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Marine epidemiologist: The virus crisis has just begun

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World-renowned epidemiologist Dr. Larry Brilliant of Mill Valley warns that it is not time to be happy with the fight against the coronavirus.

“Marine is not far from anywhere in the forest,” Brilliant said at a marine county aging committee briefing on Thursday in a conference call.

Brilliant is the Advisory Chair of the non-profit Ending Pandemics, a spin-off of the Skoll Global Threats Fund where Brilliant was CEO.

He says coronaviruses continue to spread in Marin and the rest of the world at an alarming rate, with a 5% lethality, making this pandemic worse than the 1918 flu pandemic. I said.

“We are not above peak,” Brilliant said. “We haven’t passed the first wave either. We are in the early stages of this pandemic.”

He says the virus spreads exponentially, and each person who signed it passes it on average between 2 and 2.4 people. Brilliant’s work on the eradication of smallpox predicts that the coronavirus pandemic will reach new highs next week, with 7 million infections and 400,000 deaths worldwide.

“And unfortunately,” said Brilliant. “The United States accounts for over a quarter of all dead in the world.”

He said most of the hotspots in the United States were politically in the “red” state and backed Donald Trump in 2016. , North Carolina, South Carolina, Arizona, Arkansas, Texas.

“These are all places that were eager to open up,” he said.

Brilliant said Marin County would appear as a “warm spot” in the Times, New York virus enlargement.

“Today we have achieved the best COVID ever,” he said on Marin. “We are in the second most dangerous category.”

Nonetheless, Brilliant praised Marin County’s public health official Dr. Will Will and Governor Gavin Newtham for responding to the previous pandemic.

“We are pleased that we are moving at a thoughtfully measured pace to reopen the county,” he said. “They actually use a fact-based approach, but this doesn’t apply in many other places.”

Brilliant added, “I’m worried that whatever our plan is, we will be driven by national trends.”

He pointed to the recent massive protests after George Floyd’s death and many state decisions to lift home orders over Memorial Day as events that could jeopardize the reopening plan.

“My heart goes out to the street protesters,” Brilliant said. “My first reaction when I found them is thankful that the people of God take racism seriously enough to get out on the street, but after the second Continue… Look at those who don’t wear masks.”

He said wearing a mask is the most influential action people can take to quench the spread of the virus, and hand washing will come next.

“If 80% of people have a 80% chance of wearing a mask, then COVID will be gone,” Brilliant said.

Lieplen, head of the aging and adult services sector of Marin County, said members of the committee wanted to know more about the pandemic and its specific impact on the elderly. Brilliant’s wife, Gilya Brilliant, is a member of the committee.

Pullen asked Brilliant for advice on how to balance the negative consequences of isolating older people in a nursing home for the elderly with the risk of getting a virus.

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