COVID19 update, July 12, 2020: Sweden redux and immunity; inhaled steroids; BCG vaccine redux

UnHerd interviews a Swedish medical researcher and practicing physician about what things are like there now. It seems the epidemic is winding down there now. Let me start up with Worldometers:

And a Swedish journalist fisks the NYT’s article about the Swedish response, which isn’t isn\t quite the horror show the NYT is making it out to be. Also, it “didn\’t do nothing” — it just relied more on persuasion and voluntary recommendations rather than mandates. (Good luck with THAT when dealing with Belgians, Israelis, or New Yorkers ;))
Maybe Sweden spared itself a 2nd wave by not locking down so tight in the 1st wave? 

(2) Dr. Seheult on inhaled steroids:

(3) I’ve mentioned earlier speculation that past TB vaccination with the BCG (bacille Calmette-Guérin) vaccine may impart a degree of protection against COVID19. Now a story affirming this got published in the prestigious Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2008410117

The COVID-19 pandemic is one of the most devastating in recent history. The bacillus Calmette−Guérin (BCG) vaccine against tuberculosis also confers broad protection against other infectious diseases, and it has been proposed that it could reduce the severity of COVID-19. This epidemiological study assessed the global linkage between BCG vaccination and COVID-19 mortality. Signals of BCG vaccination effect on COVID-19 mortality are influenced by social, economic, and demographic differences between countries. After mitigating multiple confounding factors, several significant associations between BCG vaccination and reduced COVID-19 deaths were observed. This study highlights the need for mechanistic studies behind the effect of BCG vaccination on COVID-19, and for clinical evaluation of the effectiveness of BCG vaccination to protect from severe COVID-19.

Finally, “Five Foot of Lutheran Fury” Mollie Ziegler Hemingway, while acknowledging the seriousness of the epidemic, tells her fellow Americans to react rationally rather than the “h” word she uses.

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