Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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Ramjet
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Ramjet » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:02 pm

lazydavid wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 1:49 pm
Ramjet wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 11:30 am
lazydavid wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 10:57 am
We were already planning on going on a cruise next summer (July/Aug 2021), but haven't booked anything. I'm now starting to watch fares closely, though I suspect it will be a month or more before they bottom out. Read yesterday that bookings are already down by 15%. "Be bold while others are fearful", and all that jazz. :twisted:
You are playing with fire my friend!

Good luck
Why?

The primary risk is that 18 months from now:

1. There is still a significant chance of getting infected or quarantined on a US/Caribbean cruise, and
2. The cruise is not cancelled as a result of #1

The likelihood of both of those things being true seems pretty remote to me.
I was joking for the most part, odds are it works out and you have a great time

If July 2021 rolls around and the situation is exactly as it is today would you go on your cruise?

lazydavid
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by lazydavid » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:09 pm

Ramjet wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:02 pm
I was joking for the most part, odds are it works out and you have a great time

If July 2021 rolls around and the situation is exactly as it is today would you go on your cruise?
I think so. It seems they're now screening passengers that have recently come from one of the "hot zone" countries, so I think that dramatically lessens the risk. The one ship quarantined in Bayonne had 27 passengers that had recently been to China that boarded before this whole situation really started coming to a head.

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mmmodem
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by mmmodem » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:18 pm

I see your point OP. It's not that you are statistically more likely to catch and die by the flu than COVID 19. It's the secondary effects of the virus to the environment around you.

1. I bought more international stock.
2. Being in New England, I already stock up on food and fuel for a generator in winter.
3. I bought extremely cheap tickets (Half off) for my parents to visit us. They are actually in Japan right now and had tickets to connect in China. I'm guessing their flights were cancelled or they changed their minds to continue their trip.

That's it. I don't see the point of buying masks. Like someone already said, it actually makes it harder for someone sick to buy one.

curmudgeon
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by curmudgeon » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:32 pm

lazydavid wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:09 pm
Ramjet wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:02 pm
I was joking for the most part, odds are it works out and you have a great time

If July 2021 rolls around and the situation is exactly as it is today would you go on your cruise?
I think so. It seems they're now screening passengers that have recently come from one of the "hot zone" countries, so I think that dramatically lessens the risk. The one ship quarantined in Bayonne had 27 passengers that had recently been to China that boarded before this whole situation really started coming to a head.
Still a ton of unknowns on the whole situation. The recent fatality in Japan was only diagnosed *after* she died. She had been hospitalized for 12 days under pneumonia diagnosis... https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2020/ ... kWg5GhKjD4

I wouldn't have a whole lot of trust on the passenger screening because I have the feeling that there is a significant iceberg of undiagnosed cases. I have to assume that there are significantly more cases than the four known in the bay area, for example; until recently there were three non-stop flights weekly to SFO directly from Wuhan.

But by July 2021, we will know a whole heck of a lot more about the situation either way. Maybe proof of vaccination will be required for cruises by then...

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Kagord » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:39 pm

seawolf21 wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 12:00 pm
You have better luck winning a lottery prize than getting this virus in the US thanks to the steps airlines/governments have taken to contain it. Furthermore getting virus does not equate death. There are 1,400 deaths in China out of 60,000 cases (less than 3%).
Remind me of this in 3 months please.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by LadyGeek » Thu Feb 13, 2020 4:30 pm

A post on Page 2 containing medical advice has been removed (how to sanitize your nose - procedure, health benefit claims). As a reminder, see: Medical Issues
Questions on medical issues are beyond the scope of the forum. If you are looking for medical information online, I suggest you start with the Medical Library Association's User's Guide to Finding and Evaluating Health Information on the Web which, in addition to providing guidance on evaluating health information, includes a list of their top recommended sites.
Please stay on-topic, which are the consumer issues.
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halfnine
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by halfnine » Thu Feb 13, 2020 6:05 pm

We keep a 2-3 month supply of everything we typically use anyway. Other than restocking a few items to get back up to that threshold we are not really making any other plans at this point.

In addition to the previously mentioned youtube videos from Dr. John Campbell I have also been keeping up to date with videos from Medcram. Other than those two I am pretty much staying away from other sources of information.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by halfnine » Thu Feb 13, 2020 6:10 pm

toofache32 wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:29 pm
SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 9:35 pm
Family is doing nothing different. We are diligent each flu season about hand hygiene, so we don't have to change behavior this season for a new respiratory virus.

I can't remember the name of the cognitive bias that is at play here, throwing off our risk assessment because coronavirus is all over the news and other higher risks are not reported every hour. Maybe someone can remind me.
About 7-8 years ago, shark attacks were all over the news. There were multiple shark attacks at beaches which the media plastered everywhere. Turns out, the number of actual shark attacks that summer was lower than the usual yearly average. But the media business was slow so they created hysteria.

10-15 years before that, a group of mountain climbers died on Mt. Everest. There were multiple journal, newspaper and film documentaries on how this was a horrible tragedy. Turns out, Everest had the lowest number of deaths on the mountain that year compared to the prior decade.

How do we know the same media frenzy is not going on here? How is this virus specifically different from every other virus/flu we see every year?
Your analysis of the Everest tragedy of 1996 would be inaccurate. But, otherwise, your analysis of the media is probably on point.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by fru-gal » Thu Feb 13, 2020 6:31 pm

mmmodem wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:18 pm
2. Being in New England, I already stock up on food and fuel for a generator in winter.
...
That's it. I don't see the point of buying masks. Like someone already said, it actually makes it harder for someone sick to buy one.
I have masks because I react badly to respiratory stuff. I didn't run out and buy them because of the coronavirus. Also another New Englander who has a stock of food, water, meds, supplies for pet. Generator is natural gas.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by mcblum » Thu Feb 13, 2020 6:54 pm

We supported our local Chinese restaurant by going to dinner and telling them how much we enjoy their cuisine and presence in our community.
The place, usually very popular, was almost empty.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by WorldWatch » Thu Feb 13, 2020 7:27 pm

I think you are very smart; prepare and hope that preparation is never needed. I have bought some N95 masks, though from what I have read, they don’t work very well or people don’t use them correctly. I am buying extra food each time I get groceries…canned goods, pasta, oatmeal, rice, flour, sugar, extra paper goods, disposable gloves, tea, coffee (a must). One category of purchases you should add to your list is what I call personal body care or first aid stuff. In case people haven’t noticed, China is practically shut down for business. (I read that 97% of the antibiotics we use are made in China.) So, I bought things like Neosporin (skin antibiotic), hydrocortisone, iodine, hydrogen peroxide, bar soap, Band-Aids, Hibiclens, Benadryl, rubbing alcohol, Pedialyte, Gatorade, OTC pain pills, cold meds, allergy care products, Pepto, and Imodium. These are things that keep us clean and make us better when hurt or sick. I raised children and always had a lot of the above stuff on hand anyway. But, by buying new I can at least replace all my old expired products and have a few things on hand when/if shortages occur. It is good to be proactive. Very few people are able to overcome Normalcy Bias.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by kacang » Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:26 am

Nothing beyond what we normally do. Except a few precautions, such as more frequent hand-washing and 2 weeks of self-isolation after my recent trip to Taiwan & Singapore. I wasn't in China, but it puts others more at ease.

We're in CA. Between preparing for earthquakes and forest fires, we are well-stocked. Besides, we shop at Costco, we'll always have too much toilet paper! :P

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JoeRetire
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by JoeRetire » Fri Feb 14, 2020 7:57 am

TomCat96 wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 2:56 pm
What if anything are you doing to prepare?
Nothing.

I get a flu shot every year, which covers the far, far more likely scenario that folks in the US need to worry about.
If/when a covid-19 virus is developed, I may get that.

Last night my wife and I went out to a nice dinner in a local restaurant. I had mussels, a salad, and an Allagash White. I feel sufficiently prepared.
Last edited by JoeRetire on Fri Feb 14, 2020 8:19 am, edited 2 times in total.
It's the end of the world as we know it. | It's the end of the world as we know it. | It's the end of the world as we know it. | And I feel fine.

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JoeRetire
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by JoeRetire » Fri Feb 14, 2020 8:12 am

toofache32 wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:29 pm
How do we know the same media frenzy is not going on here? How is this virus specifically different from every other virus/flu we see every year?
Well, you could read.

But I guess if you are conditioned to believe that everything is media-created hysteria, that might not help.
It's the end of the world as we know it. | It's the end of the world as we know it. | It's the end of the world as we know it. | And I feel fine.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by tvubpwcisla » Fri Feb 14, 2020 8:20 am

I'm preparing by ignoring the news and staying the course. Life is too short to be fearful. Keep buying low cost index funds as others run for the hills. Think back to all the news stories throughout history. None of them have been able to keep the market down for very long. Sure, there can be pull backs but if you have a good plan it doesn't matter. If anyone is scared or thinking about pulling out of the market because of the coronavirus, then they don't have a solid plan they are confident in. A strong house does not crumble during a storm, the ones with poor foundations do.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Caduceus » Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:20 am

kacang wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:26 am
Nothing beyond what we normally do. Except a few precautions, such as more frequent hand-washing and 2 weeks of self-isolation after my recent trip to Taiwan & Singapore. I wasn't in China, but it puts others more at ease.

We're in CA. Between preparing for earthquakes and forest fires, we are well-stocked. Besides, we shop at Costco, we'll always have too much toilet paper! :P
I find it funny that toilet paper is one of the things people (not just you) run out to buy when there's a panic. It's not really an essential, is it? How ever did we survive for centuries without toilet paper! :P

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Caduceus » Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:26 am

mcblum wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 6:54 pm
We supported our local Chinese restaurant by going to dinner and telling them how much we enjoy their cuisine and presence in our community.
The place, usually very popular, was almost empty.
Yes. There's a young Chinese immigrant in his 20s or 30s (I find it hard to guess how old Asian men are sometimes) who's my regular barber because he only charges $6 for a great haircut. I gave him a huge tip because it must be tough for him.

Audioarc
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Audioarc » Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:25 am

You are more likely to die from influenza.

Kagord
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Kagord » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:33 am

Audioarc wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:25 am
You are more likely to die from influenza.
LOL, you forgot the /S

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by michaeljc70 » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:33 am

The only thing I am doing is rethinking booking a cruise in the near future. I was considering one for May or November.
Last edited by michaeljc70 on Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

quantAndHold
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by quantAndHold » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:34 am

Caduceus wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:20 am
kacang wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:26 am
Nothing beyond what we normally do. Except a few precautions, such as more frequent hand-washing and 2 weeks of self-isolation after my recent trip to Taiwan & Singapore. I wasn't in China, but it puts others more at ease.

We're in CA. Between preparing for earthquakes and forest fires, we are well-stocked. Besides, we shop at Costco, we'll always have too much toilet paper! :P
I find it funny that toilet paper is one of the things people (not just you) run out to buy when there's a panic. It's not really an essential, is it? How ever did we survive for centuries without toilet paper! :P
Possibly, but do you really want to go without toilet paper now?

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Caduceus » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:38 am

quantAndHold wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:34 am
Caduceus wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:20 am
kacang wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:26 am
Nothing beyond what we normally do. Except a few precautions, such as more frequent hand-washing and 2 weeks of self-isolation after my recent trip to Taiwan & Singapore. I wasn't in China, but it puts others more at ease.

We're in CA. Between preparing for earthquakes and forest fires, we are well-stocked. Besides, we shop at Costco, we'll always have too much toilet paper! :P
I find it funny that toilet paper is one of the things people (not just you) run out to buy when there's a panic. It's not really an essential, is it? How ever did we survive for centuries without toilet paper! :P
Possibly, but do you really want to go without toilet paper now?
I feel like my answer to the question of how I would survive without toilet paper would exceed the normal boundaries of polite conversation, so I will refrain, except to say that I think I will be more than alright in such an event. :beer

quantAndHold
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by quantAndHold » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:46 am

Audioarc wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:25 am
You are more likely to die from influenza.
I’m not, because I had a flu shot. And I personally am not likely to die from either one, because I’m very healthy. But if the coronavirus gets out in the wild in the US all bets are off for a lot of people. But this has little to do with consumer issues that OP wanted to talk about, except that I will continue to pay my health insurance premiums.

China is basically closed right now. The longer this goes on, the more likely product shortages become. Think about all the stuff you buy that’s either made in China, or contains Chinese parts. There was a thread a couple of days ago where people are already having trouble getting eyeglasses.

We can go a long time without buying a lot of things, but this has me thinking about what consumables we use that might have Chinese origins, and whether or not we should be stocking up.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by ResearchMed » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:50 am

Caduceus wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:38 am
quantAndHold wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:34 am
Caduceus wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:20 am
kacang wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:26 am
Nothing beyond what we normally do. Except a few precautions, such as more frequent hand-washing and 2 weeks of self-isolation after my recent trip to Taiwan & Singapore. I wasn't in China, but it puts others more at ease.

We're in CA. Between preparing for earthquakes and forest fires, we are well-stocked. Besides, we shop at Costco, we'll always have too much toilet paper! :P
I find it funny that toilet paper is one of the things people (not just you) run out to buy when there's a panic. It's not really an essential, is it? How ever did we survive for centuries without toilet paper! :P
Possibly, but do you really want to go without toilet paper now?
I feel like my answer to the question of how I would survive without toilet paper would exceed the normal boundaries of polite conversation, so I will refrain, except to say that I think I will be more than alright in such an event. :beer
There are places where this isn't a "cocktail party" type topic... where many people simply do not have any TP... and they do not have indoor plumbing where it might be used.
This leads to quite a few different customs that might surprise some who are more fortunate.

We here on BH are almost all (or totally all?) *very* fortunate not to need to deal with such issues in our daily lives, and in many cases, not even to be aware of the real life implications.

RM
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Farmboyslim83 » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:55 am

Ramjet wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 4:52 pm
FlyAF wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 4:48 pm
This thread has inspired me to stock up the beer fridge after work. The thought of being quarantined in my house for 2 weeks and running out of hooch is too much to chance it.
Similarly, my wife just snagged me a bottle of Elmer T. Lee whiskey, so I'm all set
She got it on a work trip to Dallas, it's damn near impossible to find in Ohio :sharebeer
Buy more Hopslam, before it’s gone!

quantAndHold
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by quantAndHold » Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:11 pm

ResearchMed wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:50 am
Caduceus wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:38 am
quantAndHold wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:34 am
Caduceus wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:20 am
kacang wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:26 am
Nothing beyond what we normally do. Except a few precautions, such as more frequent hand-washing and 2 weeks of self-isolation after my recent trip to Taiwan & Singapore. I wasn't in China, but it puts others more at ease.

We're in CA. Between preparing for earthquakes and forest fires, we are well-stocked. Besides, we shop at Costco, we'll always have too much toilet paper! :P
I find it funny that toilet paper is one of the things people (not just you) run out to buy when there's a panic. It's not really an essential, is it? How ever did we survive for centuries without toilet paper! :P
Possibly, but do you really want to go without toilet paper now?
I feel like my answer to the question of how I would survive without toilet paper would exceed the normal boundaries of polite conversation, so I will refrain, except to say that I think I will be more than alright in such an event. :beer
There are places where this isn't a "cocktail party" type topic... where many people simply do not have any TP... and they do not have indoor plumbing where it might be used.
This leads to quite a few different customs that might surprise some who are more fortunate.

We here on BH are almost all (or totally all?) *very* fortunate not to need to deal with such issues in our daily lives, and in many cases, not even to be aware of the real life implications.

RM
Regardless of all this (yes, I know the “alternatives” to TP, I just prefer not to need them), I think the bulk of US toilet paper is actually sourced in North America. I wouldn’t expect shortages of that particular product.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by cheese_breath » Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:45 pm

Caduceus wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:20 am
kacang wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:26 am
Nothing beyond what we normally do. Except a few precautions, such as more frequent hand-washing and 2 weeks of self-isolation after my recent trip to Taiwan & Singapore. I wasn't in China, but it puts others more at ease.

We're in CA. Between preparing for earthquakes and forest fires, we are well-stocked. Besides, we shop at Costco, we'll always have too much toilet paper! :P
I find it funny that toilet paper is one of the things people (not just you) run out to buy when there's a panic. It's not really an essential, is it? How ever did we survive for centuries without toilet paper! :P
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by ByThePond » Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:52 pm

DW and I have a previously-booked cruise in Alaska in August. Small, luxury ship with a great company (Tauck). We still eagerly await the trip and fantacize about getting quarantined aboard such a liner. :P

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Caduceus » Fri Feb 14, 2020 4:39 pm

quantAndHold wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:46 am

But if the coronavirus gets out in the wild in the US all bets are off for a lot of people.

China is basically closed right now. The longer this goes on, the more likely product shortages become. Think about all the stuff you buy that’s either made in China, or contains Chinese parts. There was a thread a couple of days ago where people are already having trouble getting eyeglasses.
There are other coronoviruses that have been circulating for a while now. It's as likely that this is just something that we'll accept as part of the regular "virus pool" we already deal with.

I suspect it's going to be very hard for China to keep factories closed for much longer even if they want to. The salaried workers are fine not working, but the workers who are making the type of products you're talking about are only paid if they work (I asked my friends in China about this) and in the meantime there's bills to pay, food to buy, rent, etc. They are afraid of returning to work but they also need to work.

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TomCat96
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by TomCat96 » Fri Feb 14, 2020 6:36 pm

I view this question as a strategic one, rather than an emotional one.

Purchasing additional supplies, particularly supplies I would other wise use is beneficial strategically.

To fly in the face of that, and not prepare because the hype is overblown, the virus is no worse than the flu, and using the actual death rate numbers to assert that one is more likely to die of the flu, provides an emotional benefit.

The latter course of action provides no strategic benefit, yet may provide satisfaction of an emotional variety.

I am willing to forgo such emotional benefits, for the sake of pursuing strategic benefits.

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Nate79
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Nate79 » Fri Feb 14, 2020 6:41 pm

In every disaster a common theme is a lot of people being unprepared. Clearly people choose to be unprepared to the unexpected. We try to be prepared and don't cry for those that decided not to.

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Random Musings
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Random Musings » Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:53 pm

Didn't get excited about SARS or Ebola, but the suspected high R(0) and the fact that China basically has locked down major cities raises my eyebrows a little bit. So, stocking up on a key items, including meds, water, TP batteries and nonperishables that we will use anyway isn't a big deal. Also bought some masks, although I'm not sure about the effectiveness of 95's. Since China supplies a decent percentage of imports to us, there may be some supply chain disruption. We always talk about risk management in investing, no different for this case. Best case, a few dollars lost as some inventory (like masks) won't be used (although my construction friend can use them). Fat tails don't just happen in investing, history has shown that. I know the regular flu kills a lot of people each year, but the characteristics of this particular Corona virus seems "different".

I pray that it's a non event here.

RM
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wander
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by wander » Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:19 pm

I wouldn't worry too much about Coronavirus. The chance to spead in the US is very very low. I need to buy mask, but for painting my car.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by supdodo » Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:24 am

I understand people's mindset that they don't need to prep for the coronavirus in the US, mainly because it is not a pandemic here. I agree with not shaking hands if we don't absolutely need, and don't go to crowded places if we don't have to, a stay at home if feeling sick. However, a virus/disease is not the same as a natural disaster. It is also not the same as cancer or diabetes. Having cancer or diabetes does not make one a threat to his or her community but getting a virus does. And when one becomes a threat to the community, his dignity/human right/freedom of XYZ go away (at least that is what happened in China; and you can see that in the cruise too).

If you read the story about SARS you can see it only took a few days for a disease to spread globally, and the first couple patients (those who brought the disease to Hongkong and Vietnam) stayed in the same hotel. The pandemic is in China, and we don't know if the numbers they reported were accurate/true. Singapore has ~50 cases whereas the Southeast Asian countries total to less than 20 cases; why is that? Rare viruses and diseases are those normal citizens like me have never dealt with in the past. Sure I can put more gas in my car and food in my trunk, and drive away from a hurricane. Would I be able to do the same in a pandemic?

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Corsair » Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:56 am

I think many underestimate how much is made in China.
Other generic drugs whose key ingredients are manufactured in China include medicines for blood pressure medicine, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, epilepsy and depression, Gibson says.

"We can't make penicillin anymore," said Gibson. "The last penicillin plant in the United States closed in 2004."
...
"China is the world's largest exporter of vitamins and antibiotic raw materials," he said, according to an NBC News translation. "Once the export is reduced, the medical systems of some developed countries will not work."

Source: https://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-c ... y-n1052376
We've prepared best we can for an extended "stay" at home including freeze dried canned staples, stocked the garage freezer, masks, disinfectants, isobutane-propane canisters in case power goes out. It's all good to have on hand anyhow for any future emergencies.

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tadamsmar
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by tadamsmar » Sat Feb 15, 2020 11:05 am

This thread prompted me to look into hand washing.

It seems to be on the only recommendation that one hears from public health experts.

CDC recommends at least 20 seconds with soap, but cold water is OK:

https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-ho ... shing.html

But this study says 10 seconds works pretty well:

https://www.livescience.com/6895-dirty- ... hands.html

Hand wipes are relatively unreliable for killing some viruses. The mechanical removal of washing with soap seems to be important.

Seems to be good science behind hand washing. You are protecting yourself and others.

ByThePond
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by ByThePond » Sat Feb 15, 2020 12:38 pm

Corsair wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:56 am
We've prepared best we can for an extended "stay" at home including freeze dried canned staples, stocked the garage freezer, masks, disinfectants, isobutane-propane canisters in case power goes out. It's all good to have on hand anyhow for any future emergencies.
Yes. In spite of my flippant comment earlier about being stranded on a cruise ship, we too have made sure we can weather an extended home stay. But these are ordinary precautions when one lives in the country and can have power outages. Generator, fuel, firewood, canned and freeze-dried goods, paper goods, pet food, etc. are things we normally keep in supply. A lot of camping supplies can be pressed into use too. The only concern would be the continuation of routine medicines, and that's not something over which we have much control.
Opinion:
If this outbreak follows the pattern of previous ones, I expect it to eventually spread through the worldwide population in spite of any and all efforts to stop it. It will likely become part of the general virus load of modern life, with most people acquiring immunity the old fashioned way, until a vaccine may be found. Some, of course will sadly succumb as with any disease. Not much new there.
As I see it, the real benefit of large scale precautions would be to delay and smooth out a large surge in temporarily ill people, whose 'time off' could be disruptive to supply chains and economies.
We plan to be prepared for what we can, and accept what we can't. Actionably, we're staying the course. Including the Alaska cruise.

Jeff Albertson
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Jeff Albertson » Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:05 pm

Interesting article from four academics at Texas A&M. Even if the U.S. in not affected by the virus, it could still have significant health impacts.

"The silent threat of the coronavirus: America’s dependence on Chinese pharmaceuticals"
http://theconversation.com/the-silent-t ... als-130670
Today, about 80% of pharmaceuticals sold in the U.S. are produced in China. This number, while concerning, hides an even greater problem: China is the largest and sometimes only global supplier for the active ingredient of some vital medications.

China is not only the dominant global supplier of pharmaceuticals, but it is also the largest supplier of medical devices in the U.S. These include things like MRI equipment, surgical gowns, and equipment that measures oxygen levels in the blood. ... More concerning still are the limited options available to the U.S. and the rest of the globe to make up the shortfall. It could take years to develop the necessary infrastructure to reestablish U.S. manufacturing capacities ...

When a disease reaches epidemic levels, the first obligation for leaders in any country is to protect their own people. As this current crisis progresses, there may come a point when political leaders in China will face decisions on whether to prohibit the export of pharmaceuticals, medical devices and other vital medical components in order to treat or protect their own people.

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JoeRetire
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by JoeRetire » Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:11 pm

quantAndHold wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:46 am
Audioarc wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:25 am
You are more likely to die from influenza.
I’m not, because I had a flu shot.
Even with a flu shot, you are still more likely to die from influenza than Covid-19.
It's the end of the world as we know it. | It's the end of the world as we know it. | It's the end of the world as we know it. | And I feel fine.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by lazydavid » Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:50 pm

JoeRetire wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:11 pm
quantAndHold wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:46 am
Audioarc wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:25 am
You are more likely to die from influenza.
I’m not, because I had a flu shot.
Even with a flu shot, you are still more likely to die from influenza than Covid-19.
This is correct. Flu shots only contain vaccines for three or four strains of influenza, meant to cover as much of the families that virologists expect to be prevalent in a given year as possible. When they've done their job well, someone who has had a flu shot is about half as likely to get the flu as a similar person who did not. It does not reduce severity in those that nonetheless become ill from the virus.

fposte
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by fposte » Sat Feb 15, 2020 3:07 pm

lazydavid wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:50 pm
When they've done their job well, someone who has had a flu shot is about half as likely to get the flu as a similar person who did not. It does not reduce severity in those that nonetheless become ill from the virus.
CDC says it does here (scroll down). Is this a contested area?

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Feb 15, 2020 3:35 pm

Before conjecture on flu vaccine effectiveness goes further (effectiveness of treatment is medical advice), here are the reasons medical advice is not permitted in this forum:

1. This is an anonymous internet forum. It is not possible to verify anyone's identity (nor do we want to). Credentials also imply accurate advice, which may not always be the case.
2. There can be disagreement among experts, which can be harmful if someone is basing a medical decision on the advice.
3. A member's description may be incomplete.
4. Readers will misinterpret the member's description.
5. Readers will misinterpret the given advice.

Since real harm can be done, we do not permit medical advice and is the reason for the first sentence in: Medical Issues
Questions on medical issues are beyond the scope of the forum. If you are looking for medical information online, I suggest you start with the Medical Library Association's User's Guide to Finding and Evaluating Health Information on the Web which, in addition to providing guidance on evaluating health information, includes a list of their top recommended sites.
Please stay focused on the consumer aspects.
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by lazydavid » Sat Feb 15, 2020 4:25 pm

fposte wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 3:07 pm
CDC says it does here (scroll down). Is this a contested area?
I am wrong on the second part (severity). Per moderator request, I won't detail what I forgot to consider when making that statement. :)

7eight9
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by 7eight9 » Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:17 pm

Frantic customers throwing any non-perishable items they can get their hands on into shopping trolleys. Face masks, disinfectants and floor cleaners vanishing from pharmacy shelves, with no replacement stock available.
These have been some of the disturbing regional fallouts from the deadly coronavirus outbreak, with multiple instances reported in Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan.
The same thing is now happening in Indonesia. The only question is why?
As of Friday, neither the Indonesian government nor the World Health Organisation had confirmed a single case of the coronavirus or Covid-19, the pneumonia-like disease it causes, in the country despite it being encircled by infected neighbours.

https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/health-e ... -now-virus

Maybe consumers in the United States are different from consumers in Indonesia. Somehow I doubt it.

The best time to panic is first before everyone else.

I do believe it would be prudent for most consumers to pick up some shelf stable staples and other supplies just in case panic ensues.
I guess it all could be much worse. | They could be warming up my hearse.

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Phineas J. Whoopee
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee » Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:32 pm

I personally am trying to avoid contracting influenza, which is a far more serious problem where I live. Other than there being no vaccine yet it's pretty much the way to avoid the virus referred to in the thread title, COVID-19. I'm also wishing the best for the people who are affected by it.

I don't know how to help them.

By no means am I minimizing the importance of the more than 1500 people who have died, and the effect on their friends and relations, and the tens of thousands who are ill. It must be terrible for them. As fellow human beings they have my deepest sympathies.

PJW

Faisal
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Faisal » Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:45 pm

Nothing more than i do for the common flu in the US. While the media reports deaths and stuff note that the mortality rate of the corona virus is less than the flu SARS and H1N1.

Right now its close to 2.5%.

So wash your hands rest and recover. While people are being infected remember that people are recovering as well.

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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by HawkeyePierce » Sat Feb 15, 2020 11:06 pm

I’m not doing anything extra to prepare, because I’m always prepared for natural disasters and emergencies.

It’s all here: https://www.ready.gov/plan

I have a fully stocked emergency kit at home and could last for 2-3 weeks without going outside. I have an up to date first aid and CPR certification from the Red Cross. Flashlights, batteries, emergency radio, food and water, medical supplies and so on. I have a smaller kit in my car and some emergency supplies in my bike bag (I commute by bike).

I already had a box of N95 masks long before this all started.

I’ve been in enough natural disasters to understand the need for preparation. Fukushima, Ike, Colorado floods of 2013, blizzards and more.

epilnk
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by epilnk » Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:10 am

As someone who was for a while in an epidemiology program (did not finish with a degree, no particular expertise beyond an above average familiarity with the issues and variables), I am moderately concerned. We simply don't have the data yet to know how worried we should be. It spreads like the common cold, many of which are coronaviridae, and we just aren't very good at containing and avoiding the common cold. The issue in my mind is time; vaccines are in development so if we can get safely through the first covid19 season we should be ok. But a novel pathogen can spread like wildfire in an immune-naive population.

As far as preparation is concerned, not much. Mainly a plan for how and when to extract my pneumonia prone, immune compromised son who lives 3 to a room in an overcrowded dorm, should the virus hit his city. As an asthmatic who lives in a fire prone state I already have masks. I know how to wash my hands. Assuming stores stay open during a pandemic, I plan to continue shopping for staples. Anyway we have a bidet toilet seat, which protects me from the worst case scenario that is striking fear into the hearts of many of you.

Trapper
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Trapper » Sun Feb 16, 2020 10:37 am

I tripped the trigger on upgrading my IPhone 6 to a newer model. Been thinking of upgrading for six months for various reasons and think the Conoravirus may impact Apple’s ability to fulfill orders.

Jablean
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Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Post by Jablean » Sun Feb 16, 2020 3:52 pm

Trapper wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 10:37 am
I tripped the trigger on upgrading my IPhone 6 to a newer model. Been thinking of upgrading for six months for various reasons and think the Conoravirus may impact Apple’s ability to fulfill orders.
I did the same thing with a couple of computers last week. We have a couple of generators but I have a hard time convincing DH to keep much gas on hand for them. He'll buy gas for the lawn mowers though. We also have several RVs/trailers parked in the backyard so need to make sure propane is stocked up for them and the BBQ. Again, DH not a prepper and is likely to steal a tank from one of the trailers to use for his BBQ. Water is probably our weak point because although we are on a well that means you have to have electricity. I do think peeps need to decide a bit more on what to do when no water in the toilet.

Upstream someone asked why no confirmed cases in Africa. According to Dr. Campbell's videos (also listed upstream) it's because noone in Africa has the DNA test for it. Currently the virus is confirmed by virus dna, they are hoping to develop a test that will look at antibodies instead.

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