tv Worlds Apart RT May 24, 2020 7:00am-7:30am EDT
was it. was your ticket. was. your. plan or welcome to worlds apart in a ton of kind of damage when the good news is scarce thank you and that somebody is doing better than you would be because if not for celebration that at least as interested inquiry but that's when it comes to moscow and washington when russia and other countries post much much lower call but 19 mortality rates down in the
united states could then be on their blogs or bull explanations for that except when it actually can do numbers well to discuss that i'm now joined by robert primary professor of epidemiology of microbial diseases at condell school of public health professor hi mary it's so good to talk to you thank you very much for your time well thank you for inviting me now i heard you say recently that your sounds of history leads you to believe that the united states and russia countries separated at birth and this is definitely not a new idea though there's been a number of scholars who looked into russia as this dark double american greatness but i think your idea is different you argue. they reacted very similarly to these latest and damage if so what explains such drastically death friends just numbers. i think the issue about how deaths are found in how death
certificates are written explains much of that difference i come from this from my experience with with the aids epidemic. and in that situation aids deaths always seem to be undercounted in russia when you looked into it was really because people's deaths were attributed to whenever it was the problem we call the proximate cause of death and whether it was de burgh yellow says or pneumonia or are. an immuno compromised fungal disease or viral disease that was an h i b hiv isn't a thing that was going to be killing who was going to allow all these other pathogens to come in turn immunocompromised and kill you and similar thing is happening here with coronaviruses that people are dying of pneumonia people are dying of heart complications or other organ failures and that's what's being
written down as the cause of death well professor hamer there is definitely a difference in how the death toll is counted and i do want to look into it from a scientific perspective but before we go there if we take all axes dacs the seas and if we actually did all of them to call the thank you very still and massive difference between russia on the one hand and the united states and the united kingdom on the other hand what could possibly explain friends with the epidemic deaths have been concentrated in a place like the united states in many parts of the country so far has been facilities called nursing homes where the elderly are are out. with the elderly who live in congregate settings and once the virus enters those facilities they're spread very rapidly in a population and. we are very susceptible to dying in my state christian science
think now 70 so doing 50 and 60 percent. of the deaths are among people who contract the disease while in nursing homes yes that means ease does affect the elderly more than younger people right now in the elderly and a very myself so i'm very worried i have the luxury of staying at home a lot of other people don't even if we account for that and if we strictly compare large metropolitan areas like moscow to large metropolitan areas like new york london and we take into account all access death the season again the the difference is huge the death rate from cobbett 19 would be presumed to be at the around 3 percent and i think in new york it would be around 13 in london it would be around $23.00 so isn't there still even if you take that into account there's still a massive difference i don't think the death rate in new york is anywhere near 13
percent but clearly you know. the number of deaths even in new york was under was under reportage for a while. among the elderly because many of them were dying at all. and i don't think where there are far enough into the kind of epidemic. epidemiological investigations yet to draw any conclusions in any any final and well as you say it's not done that it's not you know proper time to draw conclusions and yet to be seen numerous stories in american press as well as you are numerous public health panels essentially accusing russia of cooking the numbers that's why i'm asking those questions and i don't i don't know where this is they did in one of those where you did not made that accusation per se but the general. holland was that russia has an institutional interest in under reporting
those cases what i'm trying to. ask you about here is whether russia could indeed be performing batter objectively that the united states i think this becomes a very silly argument about who is killing more people and not reporting it as i think that's not a particularly useful way to think about this i think the thing to to look at is why both russia and the united states now stand one in 2 in the total number of cases reported and outlaws cases. turn out to kill people and how those cases turn out to be reported as gold related deaths or are any irrelevant sideshow what i'm interested in is trying to understand why it is that in certain places certain settings
like congregate settings of nursing homes lead to higher rates of death among the elderly and the elderly are more spread out and the n.l. then fewer of them initially will get infected but in the end the elderly are more susceptible the average age for people in russia you know is in the forty's there are a lot of old people around but i think where we're at now is that. what we're seeing in russia is a delayed epidemic compared to western europe. a delayed epidemic compared to the united states and it's too early to predict where it's going to go and i certainly don't have access to a sufficient amount of epidemiological information inside russia to to be asked to weigh in in an informative way why there are differences in the real in-depth reporting on just on the counting this is
a longstanding question in scientific debate the so-called waste of strong problem whether everyone known to have a particular in facts and should be recorded as having died from dog attacks and even though that person happened to have let's say stage 4 cancer or i believe the addition of the russian doctors not the bureaucrats but the russian doctors they haven't said that you have to distinguish between the primary cause and the catalyst in eighty's debolt are recorded in the death report what is the problem with a surprise. i'm not saying there's any problem at all i just think that in order to interpret this you have to you know you have to understand the difference i don't have a problem with that approach. what the problem the only problem with that approach is a is a public relations approach it does raise. perhaps
inappropriate but nevertheless does raise. suspicions among people who want to score political points. on the side on the other side of the ocean you mean those people on both sides of the ocean you know you know i am not i mean just that i work in russia so you know for a very long period of time and not interested in fueling any kind of divide i would not be interested in that either but that's why i'm i actually asking you the scientific question because the russian doctors do not take those diagnosis on the top of that i have in order to make that conclusion they have to conduct an autopsy it's written into the law russia has cost more to make salmon nations also all dad's reach is a different story of for example for many countries in western europe it's also a different story for the united states because from what i know you know the avril ability of post-mortem examination differs from state to state don't you think that
russian doctors have a reason to feel it's not superior adenike least considine the data and isn't that actually good from a scientific point of view that they're coming to the global community of scientists with the data establishing was was the main cause of the disease and what was the at company a company cost there is no a priori reason. to think that russia is going to be any different from most of the other countries in in the region. he in that new more developed world in having the same in the end attributable fraction of deaths once you adjust for differences in population age distribution and population density. well that's that's an interesting point i want to talk about that a little bit later but before we go into that you highlighted one specific
similarity in the russian and the american response to the damage and this is a delegation of decision making to the territories states in the american context and the regions of russia and i heard some people call that an abdication of responsibility on the part of the federal authorities but isn't that the only way the only professional way of dealing with the conduct make in a large country where you can indeed have very different density of population in various localities and the b.s.p. demille logical conditions would also be very different on the ground why should putin or trial for that matter be involved in making decisions about some tiny town be it in primordial or i'll ask or new haven whatever decisions about when to close down things decisions about when to.
reopen them are probably best made at a local level but not and a national level the abdication of responsibility that i was referring to as a as a disaster for both countries is the lack of attention of the federal government to giving the local regions sufficient authority sufficient finances and sufficient concentration of energy necessary to respond in time energy you mean resources right i also mean that you. yet it isn't both federal governments. were catastrophic will misaligned to the size and the consequences of ignoring the pandemic in its earliest age professor primer told governments why they it's in russia or in the united states are on deriding the magical expanse goals of making the necessary resources available to unite all
down. and i don't know i don't know what russian is but certainly the united states beryl government is not giving resources to the states states who are competing with female and the federal government for masks and protect the president protect their requirement. both countries and i can't speak for russia because i really don't know the situation you know the people i've talked to my colleagues in russia even though many of them are infectious disease doctors and people who are infectious disease public health people don't seem to have the answers to the questions i have been asking them but. i am so and i'm not going to you know. speak beyond what i'm capable of knowing but i do know that our state has has not gotten a coordinated effort of the states most hardest hit here in the northeast have not
gotten a coordinated effort. and yet you compare that and then their eyes are nonetheless even though russia made it made a concerted effort it's you build designated call that 19 hospitals for the resources into the region compensate the doctors all across the country you say that you don't have enough information about russia and yet you make merry you know broad ranging statements that i respond the response of the 2 governments is pretty much the same i i don't. i don't see. based on the numbers that. russia's response has been particularly affected. yet you cannot you cannot argue with the continued increase of 10000 new diagnoses a day and suggest russia is there when ever russia has done has
the goal of the federal reserve bank would be to take the american economy private that is the say it would buy all stocks all bonds all property and now your bank and other banks are saying yeah they're going to print $130.00 trillion dollars they're not going to stop at 6 or 7 trillion the number of dollars going to print is going to exceed the g.d.p. of america by a huge factor and they're going to buy buy everything same with the other 3 or 4 major central banks around the world this is what neo feudalism looks like. welcome back to world of part of the primary professor of health and you can be all edgy all microbial disease this at the al school of public health. what matters is
not the diagnosis what matters is the motel it's a rate speaking of which i think this is actually a very important question because i'm sure you would agree with me professor heimer that this of married see which of these been done with we spend on make up facts any given country has 2 major factors 1st is the atticus you know the media response nearly just takes the provision of bad self ventilators etc and the 2nd is the existing condition of the nation it's not called that 19 per se that says. gary it's the complications caused by the by its interaction with the chronic and metabolic diseases and here in the united states has by far the worst record in the world of all developed countries and you can't put that exclusively on trump so if you just if you're just going to talk about death rates then the united states is in the middle of the pack in terms of death rates death rate of about 5 percent there are countries in europe that have far greater death rates so and i don't know
what the true death rate is in russia i am not going to argue with you about how doctors assign death rays but it does seem to me that there is no reason to expect that russia should be so so much lower than any other mostly developed country with the possible exception of a different recording mechanism. but they are still there through that was true for h. i.v. and i don't see any reason to think why it's any different now for covert it's not i don't think it's malicious i think it's systemic and i think it's a it's a failure to recognize that a precipitating of end in the deaths of lots and lots of people in russia right now is the spread of aids very serious and potentially lethal respiratory virus
that is continuing to infect tens of thousands of people every day in your country professor hamer i get your point that you believe there is no reason why russia should be different on that front but there is a very interesting paper published in the lancet just recently and it suggested that by early may the world's richest countries a content for more than 90 percent of all reported call that 900 deaths where is countries in south asia in africa with far poorer. also infrastructure and very dense populations they have witnessed so far laura my talents and despite being pretty advanced in terms of testing maybe it's not so much about how good your health interest factor is maybe it's indeed the creaks this thing they don't know about like how with differences about age is tribulation. very simple if you're straight outside of europe and united states in other developed countries it is
a is. a well known a well known demographic fact that you know you have many many younger people this disease is not as dangerous for younger people. but age is not the only variable maybe of the complications are seen in middle aged people while they have chronic conditions like diabetes type 2 like cardiovascular diseases cancer etc maybe mad a ball of diseases metabolic diseases per se is a major risk factor regardless of age and we know that in western countries the proportion of people with metabolic conditions is much higher do you think that would be a factor this is a very important why and i'm not trying to blame the united states is actually i don't think the increase. you know take to diabetes is a disease that is growing in prevalence all over the world it is not unique to
western europe it is not unique to the united states it's pretty common in in in the more developing countries in many parts of the world the only reason you're seeing more of it in in europe is that as the population ages the pence need to develop that those diseases increase so yes if you have an older population you're going to see a higher prevalence of those underlying americans are registering time to time using children already come on the. internet the type one diabetes in children is a relatively rare condition relative creasing you can use it in older. well professor hammer i think ribéry are basing our conversation on a very different sets of data and pretty sure that the prevalence of type 2 diabetes in the united states and in many western countries with western lifestyle with standard and mary can dive which is based primarily on sugar and simple carbohydrates has
a major negative impact on did metabolic health by extension only me and how can i you disregarding the site or at all i mean i know i am not i am not disagreeing with you of all i'm saying is in many other parts of the world once you account for the difference in age you're seeing an increase in the ada relative age of the population you're seeing increases in the same kinds of metabolic diseases universally. yes but not to the same extent the rates are very narrow your question can't be the same extent the west has a as a 100 year head start on on an india and china. but they're catching up and you go absolutely up as they continue to choose to eat you know the foods that are available. deaths just. i guess how things are turning out at so many attempts to get people to.
eat a better diet now we do know that for instance that the mediterranean diet you know is supposed to be particularly useful in preventing these metabolic diseases many of you know that that has not helped a place like spain and italy i want to bring you back to you know that interaction between infectious and simple and diseases because if that's the case isn't it and beat misleading to be thinking about public 900 as street cleon virus rather than this hybrid and axis madam bolling patent and that's rather like a virus but whose mortality is primarily driven by mutable exact areas or mit's and all of this regulation and wondered that in fact a fact how we think about preventing goldman sachs amicable and diseases well in the short run you can't change people's you know in the face of a pandemic in face of a virus that spread so rapidly and so quickly throughout the global population you
can't really think in the short run about changing people's underlying metabolic states you have to you have to work with what they are you have to try to protect those people from becoming infected in the 1st place you have to provide sufficient testing to know what's going on with the disease is spreading but even there. the testing the hospitalizations the cases that are. symptomatic they are lagging indicators. but they still are not telling us the true dimension of the way this disease is spreading in the population in any real time sense we are always one or 2 hyrule you know generations infectious generations behind the curve which means we're somewhere
siva to 10 days behind knowing where things really are and that that's pretty much clear and that they did the same situation with any virus but i mean i'm sure you're with a remedy that these coronavirus is not the 1st and not the last you know strike humanity serif we have to think about. the way the policy has to change and wouldn't. it be easier to implement those changes you know in terms of regulating quick companies around the bend locking down you know how from the global population for months on that in the short run stopping the spread of the virus in the immediate present president is is the clear priority one hopes that we can learn something from this to in the long run.
develop healthier. lifestyles to create. a more. healthy planet. i'm not all that optimistic. that death's going to happen but that doesn't mean i'm going to stop working towards that. we take this creagh system state of public health as an important variable wouldn't be a batter explanation for why russia has lower mind mortality downby united states because an average russian just like an average bangladeshi an average indian and average pakistani an average nationalist pretty much any country is mitten bollock least how 3 are than an average american or an average briton for that matter. if that were true then the life expectancy would be greater in russia than in britain
and it's not. well when it comes to women it's growing rebel and when it comes to math it's a different story well i so you know dogma and the fact is that this virus seems to be about a factor of 10 to 15 percent more dangerous for men than for women well because you know if we could take your last they're very bad elf in russia is bad and men are dying at a younger age maybe your death rate is lower because you have fewer older men. that's also a possibility doesn't mean you know that's all and that's a real possibility maybe if you do mail it just actually consider that indeed the percentage of men about 65 in russia is relatively small yes and many of the people who are taking to hospital are older women that i mean it sounds like a job but it's not no it's not a joke well it's a cruel joke. well 7 maybe they didn't because the russian women are indeed i mean
then you can look at many studies they are taking better care of their health and the health of their children than man typically and they are more likely to engage in house the pro-social behaviors but professor heim are way out of time on this subject that i really appreciate your being able to talk to us about those subjects and this is definitely a fascinating topic to think about and there are still so many unknown student be nice to. at some point when when the dust as they say the dust has settled and. we can more leisure really explore our some of these interesting underlying conditions go back and try to figure out what we can do to move forward to improve the general health of the populations of both russia and the united states as well i'm
pretty sure that sugar will be a lineup that's after his dad but anyway we have to leave it there thank you very much for your insight you're welcome thank you for the opportunity. and thank you for watching i hope to see you all next week on of all the parts. or. so what we've got to do is identify the threats that we have it's crazy to confront a shouldn't let it be an arms race in this on all fronts clearly a dramatic development only really i'm going to resist i don't. see how that
strategy will be successful very critical time you sit down and talk. you are no offense but you no longer a young woman in fact you are one of the last living survivors of the nazi else mass i'm aware of it. all you like. you can never forget maybe you can now auschwitz was really like to be in hell because you would never believe it wasn't a human to go to as a copy of a course for 32 years of growth and be compared with it at all since a lot offered by you if i was. right when i get out in the fall.