Like Minds on COVID19

At nearly the same time I posted yesterday, The Lancet published this editorial from Swedish epidemiologist Prof Johan Giesecke. Some excerpts:

It has become clear that a hard lockdown does not protect old and frail people living in care homes—a population the lockdown was designed to protect. Neither does it decrease mortality from COVID-19, which is evident when comparing the UK’s experience with that of other European countries.

Everyone will be exposed to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus, and most people will become infected

There is very little we can do to prevent this spread: a lockdown might delay severe cases for a while, but once restrictions are eased, cases will reappear. I expect that when we count the number of deaths from COVID-19 in each country in 1 year from now, the figures will be similar, regardless of measures taken.

Measures to flatten the curve might have an effect, but a lockdown only pushes the severe cases into the future —it will not prevent them.

In summary, COVID-19 is a disease that is highly infectious and spreads rapidly through society. It is often quite symptomless and might pass unnoticed, but it also causes severe disease, and even death, in a proportion of the population, and our most important task is not to stop spread, which is all but futile, but to concentrate on giving the unfortunate victims optimal care.

Link to the paper here

JMM

1 comment

  1. This article has no data supporting any of the claims he makes.
    Note also that there is no data from statistically representative samples on antibody prevalence in the Swedish population. One small study collected from 460 persons (age 18-74) in selected communes in Sweden showed 10% prevalence April 10 – but not sure this is statistically representative.
    Furthermore, New Zealand, Finland, Hubei, HongKong, etc are current counterexamples of his statement.

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