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tv   Washington Journal Dr. Amesh Adalja  CSPAN  October 10, 2020 3:58pm-4:10pm EDT

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i think if abortion were not so much a flashpoint, i think ultimately those numbers might even go higher. host: we would like to thank richard friedman supreme court historian and university of michigan law school professor for being with us and taking us through the law and history of court packing" expansion. thank you so much for your time this morning. guest: i enjoyed >> live coverage on c-span and be sure to visit to review a playlists of amy coney barrett political views. r
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, dr.ts on the coronavirus adalga. he is a senior scholar and he is here to take us through and provide us facts about covid-19. good morning. guest: good morning. thank you for having me. caller: -- host: let's get some of the straight information first. what is the contraction rate and how does that compare to other places around the world? guest: right now we are still having tens of thousands of cases each day. that is much higher than other parts of the world, but it is important to remember that our social distancing, our policies were aimed at trying to prevent the number of cases from becoming unmanageable from a hospital perspective. we were trying to flatten the curve to a point that stayed under hospital capacity. we were not trying to get it to zero.
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indeed, you cannot get a virus like this low because it spreads efficiently. the key will be that we have to do this balancing act between looking at hospital capacity and looking at where the cases are. that being said, we still have way too many cases because there have been so many cascading failures to control this. we still, 10 months in, do not have the ability to test people, tradespeople, and isolate people. even though we were not trying to get it to zero, we are still higher than we need to be we still have hundreds to maybe a thousand deaths per day because vulnerable populations are not being kept out of those transmissions. i think when you look at the country as a whole we have not done well at all with this pandemic. we are beginning to see some new stories that talk about
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a second wave of coronavirus as we head toward the cooler months of the year. is there any way to tell whether we are still in the first wave or are we moving into a second wave? is there any way for us to figure out where we are? i don't get into the business of trying to number the waves. we never got full control of this so we never had a trough. this seems like accelerations better occurring and places that were not hit hard earlier. nursing north dakota, wisconsin being hit hard. -- you are seeing north dakota, wisconsin being hit hard. sort of roving hotspots that intensify, think cool down, then other hotspots occur. when it gets colder, when it gets sunny, and people cannot do things outdoors anymore the virus will accelerate its
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transmission because it transmits better insight and those environmental conditions make it more likely to transmit versus summer. do we know what the current rate of death is for those who contract the covid-19 in the united states? is that a number we know? guest: it takes some time to calculate because know we have problems with testing. we are not getting the right denominator. that denominator is constrained during a pandemic, especially like this. we cannot test everyone. maybe around 0.6% if you count everybody, including asymptomatic individuals. we are still undercounting, probably by a factor of 10. get thereme time to
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because our testing was focused on people who were hospitalized. that's going to give you the severity bias in the data and you are going to see a number of 2% or 4% waste on the fact that your tests are not capturing the full breadth of infection. with percentages that small, keep hearing different conversations about whether this is as bad as the flu or worse than the flu. -- how doknow how to we look at this with numbers 1%, 2%? how do we know this is not as bad as the flu would be? guest: because the flu is much less deadly than this. this is, at the least, six times worse than influenza. you can look at the number of deaths. we have had this virus from january two october.
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over 100,000 people of die. maybe worst flu seasons 80,000 people die. this is much more severe than influenza. there are some differences in who it kills. influenza has in -- an impact on the very young. this clearly is a bigger challenge than influenza. it is more deadly. we have less tools to fight it than influenza. and we have no population immunity, because it is a novel virus. in influenza we can count on some population immunity. host: we have had -- heard a lot of talk about comorbidities. how many people have died from covid versus though who died from comorbidities? guest: all of them died from covid. this is a misnomer. when you fill out a death certificate, people that are
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trying to say you have not died from covid have never felt out a death certificate. covid is part of their death, but it accelerates other diseases like cardiovascular disease, like diabetes. and you fill out a death certificate, you have to put their cofactors on their because we know these synergize. we've known from the beginning that people with comorbidities are more likely to die. primary causee, of death was stroke, caused by covid. but covid synergizes an accelerates that death and the death would not have happened were it not for covid. that is the way you should interpret this. not that people are incidentally getting infected and dying from getting hit her car. these are comorbidities that we know interact with covid and covid accelerates their morbidity and mortality. caller on earlier
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who shared her experience with her children getting coronavirus. for a lot of talk about how this olderething that effects -- the older and does not affect children. do we know any scientific facts about the infection rate among children for coronavirus? guest: we know that young children can get infected at the same rate as adults. there are some differences between very small children and children who are 12 and above. we know that children in general are mostly going to be asymptomatic, meaning they are not going to have any symptoms. they do have the virus, they are contagious under some circumstances, but not quite as contagious as adults. now they generally are not hospitalized and generally not the ones who die. it is less likely. there are some inflammatory reactions they can get. it seems to be pretty rare. we are trying to understand it.
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the answer to the question is, our children completely spared? that is now. the question is, what do they contribute to transmission? are there magnifiers? that is why there is this idea, especially with kids sixth-grade and younger about opening schools for them, because of the ways they don't transmit as efficiently. again, there is a lot of questions about children and a lot of the data is skewed because early on we were not testing children as much because they were not coming to the hospital. we do not have a full picture of how the virus interacts with them. host: we heard about the president's experience with regeneron. what you think about that experience and is that something that should give us hope? regeneron isnk something that should give us hope. these are synthetic antibodies that are derived from people who have recovered and then the best ones are put into a synthetic
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form. this is something we have seen be instrumental in controlling bolo. you may remember -- ebola. you may remember zmap. this is something we have turned to her infectious diseases. right now the regeneron product, as well as the eli lilly product are in trials. her symptoms, and maybe can prevent you from needing to be hospitalized. they have been filing for emergency use authorizations, so this might be something that becomes more widely available. all of us want to see the clinical data to know how well it works, who it works in, when it works. it seems the president had a good experience, we obviously cannot generalize from a sample size of one. coupling what his experience was with what we have seen in trial data, it does look like something that may be a bridge
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before we get a vaccine. that we have a treatment that may be able to change the game with this virus. host: we would like to thank dr. amesh adalja, senior scholar at johns hopkins, for coming on and giving us some facts about covid-19.
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to.,e biden hits pennsylvania today. c-span,ve coverage on online at, or listen live on her free radio app. earlier today at the white house, president trump held his first in person event since being hospitalized for covid-19. he stood on the south portico balcony, speaking to groups gathered on the south lawn.


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