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Austria’s strict lockdown

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Pixie View Drop Down
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    Posted: November 14 2020 at 1:51pm


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November 14, 2020 5:59 pm by Sam Jones in Zurich

Austria’s government has ordered one of the strictest lockdowns in Europe, with chancellor Sebastian Kurz telling the public to “meet nobody” as the country battles a surge in coronavirus infections.


“One contact is one contact too many,” Mr Kurz said on Saturday, as he unveiled a raft of restrictive measures that will put much of public and economic life in the alpine country on hold. 


An “around-the-clock” curfew will apply from Tuesday, with people only allowed to leave their homes to buy groceries, travel to essential work or provide urgent care. 


Austria’s second lockdown will be stricter than others in Europe, such as that recently imposed in France, because schools will also close. 


Only supermarkets, pharmacies, banks and post offices will be allowed to stay open. 


Working from home will be mandatory, except for those who provide essential services. 


On Friday, Austrian public health authorities reported 9,586 new coronavirus infections. 


The government introduced a range of softer restrictions earlier this month in an effort to curb the growth in cases, but despite these efforts officials have been alarmed at the speed numbers have risen. 


Health minister Rudolf Anschober, speaking alongside Mr Kurz at a press conference on Saturday, said that the number of patients with Covid-19 in the country’s hospitals had doubled in the past two weeks.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote EdwinSm, Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 14 2020 at 10:54pm

It seemed that much of the eastern part of Europe had a relatively mild first wave, and Austria is in that category (lower figures than Germany),  Now with the second wave it seems as if it is out of control in the whole region, including Austria.   


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote cn65 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 15 2020 at 4:57am

From which we might conclude that mask wearing introduced at the end of the first wave in such places including France and Spain does precisely nothing to control the spread.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WitchMisspelled Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 15 2020 at 5:07am

Perhaps I haven't had enough coffee yet, but can you expand on that theory cn65?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 15 2020 at 5:34am

You had better have some great evidence (Austria is not it) if you want that theory accepted, cn65.  

Proper scientific studies on mask wearing demonstrate it reduces infection rates by significant amounts*.  None of the studies claim that mask wearing stops transmission, but the consensus agrees that it has a huge statistical effect.  Possibly as high as 90% if the mask wearer is the infected person.

Epidemiologically speaking, that renders it a vital tool in viral supression.  Alone, it would not help much, but added to hygene, distancing, testing, tracing, isolations and lockdowns it is an important link in the chain.  None of those other methods is 100% either.  But when all are put together, the R rate can be dropped below 1.  If there is a failure of compliance, understanding, planning or organisation and even one of the tools fail, you get an Austria situation.

This is a fairly nasty virus, made much worse by its contagiousness, numbers of asymptomatic patients and additional animal hosts.  Making this even worse, people are suffering from covid fatigue in most countries and getting sufficient compliance to supress the spread is becoming harder.  It is more important now to keep our guard up than ever before.  Austria's problems await the unwary and the worst time to catch something is when the ICU beds are full.

'And do I practice what I preach?   I don't go out in public at all these days.  I wear a mask for deliveries and disinfect post, using a disinfectant containing soap which inactivates this virus (as it is enveloped).  






*https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-02801-8

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