We are past the point where the damage caused by the lockdown is greater than the damage caused by the coronavirus. The damage could start compounding. Here are just a few of the recent articles making this point:
4/22/20 – The Hill – The data is in – stop the panic and end the total isolation – A medical doctor says it is time for our leaders to examine the evidence instead of hypothetical guesses and then carefully let the country start operating again. He cites five factors ignored by people who want to keep the country in ongoing lockdown:
Fact 1: The overwhelming majority of people do not have any significant risk of dying from COVID-19.
Fact 2: Protecting older, at-risk people eliminates hospital overcrowding.
Fact 3: Vital population immunity is prevented by total isolation policies, prolonging the problem.
Fact 4: People are dying because other medical care is not getting done due to hypothetical projections.
Fact 5: We have a clearly defined population at risk who can be protected with targeted measures.
Keep in mind California will probably be on lockdown until August and Virginia may be locked down until a vaccine is in use.
Two severe medical problems are being caused by and will be prolonged by the severe lockdown.
Look at the third factor – herd immunity will rapidly slow the spread. Complete isolation postpones growth of immunity prolonging the time of high illness.
Look at the tragic fourth factor – medical care is not being provided to people who are in danger – more of those people will die than is necessary.
As mentioned in previous posts, those “non-essential” medical procedures that have been halted include colonoscopies, mastectomies, hip & knee replacements, knee reconstructions, cancer screening, a large portion of cancer treatments, ongoing assessment and treatment of anyone with chronic illness, all medical treatment for people in assisted living facilities & nursing homes, and just about anything else that is done on an outpatient basis
4/23/20 – Wall Street Journal – Social Isolation’s High Physical and Psychological Toll – Researchers studying astronauts and scientists working in Antarctica know that prolonged social isolation and close confinement with restricted number of people causes emotional distress.
Article says many studies show the consequence of loneliness and isolation include strokes, heart attacks, dementia, and depression. Productivity drops. Relationships fray.
Researchers tell us that our circadian rhythms are affected not only by light but social cues. The massive lockdown we are all going through is disorienting to everyone.
There is an emotional and psychological cost to this lock-in which will result in physical costs. Those costs are growing every day. I will make it very easy guess at some point the costs are going to compound at an increasing rate.
4/25/20 – George Gilder at Real Clear Markets – This Pandemic Is Over. Let’s Stop the Economic Suicide, and Get Back to Work – Also starts with describing the severe overstatement of forecasts. He quotes a statistician, who is currently writing a book on this mess, who says this is
“the most colossal and costly blown forecast of all time.”
Author has a blunt assessment of how things got started and were allowed to run in China, a to-the-point assessment of why Italy was so bad, and a specific explanation of why unique factors in New York made such a mess there. He points out ventilators don’t help after all, with 80% mortality of those put on ventilators.
Author also points out what has been mentioned in many places that the death tally we are seeing now is inflated because anyone who dies with coronavirus is counted as dying because of the coronavirus, not the other issues which led to their unfortunate demise.
4/23/20 – CNN Health – Nearly all COVID-19 patients put on ventilators in New York’s largest health system died, study finds – In a large health system with 5,700 coronavirus patients researchers were able to track final outcome for 2,634 patients. They found about 20% of hospitalized patients died.
Of the hospitalized patients, 12% needed ventilators. Of those who were put on ventilators, 88% died.
4/22/20 – Business Insider – The 500-bed US Navy hospital ship Comfort is leaving NYC after treating just 179 patients in 3 weeks – The floating 1,000 bed hospital was reconfigured to handle 500 coronavirus patients. A mere 179 patients were treated during its three week stay in New York.