Scientists call for end to lockdown and a ‘return to life as normal’ using herd immunity approach

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Leading scientists from across the world have called for an end to lockdown policies in favour of a herd immunity approach to tackling coronavirus in order to allow ordinary life to resume.

More than 15,000 medical practitioners and health scientists as well as 153,000 members of the public have already signed The Great Barrington Declaration, which suggests a focused protection approach would enable normal life to resume while still maintaining protection for the old and vulnerable members of society.

Along with others, Dr. Sunetra Gupta, an epidemiologist with expertise in immunology, vaccine development, and mathematical modelling of infectious diseases, and a professor at Oxford University, said they have ‘grave concerns about the damaging physical and mental health impacts of the prevailing Covid-19 policies, and recommend a focused protection approach’.

The declaration states: “Current lockdown policies are producing devastating effects on short and long-term public health.

“The results include lower childhood vaccination rates, worsening cardiovascular disease outcomes, fewer cancer screenings and deteriorating mental health – leading to greater excess mortality in years to come, with the working class and younger members of society carrying the heaviest burden.

“Keeping students out of school is a grave injustice and keeping these measures in place until a vaccine is available will cause irreparable damage, with the underprivileged disproportionately harmed.”

The declaration goes on to state that understanding of the virus is growing, with vulnerability to death more than a thousand-fold in the old and infirm than the young, and for children, it is less dangerous than many other harms, including influenza.

It continues: “As immunity builds in the population, the risk of infection to all – including the vulnerable – falls.

“We know that all populations will eventually reach herd immunity – i.e. the point at which the rate of new infections is stable – and that this can be assisted by (but is not dependent upon) a vaccine.

“Our goal should therefore be to minimize mortality and social harm until we reach herd immunity.

“The most compassionate approach that balances the risks and benefits of reaching herd immunity, is to allow those who are at minimal risk of death to live their lives normally to build up immunity to the virus through natural infection, while better protecting those who are at highest risk.

“We call this ‘focused protection’.

“Adopting measures to protect the vulnerable should be the central aim of public health responses to Covid-19.”

The declaration suggests vulnerable people should have food and essentials delivered to their homes, and where possible meet family members outdoors rather than indoors.

Those who are not vulnerable should immediately be allowed to resume life as normal, with simple hygiene measures, such as hand washing and staying home when sick being practised by everyone to reduce the herd immunity threshold.

Schools and universities should be open for in-person teaching.

Extracurricular activities, such as sports, should be resumed; young low-risk adults should work normally, rather than from home; and restaurants and other businesses should open.

Arts, music, sport and other cultural activities should also resume and people who are more at risk may participate if they wish, while society as a whole enjoys the protection conferred upon the vulnerable by those who have built up herd immunity.

It comes after recent remarks from the leader of the NHS in England, Sir Simon Stevens, who said that asking all over-65s to shield to slow the transmission of the second wave of coronavirus would be “age-based apartheid”.

Another expert said the declaration ignores the growing evidence on long Covid – whereby thousands of fit and young people who contract the virus have been left with debilitating symptoms months after a mild infection.

Professor Jeremy Rossman pointed out that research suggests that protective antibody responses may “decay rapidly” and that there have been cases of re-infection of the virus.

Prof Rossman, honorary senior lecturer in virology at the University of Kent, said: “Unfortunately, this declaration ignores three critical aspects that could result in significant impacts to health and lives.

“First, we still do not know if herd immunity is possible to achieve.

“Herd immunity relies on lasting immunological protection from coronavirus re-infection; however, we have heard many recent cases of re-infection occurring and some research suggests protective antibody responses may decay rapidly.

“Second, the declaration focuses only on the risk of death from Covid-19 but ignores the growing awareness of long Covid, that many healthy young adults with mild infections are experiencing protracted symptoms and long-term disability.

“Third, countries that have forgone lockdown restrictions in favour of personal responsibility and focused protection of the elderly, such as Sweden, were not able to successfully protect the vulnerable population.”

To read the declaration in full visit: gbdeclaration.org/

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36 COMMENTS

    • Farm bound, so, you think that you’re smarter than 15,000 medical practitioners and health scientists?
      Cool…

  1. No man! Not in Antigua! Quarantine quarantine ..: lock up everybody l!!! Fine everybody the poor man dem ..5000. Meanwhile nobody is wearing a mask… when u go into establishments no one is wearing a mask. Not even police ..

    But let’s lock up and hide and cancel everything! This government is the best … smdh

    • Nope. They are actually living really well and pretty much like they did before the pandemic.

      Because they have a real leader who didn’t open their country up to THOUSANDS of COVID vectors (aka tourists) but instead protected the people of NZ and now everyone can go back to normal.

      Letting the virus run roughshod through the country is a stupid ass idea that is going to literally get a heck of a lot of people killed.

  2. What the hell do thousands of professors, phd’s, scientists etc. know? The celebrity doctors, opportunistic reporters and career politicians are the true experts and they say lockdown and more lockdown until Covid is no more. In a few hundred years it will be gone along with all of us!

  3. The are evil, the old and vulnerable are now dispensable and only those who are strong enough to withstand the virus are fit for life. Is that it? That is the survival of the fitness jungle mentality among the faithless Godless selfish evil people of this world. Young and old are dropping like flies I hope they are ready to meet their maker or/or their father the devil.

    • Elizabeth T are you serious?
      I’m 75 years old and therefore I’m in the most at risk group but I don’t fear this virus and plan to continue living until I die.

      From what I’ve learned by researching the covid virus is that mask wearing is more dangerous to my health then the virus. The mask reduces oxygen to my body and increases carbon dioxide which puts a strain on my kidneys due to the increased acidosis of my blood due to the elevated CO2 levels.

      • “It is better to be silent and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.” Stop listening to Donald Trump. Unless you are wearing a mask 24/7 it has no effect on your oxygenation

        • Your mask must be cutting off oxygen to your brain Elizabeth.
          The re-breathing of your carbon dioxide is the real problem.

          Long term mask wearing causes more carbon dioxide in lungs (hypercapnia) –> lowers pH –>increasing acid condition (respiratory acidosis) overwhelms compensatory mechanisms of the body –>The kidneys now have the hard job of dumping acid which can damage the kidneys.

    • So a statement which states that the vulnerabe should be protected and the young should go out and be exposed means that the “old and vulnerable are now dispensable”???????

      Now imagine how much more difficult it would be for this generation to comprehend basic written english if they are forced to stay away from school to avoid a 0.003% chance of dying from covid.

  4. Here’s what China is doing: “After 12 cases were discovered in Qingdao, China is testing all 9 million people in the city.”

    New Zealand the same thing. And anywhere there are sane leaders who are putting people over $$$$

    In Antigua and the US, the leaders are more concerned with their rich benefactors losing money and not being able to line their pockets than they are with your lives.

    You are a fool if you believe we should pretend we dealt with the virus and now she get back to business as usual.

    You don’t want to see what happens to a society when it quickly becomes overwhelmed with sick people.

    • So, how long are YOU suggesting the we remain in lockdown? A year (we’ve nearly done that already), two, five?

      I’m sorry, I’d rather be dead then continue with sad excuse for an existence.

      • I’m suggesting this country do what the other countries who have found success in protecting their people have done.

        Which is to not open up their borders to any and everybody.

        Treat, contact trace, quarantine and test EVERYBODY that enters the country until there is a viable treatment or vaccine for this dangerous disease.

      • As you said Will, you already got your 3score and 10 years. Some people want to live to see 2025. Some didnt have a choice between death and lockdown.
        Everything isn’t good for everyone, so let us all just give time some more time. 15000 voices isnt a lot. The results of any good research are based on time and quantities.

  5. People are recovering from COVID and not gaining immunity. There have been several cases of people who recovered and then got COVID a 2nd time a few weeks later.

    So, no herd immunity is not going to work. It doesnt work for the common cold. It doesnt work for the flu. And its not going to work for SARS-Cov-2

  6. Regrettably, it is the Jungle mentality – the survival of the fittest – that seems the most attractive to our feeble-minded Antiguan Citizen(s) and others. Bashing politicians has become a national sport for all and sundry and yet ironically, it is to the same politicians that the herd will turn for a cure when faced with the stark reality of their own vulnerability as they come face to face with certain death.

  7. Let us experiment on the scientists and doctors.

    We will put them in an isolated area in the USA provide them with all the luxuries and necessities that they require anything they one they can have within reason of course, only exception limited pharmaceutical.

    Then we let go all the different strains of COVID19 in their habitat, based on the out come of the experiment we may consider their recommendation.

  8. Why not do what Taiwan is doing….

    Taiwan has the best success rate in the world but not a word from the media.

    Taiwan did not shut down, sports continued, not one work day was missed, look at their infection rate and death rate relative to population size.

    Taiwan is the example the world need to pay attention to.

  9. To panic in a plandemic will not save the fearful and unbelieving from dying , what will be will be , death is inevitable more people can die of stress than this virus. With all The expertise out there , people are selective to what they accept. Some people accept the lies but refuse the truth. Be positive not gullible!

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