‘It’s Nonsense’: Several Public Health Experts Denounce COVID-19 ‘Herd Immunity’ Strategy

Modesto Morganelli
Ottobre 17, 2020

A group of 80 scientists from across the globe signed a letter warning the world about the risks surrounding a herd immunity approach to overcoming the coronavirus pandemic, stating it's "a risky fallacy unsupported by scientific evidence".

While emphasizing vigilance in protecting the vulnerable, the GBD classifies school closings as "a grave injustice" and asserts that "those who are not vulnerable should immediately be allowed to resume life as normal", while incorporating "simple hygiene measures, such as hand washing and staying home when sick".

"Any pandemic management strategy relying upon immunity from natural infections for COVID-19 is flawed", the scientists wrote in the open letter published Thursday in the journal The Lancet.

Such a strategy would result in "recurrent epidemics" of Covid-19 similar to those caused by numerous infectious diseases before vaccines were invented.

No one knows exactly how many people need to be protected to stop COVID-19 from spreading, but estimates range from 50%-70% of the population.

In a call with reporters featuring two senior officials, the White House said it supports an October 4 petition called The Great Barrington Declaration that argues authorities should allow the virus to spread freely among young, healthy Americans while protecting older and vulnerable people.

The Trump administration's embrace of "herd immunity" to combat COVID-19 has drawn sharp rebukes from infectious disease experts who say millions of Americans could die.

"As immunity builds within the inhabitants, the chance of an infection to all-together with the susceptible-falls".

Regardless of the declaration suggesting that mortality and social hurt needs to be minimized till herd immunity is reached, one of many co-authors, Dr. Martin Kulldorff, beforehand advised KYR information by way of electronic mail, that they "usually are not advocating a "herd immunity technique".

While some have argued this approach could lead to the development of infection-acquired immunity in the low-risk population, which will eventually protect the vulnerable, the researchers explained such uncontrolled transmission in younger people risks significant ill-health and death.

The Nice Barrington Declaration, which is called after the city in MA that it was signed in, at the moment has signatures from 10,233 medical and public well being scientists, 27,860 medical practitioners and 504,875 involved residents.

"Never in the history of public health has herd immunity been used as a strategy for responding to an outbreak, let alone a pandemic", Ghebreyesus said.

They also state that there's no evidence for "lasting protective immunity to SARS-CoV-2 following natural infection".

"We know that the natural history of coronavirus infections is that people can get reinfected over and over again", she said.

"It is critical to act decisively and urgently".

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, said herd immunity is "very risky".

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, on Thursday called herd immunity and implications from The Great Barrington Declaration "nonsense and very risky", when it comes to stopping the spread of coronavirus in the U.S.

World Health Organization emergencies director Michael Ryan warned back in May that any country pursuing herd immunity were making "a really unsafe calculation". "Allowing a unsafe virus that we don't fully understand to run free is simply unethical".

Katie Camero is a McClatchy National Real-Time reporter based in Miami focusing on science. "It's not an option".

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