Coronavirus Reads, Digest 28
Delhi discrepancy in death count furthers concerns of undercounting, the White House faces multiple Covid-19 cases amid staff.
It’s Saturday May 9th.
Sorry to interrupt your weekend with a touch of grim reality, but studies show that we need to prepare for surges and hotspots in different geographic areas over the next 18-24 months.
This Is the Future of the Pandemic, The New York Times
India’s coronavirus cases are set to cross 60,000, and there have been nearly 2,000 confirmed deaths.
The Hindu newspaper reports a discrepancy in death count between official Delhi numbers and those counted by Delhi hospitals. The Covid-19 death count total from just two hospitals is 107, while the Delhi govt’s official death count from the whole city stands at 68.
Maharashtra continues to be the worst hit, closing in on 20,000 cases. The BMC Chief in Mumbai has been transferred over the handling, as the city itself has over 11,000 cases. IAS officers are reportedly working on trying to reduce the city’s doubling time. Pranab Dhal Samanta argues in The Economic Times that Mumbai needs a special and targeted plan.
Tamil Nadu will relax lockdown restrictions starting Monday May 11th.
All labor regulation and laws have been suspended in UP & MP to supposedly draw investment at a time when the economy is struggling. But without any regulation, there are lots of concerns over worker protections and the risk of bonded labor.
A new jobs report came out yesterday, and U.S. unemployment levels have dipped to levels not seen since the Great Depression. Unfortunately, as the NYT reports, “the federal government is lurching away from the strategy that has thus far helped slow the spread of the coronavirus and sustain people and companies struggling during the self-inflicted economic shutdown.”
As Job Losses Mount, Lawmakers Face a Make-or-Break Moment, by Jim Tankersly
Meanwhile, positive Covid-19 cases have been reported amongst White house staff, including Vice President Pence’s press secretary and Ivanka Trump’s executive assistant.
Trump sought a reopening but found the virus in the White House instead, by Kevin Liptak, CNN
As you now know, Covid-19 can also result in blood clotting and strokes (even in young people). In Wired Magazine, an explanation of how blood clots and infectious diseases have a long precedent.
Covid-19's Scary Blood Clots Aren't That Surprising, by Roxanne Khamsi
And in Vox, a poignant photo essay of essential workers in NYC, by Jorge Garcia.
Side Effects of the Pandemic
Apparently online babysitting is starting to become a thing. Katharine Gammon reports on the effectiveness of virtual childcare. Does Online Babysitting Work?
At these times, will we watch anything that’s on tv, as long as it's a distraction? Shira Ovide discusses in her newsletter how television habits are changing.
As museums close, exhibits that took curators years to plan are being shelved, with some shows not even going to be able to reopen. Museum Exhibitions Years in the Making Are Felled by the Virus
A telling account from a reporter, McKay Coppins, about the experience of taking a flight in these times. While everyone around him thought it would be a welcome change from being stuck indoors, he found that between distrust and anxiety of not knowing who could be sick, trying to maintain social distancing, and disinfecting everything in sight, it was a miserable experience. His reflections show that we are misguided if we consider that “reopening” will bring us back to our normal lives.
Flying During the Coronavirus Pandemic: What to Know, The Atlantic. An excerpt:
“But as America lurches awkwardly toward an economic “reopening” in the weeks ahead, my fraught travel experience highlighted an unwelcome truth: The glittering allure of “normalcy” that waits on the other end of these stay-at-home orders is a mirage.
The things we miss most about our pre-pandemic lives—dine-in restaurants and recreational travel, karaoke nights and baseball games—require more than government permission to be enjoyed. These activities are predicated not only on close human contact but mutual affection and good-natured patience, on our ability to put up with one another. Governors can lift restrictions and companies can implement public-health protocols. But until we stop reflexively seeing people as viral threats, those old small pleasures we crave are likely to remain elusive.”