Saturday, November 29, 2014

And The "Official" Numbers Are STILL Bull$#!^

(Guardian UK) - The number of people with Ebola in west Africa has risen above 16,000, with the death toll from the outbreak reaching almost 7,000, the WHO says.
The number of deaths is more than 1,000 higher than the figure issued by the WHO just two days ago, but it is thought to include deaths that have gone unreported in the weeks or months since the outbreak began. Most of the new deaths were recorded in Liberia.
The WHO has warned that its figures could be a significant underestimation of the number of infections and deaths. Data from the outbreak has been patchy and the totals often rise considerably when backlogs of information are cleared. The latest confirmed data shows that almost half those known to have been infected with Ebola have died.
...And most of the other half only just got Ebola in the last three weeks, as always.

What the hell, it's only 1000 dead people (1165, actually) Liberia "forgot to" get around to reporting, which explains why the infections numbers continued to skyrocket while the death rate went backwards at one point recently. So apparently rumors of non-lethal Ebola didn't pan out.
And those are just the ones they actually tested for Ebola at some point before they were buried or set on fire.

Just remember every time you see these reports, that they're tabulated by governments in countries with literacy/numeracy rates of 50% give or take. All WHO does is collect them.
Doubtless witchcraft played some part.

(h/t to commentor geoffb for the direct link)


geoffb said...

Since Liberia just raised their death total by 38% over the figures they have been putting out and these are supposed to deaths which occurred at some past time then it should be fair to raise every figure in their data by 38% to account (somewhat) for the undercount over time.

And understand why their Supreme Court has suspended the upcoming election.

Ex-Dissident said...

I don't recall if it was one of your posts that led me to this article in science, but if it wasn't, then this is a pretty good explanation of why the numbers in WHO reports correlate so poorly with what was previously reported about Ebola.

Essentially when someone comes into a treatment center and gets tested, that person may leave the treatment center and die outside. That death will not be recorded and the eventual fate of that individual remains unknown. However, WHO records a confirmed case and doesn't record a death. When there was a study done on patients who remained inside the treatment center, the fatality rate was about 70%. People under 25 died about 50% of the time and people over 45 died around 90% of the time. This is a far cry from the reported 1800 deaths among 6800 cases from Liberia giving a rosy fatality rate of only 26%.

There is no meaningful follow up of those individuals who are seen in their treatment centers. On the other hand, it may be that there are many times more people who are infected with Ebola in these countries and only suffer such mild symptoms that they never show up at a center and are never tested for Ebola. If this is true then maybe the 1800 deaths that are recorded in the latest WHO report are the eventual outcome of 18000 infected individuals and then the real rate of dying from Ebola is substantially lower than what is currently thought it is.

It is curios why in America, we have had such success in our few infected people surviving. I don't know if the 2 nurses from Texas received the experimental drug such as ZMapp, or if they were only observed, or if they were simply lucky. Two cases does not make much of a study.

Perhaps someone reading your blog will know and share the information about the sort of treatment Americans with Ebola received. I think the 1st 2 people treated here, received ZMapp, but I don't know any details about those 2 nurses or the "doc" in NYC.

Ex-Dissident said...

Sorry about a mistake above, 6800 cases and 1800 deaths are from Sierra Leone and not Liberia. Both countries report unlikely numbers, but the specific numbers I mentioned were attributed to Sierra Leone.

Anonymous said...

Really the WHO and CDC are political hacks with no clue. They just want to keep the government paychecks rolling in. They just don't care how many are dead. They just know they need more money cause they want more money. Government types never want to be held responsible for failure. The failure is always due to a lack of funding. Never mind that 95% of the money is wasted on ineffective nonsense. Just how much money does it take to keep 3000 soldiers fat and happy who are never going to treat a single ebola. How many soldiers does it take to put up a cheap tent and call it a hospital?

Aesop said...

1) The bureaucratic mindset sees real-world considerations, like a blossoming pandemic, a distant second to paying their rent and keeping the bureaucracy well-greased and funded.
Sic semper transit

2) The budget for the US troops - who most certainly WILL be seeing Ebola patients - comes out of the DoD side, not CDC.

3) Take a look at the pic for this morning's post:
That's an actual shot of the British-built Kerry Town Treatment Center.
Note that it's pretty susbstantial, and not just a "plastic tent hospital".
The actual treatment tents are, so that when this is over, they can roll them up and burn them.

But presumably our folks, like the MoD, aren't building hospitals with grape stakes, zip ties, and rolls of visqueen.

But in true government fashion, they under-estimated how long those facilities would take to construct, by a factor of 100%: they thought they could build 17 100-bed facilities in 4 weeks, and it's going to have taken 8 or more by the time they're done.

Unfortunately, in the meantime in Liberia (where the bulk of our efforts are directed), while they were building those 1700 beds, there were 3000 new Ebola cases, "officially", and probably 2-3 times that in reality.

Which is leaving Liberia, like the other nations, quite a bit short on ever getting a handle on this.

Anonymous said...