Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • Hello, Welcome to this.

  • Channel four News Q and A on the Corona virus or, as it's officially known, covert 19.

  • Now we know this is an international health emergency.

  • We've seen that recently.

  • Cases seem to be increasing and spreading around the world.

  • But we also know that for a lot of you out there, there's a lot of fear.

  • There's a lot of concern.

  • There's also a lot of fake news.

  • We've asked you give us some questions and we're gonna now some of them to an expert on that is epidemiologist and by security expert Dr Ngoc Run.

  • Do welcome.

  • Thank you.

  • Glad to be here, right?

  • So let's get into it.

  • So one of the questions that we get a lot, quite a popular question from a lot of people is.

  • Is this Corona virus curable?

  • And where's the vaccine?

  • If there's gonna be so at the moment?

  • No, it's not curable.

  • We do not have a vaccine.

  • Even though there are vaccine trials, clinical trials are in played right now.

  • Estimates say that we will probably have Ah vaccine within one year to 18 months.

  • And even though that sounds like a long time, that is quite fast if you think about the history of vaccine development, so that is reassuring.

  • But that's 18 months for us to be on our guard and to be aggressively fighting this Corona virus.

  • Why is that so quick to get that Mexico's that Because we've sort of advanced to a stage now we can get a vaccine that quickly, right?

  • There's several reasons for that.

  • One is that Cove In 19.

  • It comes the Corona virus that causes that current virus is a family.

  • And so we've had other Corona virus diseases such as, Ah, the severe acute respiratory syndrome, which is stars Acela's, the Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome murders.

  • And so we already have some practice.

  • There has already been some research happening, so we're not starting from scratch, scratch per se, even though this novel coronavirus is novel with the cure aspect, you know, some people have mentioned you know, what does it tell us that some people have had a Corona virus that then recovered and they've got again?

  • Does that?

  • What does that tell us about?

  • Well, that's what we're still trying to learn.

  • We're trying to understand what happens when you have it and you build up antibodies against it, and obviously every every person's going to react somewhat differently.

  • I'm, of course, like a healthy 25 year old.

  • Um, it might be much easier for that person to fight off a re infection than somebody that is older that has existing disease with some people say to us.

  • So how can I tell the difference between the symptoms of a nasty cold or the flu on dhe covered?

  • 19?

  • I think that's a really good question, and right now the case definition.

  • So how scientists are describing in using, Um, like a set of, say, like principles to identify Corona virus is really beyond the symptoms of, you know, having a fever, having body aches, having a cough, which is president of cold and flu.

  • It's also about who have you been near?

  • So have you traveled recently to anywhere that has had a cluster of of infections?

  • It has an outbreak, so of course it would be different areas in China, especially who Bay province.

  • But also right now we have ah cluster of outbreaks in northern Italy.

  • We've had some transmission in Germany.

  • I mean, there's different places, so if there's a cluster there, that's part of the case definition.

  • It's not just those symptoms.

  • It's Have you been there?

  • One has someone in your family, been there.

  • Close contacts.

  • Close contacts are the most important people in this situation.

  • This forest transmission.

  • While we have seen very few cases limited cases where they can't really say, you know, actually, I don't remember being next to anybody who have, who has been to China or any of these places where there's a community transmission while we while we don't have a lot of that that does exist.

  • And right now a lot of scientists are trying to figure out where they got that from, because because another concern from a lot of people seems to be that Is it possible to be infected and show no symptoms whatsoever?

  • So we have seen some of those cases again limited cases that are asymptomatic, so not showing any, um, any symptoms, that something that we're still looking at a TTE the moment.

  • I mean, I can't say what percentage because there's so many different populations studies going on right now, but for the most part it seems that people are actually presenting with symptoms, even if they're mild symptoms.

  • And, as you know, a majority of people who are contracted covert 19 actually exhibit mild symptoms.

  • And in terms of what we do know, trying to put it in perspective lets people don't know.

  • How does this compare to seasonal flu?

  • Pandemic flu?

  • The death rate?

  • So what do we know if we want to try and compare this tow something like seasonal flu, Right?

  • So what we know is that it's transmissibility, so how easy it is to infect someone else.

  • It seems like it's similar to seasonal flu, and that means that it's relatively high.

  • Um, as far as its mortality or of its death rate, it seems like it's about 2% of the population who it seems like that we were still getting more data.

  • But about 2% of the population who contract cove it 19 are dying.

  • What we have seen in China, where we've had the majority of information because they've had thousands and thousands of people that have been tested on and observed, it seems that most people who contracted the mid 19 or between Colvin, 19 are between 30 years old and 69.

  • Most people who die from it are like around late sixties early seventies, um, as far a seasonal fruit flew in its mortality rate.

  • Seasonal flu has a less than 1% mortality rate, so more like 10.2% so covert 19 at 2% is higher in much higher actually, than a seasonal influenza.

  • Yesterday, W.

  • H O said.

  • This is not a pandemic yet, but it also said, this is not like any other influenza.

  • So what does that mean?

  • That means that this strain of Corona viruses nothing that we've seen before is that concerning?

  • I think it's concerning because we don't have any immunity to it.

  • You know, with seasonal flu, at least we have vaccines.

  • And like this year, the vaccine was quite effective.

  • It was about 44% for people who actually got the vaccine.

  • They were protected.

  • But what we do know, compared to other viruses that can try that that have respiratory illness or that cause respiratory illness, like what I said earlier about the stars and the murders.

  • Now, when you compare it to those diseases, it looks like it's much weaker.

  • So, for example, with MERS about 30% of people who contracted MERS died.

  • So the 30% mortality rate with stars about 10%.

  • So at 2% it's much lower than those.

  • Those two.

  • Yeah, well, I guess some people are concerned that it's, you know, there are figures about sort of 60% of the population, 80% of population getting it.

  • So is that is that is that right?

  • People are asking, Is that right?

  • That that you could see 60 to 80% of the population off of each country of the world getting this.

  • So I don't think that that is, that we're able to really confirm how many people are, What percentage of the world like.

  • Yes.

  • In some ways, it is possible for many people to get this disease at the same time, but in other in other situations.

  • So if you even look a seasonal flu, um, everybody doesn't get seasonal flu at the same time.

  • Right?

  • And flew also is seasonal.

  • It's cycles.

  • So we have, like a flu period between maybe December and February or march to anywhere you are, and then we have another one that comes in the fall.

  • So we just you know, this was just discovered at the beginning of December, so we're waiting to see if it has that seasonality pattern as well, because I think it was Donald Trump who originally said There's another people talk about it that, you know, come the warmer weather.

  • This will just go away.

  • This is something that we're hoping and that we're looking at.

  • But again, because this was what the science shows is that it really The first cases really spilled over early December in late November.

  • So no one can confidently say that in the warm weather comes that this will go away.

  • But we're hoping that it does, at least for the health systems around the world.

  • It would be a nice break for, you know, toe have a bit of a risk Spite having less people conduct contract this this illness in the summertime so that, um, efforts to respond can be more concentrated.

  • Resource is can go just to ah cove in 19 like isolation and contact tracing.

  • Because right now I mean, n h s is not just dealing with Corbett 19.

  • They have influenza, they have.

  • I mean, the wintertime is where you have most of the seasonal flu cases.

  • So because within that, lots of people are asking about what percentage of the cases are going to require people to have medical attention, go to hospital.

  • So, you know, we know about the possible death rate figures.

  • What do we know?

  • What kind of figures were actually have to go to hospital?

  • Have attention?

  • Yes.

  • So at the moment, what we've seen in China is about 20% of those who contract Cove in 19 have a severe illness, meaning that they actually need to be admitted into the hospital.

  • And like I said, there is no treatment.

  • But there are things that you can do to mitigate the effects of the of the virus on your body.

  • There's you can provide oxygen.

  • You can provide fluids, different things that you can do to manage the people who are more cases on those questions as well.

  • About, um, we know that it seems that it's older people when those with pre existing conditions are most vulnerable.

  • So people here asking, you know, if I have asthma, should they be more concerned about, So I think that's a very good question.

  • It it seems that if you are compromised, especially in your respiratory system, that it would be more concerning that you would want to.

  • I mean, everybody should be doing precautionary measures.

  • Everybody should be quite vigilant.

  • But what we've seen in China, or people who smoke, they were more likely to get severe illness or to die from the disease.

  • So I would think that people who have asthma, bronchitis or other things, they would also mean just with fluids while they would want to protect themselves.

  • And is that for the older, older people?

  • Just demographics.

  • I would think it's all demographics because even though what we're seeing a lot of times in the sciences reported, it's kind of shown is a quite binary that only old people die, you know, majority might, you know, majority of old people who have compromised immune systems are people with compromised immune system, our underlying health conditions.

  • Those might be the majority that is reflected in the pool of people that are not surviving.

  • But that doesn't mean that they're not cases, um, of young people that have also contracted the disease, and I we saw that quite a few health care workers, um the one, the one doctor who actually was the first person to report cove it 19.

  • He passed away.

  • And obviously health care workers are even more at risk because they're exposed to the virus way more than anybody else.

  • In terms of a lot.

  • Advice, especially, will get here in the UK is all about ham washing.

  • Someone here asked, At what point in the epidemic does handwashing need to be replaced by more stringent measures?

  • I guess handwashing should never be replaced.

  • So what we know is that this, um, this virus can be transmitted through droplets.

  • So if somebody sneezes on you or somebody coughs like the little spit that comes out, that is how we transmit the virus.

  • But it also can be transmitted through full might.

  • So particles that are on surfaces we still don't know how long the virus can last outside of a person on a surface.

  • But if someone sneezes in their hand and they turn the knob and then you come right after them and then you wipe your eyes or touch your face, you've exposed yourself to the virus, so hand washing should never be replaced is actually quite effective even though it sounds like Oh, it's just hand washing is actually very important.

  • Someone who's asking, um, you know, a lot of the stuff we know about Corona virus comes from China, where it seems originated.

  • Do you believe the W H.

  • O statement about the situation in China?

  • I do believe it.

  • I just read a mission report, and I also have several colleagues that were on that mission to China, where W.

  • H.

  • O.

  • Really triangulated.

  • It's evidence of what the Chinese officials were saying.

  • So they actually went to the clinics and said, for example, one of the most recent statements by China is that the case is actually declining, and debate you wanted to know is that Is China just saying that?

  • Or as you know, is this actually happening?

  • They went to the clinics and they they asked them like, How is your patient volume?

  • What's going on right now?

  • And they said, Okay, a lot of doctors said, you know, at the at the peak of the outbreak we were we had a queue outside of the clinic for people to get in.

  • Now we're seeing maybe one person per hour, so they did go to validate the information that China is putting out.

  • And I will say one other thing