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  1. #1101
    Biệt Thự Triển's Avatar
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    Sep 2011

    SOS at German intensive care units

    The number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care beds in Germany is growing dramatically. Hospitals are prepared for the new onslaught in terms of infrastructure — but not in terms of staff.

    Intensive care nurse Bärbel Breimann puts on her protective clothing and enters the coronavirus intensive care unit of Münster University Hospital, where ten of twelve beds are now occupied. It is the middle of November in Germany, with winter not yet here, and for Breimann the situation is already just as bad as it was in April, when the first coronavirus wave reached its peak.

    "We are working right at the limit of our capacity. It will not take much for the whole system to quickly collapse," she says. Breimann is one of those healthcare employees who were described as "system-relevant" key workers at the start of the pandemic. But the 47-year-old was irreplaceable long before that. She has worked in the intensive care unit since 1998 and has just celebrated 25 years at the University Hospital in Münster.

    Nurse Bärbel Breimann says she still loves her job in the Münster hospital's intensive care unit

    Mood worse than during the first wave

    The intensive care nurse has already been through a lot — but the current crisis, the second coronavirus wave, has taken on a new dimension for her. "All of us in the ward are reaching our limit. It is taking an emotional and physical toll. And of course, it all begs the question: What is still to come for Germany?"

    In contrast to the first wave, an improvement of the situation seems very far away because of the many months of cold temperatures that lie ahead. But the mood is also different. The mood at the intensive care unit in Münster is pretty much a microcosm of German society: increasingly tense and frustrated.

    "In the spring we all pulled together and that led to an incredible amount of positive energy. But that energy is missing now," says Bärbel Breimann. "And there is the fear that we won't be able to maintain the current standards. The staff are all on a knife-edge and damage limitation is the order of the day."

    One intensive care nurse for two patients

    Something else has also changed: now there is an increasing number of young people in intensive care units, some young dads in their early 30s who had no previous illnesses. Breimann and her teams can still just about keep to the golden rule of intensive care: one specialist should only care for a maximum of two patients.

    But to turn a patient over into the prone position, three nurses are needed, and some patients require individual care. More and more, staff are absent due to illness or because of compulsory quarantining.

    Bärbel Breimann is not the kind of person who complains about the working conditions in her job. She gives 100% to her role. "I work in my dream job: I have new experiences every day, lots of flexibility, a multi-skilled team, and level hierarchies. But would I recommend it to my daughter? I would tell her to have a long hard think about it."

    Nurses and beds constantly in motion

    Bärbel Breimann's boss is Thomas van den Hooven, director of nursing at University Hospital Münster. An alternative job title would be master of stopping up gaps and dealing with deficiency.

    "We have had a significant increase in COVID-19 patients over the weekend so we are in the process of reallocating our nursing staff," van den Hooven explains.

    The crisis has made people creative — so it is not only the 3,000 nursing staff that the hospital that van den Hooven reallocates every day, but also the beds themselves. The goal is to try to ease things up for the nurses: a Herculean task.

    Thomas van Hooven's job is to try and find enough nurses to staff Münster Hospital's intensive care unit

    Desperately seeking intensive care staff

    As if that is not enough, van den Hooven is also kept busy picking up the phone to attempt to sweet talk former staff members who have given up nursing to work elsewhere.

    "If they come back, we give them more training," he says. "Of course, they cannot replace the specialists on a 1:1 basis, but they are an enormous help."

    Van den Hooven also doesn't hesitate to step in himself when there is a need. After all, he worked as a nurse for 15 years.

    "Of course, it is mainly symbolic — to show that the captain is also on board the ship," says the nursing director. "But I can still turn a patient over or hand out the medication."

    Van den Hooven took over the job in Münster three years ago and the coronavirus pandemic is the biggest challenge he has yet faced, giving him unrelenting stress, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. He has never seen Germany deal with anything like this.

    So he can only shake his head when asked about the demonstrations in Leipzig against coronavirus restrictions. "I am someone with a lot of understanding," he says. "But that just stuns me."

    Peak expected in mid-December

    The question remains about what Germany should do at the end of November, when the "lockdown light" will officially end. Should Germany reopen everything, as many are demanding? Van den Hooven pulls a face.

    "We will already have a significant increase in intensive care patients by Christmas. Then we won't only lack intensive care staff, but also doctors in general," he points out.

    Before van den Hooven rushes to his next appointment, he has one piece of advice for Health Minister Jens Spahn: "Hospitals need clear confirmation that COVID-19 patients have absolute priority, and knee or hip operations have to be postponed,"he pleads.

    The coronavirus is challenging hospitals in all countries

    Available intensive care beds

    While Thomas van den Hooven has an overview of the intensive care unit at Münster University Hospital, Christian Karagiannidis has an overview of all intensive care units in Germany. Germany can thank the head of the pulmonary intensive care unit at the Cologne-Merheim hospital for the management of the intensive care unit register — which is an enormously important component in the fight against coronavirus.

    If a patient urgently needs to be ventilated and the intensive care beds at the nearest hospital are occupied, the intensive care register shows which hospitals in Germany have how much capacity.

    "We at the Germany Interdisciplinary Association for Intensive and Emergency Medicine (DIVI) had already built this when the first swine flu epidemic broke out," recalls Karagiannidis. "Then we let it fall to the wayside a little. The Robert Koch Institute [Germany's disease prevention agency] asked us to reopen the intensive care register with a traffic light system during the coronavirus pandemic."

    Red means no capacity; amber means limited and green means there are free beds in the 1,300 acute care hospitals. At the moment, the situation is manageable: Over 3,000 beds are occupied and more than 8,000 are free. But the Cologne-based physician is facing a challenge: Germany has already broken the record of capacity set in mid-April.

    "We are now at amber in terms of intensive care capacity — but the times when we were relaxed are in the past," he says.

    Missing nurses

    Worries for the future are related to the fact that Germany is missing between 3,500 and 4,000 care workers for intensive care units. Germany may be able to conjure a fully-functioning intensive care bed out of a hat — but there is no magic that can produce more staff.

    The reasons for this are clear: Comparatively small income for a high level of responsibility; shift and weekend work and little societal recognition. Even before the pandemic, Health Minister Spahn was desperately trying to recruit nursing staff from abroad.

    The results of the latest DIVI survey among intensive care workers will not calm Spahn: 97% do not think there will be enough staff to deal with a second wave, almost half are less motivated than they were in the spring and 93% are afraid that working conditions will deteriorate in the months to come.

    Possible solution: Fewer hospitals

    "The mood is visibly changing in the clinics," Karagiannidis concludes. "And we have to develop a strategy now so that 20% of the nursing staff don't leave in the summer. Because then we really will have the problem that hospitals will no longer be able to undertake any action."

    If the physician had his way, mid-2021 — when the pandemic may be under control — would also be a good time to consider a sea change for the healthcare system. He believes that wide-reaching and consistent closures of hospitals may serve a solution.

    "No country in the world can afford so many hospitals with so many hospital beds," he says. "We will have to make major cuts. And when we do this, the hospital staff will become available once more."

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  2. #1102
    I can't breathe. ốc's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Mo' iso' fo' BoJo:

    Boris Johnson forced to self-isolate again as crucial week begins

    Johnson was pictured standing next to Lee Anderson, MP for Ashfield in Nottinghamshire, inside Downing Street on Thursday. The men appear to be less than 2 metres apart and neither is wearing a mask.Officials insisted Downing Street was a Covid-secure workplace but said NHS Test and Trace had said factors including the length of the meeting meant Johnson should self-isolate as a precaution.

    The PM will have held meetings with several other figures since Thursday, including his aides Dominic Cummings and Lee Cain, who resigned this week before being ordered by Johnson to leave on Friday following a 45-minute meeting at No 10.

    The advice for Johnson to now self-isolate for 10 days comes at a difficult moment for the government. He is expected to continue to make public statements from inside No 10, including on the government’s green plans. This is also a pivotal week for Brexit, as negotiations with the EU reach their final phase.

    Downing Street said Johnson will liaise with parliamentary authorities about remote participation in House of Commons proceedings. Under the “hybrid” parliament arrangements, MPs can only take part in some proceedings by video link. It is not clear if he will participate in prime minister’s questions on Wednesday.

    A No 10 spokesperson said: “The prime minister will follow the rules and is self-isolating. He will carry on working from Downing Street, including on leading the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. The PM is well and does not have any symptoms of Covid-19.”

    Johnson contracted the disease himself in late March, shortly after announcing the first nationwide lockdown. He initially continued to work in Downing Street, before his health worsened and he was taken to intensive care.
    Cho Bovid làm người thử vaccine đầu tiên.

  3. #1103
    Biệt Thự Triển's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by ốc View Post

    Cho Bovid làm người thử vaccine đầu tiên.

    Vacine của Oxford coi bộ nguy hiểm. Chú Bo đang tả xung hữu đột. Giờ "Brexit" rồi cũng không nằm trong chương trình thuốc nhỏ giọt của bà Ursula von der Leyen. NHS của Anh phải tự vận động, không biết Anh đã đặt thuốc của các hãng nào khác chưa.

    Covid: No safety concerns found with Oxford vaccine trial after Brazil death
    21 October

  4. #1104
    Biệt Thự Triển's Avatar
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    Sep 2011

    Chỉ còn 4 tuần là tới lễ giáng sinh. Mùa này là mua gặp gỡ truyền thống. Có đạo chúa hay không cũng vậy đơn giản là vì quốc giáo nên ai cũng được nghỉ 2 ngày. Bà con "tranh thủ" về nhà cha mẹ ông bà, gặp gỡ, hàn huyên, ăn uống. Nhưng theo cái đà tăng nhiễm trùng này thì mùa giáng sinh này ai biết nghĩ cho ông bà, cha mẹ thì chỉ còn cách gặp gỡ "on line", đường dây điện thoại hay đường dây social media cũng vậy thôi. Đông này con không vìa.

    Merkel, German states consider tougher restrictions

    Germany's federal government and states are considering tighter COVID-19 restrictions, such as dramatically reducing the number of people at private gatherings and compulsory mask wearing for school students.

    On Monday, Chancellor Angela Merkel will discuss potential new measures with the heads of the country's 16 states via video conference. A draft document of the measures, seen by various media outlets, said people would be urged to abstain from private parties completely until Christmas.

    According to the proposals, children and young people are to be encouraged to meet with only one particular friend regularly in their free time. Similarly, families are to limit private get-togethers to their own household and people from one other particular household.

    The draft document further envisions limiting peoples' meetings in public to members of their own households and a maximum of two people from another household.

    The proposals could still change pending the discussion between the federal and regional governments.

    Masks and social distancing at schools

    The draft also pushes for social distancing measures to be stepped up at schools. Masks that cover the mouth and nose are to become compulsory for teachers and pupils of all ages on school premises and during lessons.

    Pupils are to have lessons in assigned, unchanging groups of about half the regular class size, according to the proposal.

    All people considered vulnerable will be eligible once a week for one heavy duty respirator mask, also known as FFP2.

    Other possible resolutions include demanding people with even light common cold symptoms, such as a cough or runny nose, to isolate themselves and go into quarantine.

    Regional bottlenecks

    Germany this month imposed a set of measures dubbed a "lockdown light" to rein in the second wave of the pandemic that the country is seeing in common with much of the rest of Europe. While bars and restaurants are closed, schools and shops so far remain open.

    As a result, numbers of new infections are no longer growing exponentially, but a decrease of infection numbers is not yet foreseeable, the document said.

    After the pandemic began, 520,000 COVID-19 cases were detected in Germany by the end of October, but numbers spiked by 50% to 780,000 cases in the first two weeks of November. In the same period, the number of COVID-19-intensive care patients in German hospitals increased by 70%, leading to regional bottlenecks.

    Merkel warned during her video address Saturday that "the winter ahead will still demand a lot from everyone."

    On November 23, the chancellor and the regional state heads will meet again and possibly decide further measures, taking into account the development of infection numbers by then.

    kbd/sri (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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  5. #1105
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    Sep 2011

    Gà trống Gaulois tỏ ra cứng cựa.

    France looks to Biden era as Trump ally Pompeo visits

    US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has promised 'a smooth transition to a second Trump administration' MANDEL NGAN AFP/File

    Paris (AFP)

    France's Emmanuel Macron will be forced to walk a diplomatic tightrope on Monday when he hosts US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, a staunch defender of President Donald Trump, for talks while at the same time seeking to build relations with President-elect Joe Biden.

    Pompeo arrived in Paris Saturday at the start of a seven-nation trip to US allies.

    America's top diplomat has been criticised for backing the president as he digs in over his unsubstantiated claims of election fraud.

    "There will be a smooth transition to a second Trump administration," a defiant Pompeo told reporters moments after announcing his trip last week.

    World leaders however have shown no doubt about whom they see as the victor, with Macron one of the first to congratulate Biden and speak with him by telephone.

    Pompeo has been critical of such overtures to Biden, telling Fox News that such calls to Biden were not objectionable if it was "just saying 'hi'."

    "But make no mistake about it, we have one president, one secretary of state, one national security team at a time," he said.

    French presidential aides emphasised that it was Pompeo who sought the meeting with Macron and that it was granted "in full transparency with President-elect Joe Biden's team."

    In a sign of the unease generated by his visit, no press conferences are planned after his meeting with Macron and separate meeting with Pompeo's French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian.

    A senior State Department official, asked whether Pompeo would insist to allies that Trump will remain in power, said that the former CIA director has a "broad strategy" in pursuit of US interests and that "he remains the secretary of state".

    - Ongoing disagreements -

    In contrast to some other EU leaders, Macron sought from the outset to win over Trump, making him the guest of honour at Bastille Day celebrations in Paris in 2017 -- a trip that included a dinner with their spouses on the second floor of the Eiffel Tower.

    But analysts say that the French leader has little to show for his efforts, with Trump pulling the US out of the landmark 2015 Paris climate accord and the two leaders also locking horns on Iran, trade and taxing digital giants.

    "The strong relationship between our countries cannot be overestimated, and I'm looking forward to my discussions here in Paris," he said.

    But there is ample scope for friction.

    Le Drian said Friday that he would raise the concerns of France -- which has been hit by a number of jihadist attacks -- over Trump's plans to speed up the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq and Afghanistan.

    "We don't think that should happen," Le Drian said in a television interview.

    EU leaders are also still trying to save a hard-won international deal to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions, which Trump ripped up early in his term.

    A senior Trump administration official told the press that Washington's policy of "maximum pressure" on historic foe Iran was "not going to stop in the coming months."

    - Farewell tour? -

    Pompeo, whose visit has the hallmarks of a farewell tour that dare not speak its name, had no official engagements in Paris over the weekend which he spent with his wife Susan.

    On Monday morning, he will commemorate the victims of recent terror attacks in France, including teacher Samuel Paty who was decapitated over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed and three people who were stabbed to death in a church in Nice.

    From Paris he heads to Istanbul, where his trip has already caused friction.

    Pompeo's only announced meeting is with Bartholomew I of Constantinople -- the spiritual leader of the Greek Orthodox world -- to discuss religious freedom, a key topic for the evangelical Christian Pompeo.

    In Jerusalem, Pompeo will see Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is a close partner of Trump but who has congratulated Biden.

    According to Israeli newspaper Haaretz and news site Axios, Pompeo will become the first secretary of state to visit one of Israel's settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories, which are considered illegal by virtually all other countries, and also tour the Golan Heights, whose annexation by Israel was recognised by Trump.

    Pompeo will also visit Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Georgia.

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  6. #1106
    Biệt Thự Triển's Avatar
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    Sep 2011

    Polexit và Hungrix chắc chỉ còn là vấn đề thời gian. Hai nước này kiểu VN và Bắc Hàn, cho tiền thì lấy tuốt, nhưng độc tài là cốt lõi.

    Poland and Hungary veto EU budget plan

    The two countries have followed through on their threat to block spending plans through to 2027. The EU needs a unanimous vote from all 27 members in order to pass the budget and coronavirus economic recovery fund.

    Hungary and Poland blocked approval of the EU's long-term budget on Monday, diplomatic sources revealed. The spending plans also include a €750-billion ($888 billion) coronavirus rescue package.

    The two countries are opposed to a rule-of-law mechanism that could see them lose EU subsidies if they continue with policies seen as eroding democratic standards.

    "Hungary has vetoed the budget," Zoltan Kovacs, a spokesman for Prime Minister Viktor Orban said, arguing that the package must reflect a deal reached in July.

    "We cannot support the plan in its present form to tie rule of law criteria to budget decisions," he said.

    'A radical limitation of sovereignty'

    The veto is likely to delay the delivery of much-needed cash for the EU, with the seven-year budget set to begin January 1.

    Poland's Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki threatened a veto last week.

    "The question is whether Poland... will be subject to political and institutionalized enslavement," Zbigniew Ziobro, Poland's justice minister, said Monday.

    "Because this is not rule of law, which is just a pretext, but it is really an institutional, political enslavement, a radical limitation of sovereignty," he asserted.

    A serious crisis

    EU leaders thought they had resolved dispute over the budget and associated stimulus plan at a four-day summit in July.

    Senior European diplomats said it was unlikely that other countries would agree to compromise on the rule of law condition.

    "We'll see if Budapest and Warsaw are looking for guarantees and if these are acceptable," AFP news agency quoted an unnamed diplomat as saying, who warned of a "serious political crisis."

    EU leaders were due to hold a video conference on Thursday to discuss the coronavirus crisis. They may now be focusing on convincing Poland and Hungary to resolve the budget stand-off.

    Spain hopes the 27-member bloc will resolve the dispute in coming days.

    "It is urgent that the budget agreement and the various normative documents are approved," Economy Minister Nadia Calvino said on Monday, underlining that Spain supported the key condition of the rule of law.

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  7. #1107
    I can't breathe. ốc's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Polexit và Hungrix
    Hay là Poleave và Hungarid. Tiếng Việt thì gọi là Ba lang thang và Hung ga riêng.

    Sắp có dân Ba lan, Hungary trốn qua Pháp, Đức, Áo ở lậu.

  8. #1108
    I can't breathe. ốc's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Cái vòng Liên hiệp Âu châu
    Kẻ hòng ra khỏi người cầu bước vô
    Nước mong chờ đỏ hoe con mắt
    Nước hững hờ ngúc ngắc muốn ra

    Bulgaria blocks North Macedonia's EU path

    During discussions by EU ministers on Tuesday, Bulgaria raised its opposition citing a failure of its neighbour to respect a shared history. It wants official EU documents to avoid mention of the “Macedonian language”, which it insists derives from Bulgarian.

    North Macedonia – which added “North” to its name in February to satisfy the Greeks as part of its successful efforts to join Nato – has also fallen foul of Bulgaria’s demand for guarantees that it will not support any claims for a Macedonian minority in Bulgaria.

    The development will be a huge source of frustration in Skopje, the former Yugoslav republic’s capital.
    “Bulgaria, at this stage, cannot back the draft of the negotiation framework with the Republic of North Macedonia,” she said.

    As Macedonia, the country applied for EU membership in March 2004 and it was given candidate status the following year. The European commission has recommended opening accession talks since 2009.

    North Macedonia is now expected to offer further guarantees to Bulgaria that it will deliver on a 2017 friendship treaty with Sofia that deals with the thorny historical issues.

    The European commission’s vice-president, Maroš Šefčovič, said it was important to move the accession talks with North Macedonia and Albania to show that the EU was open to enlargement.
    Ma cũ bắt nạt Macedonia.

  9. #1109
    Biệt Thự Triển's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by ốc View Post
    Ma cũ.
    Bảo ra lợi.

  10. #1110
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    Sep 2011

    Germany: Police find cannabis plantations, weapons caches in Rhineland

    Police in Aachen have found three professionally run cannabis plantations and masses of weapons in a large operation. It took authorities several days to transport some 1,000 weapons out of the site.

    An investigation of illegal cannabis plantations in Germany's Rhineland region has taken on "extraordinary dimensions," police and prosecutors in the western city of Aachen said on Wednesday.

    Since mid-October, authorities have uncovered a total of three professionally operated plantations, along with large quantities of weapons and ammunition.

    In all, 11 suspects had been arrested, they said.

    Huge weapons cache

    During the first two raids on October 19, investigators found one plantation in the city of Euskirchen and another in Herzogenrath, near Aachen.

    The weapons found included some reserved for military use

    According to a police statement, the plantation in Euskirchen contained 2,300 mature marijuana plants and 2,000 cuttings. Police also found around 1,000 weapons, weapons parts and ammunition at the site.

    The securing and transport of the weapons took several days, even with the help of colleagues from other police forces, the statement said.

    Taken together, the two plantations would have yielded cannabis with an estimated street value of €1.5 million ($1.8 million), police said.

    Hungarian arrest

    A third plantation was found in Titz, near the Rhineland city of Düren, at the end of October. Some 1,600 mature cannabis plants were growing there, police said.

    The ongoing investigation has so far examined 25 properties and buildings, according to police.

    One of the 11 arrests took place in Hungary, where a 34-year-old man in possession of false papers was detained on suspicion of connections to the Euskirchen plantation. He is in detention pending extradition, police said.

    tj/rs (AFP, dpa)

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