Herd immunity to COVID-19 and pre-existing immune responses

Reposted from Dr. Judith Curry’s Climate Etc.

Posted on September 22, 2020 by niclewis | 

By Nic Lewis

I showed in my May 10th article Why herd immunity to COVID-19 is reached much earlier than thought that inhomogeneity within a population in the susceptibility and in the social-connectivity related infectivity of individuals would reduce, in my view probably very substantially, the herd immunity threshold (HIT), beyond which an epidemic goes into retreat. I opined, based on my modelling, that the HIT probably lay somewhere between 7% and 24%, and that evidence from Stockholm County suggested it was around 17% there, and had been reached.

I then showed in a July 27th update article[1] that mounting evidence supported my reasoning.

It is pleasing to report that the evidence for heterogeneity of susceptibility across the population, arising from variability in both social connectivity and biological susceptibility, has continued to increase. Not least, there have been a number of further papers reporting pre-existing cross-reactive T-cells in a substantial proportion of people, which as I discussed in my July 27th article is likely be a key reason for heterogeneity in biological susceptibility. Mainstream journals are now starting to acknowledge that these factors are significant, with the implication that the herd immunity threshold (HIT) can be expected to be substantially lower than that often quoted by scientists close to governments. Unfortunately, in the UK at least, there is little sign as yet that those scientific advisors are prepared to recognise these facts.[2] [3]

Here I will focus excerpt on statements in a recent, quite hard hitting, feature article in the British Medical Journal by one of its associate editors.[4]

The article points out serological studies have generally indicated that no more than around a fifth of people now have antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, saying:

 With public health responses around the world predicated on the assumption that the virus entered the human population with no pre-existing immunity before the pandemic, serosurvey data are leading many to conclude that the virus has, as Mike Ryan, WHO’s head of emergencies, put it, “a long way to burn.”

As the article says, this has led most planners to assume that the pandemic is far from over:

In New York City, where just over a fifth of people surveyed had antibodies, the health department concluded that “as this remains below herd immunity thresholds, monitoring, testing, and contact tracing remain essential public health strategies.” “Whatever that number is, we’re nowhere near close to it,” said WHO’s Ryan in late July, referring to the herd immunity threshold.

However, the article notes:

Yet a stream of studies that have documented SARS-CoV-2 reactive T cells in people without exposure to the virus are raising questions about just how new the pandemic virus really is, with many implications.

It also points out that the WHO and the CDC has been repeating mistakes that they made and recognised in the past, suggesting a lack of scientific competence (unless explainable by a prioritising of other objectives over scientific ones).

In late 2009, months after the World Health Organization declared the H1N1 “swine flu” virus to be a global pandemic, Alessandro Sette was part of a team working to explain why the so called “novel” virus did not seem to be causing more severe infections than seasonal flu. Their answer was pre-existing immunological responses in the adult population: B cells and, in particular, T cells, which “are known to blunt disease severity.” Other studies came to the same conclusion: people with pre-existing reactive T cells had less severe H1N1 disease. In addition, a study carried out during the 2009 outbreak by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 33% of people over 60 years old had cross reactive antibodies to the 2009 H1N1 virus, leading the CDC to conclude that “some degree of pre-existing immunity” to the new H1N1 strains existed, especially among adults over age 60. The data forced a change in views at WHO and CDC, from an assumption before 2009 that most people “will have no immunity to the pandemic virus” to one that acknowledged that “the vulnerability of a population to a pandemic virus is related in part to the level of pre-existing immunity to the virus.” But by 2020 it seems that lesson had been forgotten.

Regarding pre-existing T-cell mediated immunological responses to SARS-CoV-2, the article quotes Alessandro Sette, an immunologist from La Jolla Institute for Immunology in California and an author of several of the studies:

At this point there are a number of studies that are seeing this reactivity in different continents, different labs. As a scientist you know that is a hallmark of something that has a very strong footing.” It also notes that a paper in Science confirmed its authors’ hypothesis that, because they’re closely related, the origin of these immune responses would be ‘common cold’ coronaviruses.

As the article says, the T-cell evidence suggests that antibodies are not the full story, in relation to which it gives this quotation:

 “Maybe we were a little naive to take measurements such as serology testing to look at how many people were infected with the virus,” the Karolinska Institute immunologist Marcus Buggert told The BMJ. “Maybe there is more immunity out there.”

and comments that studies by Buggert and others have shown that many people who have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2 generate T-cell responses but no antibodies.

The article makes the telling point that:

Taken together, this growing body of research documenting pre-existing immunological responses to SARS-CoV-2may force pandemic planners to revisit some of their foundational assumptions about how to measure population susceptibility and monitor the extent of epidemic spread.

The article also discusses the fact that the classical formula HIT = 1 − 1/R0 (where R0 is the disease’s basic reproduction number) assumes that immunity (the complement of biological susceptibility) is distributed evenly and members mix at random, saying:

While vaccines may be deliverable in a near random fashion, from the earliest days questions were raised about the random mixing assumption. Fox and colleagues wrote in 1971 [that] truly random mixing is the exception, not the rule.

The author quotes  Gabriella Gomes, noting that she and her colleagues wrote:

More susceptible and more connected individuals have a higher propensity to be infected and thus are likely to become immune earlier. Due to this selective immunization by natural infection, heterogeneous populations require less infections to cross their herd immunity threshold.

and points out that

While most experts have taken the R0 for SARS-CoV-2 (generally estimated to be between 2 and 3) and concluded that at least 50% of people need to be immune before herd immunity is reached, Gomes and colleagues calculate the threshold at 10% to 20%.

The article further notes that Sunetra Gupta’s group at the University of Oxford has arrived at similar conclusions of lower herd immunity thresholds by considering the issue of pre-existing immunity in the population.

The author also quotes Ulrich Keil, professor emeritus of epidemiology from the University of Münster in Germany, as saying

the notion of randomly distributed immunity is a “very naive assumption”

that ignores the large disparities in health and social conditions in populations.

As so often, the case of Sweden is brought up, in this quotation:

Buggert’s home country has been at the forefront of the herd immunity debate, with Sweden’s light touch strategy against the virus resulting in much scrutiny and scepticism. The epidemic in Sweden does seem to be declining, Buggert said in August. “We have much fewer cases right now. We have around 50 people hospitalised with covid-19 in a city of two million people.” At the peak of the epidemic there were thousands of cases. Something must have happened, said Buggert, particularly considering that social distancing was “always poorly followed, and it’s only become worse.”

Social distancing will reduce the R0 level of an epidemic and thus, while it continues, with reduce the HIT. The fact that social distancing in Sweden has become relatively minor therefore means that the epidemic’s recent behaviour there should provide a better guide to the HIT in the absence of social distancing than its behaviour in many other countries. Supporting Marcus Buggert’s comments, that in Stockholm (a densely populated region where R0 will be higher than average)  the epidemic  is almost extinct and social distancing is now minor, are these recent comments from a hospital doctor[5] in Stockholm:

In the hospital where I work, there isn’t a single person currently being treated for covid.

I haven’t seen a single covid patient in the Emergency Room in over two and a half months.

My personal experience is that people followed the voluntary restrictions pretty well at the beginning, but that they have become increasingly lax as time has gone on.

When I sit in the tube on the way to and from work, it is packed with people. Maybe one in a hundred people is choosing to wear a face mask in public. In Stockholm, life is largely back to normal. If you look at the front pages of the tabloids, on many days there isn’t a single mention of covid anywhere.

Covid is over in Sweden. We have herd immunity.

In Sweden, the epidemic gradually spread throughout the country from its original centre in Stockholm, with different regions seeing differently timed surges in cases, almost all of which have now tailed off despite national seroprevalence estimates of only 5-6%.[6] However, it looks as if in countries such as the UK lockdowns may have impeded the epidemic’s spread from its original centre to regional metropolitan centres, where the epidemic is growing now that young people in particular no longer fear COVID-19 much. Nevertheless, serious illness and deaths remain rare in the UK; in recent weeks only 1% of death certificates have any mention of COVID-19[7].

Returning to the T-cell immunity issue, the BMJ article further comments:

The immunologists I spoke to agreed that T cells could be a key factor that explains why places like New York, London, and Stockholm seem to have experienced a wave of infections and no subsequent resurgence. This would be because protective levels of immunity, not measurable through serology alone but instead the result of a combination of pre-existing and newly formed immune responses, could now exist in the population, preventing an epidemic rise in new infections.

Although noting that these epidemiologists added the qualification that this hypothesis is currently unproven, the article quotes Daniela Weiskopf (the senior author of the Science paper mentioned earlier) as commenting:

Right now, I think everything is a possibility; we just don’t know. The reason we’re optimistic is we have seen with other viruses where [the T cell response] actually helps you.”

As the paper says, one example is swine flu, where research has shown that people with pre-existing reactive T cells had clinically milder disease.


In conclusion, it is encouraging to see an article like this in an medical establishment journal like BMJ. I can only hope that epidemiologists, other scientists and modellers advising governments will now finally take seriously the issues that it raises.

Nicholas Lewis                                         22 September 2020

[1] Lewis, N: Why herd immunity to COVID-19 is reached much earlier than thought – update; with further update added on July 31st.

[2] For example: The academy of Medical Sciences 14 July 2020 report “Preparing for a challenging winter 2020/21” appears to rely on modelling by Professor Ferguson and colleagues from Imperial College, whose models make little allowance for population heterogeneity of susceptibility  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-preparing-for-a-challenging-winter-202021-7-july-2020

[3] https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-54234084

[4] Peter Doshi: “COVID-19: Do many people have pre-existing immunity?” BMJ 2020;370:m3563 https://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m3563

[5] https://sebastianrushworth.com/2020/09/19/covid-19-does-sweden-have-herd-immunity/

[6] https://www.folkhalsomyndigheten.se/contentassets/376f9021a4c84da08de18ac597284f0c/pavisning-antikroppar-genomgangen-covid-19-blodgivare-delrapport-2.pdf  The latest published estimate is 5% for week 22; it may have grown since then but based on disease incidence seems likely to have remained under 10%.

[7] https://www.ons.gov.uk/file?uri=%2fpeoplepopulationandcommunity%2fbirthsdeathsandmarriages%2fdeaths%2fdatasets%2fweeklyprovisionalfiguresondeathsregisteredinenglandandwales%2f2020/publishedweek372020.xlsx

Originally posted here, where a pdf copy is also available

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September 23, 2020 6:22 am

Without this and similar mechanisms, how does one explain the low numbers of infections and low severity of COVID-19 in Asia generally and specifically within China? (OK, I accept the fact that the CCP lies also.)

Keep in mind that hundreds of thousands of people were travelling in and out of Wuhan in preparation of the Chinese New Year just prior to travel restrictions being imposed there. I’ve been on buses, trains, planes and subways there, and the vehicles and stations are crowded under normal circumstances.

Stephen Skinner
Reply to  Scissor
September 23, 2020 1:50 pm

China has a 3 thousand year old culture and has been living with flu and cold viruses for quite a while. After all, many of these viruses come from China so they are habituated.

September 23, 2020 6:25 am

This is no longer an epidemic it is a casedemic.

Reply to  Philip Mulholland
September 23, 2020 9:39 am

Screening tests are being used as diagnostic instruments, thus magnifying the perceived infection rate. This practice leads to bad public policy.

Reply to  Phil
September 23, 2020 10:07 am

Yes, misaligned public policy, and its exploitation for leverage to herd people, and to exploit as a sociopolitical and economic cudgel.

Paul Milenkovic
Reply to  Phil
September 23, 2020 3:35 pm

I think you have this reversed: diagnostic instruments are being used as screening tests.

There is a reason why your doctor doesn’t want to screen you for every illness your imagination leads you to think you were exposed. False positives. This is the reason why you want to restrict diagnostic tests to people who have a condition requiring a diagnosis.

I read that if someone “presents” with fever, cough, body aches, the test reliably performs a “differential” diagnosis between COVID-19 and just having a run-of-the-mill nasty flu. But if you start mass screening with the test, everybody and his uncle will be found to have Corona Virus.

Reply to  Paul Milenkovic
September 23, 2020 4:30 pm

Yes, that’s the way it should be used. In some places people are randomly chosen for testing or are tested because they may have come into contact with an infected person.

September 23, 2020 6:25 am

Well written summary. The really big issue is COVID is now institutionalized. It’s going to be very hard for anyone, especially politicians, to give up their grip on people and a lot of the population are still scared they will get it and die a horrendous death. Common sense and logic are no where to be seen anymore.

Reply to  rbabcock
September 23, 2020 6:46 am

rbabcock wrote, ” … and a lot of the population are still scared they will get it and die a horrendous death.”

And a lot of the population is not scared. Science should not be a popularity contest but politics is and politics is driving this boat.

Meanwhile large institutions (many for-profit) are working hard and spending hard on vaccines which are the only real answer at this time.

Carl Friis-Hansen
Reply to  Speed
September 23, 2020 7:18 am

The Russians have developed a vaccine against COVID-19 which does not involve injecting any SARS-CoV-2. The vaccine is currently undergoing the final test on 40,000 volunteers. Their COVID-19 vaccine will, if test go well, be available on the world marked. You will need two injections. As I understand it, from RT this morning, it would be very cheap too.

Sputnik V launched: Russia dispatches first batches of pioneering Covid-19 vaccine to all of its 85 regions

Reply to  Speed
September 23, 2020 7:21 am

The only real answer is to wake up and reject the framing that covid is a generally dangerous illness.

Reply to  Speed
September 23, 2020 9:15 am

So you disagree with the conclusions of the article. Interesting. Can you explain why?

Reply to  Newminster
September 23, 2020 10:22 am

Nic Lewis is Mr. Jump to conclusions well before the pandemic is over and data are analyzed for accuracy. He repeatedly presents his speculation as real science. The claim that any nation is at, or anywhere near, herd immunity is clueless speculation. There are no Covid experts until after the pandemic ends and I doubt if Nic Lewis will be an expert then. If I wanted speculation I could listen to President Trump, the Covid perfesser. For Nic Lewis, you give him a batch of numbers and he’ll jump to a conclusion. And probably not the right conclusion. He has done this repeatedly during the pandemic.

Reply to  Richard Greene
September 23, 2020 12:50 pm

The problem is when the pandemic is over (if it ever is over) just like climate data, there isn’t going to be any one data set you can believe in to get “just the facts”. Every one is going to be “adjusted” for one reason or another.. or many reasons. There are way too many competing interests and faces to be saved for us to get anything close to being accurate data.

Reply to  Richard Greene
September 23, 2020 4:13 pm

“If I wanted speculation I could listen to President Trump, the Covid perfesser”

You’ve outed yourself as a political hack.

Reply to  Speed
September 23, 2020 1:16 pm


“Meanwhile large institutions (many for-profit) are working hard and spending hard on vaccines which are the only real answer at this time.”

Except in Sweden, obviously.


Reply to  rbabcock
September 23, 2020 7:02 am

This reminds me of Mackay’s teachings on delusions and madness of crowds.

Poems of Our Climate
Reply to  Scissor
September 23, 2020 9:18 am

Yes. Good time to look at group psychology.
Herd mentality is as important to understand as herd immunity.

Reply to  Poems of Our Climate
September 23, 2020 5:54 pm

“Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, one by one.”

Ron Long
September 23, 2020 6:30 am

Interesting article by Nic Lewis, reposted from the Judith Curry site. Since the Fake News people in the USA have weaponized Corona Virus news, always leading to an anti-Trump spin, actual facts are not going around in news sites. After the USA presidential election November 3, it will be interesting to see if the media changes their focus (for sure to other anti-Trump memes).

I know for my wife and myself we just avoid contact with higher-risk situations and persons, so our access to HIT is somewhat limited (excepting common cold effects). It will be interesting to see what mix of vaccine, recovered patient immunity, and HIT leads to the virtual disappearance of this problem. I know for certain that the lack of access to the in-school environment is putting an additional disadvantage against the working class children, which they do not need. Stay sane and safe.

September 23, 2020 6:39 am

So why don’t we have herd immunity to the common cold and the flu?

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 6:57 am

Maybe we do mostly.

Besides the appearance of new viruses through mutation that get around immune defenses, herd immunity doesn’t mean that infection and outbreaks cannot occur. Herd immunity limits extent of future outbreaks.

COVID-19 is destined to be with us for a while, just as colds and flu.

Reply to  Scissor
September 23, 2020 10:47 am

H1N1 influenza was very strong this year, but ignored because COVID19 became a political tool. We would be comparing COVID19 to flu if the impact of H1N1 were mentioned. H1N1 killed thousands every week if the secondary pneumonia cases are included. H1N1 also killed many more children than COVID19.

We are to believe H1N1 is no big deal, but COVID19 is? H1N1 hit the country this year hard. But we were able to tolerate that just fine. COVID19 cases and deaths were maybe 3 times the level of H1N1. We are supposed to believe COVID19 was a national emergency, and “fighting COVID” was worth destroying our economy? Yes, because it became political. They just ignored H1N1 to avoid confusing us with the facts. We might have resisted their efforts.

States run by the opposition party wanted to 1) gain power they never had over people, and 2) weaken the foundation of the President for re-election. It was an over-reach, and has people very peeved. This year we saw opposition party governors putting citizens in near-house arrest, and opposition party mayors choosing to let their attack dogs (Antifa) burn cities. These events repeated across the country in clearly defined areas controlled by one party cemented the rejection by many if not most Americans of the opposition party.

Reply to  Hoser
September 24, 2020 5:34 pm

What are you basing your h1n1 stats on? Total of all flu deaths, including h1n1, during the 2019-2020 season was on the lower end with 24,000 deaths. Covid 19 is still only 7 months in and already nearly 10 times the number of deaths during unprecedented measures to contain the spread.

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 6:59 am

Because both rhinovirus and the flu virus don’t stay the same year on year. By vaccinating against the predicted flu type(s) herd immunity becomes a possibility for that year only. The flu vaccine also only mitigates against extreme illness. The rhinovirus mutates quite rapidly and hence there can be no definitive vaccine.

Reply to  JohnC
September 23, 2020 9:09 am

And, per the article above, vaccines do not end up distributed in the manner of natural spread of an epidemic….perhaps even perversely, as it is cautious people who get vaccines, but it is uncautious people, on average, who are more likely to be “superspreaders”, to the extent that superspreadering is lifestyle related.

Also, if there are people who tend to get minimally symptomatic viral illnesses for physiologic reasons, but are nevertheless often temporarily contagious, such people may avoid vaccines (“I never get sick, so why bother getting a vaccine…”) and become superspreaders. A vaccination program would not work as well as the Swedish laissez-faire approach for getting these folks out of the susceptible pool.

Reply to  JohnC
September 24, 2020 4:36 am

admissions that of the last TEN yrs flu vaccines theyve only got it “right” 3 times..and even the the protection is around 50%

personally a yearly jab of cow pig or whatever dna remnants plus aluminium/mercury, an assortment of “adjuvnts’ designed to irritate my immune system thats already a tad over reactive.for an iffy level of maybe..protection from a flu?
I pass thanks.

The Dark Lord
Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 7:03 am

how would we know … we have never before tested the entire population for exposure to a cold during cold season … I think we do have some immunity to the cold … just not herd level at start of season …

Bob boder
Reply to  The Dark Lord
September 23, 2020 8:59 am

There are at least 160 different “cold virus”‘s many of which are of a type that mutates much more easily than a corona virus will.

Reply to  Bob boder
September 24, 2020 5:34 am

Bob Boder: the plural of virus is viruses – there’s no need to use quotation marks or apostrophes.

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 7:05 am

New strains constantly evolve, drift – some crossover immunity possible, shift – less likely.


Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 7:24 am

Possibly because the herd is not uniformly healthy.

Reply to  icisil
September 23, 2020 8:06 am

Yep. When it comes to the Wuhan flu, it looks like the most important factor is Vitamin D deficiency. link. Counter intuitively, folks in Italy and Spain are more likely to be Vitamin D deficient than those in the Nordic countries. The Spanish don’t go out in the noonday sun and the folks in the Nordic countries are more likely to take Vitamin D supplements. When I was young, my dear Swedish mother made sure we had our daily cod liver oil.

On this side of the Atlantic, it’s our black brothers and sisters who are most likely to be Vitamin D deficient and, unsurprisingly, they are the ones most likely to suffer from the Wuhan flu.

We have the recent double blind study in Spain that showed astounding results from treating hospitalized patients with calcifediol (a metabolite of Vitamin D).

The solution to the problem seems obvious. Why are the authorities not trumpeting from the rooftops that people need to make sure the Vitamin D in their blood is sufficient?

In the light of the evidence on Vitamin D, arguments like Remdesivir vs. HFQ seem stupid and pointless. The effect size of Vitamin D treatment blows them both out of the water.

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 8:46 am

I generally spend a lot of time outdoors, but at the beginning of fall I upped my supplement dose from 5000 IU to 10,000 IU/day.

Bob Harding
Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 1:31 pm

My Vitamin D Level is 42 (Labs-09/01/2020) on a scale of 1-100. I do 5000 IU daily for the past 100 days. Anyone have an opinion about if I should go to 10,000 IU per day? I am diabetic and my doctor is clueless about the benefits if D on Covid19. Thanks in advance.

I am also doing 2800 mg of Vitamin C & 25mg of Zinc daily and a multi vitamin.

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 3:37 pm

Vitamin D is useful for preventing infections in general, not just the flu.

I was taking about 3000 IU a day for years and added 5000 IU a day with Covid in town. I do not get much sunlight due to sun burns but I imagine natural D from the sun would be the best choice.

Reply to  Richard Greene
September 23, 2020 7:39 pm

Be careful with Vitamin D. It is fat soluble and can build up to toxic levels. Not at 2000/3000 IU per day, but if you are taking more than 5000 it would be a good idea to monitor your level.

Paul Schauble
Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 11:03 pm

I see a number of posts following this saying how much vitamin D people are taking. That’s not useful to know.

I can’t say this loudly enough or often enough: get you blood level of 25-hydroxyvitamin D tested. This is a readily available medical lab test that is generally covered by insurance. It is the blood level that counts.

I take 20,000 units of vitamin D to maintain a blood level of about 70 ng/ml (US units). I have no idea why it takes so much, but it’s blood level that counts. The useful range is 50-100. My metric friends measure levels in nanomoles/liter and should multiply all the levels by 25.

I would also recommend that anyone maintaining such a blood level should also take a vitamin K2 MK7 supplement.

Tony Sullivan
Reply to  icisil
September 23, 2020 8:17 am

@icisil – Agree completely, and something many (not necessarily posters on WUWT) seem to conveniently overlook.

Reply to  icisil
September 23, 2020 8:36 am


I rarely got the flu or colds most of my life but during stretches where I was a bad boy health wise, I would get sick on occasion.

Since I started taking D3 after being diagnosed as Diabetic at 63, 2 years ago, I have not been sick at all, even following two 8000 mile cross country trips via RV last fall before the China flu and this summer during the CRISIS. My wife and I only wore masks when specifically required and often sneak around in stores without them as soon as we pass the hall monitors at the entrance.

Speaking of hall monitors, every leftist hack governor still keeping their states closed are of that mentality.

John F Hultquist
Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 8:04 am

Are “common colds” more common in young folks than elderly?
I haven’t had a serious cold or flu in 20 or so years.
I think being a curmudgeon has something to do with it.
Or maybe its multiple years of flu shots.
Maybe its the wine; or . . . never mind.

Reply to  John F Hultquist
September 23, 2020 10:55 am

Or maybe it’s being a curmudgeon like me, who doesn’t want what other people have and tries to avoid them as much as possible.

Haven’t had a flu bug attack or even a common cold since I left the work world permanently and don’t spend time in the company of my neighbors, because most of them are still working people.

There may be some benefit in Vitamin D. I do take that, too, but I also consume dairy products so that may or may not be a factor.

Not being an isolationist, I have plenty of contact online with other people, but I do avoid crowded places these days.

John F Hultquist
Reply to  Sara
September 23, 2020 1:52 pm

I live at 47° North Latitude with intense summer sun, and cold and windy other times. I cover up, all seasons.
I asked my doctor, actually a PA-C, about taking Vitamin D at a 2,400 IU level. She thought that was fine, but if I wanted to go higher we should do a test. I also eat red onions 3 or 4 times a week. Not a lot for the recommended ionophore, Quercetin. Still, better than nothing.

Chris Wright
Reply to  John F Hultquist
September 24, 2020 3:39 am

I remember reading a report in the Daily Telegraph a couple of months ago. It stated that on average children have far more colds than adults (the ratio may have been 20). It speculated that this could be one reason why children have very high immunity to Covid: many colds are caused by corona viruses.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 11:17 am

CB the reasons are different.

There are about 100 rhinovirus serotypes causing about 65% of common colds, and 4corona viruses causing about 30%. (The other 5% is caused by an adenovirus.) So you need 105 separate herd immunities. Not going to happen.

The flu virus mutates annually. That is why there is an annual vaccine ‘guessing’ at which mutations from last spring will be prevalent next fall. So herd immunity never happens, and annual vaccine efficacy is never real good.

John F Hultquist
Reply to  Rud Istvan
September 23, 2020 1:58 pm

Went for a flu shot yesterday. They had just run out of the super-duper high dose shot. Talked a bit – ’cause this was new – and decided to come back. They’ll call.
Being well over 65; so found this:

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 12:10 pm

we do.

But immunity in memory B cells and memory T cells is always waning in each of us over the years since our last active infection in which we felt ill. Those daughter cells sub-populations that form live for years usually, but they wane. This is the same reason the Chicken pox virus (Varicella Zoster, an ⍺-Herpes virus) usually returns to adults in the 2nd half of life as shingles. The T cell memory responses formed during the initial infection that were keeping the herpes virus in check.

It is the acute illness, that awful feeling of being sick, that is the immune response, the virus itself is just silently killing cells it productively infects. So the fever, the chills, loss of appetite, just wanting to sleep, muscle aches are all due to responding immune cells that are releasing chemical messengers to the rest of the body to put up anti-viral/anti-microbial defenses. One can blunt these immune responses with aspirin or NSAIDS (since prostaglandins play a key role in cellular and systemic signaling), but if you can get by without that, you’re probably better off for forming much longer lived immunity.

Because T cell immunity is waning in all of us at different rates and with different times since the last infection, there is always a %-age of the population becoming susceptible again to H1N1, H3N2, and all the many cold viruses as the T cell immunity, both direct and cross-reactive, wanes as we age. When a much more distantly related influenza virus emerges to infect humans, like and H5N1 bird flu virus, there may be much lower levels of effective cross-reactive immunity, and thus a much higher probability of global pandemic to something like an H5N1 flu virus if it ever becomes easily human-to-human transmissible.

But even with a “novel” flu virus there will still be T cell cross reactivity because the Influenza A virus uses common sets of internal molecular machinery (strings of amino acid sequences that form core components of molecular machines like polymerases, and other functional motifs). These molecular motifs are common within the virus family because they all evolved from a common ancestor virus, and thus have lots of “homology” in amino acid sequences. And it is this common internal homology that T cells are great at recognizing and then attacking those infected cells to stop the virus replication from spreading. And B cells and the antibodies they produce have very little role in this T cell mediated immune response.

What this SARS-CoV-2 virus epidemic is going to do is put a whole new public face on the relative inadequacies of simply using antibody serology to determine population levels of immunity to a novel virus from a family which is already widely circulating in humans. T cells are a much larger and more important part of the picture of immunity than B cells simply because a virus a can sometimes easily evade the highly specific antibody response, yet it is nearly impossible for it to completely evade the T cell response. The HIV epidemic of the past 30 years has taught the research immuilogy field vast amounts about how important T cells are to the immune response and how hard it is for viruses to evade those.

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 12:37 pm

The common cold and the flu also kill mostly the weak with a failing immune system by the millions every year.
When you’re weak you’re in trouble , who knew.

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 8:18 pm

commie, are you sick with a cold all the time? are you sick with the flu all the time that leaves you in bed for a week at a time? if the answer is no, then you have some immunity to most types of cold and flu viruses. however, virus’ mutate so herd immunity is harder to reach. there’s no magic bullet to cure all colds and flus forever.

Rodney Johnson
September 23, 2020 6:43 am

“As the article says, the T-cell evidence suggests that antibodies are not the full story”
Would it surprise anyone if this matched immune response to other common corona virus strains?
Classical vaccine approaches will increase mortality and misery for this one. mRNA approaches are a dangerous human experiment for an infection that is not particularly threatening.

Reply to  Rodney Johnson
September 23, 2020 7:02 am

Antibodies tend not to be the whole story with viruses, the innate and T cell immune system are able to handle the infection, which is why symptoms may be absent or only minor.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Rodney Johnson
September 23, 2020 12:22 pm

The mRNA and DNA vaccines to this respiratory virus are certainly going to k1ll some people when they come down then with the real infection. The mRNA and DNA vaccines in a few people will skew their immune response to the actual virus when they become infected to a non-protective Th-2 response, rather than the protective Th-1 response. (A Th-2 response is an antibody, allergy-like response driven by a different set of immune response patterns that seems mostly geared to defeating parasitic infections like worms, aka helminths.)

The result of a Th-2 response to respiratory virus will typically be an eosinophilia-driven asthma like response while at the same time the person’s immune system is battling the virus itself. This is exactly what happened with the attempts to make an RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus, an upper airway-lung illness in children) vaccine from a inactivated RSV virus preparation. The mRNA and DNA vaccines to the SARS-CoV-2 infection, I predict, are going to repeat that deadly mistake.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
September 23, 2020 12:36 pm

That looks like an expert level of understanding.

Harry Davidson
September 23, 2020 6:47 am

Can someone please get Carrie to read this so she can tell Boris to stop panicking? For non-British, Carrie is the first girlfriend, mother and fiancee. A competent politician with fine achievements to her credit as well.

September 23, 2020 7:29 am

Herd immunity is clearly working at least in London, as the UK “second wave” is now in the provinces, which are actually getting the first wave. Without herd immunity London would always be the hotspot, with its high population density and use of public transport.

I’m guessing that New York is similar to London.

Gras Albert
September 23, 2020 7:37 am

Further to those commenting on the increasing rate of infection

There is an increase in Covid-19 cases because there is an increase in testing!

If more people took IQ tests there would be an increase in idiots too…

Harry Davidson
Reply to  Gras Albert
September 23, 2020 8:05 am

Certainly in the UK there is a substantial increase in the percentage of positive tests, but as yet no significant increase in deaths and hospitalizations – the only numbers that matter. Spain is seeing increasing numbers of deaths, about 100 per day over the weekend, but nowhere near the numbers in March. On 17th Sept. UK hospitals were told to “prepare for a surge of cases in 2 weeks time”. We will see on that.

Reply to  Harry Davidson
September 23, 2020 12:44 pm

In Spain 1400 people die every day for whatever reason.

John Robertson
Reply to  Gras Albert
September 23, 2020 8:40 am

It is very hard to take these “Chicken Littles” seriously.
The current “Fear” is idiotic.
Yes we have more cases,first what did we expect once the curfew was lifted?
And finally testing by government,has finally started on those without symptoms.
To go from these two obvious observations,to declaring “Emergency” again is a sign.
A sign of small nasty people ,in love with newfound power.

Sweden has exposed the lockdown countries as having overreacted at a minimum.
Brazil looks like it will follow the same cycle as Sweden.

If this virus kills 7 in every 10 000 (7000 dead out of 10 million)
Then Brazil should top out around 150 000.
So will we who locked down,face this same mortality rate,but now spread out over 2 or 3 years of economic destruction?

Reply to  Gras Albert
September 23, 2020 11:45 am

The problem with that notion is that cases are spiking, whereas testing is gently increasing.

Peter Carroll
Reply to  Gras Albert
September 23, 2020 12:52 pm

In New York and London, it is almost certain that the majority of the ‘new cases’ are actually false positives. When I say ‘the majority’, I mean 80-90%.

False positive rate on the PCR test is 0.8% (or higher) and latent infected rate is probably 1/1,000


Boris has jumped the shark! And the only thought more horrifying than THAT is what the Laborites would have done if they’d been in power. Ye Gods!

John Piccirilli
Reply to  Gras Albert
September 23, 2020 3:35 pm


Peta of Newark
September 23, 2020 8:15 am

Harry: Nice thinking but you’ve got it The Wrong Way Round

Carrie is a new mother and with all due respect to the female of the species they are the ones who dutifully obey the rules of the Precautionary Principle – *especially* when newborn bundles of joy are involved.

NOW do we understand the UK response to this thing?
Carrie is in The Driving Seat – if Boris and her have a ‘falling out’ – it will be VERY public Boris’ name/reputation/everything will be dirt for ever more

Let this be a warning for when Kamilla gets into power – wonder if UK version of same what’s propelling silly old Prince of Chuckles?

Tom Abbott
September 23, 2020 8:27 am

The Wuhan virus should not be dismissed as trivial. Lots of complications appear to be cropping up post infection, even in asymptomatic people.

Gaining herd immunity may be more costly to human health than with previous infections.

Dr. Fauci mentioned the worries over post infection inflammation from the Wuhan virus today in testimony before the U.S. Senate. He called attention to the “long haulers” who are experiencing all sorts of complications after having been infected with the Wuhan virus.

You don’t want to get the Wuhan virus if you can prevent it. You don’t know what it is going to do to you. Even if you have a mild case, you don’t know what it’s going to do to you in the future.

I read about a nine-year-old boy who has been experiencing various problems for the last six months after being infected with the Wuhan virus. Being young may not save you from all the problems this virus causes.

Dismissing it’s dangers is foolhardy at this point in time.

Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 23, 2020 9:09 am

Guvmints all over the world are pushing the ‘after effects’ story very hard to keep up the panic. However, post viral syndromes are very well known. My antivaxer 60 y/o neighbour took 6 months to recover from ordinary flue last year. She moaned the whole time.

Scaring the public is damaging. We have gone back to 17th C responses, where people fear others to the extent that normal social supports disappear. This is not the Black Death. I have no objection to Tom Abbott hiding in his hole for the next year or so. I object to police ticketing family gatherings and young people getting together.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Fran
September 24, 2020 8:49 am

“I have no objection to Tom Abbott hiding in his hole for the next year or so.”

I appreciate that. I will continue taking precautions until a vaccine is found, and If I get infected in the meantime, I will rush down to my doctor and get the HCQ treatment as soon as possible.

I think that is what everyone should do. I think that should be promoted publicly by the people in authority. We should not allow the Wuhan virus to run its course in the human body when we can shorten that time considerably using medications already available. Unfortunately, the authorities put no emphasis on this, so it’s up to the individual to recognize this potential problem with the Wuhan virus (long-term, adverse health effects) and realize there is a potential fix for that problem using medications and use it.

Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 23, 2020 9:15 am

“The Wuhan virus should not be dismissed as trivial. Lots of complications appear to be cropping up post infection, even in asymptomatic people.”

Long covid and long haulers, as they call them, are mostly fiction. There may be some legitimate post-covid complications like there are with any illness, but most of it seems to be a conflation of treatment side effects (e.g., mechanical ventilation, toxic drugs), psychosomatic disorders, stress from the lockdown, hypochondria, Munchausen syndrome, etc.

I’ve read through hundreds of posts by long haulers, and most of them seem to be by people who are glad they finally have something specific to explain chronic symptoms of generally bad health that the anxiety and stress of lockdown has amplified.

Here’s an example of one from a long-hauler support group who was intubated for 51 days (it’s remarkable this person survived; my heart goes out to this person). Long term side effects from mechanical ventilation are normal, so beware of and treat with extreme skepticism anyone who conflates all cases together and doesn’t take pains to point out these kinds of things.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/COVID19survivorcorps/permalink/797910680957793/ (click on the Discussion link to read more)

Reply to  icisil
September 23, 2020 9:17 pm

(e.g., mechanical ventilation, toxic drugs)

Bogus. A lot of long haulers never got any treatment. Just staying at home being considered a “mild” case. Still can’t walk stairs w/o getting out of breath – after months.

You’re obsessed with your unfounded “it’s all about the wrong treatment” claim. It would be funny wouldn’t it be so disturbing and foolish.

Reply to  Ron
September 24, 2020 11:32 am

I said side effects from mechanical ventilation and toxic drugs are part of the conflation, not the entire suite of long hauler problems. You’re obsessed with deflecting from an obvious cause. It sounds personal.

Reply to  icisil
September 24, 2020 5:45 pm

Beg my pardon but a sentence like

“Long covid and long haulers, as they call them, are mostly fiction.”

does not at all reflect reality. You can measure the effects and compare them to patient files from before.

Educate yourself:

Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 23, 2020 9:17 am

“I read about a 9 year old boy….”

THis is pure phenomenology: just like weather. Bet its the parent’s interpretation, while the quacks, if competent, are looking for some of the bad things that do sometimes happen to children as an alternative explanation. My parents spent 7 years feeding my brother supplements and mourning that he was homosexual. Turned out he had a pituitary tumour.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Fran
September 24, 2020 4:28 pm

“Bet its the parent’s interpretation”

You would lose that bet. The child was quoted in the article, describing his various ailments since he got the Wuhan virus over six months ago.

Michael in Dublin
Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 23, 2020 9:24 am

You appear not to notice there are flu and corona viruses with different mortalities.
Your story about a nine year old with no context or verification proves nothing.
How many under 25 have died from CORONA-19 compared to those 65 and older – when people usually die – proving the dangers to children and students is less than crossing a busy road.
It is Dr Fauci’s alarmism that is foolhardy.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Michael in Dublin
September 24, 2020 4:45 pm

“How many under 25 have died from CORONA-19 compared to those 65 and older”

The deaths are a separate issue from what I am talking about. Yes, older people with health conditions are more susceptible to the Wuhan virus, and young people weather it very well. I believe something like 99.9 percent of those who get the Wuhan virus survive the infection.

The issue I’m concerned about with Wuhan is the possible long-term health effects caused by the virus. Inflammation is showing up in a lot of people who have had the Wuhan virus, even people who were not hospitalized and had mild symptoms. The standard procedure for college football players nowadays who get infected with Wuhan is after they recover they are supposed to lay off any heavy exercise because of potential heart inflammation that may be made worse by vigorous exercise, and they are checked very closely over a period of time for inflammation.

This inflammation damage is happening in people. We don’t know if the damage is just temporary and the body will heal itself eventually, but it could be permanent damage. Permanent damage even with a mild case of the Wuhan virus. We just don’t know. So you survive but can’t climb a set of stairs without getting out of breath for the rest of your life.

SARS-1 in 2003 caused a lot of people to have adverse health effects that have lasted to the present day. I posted a link to that study a week or two ago. SARS-1 and SARS-2 (Wuhan) are closely related and may be doing similar damage to people.

So I’m not arguing that the Wuhan virus flu-like part of the illness is that dangerous to most people, but the after effects may turn out to be a much bigger problem than we realize right now.

People need to be treated with medications as soon as they test positive in order to eliminate the virus from the body as soon as possible, and the hope would be that this would lessen the damage done by the virus and possibly eliminate long-term damage.

Matthew Schilling
Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 23, 2020 9:24 am

Please re-read your first sentence slowly. I will leave out a portion that might obscure my point: “Lots of complications.. in asymptomatic people.”
Please explain how an asymptomatic person has any complications, let alone “lots”. Or, explain how a person with any complications – let alone “lots” – could be considered asymptomatic.
Have fun! Thanks in advance!

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Matthew Schilling
September 24, 2020 7:47 am

I see the replies are all dismissing my concerns about the long-term effects of the Wuhan virus. It sounds like a lot of wishful thinking, or whistling past the graveyard, to me.

As to asympotamtic people having adverse effects after infection, there are studies (I dont’ have one available at this time, but am sure I’ll run across more) where 100 people who had recovered from he Wuhan virus, both those who had severe symtoms and went to the hospital, and those who had mild symtoms and did not go to the hospital, and they found post-infection inflammatin in 50 percent of both groups. The flu symptoms of the Wuhan virus are just part of the problem.

I say the aftereffects of Wuhan virus should be a concern to everyone. We should not tell people it is ok to get this virus, that everything will be alright because we don’t know that to be the case.

There’s a simple solution, whether Wuhan is dangerous long-term or not, and that is using medications to eliminate the virus from the body as soon as possible. We now have numerous treatments that will accomplish this goal. What we don’t have is the emphasis on doing this. Instead, we tell people to go ahead and get sick and allow the virus to run its course in the body. But by doing so we may be setting them up for lifelong damage to their body even if the initial Wuhan infection is not severe.

We have treatments to eliminate the Wuhan virus from the body. We should use them on everyone who tests positive as soon as possible. That way we minimize the potential damage as much as possible.

We’ll see where you guys stand in about a year when we have a little more information.

Check out the after effects of the Sars-1 virus of 2003. It infected about 8000 people and k!lled 800 of them, and many of the survivors are still having adverse health effects from that virus. There’s a study on that somewhere. And aren’t we glad that the Wuhan virus wasn’t as lethal as Sars-1. If the Wuhan virus was 10 percent lethal we would all still be hiding in our homes and there wouldn’t be anyone advising that we go about business as usual.

We got lucky with the Wuhan virus, but we are not out of the woods yet.

Matthew Schilling
Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 24, 2020 7:00 pm

So, in your (too long) reply, you mentioned “both those who had severe symtoms (sic) and went to the hospital, and those who had mild symtoms (sic) and did not go to the hospital”.
Neither of those groups are asymptomatic. As the famous funny quote goes – “You Keep Using That Word, I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means”

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Matthew Schilling
September 25, 2020 8:24 pm

“Neither of those groups are asymptomatic. As the famous funny quote goes – “You Keep Using That Word, I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means””

Well, good, I’m glad you are still around. I have something I read tonight that will address your questioning of asymptomatic patients.


“Here’s what Dr. Fauci said, “We found to our dismay that a number of individuals who have completely recovered and apparently are asymptomatic, when they have sensitive imaging technologies, such as magnetic resonance, imaging, or MRI, have found to have a disturbing number of individuals who have inflammation of the heart.”

end excerpt

I think that statement pretty much backs up the claims I have made that you have questioned. There were a “number of individuals” i.e., “lots” and they were asymptomatic.

Any more questions?

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Matthew Schilling
September 24, 2020 4:53 pm

“Please explain how an asymptomatic person has any complications, let alone “lots”. Or, explain how a person with any complications – let alone “lots” – could be considered asymptomatic.”

I have read of several cases where people went to the doctor for inflammation that had cropped up in their body (one guy’s lower legs were swollen and inflamed) and they were diagnosed with the Wuhan virus.

I suppose that’s technically not asumptomatic since the inflammation was supposedly caused by the Wuhan virus, but the patient showed no flu-like signs at all.

I think I posted links to a lot of this a week or two ago.

I’m sure I’ll have more links to post on the subject in the near future. Stay tuned.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Matthew Schilling
September 24, 2020 7:01 pm


Doctors say 8 types of skin rash can be coronavirus symptom – especially in kids

“In 21 percent of cases, rashes were the only symptom.”

end excerpt

Not everyone who gets the Wuhan virus and is damaged, has flu-like symptoms.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Matthew Schilling
September 24, 2020 7:28 pm


Dr Fauci Warns of New COVID Symptoms You Need to Know

“Fauci continued: “The other thing is that when people get infected, we’re seeing more and more of lingering signs and symptoms, so that when you clear the virus, you may have weeks or months or so in which you just [feel] not quite right.” “People with more severe infections might experience long-term damage not just in their lungs, but in their heart, immune system, brain and elsewhere,” reports Nature. “Evidence from previous coronavirus outbreaks, especially the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic [2003], suggests that these effects can last for years.”

end excerpt

Treatment, which interrupts the natural progression of the Wuhan virus, as soon as a person tests positive would be the way to go. The less time the virus is in the body, the less damage it can do.

Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 23, 2020 11:21 am

Tom, have you ever thought of googling for published flu research for all these claimed effects of covid?

Yes, exactly the same claims are made.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 24, 2020 4:22 pm

Here’s an interesting item I ran across a minute ago:


Effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine was hiding in plain sight

Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 24, 2020 4:56 pm

From your link:

“To use the airbag analogy, the purpose of the study was to determine whether the airbag (hydroxychloroquine) had the capability of cushioning passengers from fatal impact. The unsuitable cases are equivalent to passengers who received no airbag protection because the airbag was not deployed, not because airbags that did deploy had no effect.”

Brilliant analogy.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 24, 2020 4:25 pm

And there’s this:


Coronavirus deaths 75% lower in nations using hydroxychloroquine!

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Tom Abbott
September 25, 2020 9:03 pm

And this:


Research Shows Cardiac Safety of Hydroxychloroquine in COVID-19 Patients – Not Associated With Dangerous Heart Rhythms

“Short-term hydroxychloroquine treatment is not associated with lethal heart rhythms in patients with COVID-19 who are risk assessed prior to receiving the drug. That’s the finding of research published today (September 25, 2020) in EP Europace, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).[1]

“This was the largest study to assess the risk of dangerous heart rhythms (arrhythmias) in COVID-19 patients treated with hydroxychloroquine,” said study author Dr. Alessio Gasperetti of Monzino Cardiology Centre, Milan, Italy and University Hospital Zurich, Switzerland. “In our cohort, there was a low rate of arrhythmias and none were associated with hydroxychloroquine. . .”

“Dr. Gasperetti said: “Hydroxychloroquine treatment was associated with QT prolongation, as expected, but the change was small. There was no connection between the drug and the occurrence of arrhythmias. The study shows that hydroxychloroquine administration, alone or in combination with other potentially QT-prolonging drugs, is safe for short-term treatment of COVID-19 patients at home or in hospital, provided that they undergo risk assessment and ECG monitoring by a physician.”

end excerpts

I think the political demonization of hydroxychloroquine is a huge scandal. I think the demonizers have blood on their hands

Andy Pattullo
September 23, 2020 8:27 am

This is a really good summary of observations and principles of respiratory outbreaks that are largely being ignored by leaders and a lot of public health advisors. Along with the controversies around herd immunity, there are also a couple of other areas of confusion that I believe are being ignored or misinterpreted by leaders and the media. First is the case numbers. Where I live as in many western nations there has been a “2nd wave” of cases which paralleled a rapid increase in testing.

The case numbers can for the most part be largely explained by doing a lot more testing in asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic people. No test is perfect and the recently developed PCR assays for the CoVID pathogen have never even been tested against a “gold standard” to determine their actual sensitivity and specificity. If specificity is low, as is likely with a PCR test using high cycle numbers, then a large proportion and possibly even a majority of positive tests in minimally symptomatic individuals may be false positives and the testing may be the cause of the case numbers.

In support of the above is the observation that death rates and hospitalization have largely faded away in most western nations in spite of the rising case numbers suggesting the “cases” being reported are of a very different nature than those at the onset of the pandemic.

The second area of controversy is the pathogenicity of the virus as manifest by the death rate. In my province of Alberta the average age of death “due to” CoVID remains 83. The most likely affected were elderly and otherwise chronically ill individuals. Because of loose case definitions and built in incentives to report CoVID it is very likely that many of those who died did so from other conditions including advanced age and that CoVID had little or no influence on longevity. We just don’t know and won’t know for some time the actual quantification of this viruses impact and can only indirectly make estimates by measures of “excess mortality” against normalized seasonal numbers.

When we know a lot more we may end up concluding that all of the lockdown and social distancing along with the enormous costs and losses that those policies entailed were of no benefit other than to spread out an inevitable virus burn through the vulnerable population. In places where health care resources were stretched to their limits that may be the only benefit from the policies which we then need to assess against the harm done. I hope we don’t just learn from this but remember the lessons for decades to come.

September 23, 2020 8:33 am

In March 2020 the US Covid case rate shows a double bump, increasing until mid April, decreasing to mid June when it again began increasing reaching a new peak near the end of July. It then began a slow decrease continuing to this day. The US Covid death rate also shows a double bump offset from the case rate by a few weeks peaking in late April and again in late July.

The UK, France, Germany and other European countries show a double bump in the case rate but not the death rate. Despite recent increasing Covid infections there, deaths have not increased and remain very low. This suggests either a difference between the US and Europe in how Covid deaths are recorded or the existence of a different form of Covid in the US which is more deadly than that in Europe.

Reply to  DHR
September 23, 2020 9:07 am

The “double bump” in the US is far more likely due to the spread of the virus over time. It appears now that there will be a third bump (although much smaller) as the virus continues its spread into less dense and more rural areas.

I doubt that we are much different than Europe in any of the possibilities you mentioned.

Reply to  DHR
September 23, 2020 9:23 am

Flus show different epidemiological patterns in cold and warm climates. The long slow increase in southern states is like that in Brazil and Argentina. See around 20:11 in this video.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Fran
September 23, 2020 9:54 am

No one seems to want to compare Sweden w/ Norway or Finland???

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 23, 2020 1:57 pm

Please explain this –

Deaths/1M pop:
Sweden – 581
Finland – 62
Norway – 49

Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 23, 2020 9:06 pm

farmer, please explain this:

sweeden-no lockdown or mask mandate
finland/Norway-lockdowns and mask mandates

1500 deaths >90
2500 deaths 80-89
1200 deaths 70-79
600 deaths <60

90% of deaths in sweeden were 70+ (likely nursing homes) so general population was at very low risk so no lockdown or masquerading was the appropriate call

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 24, 2020 7:55 am

Goracle – I’m an engineer and can’t explain anything w/ your straw man argument that skips 2/3 of the data (Finland and Norway). I can speculate (which my lawyer friends advise against).
Speculation #1: Sweden reduces its health and social care costs for the elderly by . . . Doing nothing!
Speculation #2: Sweden weakens the no-go zones by . . . Doing nothing!

(Apologies to my beautiful wife who is of Swedish decent)

Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 24, 2020 7:01 pm

farmer, the point is 90% of sweeden deaths were aged 70+… therefore, the risk for those under 70 is very low (on par with seasonal flu, if not less) and my conclusions that the lack of lockdowns or mask mandates were appropriate response… u take it 1 step further and say they did it on purpose to clean the slate of old expensive people… could be accurate but how did you get that strawman conclusion of yours

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 26, 2020 3:39 am

goracle – “ how did you get that strawman conclusion of yours”

My original question asked for a comparison of Sweden, Finland, and Norway. Your answer presented demographics of deaths for Sweden only – which is an answer for a different question.

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  DHR
September 24, 2020 4:14 am

Or the fact that the US population is much larger and spread out over an area that is much larger than the European countries. The US population is almost 4 times that of Germany. As for the double bump, the southern US states actually got their first wave of COVID-19 during the “second wave”.

TL Winslow
September 23, 2020 8:34 am

Herd immunity isn’t the problem.
“And you’ll develop — you’ll develop herd — like a herd mentality,” Trump said. “It’s going to be — it’s going to be herd-developed, and that’s going to happen. That will all happen.”
LOL Mr. Stable Genius!!!!

Reply to  TL Winslow
September 23, 2020 10:19 am

Mr Stable Genius vs. Mr. Lights Are On But Nobody’s Home

Carl Friis-Hansen
Reply to  icisil
September 23, 2020 2:15 pm

Sadly so many US sheeple appear to go voting for him.
It would have been better if Greta Thunberg had taken his place. She could always get a new birth certificate in Hawaii, have Arnold as science advisor and Joe Biden could then be the new SCOTUS.

And they lived happily ever after.

Reply to  icisil
September 24, 2020 5:43 am

Another 200 million dead? Pretty soon we’ll be talking about some big numbers.

Chas Wynn
September 23, 2020 8:38 am

Gras … How true! Great comment. Should be stamped on the forehead of every hand wringing politician.

September 23, 2020 8:42 am

We have successfully survived every virus since the dawn of humanity.
All mammalian life on Earth has been co-evolving with viruses since the dawn of mammalian life.
The dinosaurs were not killed by viruses, probably, for the same reason.
Rats and cockroaches do not wear face masks and they seem to be doing about as well as any other animal.

The real pandemic today is the intrusion of politics into every facet of human affairs, facilitated by a novel means of digital communications. People will survive adversity, just like rats or cockroaches.

Reply to  bwegher
September 23, 2020 10:20 am

The question is, can we survive virologists?

September 23, 2020 8:49 am

If you normalise the UK “cases” by the number of tests being performed then the number of equivalent “cases” back at the peak in April would have peaked at about 120,000 per day (compared to 5000+ per day now).

So after normalising “cases” by number of tests the current “cases” are only about 4% of what might have been expected from testing back in April. If you take the normalised cases and accumulate them, it would total around 3.5 million people in the UK, or about 5% of the population.

The deaths now are running at just 2.0 – 2.5% of the deaths back in April.

The UK chart of “cases” implying a second wave is clearly a wrong indicator (even if there is a lag between testing and deaths). Uncorrected for the number of actual tests being performed, it gives the impression the number of daily cases is now almost the same as in April at the peak. number of “cases”. But deaths are averaging 20.6 (vs 973 in April’s peak), just over 2%. Currently there is no “second wave” and if deaths hardly change over the next 14 days then it will have been a false alarm and the scientific experts will have called it wrong.

Don B
September 23, 2020 9:00 am

Thank you Nic for continuing to make the case for herd immunity.

 In addition to herd immunity, the availability of Hydroxychloroquine is important. Look at the Frontline Doctors global map of where HCQ is over the counter or has minimal restrictions (economically advanced countries are not so advanced about this medicine):


Reply to  Don B
September 25, 2020 4:36 am

There is some indication that infection by some parasites – worms, malaria plasmodium etc can prevent Covid.
So was it the HCQ or was it the plasmodium?
If the latter then HCQ may not be the cause of low Covid deaths in malaria infested countries.
Just search – worms and covid – e.g. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQ5SUsDSxpY at about 24 minutes

Richard Wendt
September 23, 2020 9:21 am

I am 76 and thinking back, I don’t think I have been sick with anything for the past decade. I do take yearly flu shots and have a heartbeat irregularity but that isn’t going to kill me. Eat well, eat sparingly, exercise, don’t smoke and do stupid things.

Reply to  Richard Wendt
September 23, 2020 10:08 am

don’t smoke, and do stupid things,
don’t smoke or do stupid things?

September 23, 2020 9:38 am

Don’t be too optimistic.
Sweden has just its first wave passed.
Anyway, the virus mutates and will finally override ANY “herd immunity”.
It is only a vaccine – updated every 6 months – that can stop the epidemics.

Reply to  Alex
September 23, 2020 10:37 am

Don’t be too pessimistic.
Sweden will survive.
All viral biology mutates, with any one strain tending to become more benign.
Viral pandemics have been occurring over millions of years where no vaccines existed.
Covid-19 sill surely be added to H1N1 in the historical record of human virus successes.
Meanwhile, you just go ahead and wear your biohazard suit. Don’t forget your bubble boy plastic room and that foil wrap around your head for those RF signals.
That reminds me, make sure all children on Earth are required to wear several feet of bubble wrap, just in case some random hazard might harm one.

David Lilley
Reply to  Alex
September 23, 2020 11:12 am

Alex, what caused epidemics to end in the era before vaccines were discovered ?

Virus-specific antibodies are required to defeat any particular strain of virus and production of these antibodies can be triggered by contact with the virus itself or by a vaccine. These antibodies do not remain in the body for a great length of time but the blueprint to create them is retained by T-cells. T-cells are long lasting and, critically, they can recognise viruses with common characteristics such as other members of the coronavirus “family”. This does not mean that you can’t subsequently catch the virus or a mutation but it does mean your body can deal with it.

Covid-19 is a SARS virus. T-cells created as a response to the first SARS epidemic in 2003 can still be found in the bodies of survivors. There is also evidence that people who have more recently had a mild coronavirus have immunity.

A vaccine is not a requirement for herd immunity but it is a good idea for those members of the community who are at risk through age or co-morbidities.

Reply to  Alex
September 23, 2020 3:58 pm

Then how are humans still here?

Worldwide vaccination has been around only several hundred years or so.

Do you think this is the first epidemic humans have faced?

Mutations do not necessarily override immune response to viruses or herd immunity. For example the measles vaccine has not changed in over 50 years.

Reply to  DGM
September 25, 2020 4:41 am

We are only just here:
The Black Death was the second disaster affecting Europe during the Late Middle Ages (the first one being the Great Famine of 1315–1317)[17] and is estimated to have killed 30% to 60% of Europe’s population.[18] In total, the plague may have reduced the world population from an estimated 475 million to 350–375 million in the 14th century.[19] There were further outbreaks throughout the Late Middle Ages, and with other contributing factors[b] it took until 1500 for the European population to regain the levels of 1300.[20] Outbreaks of the plague recurred at various locations around the world until the early 19th century.

September 23, 2020 9:50 am

London, England
During the lockdown roads across the capital have been closed and poles put up in the roads to demarcate cycle lanes. The car is the enemy. For my council its become a bit too much

The LTN trials were introduced last month to make residential streets more bike and pedestrian friendly and to deter rat run traffic.

They were part of a series of measures introduced as part of the COVID response by freeing up additional space on the highway in support of social distancing and to promote alternative forms of travel as people gradually return to work.

The trials also supported the council’s ambition of combating climate change by encouraging people to use more sustainable forms of transport and tackling air quality.

However an initial review of the trials has identified concerns with emergency access and traffic flows. And this has been compounded by additional changes that Transport for London (TfL) is making to red route roads in the borough.

These include significant interventions on the A24 (Balham High Road to Tooting High Street and beyond) including moving bus stops, installing cycle lane segregation, banning turns at a number of junctions and removing parking.

The scale of these A24 changes coinciding with the council’s efforts to establish LTNs on residential streets has caused confusion and long traffic queues.

Additionally, concerns around rising COVID rates and reduced capacity on public transport has meant that alternative travel options are limited for many people at this time.

In light of these initial trial findings the council has decided to suspend the LTN trials.


It also delayed fire engines and ambulances.

Farmer Ch E retired
September 23, 2020 9:52 am

Updated reported US COVID-19 deaths pre & post HCQ EUA:


September 23, 2020 10:03 am

The virus is not novel. The response is and disconnected from the transmission modes in context. The greatest blocs of excess deaths can be traced to Planned Parent (e.g. long-term care facilities), cross-contamination in medical facilities, and other locations (e.g. apartment complexes) with unsanitary conditions. The combination of early treatment, improved hygiene, monitoring for Planned Parent facilities, controlling social contagion, and preexisting immunity would have reduced excess deaths, which many are not “excess”.

September 23, 2020 11:39 am

“Covid is over in Sweden. We have herd immunity.”

Unfortunately not. Infections are rising rather steeply now.

1131 new cases yesterday, the highest since June.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  tty
September 23, 2020 12:28 pm

Cold weather has returned, driving them back indoors to closed-up, heated spaces. It will happen again in the norther US first.

The spike in COVID in the Southern US states at the beginning of June and into July coincided with the heavy use of A/C and people staying inside cooled spaces.

The craziest, anti-science thing in the world is to think this Corona virus is transmitted to any significant degree out on beaches and in large open outdoor day-time spaces where breezes and air currents rapidly mix the air particles and the UV sunlight sterilizes them.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
September 23, 2020 1:17 pm

It also coincides w/ the FDA revocation of the HCQ emergency use authorization on June 15th.

Reply to  tty
September 23, 2020 1:29 pm

Hello tty

I’m wondering about your Sep 22 number for new cases in Sweden:
– 239 according to Worldometers
– 185 according to the European CDC, I just downloaded their data from


Maybe you have a better source at home?


But I fully agree with your statement about infections “rising rather steeply now”.

We just need to look at UK, France, Spain, and… yes yes: Germany.

Joel O’Bryan does not seem to live in corners where

– central town, beach or apres-ski bars are heavily visited without any respect to social distanciation, and/or
– large family celebrations with over 300 people take place despite the ban,

what possibly explains his rather naive comment (breeze in bars? wow).

J.-P. D.

Reply to  Bindidon
September 23, 2020 3:19 pm

This discrepancy occurs because Worldometer records all “new” cases and deaths as occurring on the day of report, rather than on the day of testing or occurrence, which can have the effect of making any given day’s total appear greater than it actually was.

For example if a country has 10 deaths occur over the last week, but because of delays they were all reported yesterday, Worldometer will report that 10 deaths occurred in that country yesterday; whereas on that country’s actual data dashboard, the deaths will be entered on their day of occurrence.

Thomas F
Reply to  Bindidon
September 24, 2020 12:28 am

From the Swedish official website:
239 new cases on Sep 22. No uptick
Death count close to zero

Carl Friis-Hansen
September 23, 2020 12:26 pm

Good post, but what is the common nominator for the mortality?

I was looking at this list:

Clicked on the “Deaths/1M pop” in order to sort it descending.

No matter how much I try to bang my three brain cells, I cannot figure out what determines the ranking.

1: The Republic of San Marino
2: Peru
3: Belgium
4: Andorra
5: Spain
6: Bolivia
7: Brazil
8: Chile
9: Ecuador
10: USA
11: UK
12: Italy
13: Sweden
14: Mexico
15: Panama
16: Columbia
17: France
18: Sint Maaten: 465
47: Saint Martin: 155

19: The Netherlands
20: Ireland
21: North Macedonia

If we look at rank 18 and rank 47 the death toll is 3 to 1 on this very same island.
Has anybody here on WUWT knowledge handling C-19 and differences in eating, social behavior, elder care, hospitals, HCQ/Zn phobia, etc. on the north and south part of this island?

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Carl Friis-Hansen
September 23, 2020 12:31 pm

Look for the common link to be Social structures of the population and large, extended families living in and sharing common spaces ( the same homes).

Carl Friis-Hansen
Reply to  Carl Friis-Hansen
September 23, 2020 1:13 pm

Joel, after living in The Netherlands for 6 years, I learned that the Dutch kiss three times when saying hello and I think the French only kiss twice during greeting.

But still Sint Maaten and Saint Martin share a tiny island. The roads are intertwined they both have golf, casinos, hospitals and airports. Despite French vs Dutch small differences, there is not a lot of difference to point out for someone who have never been there.

My ugly wild guess is that we have a counting issue.
A counting issue, died with or of C-19, could be revealed if we can get hold of the total general mortality for the last five years. This number is difficult to “doctor”.

Reply to  Carl Friis-Hansen
September 23, 2020 1:51 pm

Carl Friis-Hansen

The reason is quite simple: you compare two statistically insignificant countries, with each having far less than 1000 cases and far less than 100 deaths:

18 Sint Maarten 594 3 20 512 62 6 13,818 465
47 Saint Martin 330 6 206 118 11 8,502 155

That definitely makes no sense at all, sorry.

J.-P. D.

Carl Friis-Hansen
Reply to  Bindidon
September 23, 2020 2:36 pm

Probably right.

Reply to  Carl Friis-Hansen
September 24, 2020 5:48 am

If you want to reduce it to one variable, it must be CO2.

John Finn
September 23, 2020 12:48 pm

The timing of this article couldn’t be worse. A big spike in cases has been detected in Stockholm. They are even considering introducing restrictions.

This is a major setback since there were big hopes that Stockholm was at least close to herd immunity. We’ve also got some hefty spikes across the UK which are not translating into hospital admissions.

This virus has a long, long way to go.

Carl Friis-Hansen
Reply to  John Finn
September 23, 2020 1:33 pm

I do not see any “big spike in cases”. Could you point to a reference, please?
Although I live in Sweden, I do not see Swedish TV-propaganda.
Have a look at https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/sweden/ and notice that case, whatever the definition is, does not show any spike until yesterday. Similarly the death toll is about 1 a day, which is sad, but there is absolutely no upward trend according to the above mentioned web page.

Reply to  Carl Friis-Hansen
September 23, 2020 2:32 pm

Carl Friis-Hansen

” … notice that case, whatever the definition is, does not show any spike until yesterday. ”

Oooops?! What about looking at this screenshot of Worldometers’ Sweden data?


J.-P. D.

Carl Friis-Hansen
Reply to  Bindidon
September 23, 2020 10:33 pm

Bindidon / J.-P. D.

Please learn to read a chart!!!!

Read very carefully what is on the X-axis (under the horizontal line).

Under that line are dates, not minutes, hours or something else.

The spike You are talking about was on June 24th 2020.

If you were trolling, then please do it in a way where we know you are, so we can have a laugh and not waste time analyzing your suggestions.

Reply to  Carl Friis-Hansen
September 24, 2020 4:01 am

Carl Friis-Hansen

Please Mr Friis-Hansen! Keep calm / restez calme s.v.p.

I did not understand that you meant ‘no spike since then’.


And… thanks for the subcutaneous arrogance in

If you were trolling, then please do it in a way where we know you are, so we can have a laugh and not waste time analyzing your suggestions.

Y personally would prefer you doing some useful job instead, e.g. by trying to answer my question below:


How you can manage to suppose me being a troll I can’t understand.

J.-P. D.

Matthew Schilling
Reply to  John Finn
September 23, 2020 1:49 pm

Thanks, John Finn, for that informative link to back up your assertion that Stockholm has suffered “a major setback” regarding the Wuhan Virus.
Oh wait… it seems you didn’t provide a link to back up your assertion… That’s odd! Someone might think you’re just making things up.
You have a long, long way to go to re-establish your credibility. Good luck!

Reply to  John Finn
September 23, 2020 9:13 pm

if you catch it but dont die from it and the IFR is .1-.2 max, does case count really matter other than to spread fear? move on with your life… or stay home and let others move on with theirs.

September 23, 2020 12:48 pm

Farmer Ch E retired [September 23, 2020 at 9:54 am]

” No one seems to want to compare Sweden w/ Norway or Finland??? ”

Oh sure I want!

Here are some comparisons of Sweden with Scandinavia excluding it, i.e. Denmark, Finland and Norway (in the following ‘DFN’).

Sweden has about 10 million of inhabitants, DFM has in the sum 15; their population densities are quite similar.

1. While Sweden has a COVID mortality rate of about 560 deaths / million (the US is at over 600), DFN accounts for no more than 73, i.e. about eight times less: it is way below the Globe’s average, with currently 120.

The comparison is best understood when you remember that the seasonal flu’s mortality per million is about… 20.

2. How did Sweden’s and DFN’s mortality develop over time?


3. But this is only half the job you should do. Because it doesn not matter only to show how death tolls cumulate over time; it is important as well to show when they develop, by using daily increment information:


4. I never understood this strange interest for a Sweden allegedly doing ‘everything well’ during this pandemic (unless one is brazen enough to compare that country with e.g. New York state).

Case mortality, as suddenly put in front by Trump for merely political reasons, is a perfect non-sequitur: while the US and the UK are on par for both tests per million and deaths per million, their case stats per million differ by a factor of over 3, what leads UK having a case mortality of over 10 compared with 3 for the US.

Of interest is one more time the comparison with the seasonal flu, with a case mortality of 0.1 for the US!

J.-P. D.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Bindidon
September 23, 2020 2:14 pm


Did Sweden do a great job at handling COVID-19 w/ 581 deaths/1M pop?

I would rather live in the next-door neighboring country of Finland (62 deaths/1M pop) or Norway (49 deaths/1M pop). They share borders w/ Sweden whereas Denmark does not. Denmark (111 deaths/1M pop) shares a boarder w/ Germany (113 deaths/1M pop).
(worldometers.info 9/22/20)

Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 23, 2020 3:21 pm

The 20 year old Öresund bridge linking Sweden to Denmark is cause for major problems.

Reply to  Bindidon
September 23, 2020 8:55 pm

unlike sweeden, those other countries had lockdowns and mask mandates…. some are locking down again because case loads are up (not sure why but if u never built up herd immunity then deaths will likely happen). sweeden did have a much higher death toll than their neighboring countries… but most were elderly.. like nearly 90% of all deaths were 70+.


. the point is the godless country of sweeden appears to base their decision on science more than other countries did…. and they were right all along. if you’re not sick and elderly, covid was a nothing burger even lower IFR than flu/pneumonia if your under 50.. the lockdown and mask madness are abhorrent abuses of power… and the sheep wear the diapers on their faces with pride.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  goracle
September 24, 2020 8:22 am

goracle – straw man argument doesn’t address why Finland & Norway have done an order of magnitude better to date. While visiting Japan a few years ago, I was surprised to see many residents wearing masks. There must be some benefit even w/o our mild pandemic.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  goracle
September 24, 2020 8:52 am

“the point is the godless country of sweeden appears to base their decision on science more than other countries did”
In some respects I agree. If the US would have continued to allow the use of HCQ/zinc (based on science), 10s of thousands would still be alive. What I’ve observed is that when Judeo-Christian values are thrown out the window, science becomes a tool for achieving more power.

Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 24, 2020 7:11 pm

farmer, stop eating the straw you grow… it effects your thinking. I’ve already said Norway and finland did much better regarding death count than sweeden…. because lockdowns and masks…. and now reopening are being delayed again because infection hotspots due to lack of herd immunity…

as for japan, if lockdowns and masks worked, why the 2nd spike? strawman, admit it, you’re wrong, lockdowns and masks were wrong decision,

as for Christian values, here in USA we’ve reached the point of no return IMO… it’s either revival of Christian values or into the trash heap of history we go.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 26, 2020 3:56 am

Goracle- thanks for reply. Regarding Japan, their use of masks, & a 2nd rebound- they must be doing something right as their C-19 reported deaths are less than 2% that of the USA despite their higher population density.

As for Christian values, we are in agreement.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  Farmer Ch E retired
September 26, 2020 3:59 am

Reported deaths should be “deaths/1M pop”

john cooknell
September 23, 2020 2:29 pm

I always read Nic Lewis articles, and I find he is very good at pulling apart those that get statistics wrong.

Not sure about this. I get the feeling none of the statistical models have any resemblance to reality, so just because the statistical models all appear rubbish it really doesn’t answer the question of “what shall we do?”

Experienced hard nosed Medics I know, who work on the frontline, have never seen anything like it, and are scared stiff, so how do you model something like that!

Historical precedent exists, the 2nd wave always kills more than the first wave.

Reply to  john cooknell
September 23, 2020 3:50 pm

What exactly are they scared about? Fear has a way of feeding on itself. I’m pretty sure that doctors have seen stuff like this before, but I would be interested in what it is exactly that they’ve never seen before.

Craig from Oz
Reply to  john cooknell
September 23, 2020 6:26 pm

“Historical precedent exists, the 2nd wave always kills more than the first wave.”

Care to expand on that?

Stephen Skinner
September 23, 2020 2:36 pm

China has a 3 thousand year old culture and has been living with flu and cold viruses for quite a while. After all, many of these viruses come from China so they are habituated.

David Lilley
September 23, 2020 2:56 pm

I see these comparisons between Sweden and the adjacent Nordic countries. The difference in deaths per million of population is factual but the notion that this is due to differing lockdown regimes is a supposition. Consider other pairs of adjacent countries :-
France (482 deaths per million) v Germany (113)
Spain (664) v Portugal (189)
Italy (592) v Greece (34)
and yet France, Spain and Italy have had some of the strictest and most rigorous lockdowns in Europe.

I think we should also be very wary of the so-called second wave of infections. At the height of the pandemic in late March and early April, certainly in the UK, only hospital admissions were being tested. These were genuine covid-19 cases, i.e. people who were ill. Nowadays, most tests are being carried out in the community using throat and nasal swabs which are tested using the PCR technique. If you look at the link below, you will see that the PCR test is utterly unsuitable for coronavirus testing and returns ridiculously high false positives. Even the genuine positive results are not necessarily indicative of a viable virus. The second wave is, up to this date, phoney.

It’s not surprising that so many perfectly healthy individuals are being told they have the virus and must self-isolate. For UK readers, think
David Moyes and two West Ham players
Most of Leyton Orient
Several Aberdeen players, etc


September 23, 2020 3:20 pm

What IMHO would be much more interesting than these strange herd immunity considerations, would be a really scientific evaluation of the comparison of COVID19 cases/death tolls for all Earth’s continents, together with the somewhat more special cases Western Europe and the US.

If you average the ECDC data


for all these parts of Earth, you obtain this:

1. Cumulated cases


2. Weekly means of daily cases


3. Cumulated death tolls


4. Weekly means of daily death tolls


How is it possible that, though statistically having had at least as many potential COVID victims, not only Oceania but also Africa and Asia keep so far below the Globe’s average, while Europe, but especially America and above all the US keep so far above?

J.-P. D.

Ian W
September 23, 2020 3:35 pm

I am amazed the entire article and all the comments apart from commieBob September 23, 2020 at 8:06 am concentrate on the Adaptive Immune System.

There is also the ‘Innate Immune System’ that just by design makes it difficult for viruses to take over the body and cause disease. For the Innate Immune System to work correctly it is essential to have the correct diet. In particular it is essential that the body is sufficient in zinc, selenium and Vitamin D. Zinc is not easily taken up by cells without the presence of a zinc ionophore. In nature these would be polyphenols such as quercetin, resveratrol, and EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate) from green tea. If there is sufficient intra-cellular zinc then viral replication is blocked as it prevents viruses taking over the cell’s RNA transcription mechanism. This blocking works with Corona Viruses, Influenza Viruses and Polio Viruses.
This was known by experiments in vitrio and cell cultures and this was published in 2010.
[See Journal.ppat.1001176 ]

Of course the most famous zinc ionophore is now Hydroxychloroquine which if taken with zinc and antibiotic at the first sign of symptoms usually cures COVID-19 in 5 days. These cures now number in the thousands and countries which are using this regimen have hugely lower ~75% hospitalization and death rates. These results were said to be ‘anecdotal’ and the medical establishment demanded clinical trials – these people knew of the paper from 2010 remember. They also persuaded governors to outlaw the prescription of HCQ. Then when the trials were run they did NOT include zinc (remember that is the active element) and were given to people that were already hospitalized and in extremis. This was deliberate.

As you will see from the paper intracellular zinc blocks many viruses from replication, viruses that currently are the raison d’être for a huge vaccination industry. In short if your innate immune system is in kept strong with zinc and zinc ionophores and together with Vitamin D3 and selenium (from Brazil nuts). Not welcome news for the industry.

Chronic COVID-19 has been in the news recently to talk up the dangers. The reason for this is that the response from doctors to a positive case of COVID-19 with symptoms is to tell them to quarantine at home with perhaps acetaminophen and call for hospitalization if things get too bad. This is the equivalent of the fire service saying call us back when the roof is well alight. By that time the SARS-CoV-2 viruses have started infecting all the endothelial cells lining blood vessels as well as the lungs. Considerable damage can be done in this stage not only to the lungs but to other vital organs such as cardiac problems, brain inflammation and multiple strokes, kidney damage, even damage to toes and testes. It may be that this damage is permanent and will not heal.

All because the medical establishment do not want people to know that a simple zinc/zinc ionophore/antibiotic treatment will cure many viral infections. Indeed, a good diet that keeps a person sufficient in zinc, zinc ionophore (fruits and vegetables), selenium and vitamin D3 will ensure that they are NOT susceptible to viral infections.
This is not new. You can find support for this by simple searches on the internet.

The fact is that just by ensuring the population has a diet that provides sufficiency in easily available minerals and vitamins this pandemic could have fizzled out. Those people that did become sick could have been easily treated as outpatients.

Someone needs to explain why that was not the case.

David Lilley
Reply to  Ian W
September 23, 2020 4:02 pm

With your permission, I would like to post this to other forums. I will attribute it to you using your WUWT handle.

Ian W
Reply to  David Lilley
September 23, 2020 6:43 pm

I have no problem with any reposts David

Reply to  Ian W
September 23, 2020 4:33 pm

Given the recent Spanish study, I am gobsmacked that the authorities aren’t embracing Vitamin D supplements and therapy.

As you say, it looks deliberate.

Reply to  commieBob
September 23, 2020 6:31 pm

What other reason could there be?

Reply to  Ian W
September 23, 2020 4:55 pm

Boils down politics and power. Pretty much all things do. Government is a disease masquerading as a cure.

Les Francis
Reply to  Ian W
September 23, 2020 8:52 pm

Well. Is it a matter of – There’s your problem.

Getting your Zinc, Selenium or Vitamin D from healthy diet and sunlight.

Is it a fact that 42% of the US population is obese? Bad dietary choices.
In many western countries the obesity rate is approaching that percentage? Same bad dietary choices.
In poorer countries diet is compromised for the simple lack of funds to buy the “healthiest” food.

I’ve seen it stated that normal vaccines are much less effective in obese persons because of their tendency to have many more Ace2 receptors than “healthier” weight people. Any Sars-Cov2 vaccine is also to be much less effective for that group.

Should not the medical profession, governments and MSM be running a huge scare campaign against obesity and the need for a healthy diet instead?

Reply to  Ian W
September 24, 2020 3:41 am

” As you say, it looks deliberate. ”

Well, if that was really true, no US administration would publish an own link to the paper.


J.-P. D.

Reply to  Ian W
September 24, 2020 11:30 am

Thank you, Ian W. This knowledge about how to protect oneself and one’s loved ones to the extent possible is summarized beautifully in your comment.

Ivermectin is also important, an even more potent virus killer (at least this virus) than zinc with its ionophore. All can be used together. All are cheap. All are proven safe – for many years.

Also as I understand it hydroxycholorquine is most important for protecting all the other body organs even if it is not the actual virus killer like zinc is. (Maybe it would lessen or limit the “long-haulers” if used early on.)

A significant level of Vit D is important, probably greater than 50. Very high doses of Vit D also is curative for pts infected with the virus.

Thank you Anthony for these excellent scientific articles.

We should be very angry at those powers who want to continue both the illness and the lowered economic development.

In addition to sharing Ian’s comment with those we care about, also see DrBeen (Dr.Mobeen) YouTube lectures for all these treatments, the research and/or doctor’s behind them, and the microbiology that explains them. Excellent, friendly, and important information.

Steve Z
September 23, 2020 4:50 pm

According to the latest statistics for the USA, there have been a total of 6,985,791 “confirmed cases” of COVID-19, and 202,421 deaths from COVID-19, for an average fatality rate of 2.89%.

One problem with these values is that they are cumulative since the pandemic began in March, although new cases and new deaths have been declining steadily since about mid-July, and no hospitals anywhere in the country are “overwhelmed” with COVID-19 cases.

If we estimate the USA population at 330 million, about 2.12% of the population has been tested positive at some time since March, and 0.061% of the population has died from COVID-19 since March. But what happened to those who were tested positive in March or April or May who didn’t die? Have they completely recovered? Are they now immune?

There’s also been some discussion of false positives in testing, since the method used attempts to replicate fragments of DNA to “amplify” their concentration a thousand or a million-fold to help with detection. However, discovering a fragment of viral DNA in someone’s blood or nasal sample doesn’t mean there are active viruses–the person could have had a few viruses that were killed by the body’s immune system, and a few dead fragments remain. Such a person would be asymptomatic and unable to spread the disease to others.

It has been estimated that about 3% of the people tested are false positives, who are diagnosed as positive without any real disease. The percentage of tests which come back positive varies by state, but generally between 6% and 10%, meaning that 30% to 50% of “positive” tests are false positives, and the actual infection rate (contagious carriers) is much lower than 2.12% of the population. Adding in the fact that some people who tested positive months ago (and survived) are no longer contagious, and there may be less than a 1% chance that some random person you meet has COVID-19.

We also find out that the median age of people who die from COVID-19 is about 80 years old, which is close to the average life expectancy. With an average life expectancy of 80 years, one would expect about 1.25% of the population to die (of all causes) in a given year. So, if 0.061% of the population died from COVID-19 in six months, that represents about a 10% increase in the overall death rate from all causes.

With this knowledge, do continued lockdowns make any sense whatsoever? Since the effects of COVID-19 are more serious in older people than younger people, wouldn’t it make more sense to have elderly people (most of whom are retired) stay at home, and have younger, COVID-negative people take care of their daily needs, while the rest of the population goes back to work and school and life as usual?

Ian W
Reply to  Steve Z
September 25, 2020 2:45 pm

If you take any large city, even where the handling of COVID-19 was poor. The actual numbers infected are usually 5% or less. As I say above this is because people with a good innate immunity due to diet and fitness cannot get infected.
Take London for an example, the SARS-CoV-2 virus probably arrived in London sometime around January. At that time the London underground was handing 5million passenger journeys a day. London buses similar numbers. Anyone who has been in London during rush hour knows how crowded together passengers are and none wearing masks. This from January through to the mid-March lockdown. If everyone was susceptible to the virus the numbers sick should have been in millions. It was not. Nor were those the numbers in Wuhan a city of comparable size, nor were they the numbers in New York City, or Los Angeles. Everywhere that there should have been a huge infection rate there was not. Only around 5% were infected. This is what got me looking at innate immunity.
There was a lot from hospital doctors that people sufficient in vitamin D were not turning up in ICU and the level of sufficiency seemed to be directly proportional to the disease severity.
I then found research on the web published by NIH in 2005 that showed that chloroquine stopped Corona Virus replication. It seemed to me there was no need to panic over the pandemic as cheap treatment – zinc/hydroxychloroquine/antibiotic given at first symptoms or contact with an infected patient would cure the infection in a week. I was saying this to people in February 2020.
Then Trump mentioned that hydroxychloroquine showed promise as a treatment and immediately talking heads (normally those that hadn’t hands-on-treated a patient in decades) started claiming all sorts of problems with HCQ. All the side effects that they started claiming are known now to be symptoms of COVID-19. The virus will infect any cells with the ACE-2 receptor. All the blood vessel endothelial cells can be infected all over the body, so any organ with a blood supply may get damaged. These symptoms only occur after around 10 days of untreated infection.
Alongside the howling from media talking heads, the FDA/NIH ‘experts’ called all the claims of cures using HCQ/zinc ‘anecdotal’ it could not be sanctioned as a treatment until there had been a clinical trial. Clinical trials were set up most of them not including zinc (the main antiviral) and most in hospitals given to severely ill patients rather than as a first course of action with an outpatient.
I have set up formal trials many times – that level of ineptitude in setting up the clinical trials for HCQ/Zinc had to be deliberate.
There was also a affected lack of understanding of the side-effects of COVID-19 even web pages like WebMD were publishing lists of side effects of COVID-19 that these ‘professional experienced clinical researchers’ were blaming on HCQ. All the publicity was about HCQ and that they were testing HCQ. Whereas ‘all’ HCQ was doing was acting as a zinc ionophore to raise the level of intracellular zinc. Zinc has to be added to the regimen as most people are insufficient in zinc in their diet (especially if they have been on hospital food for a week or so). So the repeated talking of HCQ clinical trials was a deliberate bait and switch.
My question then was – “Why are these ‘professional medical researchers’ not using zinc in the clinical trials?”. I then found another 10 year old paper that said that zinc with a zinc ionophore blocks RNA virus replication . not only Corona Virus but also others like Influenza and Polio.
“Zn(2+) inhibits coronavirus and arterivirus RNA polymerase activity in vitro and zinc ionophores block the replication of these viruses in cell culture” [DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1001176 ]
This paper was published by the NIH. So they knew that intracellular zinc would prevent viral replication a decade ago. Perhaps the idea that influenza and polio can be blocked by a simple diet change might cause a monetary loss to a vaccine industry.
So what we see now in the USA and some other countries is an approach to COVID that does NOT treat patients when a $25 cure works in a week. Instead the patients are told to go home with acetaminophen and if things get too bad go to the hospital. Needless to say it is this untreated wait in which the virus can propagate all around the body that causes what is now called chronic COVID and also all the organ damage.
I am left with a very poor view of the medical profession particularly the medical bureaucrats. The intent seems to be to want to profit from vaccines not cure patients. Clinical trials are deliberately set up to fail. The metrology (metrics) being used is being deliberately sullied by venal attempts to get more money so every death is COVID even if it is a motorbike accident. It is now not possible to calculate IFR/CFR and other figures as a positive test is called a ‘case’ even symptomless and probably a false positive as the PCR amplification is set to as high as 45. And the deaths are always recorded as COVID if the patient has ever had a positive test. The fiddled figures are then put into graphs that [like climate change graphs] have a stretched Y axis to look scary and are then fed to innumerate politicians.

Any one of the points above would be suspicious – having them all in a sequence……raises issues that need to be discussed. But then if social media is used to discuss these them, as ‘the front line doctors’ found, that discussion can be removed from the web and social media globally inside a few minutes with Twitter, Facebook and Google all acting in concert.

One of the ‘Front Line doctors’ has assessed that 75% of patients that died of COVID could have been cured using the zinc/zinc ionophore/antibiotic regimen. You can imagine her frustration. That is a lot of people dead. Figures for countries that do use the protocol are startlingly better than USA or UK.

Sufficiency in Zinc, Vitamin D3, Selenium and a diet that includes a zinc ionophore such as quercetin or EGCG and you will join the majority of unsusceptibles – not only for COVID but for a swathe of other viral infections. It is your innate immune system feed it well.

Craig from Oz
September 23, 2020 6:34 pm

Face it kids, China’s Gift to the World came in, harvested all the terminally ill and then ran out of things to do.

Since then many of us have caught it without realising, and, not being terminally ill, are still alive.

In the coming months far from seeing a second wave we are very likely to see the ‘Excess Deaths’ drop below the national average lines and remain there for several months.

I dispute we are seeing Herd Immunity in the sense the virus can no longer spread. I put to you the virus is happily spreading in a largely uncontrolled manner and we are seeing a drop in hospitalisations and deaths because, as mentioned earlier, we are running out of terminally ill elderly victims.

Intentional Self Harm deaths on the other hand will continue to grow for months.

WuFlu stopped being a medical issue back in March. Since then it is political.

Reply to  Craig from Oz
September 23, 2020 11:26 pm

I suspect you are right Craig 🙁

Carl Friis-Hansen
September 24, 2020 7:31 am

Denmark is now having more cases than they had during the peak in April.
This doesn’t seem to have much influence on mortality though.

Finland sees much the same tendency and are going to close the border to Sweden – again.

Sweden is still not seeing any significant increase.
My opinion: Sweden is unlikely to see any issues before the winter sets in, where cold, flue and Wuhan usually get a better bite.

September 24, 2020 8:44 am

Here’s Dr. Atlas saying the same thing as Nic’s article, with the same references…Hmmm…..


George DeBusk
September 24, 2020 8:56 am

I went and read the BJM piece and I wondered after reading it if “The Vaccine” might not have been among us the whole time. If, in fact, it could be established that exposure to Coronavirus colds imparts not immunity but resistance to SARS Cov2, then could infection by a relatively benign Coronavirus cold be a way to prevent or at least minimize serious cases? If we really feared Covid19 that much, then perhaps an intentional infection with one of the cold-inducing Coronaviruses could provide the resistance needed to prevent serious infection in persons with preexisting conditions.

Probably completely unworkable from a public health perspective (mostly because a coronavirus cold may be enough to kill many of those dying of Covid 19 – in my home state of SC the median age of death is 78, a year older than the average life expectancy of 77!), but it might make a great plot for a fiction piece . . . hmmmmm.

michael hart
September 24, 2020 11:42 am

Returning to the T-cell immunity issue, the BMJ article further comments:

The immunologists I spoke to agreed that T cells could be a key factor that explains why places like New York, London, and Stockholm seem to have experienced a wave of infections and no subsequent resurgence. This would be because protective levels of immunity, not measurable through serology alone but instead the result of a combination of pre-existing and newly formed immune responses, could now exist in the population, preventing an epidemic rise in new infections.

Though I call myself a Chemist, I studied much T-Cell immunology for my PhD at the turn of the century, including a lot of work by Alessandro Sette. (Delighted he is still going.)

As something of a scientific ‘outsider’, like my supervisor before me, I was struck by immunologists focus on B-Cell immunolopgy and antibody production in cases where the T Cell response was known to be of critical importance.

I suspect that that is largely because the effector molecules of the B Cell response (ie antibodies) are so much easier to measure. It is a classical example of the drunk found searching for his car keys under the street lamp when he actually dropped them some distance away. When asked why he was searching there, the reply was that “that is where the light is” even though he knew that it was an almost forlorn task to search there instead of where he was actually more likely to find them.

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