As Ontarians are amid their 3rd lockdown, a group known as the Concerned Ontario Doctors hosted a summit on the harms of lockdowns that featured some very prominent medical professionals. The event took place on April 11th at 4 pm eastern time.
The event opened with an address from a frontline physician and President of the Concerned Ontario Doctors – Dr. Kulvinder Kaur Gill. She welcomed the group of speakers before the moderator was introduced.
The moderator for the event was a heavyweight in the field of medicine – the former Chief Medical Officer of Health for the Province of Ontario, Dr. Richard Schabas. The Other panellists consisted of all three of the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration. There was a Professor of Medicine at Stanford University and Infectious Disease Epidemiologists Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, Professor of Theoretical Epidemiology at the University of Oxford Dr. Sunetra Gupta and the professor of Medicine at Harvard University, Biostatistician and Infectious Disease Epidemiologist Dr. Martin Kulldorff.
To say that these people are qualified to give an opinion on the current handling of Covid is a staggering understatement. The moderator of this event alone was in charge of the health of an entire province – so why haven’t you heard about the event?
Covid has shown us censorship reaches the medical field as well
Dr. Richard Schabas, the former Medical Officer of Health for Ontario and moderator of the event started the stream by saying “I’m delighted to be here today and as I mentioned before you’ve faced efforts of censorship by our medical licensing body in Ontario and It’s wonderful to see that you’re not being intimidated by that.”
“One of the great causalities of Covid has been the loss of Collegial constructive discussion and that’s why I think this panel is so important.”
So here is the former Chief Medical Officer of Health for the entire province of Ontario openly stating that the medical licensing body in Ontario has tried to censor doctors for their opinion. He continues by stating that “one of the great causalities of Covid has been the loss of Collegial constructive discussion” – in essence, the death of friendly and good-willed discussion among colleagues in the medical profession.
“I will say that I have found the last year to be a very Uhm, from an intellectual and professional standpoint a very isolating experience. I’ve had a handful of supportive colleagues but I have felt very much cut off from the mainstream of discussion in the professional and scientific world and from the media where I’ve been effectively cancelled.”
This statement bothered me as it was an admission that a very qualified individual (Former Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario) was being barred from having his opinion discussed in the media – no wonder there are some Canadians still buying the lockdown narrative hook line and sinker. They aren’t hearing the qualified voices – because those voices are being systematically censored.
Dr. Schabas concluded his thoughts by saying:
“It’s been great whenever I have seen one of the three of you give an interview or read something you’ve written because it tells me that I’m actually not crazy. That my ideas while I may not be right about everything or anything – It’s not crazy and these are legitimate perspectives, these are legitimate questions and so I’d like to thank the panellist for their ongoing insights, for their willingness to speak out and for their courage. Because I’m sure whatever animosity I have faced, you have faced at orders of magnitude higher.”
Again I was taken aback as I thought about the repercussions of the words coming from Dr. Schabas – how does the Former Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario feel isolated? Why did he insinuate that he felt crazy – but was glad to know he was not alone? Have our politicians and media pundits isolated and belittled dissenting expert voices so often so that even a medical heavyweight like Schabas questions himself?
Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, Professor of Medicine Stanford University, Infectious Disease Epidemiologists
Dr. Jay Bhattacharya started his talk by speaking about the Great Barrington Declaration. He said that “there’s an enormous risk difference by age in mortality from COVID,” the Professor of Medicine from Stanford University continued “from seroprevalence studies around the world the survival probability for someone over 70 is 95% from infection. Which is, I mean that’s a really high death rate from a disease. Whereas for people under 70 it’s much higher 99.95%. And for children, the flu poses a greater threat than COVID. There’s this enormous age stratification in severe outcomes from COVID.”
So here is a professor of medicine from Stanford University stating that:
- The flu poses a greater threat than Covid for Children
- The survival probability for someone over 70 is 95%
- The survival probability for someone under 70 is 99.95%
Dr. Bhattacharya continued:
“The lockdowns themselves by causing disruptions in the normal function of society pose great harm directly to the population. Not just in terms of economics which I think has sort of unfortunately been emphasized to some extent it’s really mainly in terms of the health and psychological well-being of the population at large. The lockdowns are not a human way to live. They separate people, they disrupt our ability to interact with one another in ways that are harmful to human well-being. So if you combine those ideas for the oldest populations we have to do an enormous amount to protect them from COVID. For the rest of the population, the lockdowns are more harmful than Covid.”
My takeaways from Dr. Bhattacharya are that lockdowns pose great harm directly to the population. Not just in economic terms but mainly in terms of health and psychological well-being. The elderly (above 70) have high mortality from Covid but this doesn’t justify locking down healthy individuals under 70 who have a 99.95% chance of survival. It also doesn’t make sense to close schools because of Covid as influenza is more dangerous to children than Covid.
Martin Kulldorff, Professor of medicine at Harvard University, Biostatistician and infectious disease EpidemiologistDr. Martin Kulldorff is a professor of medicine at Harvard University, a Biostatistician and an infectious disease Epidemiologist. He is also one of the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration. He spoke about the various approaches to Covid. He said there are two bad ways and one good way to deal with it – let’s take a look.
One bad way – let it rip
“The problem is there are two bad days to deal with the pandemic and there’s one good way to do it. One bad way is to let it rip and not do anything and just let everybody can get affected the young and so on. And if you do that a lot of older will be affected and since they’re at higher risk of dying from this disease a lot of people would have higher mortality. It’s not the difference in risk of getting infected it’s the difference risk of dying or having a serious hospitalization. So let it rip is a very bad strategy. “
Bad strategy #2 – lockdown
Dr. Kulldorff continued:
“But lockdown is also very bad strategy. To do it for a long period of time is very misguided and actually increases the deaths from Covid. Because the more you drag it out the more difficult it is for older people to protect themselves. So basically lockdown is let it rip strategy that’s dragged out a little bit more over time.”
The good plan
Dr. Kulldorff said “If we look at the basic principles of Public health and all the pandemic preparedness plans that most countries had done before the pandemic you protect the most vulnerable, the high-risk people and in this case, it’s the older people. So that’s what the Great Barrington Declaration put forward. We have to do a much much better job protecting older people because lockdowns do not protect them at all. We have seen that. We have had enormous mortality from this pandemic because lockdown is a very bad strategy.
And there are standard ways to protect older people. For example, in nursing homes, you should have less staff rotation and more testing of the personnel. There are standard ways that we outline in the declaration itself or in the FAQ that goes with it that should’ve been implemented and weren’t implemented and has led to tragic result with far too many people dying from this disease than had to be the case.”
Dr. Martin Kulldorff closes his thoughts
Closing out his thoughts, Dr. Kulldorff said “as Jay said for children the risk is less than from the annual influenza and we don’t close schools for annual influenza. So we have done the misguided things of trying to protect people who don’t need protection when not protecting the ones who do need protection. Children and young adults they have suffered a lot of the collateral damage from these lockdowns with school closings and plummeting vaccination rates, cancer screenings not being done, worse cardiovascular disease outcomes, people not getting their diabetes treatments, more overdoses and deteriorating mental health. So this has been a absolutely catastrophic public health disaster and fiasco of how we have responded to this pandemic and I hope it will never ever be done again and we need to now end the lockdowns.”
Where is the coverage of comments like these from qualified epidemiologists and physicians? Why aren’t we hearing the dissenting opinions coming from some of the most qualified medical professionals the world has to offer? Perhaps it’s because many of them are saying lockdowns don’t work and that they hurt many and that the current approach has been as Dr. Kulldorff puts it ” a absolutely catastrophic public Health disaster and fiasco.”
Let’s be honest for a moment – lockdowns have never worked unless the goal was to be able to point to something and say that effort was made. The Lancet reported that lockdowns don’t work back in August of 2020.
The report titled “A country-level analysis measuring the impact of government actions, country preparedness and socioeconomic factors on COVID-19 mortality and related health outcomes” said that “rapid border closures, full lockdowns, and wide-spread testing were not associated with COVID-19 mortality per million people.”
Essentially the questions pertinent to overall health outcomes from Covid were how obese is your population? Do you have a lot of advanced-aged citizens? What is the smoking prevalence among your population? What is your countries baseline healthcare capacity? Can they handle an influx of patients? In Ontario’s case – overloaded hospitals aren’t new. Those that point to them as a justification for lockdowns are completely uninformed of the reality of Canadian healthcare pre-Covid.
We need to stop making decisions in a vacuum. As a society, there are more problems to deal with than just Covid. Protect the most vulnerable and let us get society back to normal. Stop pretending it’s virtuous to steal others’ livelihoods (shut down their businesses and cause lost jobs) in the name of “safety” while experts have been speaking against lockdowns for a long time now. One of the most prestigious medical journals in the world, The Lancet reported that they don’t work back in August of 2020 for crying out loud! It’s time to make decisions based on a full cost-benefit analysis – not just through the lens of Covid.
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