Category Archives: medicine

Dr. Lickerman on coronavirus: is a vaccine in the offing, what’s your risk of infection from casual contact, and what rules should businesses follow if they’re allowed to reopen?

I’m calling attention to a new post by my physician, Dr. Alex Lickerman—part of his continuing series on the pandemic and the virus.  In this one, he lays out guidelines about how a business should operate to be opened safely if it’s allowed to and wants to; but he emphasizes at the outset that he […]

Two anniversaries today, both marking the end of wars, one against people, the other against a virus

I missed this because I left out today’s anniversaries in the Hili dialogue. There are two big ones today, both pointed out by Fiona Fox, director of the Science Media Centre in Britain. Dr. Fox quotes remembrances from two of her experts (h/t Steve Jones): From Professor Geoffrey L Smith FRS, Head, Department of Pathology, […]

Faith-soaked physician to conduct study of prayer in curing Covid-19

Does prayer work to cure diseases? Anecdotal evidence from Lourdes, where amputees and the eyeless aren’t cured, suggest not. And we all know the results of the Templeton-funded study of the effects of intercessory prayer on recovery of cardiac patients, the most thorough study of intercessory prayer yet, involving over 1800 patients (Benson et al. […]

Part 2 of Ken Burn’s “The Gene” broadcast tonight

The tweet below came from Matthew, who may in fact be featured in this documentary. This tells us that Part 2 (the last part) of Ken Burns’s documentary “The Gene: An Intimate History” will be broadcast on PBS tonight. And it will probably be available for free on the show’s website for at least a […]

Advice about Covid-19 from a pulmonary critical-care doctor

Reader Rick sent me this video, which I’ve listened to in its entirety (57 minutes). It’s made by Dr. David Price, a critical pulmonary-care specialist at Weill Cornell Hospital in New York City. Usually he deals with all kinds of respiratory ailments, but, as he says, now he’s dealing only with COVID-19 patients. Here Price […]

Coronavirus updates: three easy pieces

Today we have an article by Nick Cohen to read, a panegyric by Andrew Sullivan, and an epidemiological website to peruse and fret about. Cohen and Sullivan worry that, although Trump’s response to the viral pandemic has been erratic, hamhanded, and even duplicitous, the Prez could come out of this even stronger. (I predicted the […]

VICE claims that coronavirus is transphobic

I heard about this article in a tweet from Titania (below), and while the issue she mentions is concerning to some, it’s not sufficiently serious to be immune from mockery. At any rate, you can read the article on VICE by clicking on the link in Titania’s tweet or on the screenshot of the VICE […]

Viability of Covid-19 virus on various surfaces (hint: use gloves when handling Amazon packages and don’t open them for 24 hours)

Reader Charles sent me a linking to a publicly-available article from the New England Journal of Medicine that measured the viability of the Cov-19 virus (they call it SARS-CoV-2, or “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2”) on various surfaces, comparing it to the viability of a closely related coronavirus, SARS-CoV-1.  You’ll remember the second virus from […]

Camus on the plague, and de Botton gets the vector wrong

Ah, we have’t heard from Alain de Botton for a while, and I haven’t missed him (see all my posts on him here). He was always a faitheist, an atheist-butter, and an arduous advocate for atheist churches, which I don’t particularly object to but also don’t feel we need. de Botton is also patronizing: the […]

What are you doing during the quarantine?

Many places, including Illinois, are still pretending that the coronavirus pandemic will significantly abate in the next two weeks, a possibility I consider, well, very unlikely. (For example, they’ve closed all restaurants and bars in our state, but only till March 31.) But until it does abate, we’re all pretty much confined and restricted, with […]