WHN Boardroom Briefing – Jan 24
The human, health, economic costs and consequences of “living with covid”: HIGH
Despite low-level testing and data, Covid-19 remained in the top 4 leading causes of death in the US in 2022 and was the most used ICD-10 code for underlying or contributing cause of death (76%). Covid-19 infections are also driving heart disease: A large study using UK biobank data, found infected persons are 81X more likely to die of heart disease within 3 weeks of infection, versus an uninfected person, and 5X more likely up to 18 months after.
Excess deaths across all age groups continue to be a more accurate view of counting the ongoing impact of the pandemic – The Economist has updated its model of total global deaths to 5X official covid-19 death reports.)
Today, in Jan 2024, 71 out of 210 countries are sharing data with the WHO, which recorded an additional 1M covid cases worldwide between the 11th Dec – 7th Jan. However, these numbers do not tally with the high levels of wastewater showing across the US and other countries, prompting a warning that actual numbers of cases could be up to 19X higher than official reports.
10-20% of these latest infections will inevitably turn into Long COVID cases, appearing in the 1st-2nd quarter this year.
Prior to JN1, Long COVID was estimated to affect more than 65M people worldwide and the disease was recorded on 5000 US death certificates. Long COVID continues to be a root cause of declining population levels of worker activity and quality of life.
Global costs to the economy calculated in 2022 and pre-current JN1 wave was $12.5TR (pandemic, IMF) and $3.7TR (Long COVID, Cutler). During a New York State Insurance Fund webinar last month, Cutler stated that:
“There is no amount of money the government shouldn’t spend to fix Long COVID…there”s no amount that’s overdoing it.”
– David Cutler, Harvard Economist
Global solution feasibility level : HIGH
Politicians must now act and tell the truth about the scale of the threat of an airborne SARS virus that is eroding our ability to live long, healthy lives. There is an urgent need to protect all workers and children to prevent more unnecessary deaths and disability.
Scientists at the WHN have published a new paper that focuses on prevention to provide a science-based way out of the airborne pandemic.
By implementing this plan, leaders can be on the right side of history by better supporting and protecting their workforces, customers and communities.
Healthcare policy will also need to move away from relying on historical, pre-pandemic data for answers, and instead adopt a re-education – re-design of healthcare systems which orients research and analysis around the impact of SARSCOV2 on the human body.
This is a fundamental shift that impacts all of us. If we do nothing, re-infections will continue to increase the level of health impact on every child and adult with poor economic and societal outcomes.
In brief: infection-associated chronic disease
- Last week, a US senate hearing on Long COVID gave patients and doctors the opportunity to give evidence and for advocacy groups to demand $ billions for funding biomedical treatment (noting the comparable nature of the disease to HIV/AIDS)
- Dr Ziyad Al-Aly reminded the house: “there is no Long COVID without COVID”
- Ziyad Al-Aly also followed up with talking to TV host Chris Cuomo (who has mild Long COVID), where he highlighted the problem that “we psychologise what we don’t understand” – as seen with ME and other historical infection-associated chronic illness
- The dangers of exercise and “pushing through” after infection due to post-exertional malaise and the damage it causes to muscles, is finally reaching mainstream media and rehab clinics
- A small pediatric study found ALL children (including those with mild and asymptomatic covid-19 infection) had signs of vascular damage and/or microclots during tests carried out in a lab
- WHN member Cat Fraser, writes about her personal health journey of infection-associated chronic illness and the global social movement building a well-being economy
- Read WHN member Julia Doubleday, detail how the left are complicit in allowing disinformation and disease to spread…and what comes next? Reducing access to clean water, unless you’re a billionaire?
- Read why Long Covid Doctors for Action have launched a large-scale legal case against the NHS for not protecting healthcare workers with legally approved PPE for a bio-safety hazard 3 (BSH-3).