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Commentary from Minnesota: Lockdowns a pandemic of fear?

Katherine Kersten published a commentary discussing the lockdown in Minnesota.

There are lots of commentaries making similar points lately -- people wondering why many government officials are so hesitant to lift even the most restrictive aspects of the lockdown strategies they have instituted to mitigate the spread of SARS-CoV-2.

Her major points are that those whose lives are most at risk from COVID-19 are older people with pre-existing conditions, and especially such people in dense living situations like assisted living communities. She claims that Minnesota's governor justified the lockdowns based on a (deterministic epidemiological) model suggested 74,000 Minnesotans would die without this policy, and even with the policy 50,000 would probably die. To date they have had <10,000 confirmed cases and just over 500 deaths.

She emphasizes the extreme pain being caused to citizens and businesses by the lockdown.

I don't think her article adequately acknowledges the unique challenge of the fast spread of this virus through asymptomatic carriers and the extreme damage it can do to the small proportion whose infection leads to advanced disease.

But I wonder a lot of the same things she does. Given what we have learned, why are lockdowns the status quo that they are so slow to move off of? Why not rethink a fresh perspective based on what we have learned?

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1 Comment

Witt Freddie
Witt Freddie
Jul 18, 2023

I find an interesting point in your paper, one that is often overlooked: NPIs must be tailored to the population, there's no 'one size fits all'. The effect of Mask seems to depend on the numerous factors (Density, people's behavior, as well as other measures). coreball

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