Lockdown: An Unnecessary Measure

(With thanks to our medical advisers for the following information)
  • As of 19 March 2020, COVID-19 is no longer considered to be a high consequence infectious disease (HCID) in the UK.
  • A new French study in the Journal of Antimicrobial Agents, titled SARS-CoV-2: fear versus data, concludes that "the problem of SARS-CoV-2 is probably overestimated“, since "the mortality rate for SARS-CoV-2 is not significantly different from that for common coronaviruses identified at the study hospital in France“.
  • An Italian study of August 2019 found that flu deaths in Italy were between 7,000 and 25,000 in recent years. This value is higher than in most other European countries due to the large elderly population in Italy, and much higher than anything attributed to Covid-19 so far.
  • In a new fact sheet, the World Health Organization WHO reports that Covid-19 is in fact spreading slower, not faster, than influenza by a factor of about 50%. Moreover, pre-symptomatic transmission appears to be much lower with Covid-19 than with influenza.
  • A leading Italian doctor reports that "strange cases of pneumonia“ were seen in the Lombardy region already in November 2019, raising again the question if they were caused by the new virus (which officially only appeared in Italy in February 2020), or by other factors, such as the dangerously high smog levels in Northern Italy.
  • Danish researcher Peter Gøtzsche, founder of the renowned Cochrane Medical Collaboration, writes that Corona is "an epidemic of mass panic“ and "logic was one of the first victims.“
  • Former Israeli Health Minister, Professor Yoram Lass, says that the new coronavirus is "less dangerous than the flu“ and lockdown measures "will kill more people than the virus“. He adds that „the numbers do not match the panic“ and "psychology is prevailing over science“. He also notes that "Italy is known for its enormous morbidity in respiratory problems, more than three times any other European country.“
  • Pietro Vernazza, a Swiss infectious disease specialist, argues that many of the imposed measures are not based on science and should be reversed. According to Vernazza, mass testing makes no sense because 90% of the population will see no symptoms, and lockdowns and closing schools are even „counterproductive“. He recommends protecting only risk groups while keeping the economy and society at large undisturbed.
  • The President of the World Doctors Federation, Frank Ulrich Montgomery, argues that lockdown measures as in Italy are „unreasonable“ and „counterproductive“ and should be reversed.
  • Switzerland: Despite media panic, excess mortality still at or near zero: the latest test-positive "victims“ were a 96yo in palliative care and a 97yo with pre-existing conditions.
  • The latest statistical report of the Italian National Health Institute is now available in English.
An image of...
Above are today's statistics for COVID-19, including a graph showing the weekly numbers of deaths in the UK since 1 Jan 2020. As can be seen, the situation so far shows a very similar track to the average of the past five years.
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UK Column News - 23rd March 2020

Brian, Mike and David with the latest UK Column News

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