Attendees: Lauren Sherwood Mike Burrows Brian Horan Renee Brown Kate Mullis (tried)
The meeting was called to order at precisely 7:00 p.m. consistent with FOCM SOPs. If there’s one thing that FOCM stands for it’s being on time. No, no, that’s actually not true. If there’s one thing FOCM stands for its socializing/networking.
The meeting was held via Zoom which I’m not familiar with using, such that when Kate Mullis tried to join, I didn’t notice the “Kate Mullis wants in, do you admit her or not” and she had to give up and put children to bed. FOCM’s chairman vows to do better in the future.
It appears we’re all bearing up under the COVID-19 distancing and limited opportunities for going out other than walks, exercise, picking up take out, following the arrows at the grocery stores. There’s a definite reduction in new study start ups, but a lot of work and planning for how to handle ongoing clinical trials. Decisions on new hiring are also delayed considerably.
Will the future of clinical trials be: a return to the way we were doing them with a gradual move toward reducing patient and site burden or will this be the disruption needed to make virtual/hybrid trials the new normal?
Continue washing your hands and staying away from people. I think based on my review of the data, bar graphs, the number of patients in clinical trials and the early reports finding beneficial effects from some of them that by May 8, we’ll be down to under 10,000 daily new cases.
Well, I admit it, my optimistic interpretation of the data was incorrect. I felt strongly that April 4 was the peak of new cases in the US and that stayed true until April 24 when we had a spike of 38,ooo+ new cases reported.
Perhaps that is due to broader availability of testing, which is finding more individuals who test positive for coronavirus. However, the optimist in me did find a brilliantly shining piece of good news – April 26 – the number of new cases reported was 26,509; the 4th lowest daily new cases since April 1.
But my prediction that we’d be dancing around the MayPole on May 1 will not be the case. Yes, some states will be easing restrictions on May 1, but not to the extent I’d hoped. We have to continue to be wise and listen to the scientists, review the data and go forward cautiously. 14 days from April 24 is May 8 and my new prediction (like economists know, if you keep changing your forecast, you’ll eventually be right) is that by May 8, we’ll be having 10,000 or fewer new daily cases. Be optimistic – let’s make optimism be contagious!
April 4 is standing tall as the peak day of new coronavirus cases in the US. We’re now 8 days since that date. Looking at data from other countries, shows that in day 10 – 14 from peak the number of new daily cases is around 20% of the peak.
With over 2,000 patients in clinical trials of drugs that have solid promise based on pre-clinical data, those patients will likely be contagious for shorter periods of time reducing the transmissibility and blunting the number of new cases. Also, the prescribing of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin in early published trials shows elimination of the virus by day 5 whereas patients with no treatment are still positive for 10-12 days. This, too is probably a significant reason for the decline since April 4.
I truly believe pharmaceutical intervention is playing a big role in flattening the curve. Let’s remember that the US pharmaceutical industry is one of America’s greatest assets and is an important part of our excellent and effective healthcare system.
Well, as you know if you keep changing your prediction you’ll eventually be correct. I had optimistically hoped that the number of new cases would have peaked by March 31; however, I missed it by 5 days. The peak, I believe, occurred on April 4 and in analyzing other countries, by day 10 from the peak, the number of new daily cases will be halved.
Call me an optimist – because I am one. With so many patients being treated in clinical trials with several drugs and vaccines and the availability of the safe (on the market since 1955, side effects well known and manageable) hydroxychloroquine, either alone or in combination with azithromycin, the duration of illness is declining in thousands of patients. This reduces the time they’re contagious. That coupled with social distancing and warmer weather will soon have us back to our new normal.
I think we can all gather around the May pole on May 1 (no one seems to do this any more, do they?) and skip around it, singing, “I’d like to buy the world a coke”. I do recall skipping around a May pole in elementary school. What was the purpose? What is a May pole? Questions for another time perhaps. Or feel free to use the comments section to post a reply.
It is now time to unquarantine all of us and move to quarantining just those who test positive, those who have symptoms or who have had recent contact with someone who tested positive.
And let’s start buying stuff so heavily from one country, maybe even make stuff in America again. I’ve been looking for a toaster oven made in any country but China – no can find!
Okay, so here we are on 3/31, day 15 + 1 from the 15 day social distancing edict. We’ll have to wait a few more days to see if my prediction that our nation-wide effort will result in the US hitting its peak by 3/31. is accurate. It is encouraging to see that the number of daily new cases is increasing but at a decreasing rate. Only 400 new cases reported yesterday.
Troubling though is the quick rise in a few large cities: Detroit, New Orleans, for example.