Coronavirus may be a problem. If you are following the news you have undoubtedly heard of the Coronavirus that started out in China. This virus is similar to SARS and MERS in that it was transmitted from live animals to humans in an illegal live food market in China. The market sold live predatory animals as food including the Civet Cat. The Civet Cat is thought to be the animal that transmitted SARS to humans. There is a reason predatory generally do not eat other predators. That reason is disease. Most predators and omnivores, including humans, eat herbivores.
Now that the virus is loose is it a problem for people living in the U.S.? Most likely not at this time. So far the Chinese government has not stated there is a known case of human to human transmission as happen with a cold or flu. If that were the case then it would be a serious issue. The Trump administration has stated that they may ban all flights from China to the U.S. If the U.S. bans all inbound Chinese flights, European and other countries will follow.
So far the Chinese government has been less than forth coming about the number of infected individuals and the number of deaths. Chinese government has finally granted permission for the World Health Organization to send doctors and scientists into China. This is the first signs of hope that the Chinese government is willing to work with the U.S. and others to fight this pathogen. There are also many researchers working on sequencing the coronavirus DNA to develop a vaccine before in becomes airborne.
Hopefully China works in best interest of the world and their own economy. Nothing will cause the Chinese government to sit up and take notice when their economy is at stake.
All anti-biotic drugs are now made in China. The NBC national news aired a report on Tuesday evening about how all anti-biotic drugs are now made in China. The pharmaceutical companies moved production to China to reduce cost and reduce prices. According to the report no anti-biotic drugs are now made in this country. I know what you are thinking. This is not possible. Yes it is possible. How do you think Fry’s or Costco or Sam’s Club can offer $4 prescriptions drugs. Once again according to the report it is not possible to make anti-biotic drugs in this country that sell at $4.00. What does this mean for the country?
People both inside and outside our government worry that this puts our country at a strategic disadvantage. To me their worry is justified. It is not hard to imagine China reducing or cutting off our supply of anti-biotic drugs to our military. Another scenario that is worrisome is a global pandemic. China’s current population is 1.4 billion people as compared to 330 million in the US. Would China send us drugs if their population is at higher risk than ours? There is a real possibility China would not or could not send us the drugs if their population is being decimated.
A question we should be asking our elected leaders is why this was allowed to happen. If I let my cynicism come out to play I would guess that the pharmaceutical manufactures gave political contributions to members of congress to let them do this. Of course this can never happen. Yeah, right.
This brings up another obvious question. If the drugs manufacturers are out sourcing to China, why are drugs so expensive. We are the only country that does not negotiate drugs prices on a national level. Congress passed a law in 2003 that forbad the government from negotiating lower drug prices. We are the only country that does not negotiate drugs prices on a national level. Why is this? See the previous paragraph. All anti-biotic drugs are now made in China. I am worried. A lot of very smart people are worried. You should be worried too.