Category Archives: Journalism

Poison centre cases rise under Covid-19

THE official US advice has been to disinfect high-touch surfaces to minimise the spread of Covid-19. Taking that advice to the extreme, Lisa filled a sink with a mixture of 10% bleach solution, vinegar and hot water and soaked her vegetables and other food in it. Soon, she noticed a powerful odour of chlorine in the kitchen and was having difficulty breathing…

This article first appeared in The Guardian on 8 June 2020. To continue reading, click here.

Are we underestimating how many people are resistant to Covid-19?

DURING the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, cities were in general affected worse than smaller conurbations or rural areas. Yet in Italy, Rome was relatively spared while the villages of Lombardy experienced very high rates of sickness and death. Then again, one Lombard village – Ferrara Erbognone – stood out for not recording a single case of Covid-19 at the height of the wave. Nobody knows why…

The Lombard village spared by the plague

This article first appeared in The Observer on 7 June 2020. To continue reading, click here.

Interview: Covid-19 expert Karl Friston

NEUROSCIENTIST Karl Friston, of University College London, builds mathematical models of human brain function. Lately, he’s been applying his modelling to Covid-19, and using what he learns to advise Independent Sage, the committee set up as an alternative to the UK government’s official pandemic advice body, the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage)…

Photo credit: Kate Peters

This article first appeared in The Observer on 31 May 2020. To continue reading, click here.

Covid-19 and the grassroots

PANDEMICS hand power to the people. Leadership is necessary, for an optimal outcome, but essentially it’s up to us what happens next. It’s in times like these that grassroots political movements can come into their own – if they know how to adapt to the circumstances…

Sardine baitball by Sudokuhani – own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

This article first appeared in The Guardian on 15 May 2020. To continue reading, click here.

The coronavirus slayer!

ON 20 January, KK Shailaja phoned one of her medically trained deputies. She had read online about a dangerous new virus spreading in China. “Will it come to us?” she asked. “Definitely, Madam,” he replied. And so the health minister of the Indian state of Kerala began her preparations…

KK Shailaja, aka Shailaja Teacher, Kerala’s health minister

This article first appeared in The Guardian on 14 May 2020. To continue reading, click here.