Director of CDC - Lockdowns not needed but masks are, kids are not major transmitters, suicides up.
Very interesting interview from the Director of CDC.
I recommend this as a read. It will provide some useful insight.
Here are some takeaways for me.
- They are looking but have not found evidence of kids as major transmitters of COVID. There was recent peer review work that substantiates that point as well.
- Masks work. We do not need lockdowns but for the time being we do need masks. I have started to see downturns of cases in the South and I think it is because of the use of masks.
- Speaking of lockdowns there have been more deaths due to suicides and drug abuse than COVID during this time. There are important costs to pursuing a lockdown stradegy. Those of us who question it are not just looking to get a haircut or some sort of nonsense like that.
- So much for the stupidity of calling this the "Wuhan" virus. The virus that came from China was not as infectious as the one that came to us by Europe. If you want to blame a section of the world for this (I don't but if you do) then blame the Europeans.
Right now it is hard to find systematic numbers in the U.S. You have a ton of anecdotal evidence and for some reason some more systematic evidence of suicide increase in India. But given what previous research has taught us about suicide and isolation and unemployment it would be amazing if we had not seen a surge of suicide during the lockdown.
I’ve seen some of the anecdotal evidence and there are definitely individuals whose suicides can be directly connected to COVID. However, in many national or global crises suicide rates increase a bit so that is not unique to COVID. What would be unique to COVID is an increase in suicide due to isolation in addition to the suicides associated with the usual stress associated with crises.
I know it will be at least a year before we have accurate dats about this. Usually the US has 14.2 suicides for every 100k in the population. COVID results in 120.9 hospitalizations for every 100k and 42.3 deaths for every 100k.
No amount of suicides or COVID related deaths is acceptable and discussed without recognizing the value of each human life. But it seems as if the consequences of contracting COVID would be more deadly than the consequences of social isolation related suicide.
So while we might see a surge of suicides during lockdown. I am skeptical and unsure about whether the risk of suicide outweighs the risk of contracting COVID.