Monday, March 09, 2020

Trustworthy Coronavirus News Sources

There is so much information and misinformation out there about, it's dispiriting.

My go-to source of reliable information is Pulitzer Prize winning science writer, Laurie Garrett, who has written extensively about pandemics and disease for decades.  Follow her on Twitter @Laurie_Garrett for the latest reliable news.

She uses the #COVID19 hashtag.  This time of year, I usually have a persistent scratchy throat from the tree pollen.   I don't follow that hashtag, because I don't want to obsess.  YMMV

I've been following the news of tests. I'm a physical scientist, but have worked in an analytical chemistry lab in college. I know that reliable testing for pathogens is very difficult, but don't understand the details. I found a couple of articles that helped me understand what is happening on the testing front.

How SARS-CoV-2 Tests Work and What’s Next in COVID-19 Diagnostics in New Scientist, by Bianca Nogrady

We Need a Cheap Way to Diagnose Coronavirus, in Harvard Business Review, by Devabhaktuni Srikrishna , Ranu S. Dhillon and David Beier.

Infectious disease docter, Dr. Krutika Kuppalli is also a good follow on Twitter, @KrutikaKuppalli.

The first article mentioned work on developing antibody tests.  Dr Kuppalli tweeted some preliminary antibody (IgG/IgM) test news out of China.

I live in the South Bay part of Los Angeles, which is bracketed by LAX international airport to the north and LA Harbor to the south.  So many airline employees live in my community, we are taking the prudent course and staying home as much as practical.  This will slow, but not prevent the spread.  That helps both you and your community weather the crisis.

Screen shot from Esther Kim's tweet

BTW, the "news" that Coronavirus does not spread in warm weather is totally false. It has spread plenty in warm places.

In times like these, I am livid that not all workers get paid sick leave and that we do not have universal and affordable access to health care.  Fight on, but maybe from home?  ;-)


  1. Anonymous20:16

    Thank you so much. Your posts are greatly appreciated!

  2. I wish those who screech "too expensive!!" would do the math on how much is lost in times like this. Then factor in how many times it has, or nearly has, happened in the last, say 25 years. Or however long air travel has made it so easy and fast for an outbreak to spread around the world. Count "normal" outbreaks of influenza, measles, etc also. I suspect paying sick time is at most a break even.

    Anyway, thanks for the information. One question I have - they keep saying tea towel or dish towel in various articles. I have no idea if they mean what I call flour sack towels, or terry cloth towels. I don't know if it's a terminology thing, like European vs. American English, or if they are different fabrics. I guess is not much matter, since it looks like 100% cotton t-shirts or pillowcases are best since you can breathe with them on.

  3. Would I be correct in thinking that dish towel is terry cloth, since it ranks low on being able to breath through it? I'm looking at charts on


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