Last reply 2 months ago
Daily Briefing Covid-19 [24th Mar 2020]

Morning everyone,

Read to the end for a present. Scroll past everything if you like to skip the daily homily.

Now we are all officially – I think, this govt is the flip-flop special edition one and not what most of us thought we had ordered. Watching the Buffoon prounounce daily feels like going through the Fat Ron’s drive-thru and parking up somewhere hidden to enjoy your dirty secret of indulgence, only to whip the bag open and find out that there is a Filet-o-Fish and a Kids Meal instead of the 20pc McNugget box and a black coffee that you ordered. Starving, you force them down but feel a little bit soiled when doing so. That kind of feeling. – confined to barracks (well, sort of definitely maybe in the fullness of time when I am finished doing my ‘ting can you imagine a Bobby trying to ticket you for being outdoors?) No worries, can’t happen. The Golden Arches of Obesity is shut now. It seems that a side order of an invisible virus is no longer on the menu for the moment.
MS News
Anosmia (or, you don’t stink) – Hands up who knows what anosmia is? It is simply ‘Doctor Speak’ for the loss of the sense of smell. It turns out that it is a v important sign regarding our friend, Covid-19. Read this:

Government Letters to the at-risk groups: covered on the forum already and on the Barts Blog. Read this: at

COVID-19 and my MS? An exhaustive list of questions and answers is here. I urge you to read it before worrying. There was one poor lad on Twitter that genuinely thought his fingolimod was a death sentence. Can you imagine how freaked out he was? Don’t be that guy. Be informed. Also, when you go into meltdown over something that has been answered you take the time of people to reassure you with information already out there. I know I am being a bit preachy but we are suddenly in resource-stretched times. The information is there.

From Prof G on Twitter – The million dollar question: “AM I AT INCREASED RISK OF #COVID19 BECAUSE I AM ON A SPECIFIC DMT?” Have a look at the risk table here:

Cranks and Twitter experts. On the hashtag #MSCOVID19 there is also the great spectacle of regular people taking issue with many experts. Just arguing hard against an expert because they ‘feel’ something is not right. Hey ho, the world never changes.

Ocrelizumab – see what the neuros are saying:

The drug risk table is dynamic, as things change quickly. For example, Prof G says regarding ocrelizumab: “On the embedded table I have changed it moderate-2-high. If you are naive to DMTs it is high, if non-naive to DMTs moderate.”

The Covid-19 microsite to ask questions of the experts directly.
Social Stuff
If you want to come out of the game ahead then there are some excellent free courses at Future Learn –

Alexander McCall Smith has written a beautiful poem about this whole hiatus. I’ll leave you with it:

In a time of distance

The unexpected always happens in the way

The unexpected has always occurred:

While we are doing something else,

While we are thinking of altogether

Different things – matters that events

Then show to be every bit as unimportant

As our human concerns so often are;

And then, with the unexpected upon us,

We look at one another with a sort of surprise;

How could things possibly turn out this way

When we are so competent, so pleased

With the elaborate systems we’ve created –

Networks and satellites, intelligent machines,

Pills for every eventuality – except this one?

And so we turn again to face one another

And discover those things

We had almost forgotten,

But that, mercifully, are still there:

Love and friendship, not just for those

To whom we are closest, but also for those

Whom we do not know and of whom

Perhaps we have in the past been frightened;

The words brother and sister, powerful still,

Are brought out, dusted down,

Found to be still capable of expressing

What we feel for others, that precise concern;

Joined together in adversity

We discover things we had put aside:

Old board games with obscure rules,

Books we had been meaning to read,

Letters we had intended to write,

Things we had thought we might say

But for which we never found the time;

And from these discoveries of self, of time,

There comes a new realisation

That we have been in too much of hurry,

That we have misused our fragile world,

That we have forgotten the claims of others

Who have been left behind;

We find that out in our seclusion,

In our silence; we commit ourselves afresh,

We look for a few bars of song

That we used to sing together,

A long time ago; we give what we can,

We wait, knowing that when this is over

A lot of us – not all perhaps – but most,

Will be slightly different people,

And our world, though diminished,

Will be much bigger, its beauty revealed afresh.

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2 months ago

2 months ago

On point and very funny @dominics. Keep the updates coming as They seem to be the quickest and most informed for us MS’rs so far. Stay well.

2 months ago

We just finished interviewing Aaron Boster for the Shift. MS +Covid 19 series.

Watch this space as it’ll be up in a day or two. The editing elves are hard at work. It ought to be really great.

2 months ago

Thanks so much for your regular updates – it saves me so much time to have what I need packaged all up 😉 can’t wait until the editing elves are done polishing up the interview with Dr Boster. I love his stuff as well as the Bart’s perspective. Good to have a direct link to experts like that 😉

Is the covid19 totally as severe as I have heard?
Should I have all people visiting me wear a mask and gloves?

2 months ago

Yes it is. The media, for a change, are not exaggerating as it is a hard thing to exaggerate. Stay at home. A mask is pretty useless. I’d encourage you to read the updates.

2 months ago

In the UK (60 million of us) no one can visit anyone at the moment. I think you’re in the US though?

2 months ago

@vixen – there seems to be a core of anti-social bastards that seem intent on not caring, being proud of not caring and flaunting all the guidance. C’est la vie.

2 months ago

Yes @dominics, and a touch of Buffoonary that should have put sensible and proven measures in place a tad sooner….

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