In this March 29, 2022 article Shira Doron, Westyn Branch-Elliman, and Elissa Perkins for The Washington Post criticized the use of “predetermined thresholds for public health policy”.

According to the authors, the pandemic has changed so fast that “[B]y the time preset measures are triggered, they are often out of date”.

The authors cite the example of the off-ramp of mask mandates in Massachusetts schools, which was conditioned on an 80% vaccination rate. By the time this target was reached, local health leaders opposed the lifting of mask mandates as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID shot for children 5 to 11 years was due to be released. Another example was the establishment of thresholds for rates of community spread which would indicate the transition back to remote learning. The authors said, “Many of them crossed those thresholds during the winter peak, but by then, the situation had evolved. In-school transmission proved rare enough that following the pre-specified, arbitrary plans set over the summer did not make sense”.

The authors offer three recommendations to guide future strategies:

  • Investment in the public health infrastructure to ensure robust, real-time surveillance and data analysis
  • Opt for strategies tailored to local situations, rather than one-size-fits-all standards, and work to collect scientific evidence to support the effectiveness of metrics for achieving a policy goal.
  • We should set clear goals for any intervention and update those goals along with metrics in real-time. This will improve our understanding of how, when, and for how long interventions will be recommended.

Editor’s Note: We have chosen to publish this article as the threat of “new surges” in the Philippines has been put out by both the World Health Organization (WHO)[1]https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1579884/who-warns-of-new-covid-surge-in-2-months-urges-ph-to-prepare and some local “experts”[2]https://www.gmanetwork.com/news/topstories/nation/827968/ntf-adviser-covid-19-surge-possible-in-next-2-months-due-to-elections-religious-gatherings/story/.

Are they conditioning Filipinos to accept a series of new COVID restrictions if the government fails to reach its goal of 100% vaccination by June 2022?[3]The Government Believes that 100% Vaccination is the Key to Getting the Philippines Back to Normal. Also, read Fauci: Be prepared to return to COVID restrictions if cases surge again, China goes back … Continue reading

Or it could be a way to sell the booster shots to people [See Government Fails to Meet 5M Goal of 3rd Mass Vaccination Drive, Says Filipinos Don’t See the Urgency in Taking Boosters, Should the government place expiration dates on vaccination cards?]

Whatever their reasons are for their fear-propaganda, we hope that Filipinos know better now. This article from Washington Post was pretty clear: it is no longer ethical to impose a one-size-fits-all approach to COVID. [Read One-size-fits-all strategy cannot work for the coronavirus, SAGE adviser: Lockdowns can no longer be justified and Why can’t the Philippine government give up its unscientific, illogical, and useless COVID policies ?]

We also want to add an insight here: the science is already pretty clear: there is no reason to implement COVID restrictions. We already have two years’ worth of data showing the ineffectiveness and the harms of these policies [see African experience proves countries “mishandled” COVID, Sweden: The Disaster That Never Came, Study: Even a military enforced quarantine can’t stop the virus, Full lockdowns had no impact on COVID-19, One Year On, Evidence Shows the Great Barrington Declaration Was Right. See more at Is A Lockdown Necessary? and Is It Really That Deadly? Also, read Top infectious disease expert in UK reveals anomalous practices in deciding country’s pandemic response, Complicity Between CDC, Teachers’ Union on COVID School Reopening Guidance Now Exposed].

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