As a childhood connoisseur of hospitalization for respiratory and digestive tract issues, I've begun to wonder about the recent round of hospitalizations for the Wuhan Flu. Consider these:
- The thing is a virus, so you don't treat it with massive doses of antibiotics.
- The patients aren't struggling to keep things down, so they could force fluids orally, at home.
- Being in a hospital bed sucks. It's not restful. You'd get better rest at home, in your own bed, watching Claude Rains movies or playing Bubble Blast 2.
So just what is the hospital providing? Why are they so impacted with patients for the Omnicorn round? It's an upper respiratory virus which means it's not life-threatening like pneumonia.
In the comments, Tim makes a typically cogent point. "The COVID makes them susceptible to pneumonia, and then the pneumonia is what finishes things. It looks like the dominant forms of pneumonia are the bacterial forms, which most certainly are treated with antibiotics." That would explain the hospitalizations, at least in some cases.
Here's my hypothesis. Thanks to media and government hysteria, many people, perhaps most, are in a state WuFlu paranoia*. That's produced a strong bias towards testing and going to the hospital. Once you arrive at the hospital, malpractice insurance gives them a strong bias towards admission. If they send you home and you croak, they could face lawsuits. Lather, rinse, repeat.
I'm coming at this from a layman's point of view, but I just can't see what good it does to go to the hospital with Omnicorn.
Bonus Thoughts Which Contradict My Original Thoughts**
So how about this: The massive, localized jumps in hospitalizations are due to a combination of Chinese math infection rates and lost staffing due to infections. Omnicorn's most endearing feature is its short, sharp infection spike. That is, it infects a ton of people all at once, but only for a short period of time. A very small percentage of a large number of people, i.e. a small subset requiring hospitalization of a huge number of infected, is enough to wipe out the safety margin of hospital beds.
Add to that a significant number of nurses and doctors out of action due to their own Omnicorn cases and you get a perfect, if very temporary storm.
I think my original analysis was wrong. It's not paranoia plus lawsuits, it's simply Omnicorn doing what it does best - infect everyone, all at once.
* - Yes, the thing can be very dangerous, but only to a very well-defined subset of the population.
** - Remember, this blog is here to work through ideas, not defend bad ones.