and ER.






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Undoubtedly, the virus epidemic will be going on for months, and encouraging folks to walk around town and mingle with others will not be a good idea even though the event would be outdoors. Social distancing would not be possible.

We can reconsider having it in the fall, but cancelling May 9 seems like the correct decision since that date will be upon us pretty quickly.



Paul Goldfinger, MD.  Editor @Blogfinger.


DORIS DAY.    “Que Sera, Sera”

“Que sera, sera
Whatever will be, will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera
What will be, will be”

This song was featured by Doris Day in the Hitchcock movie The Man Who Knew Too Much.

It won an Oscar for best original song  and it was a #1 hit for Doris Day and became her signature song.

Doris Day and Jimmy Stewart. The Man Who Knew Too Much.

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