Long pandemic lockdowns not the answer, lawmakers, doctors, disease trackers agree
May 03, 2021 2 mins, 40 secs
I think politics, media hysteria just took over,” said Joe Grogan, who led the Domestic Policy Council under President Trump and served on his COVID-19 task force.

The economic shutdowns reduced the number of cases but proved to be a blunt instrument, with massive job losses, permanent business closures and excess deaths from a host of causes as people put off regular health screenings or treatments.

The situation forced the nation to reckon with a clunky approach that exposed years of failure to invest in tools that could head off desperate measures during a pandemic?

“We must fix the flaws in our public health system, empower scientific leadership to take proactive actions and have a delimited framework for how to use blunt tools when all other options are exhausted.”.

The rules at times seemed dictated by public or economic pressure rather than the virus itself, creating confusion.

“This [pandemic] broke our bureaucracy in public health, and it revealed tremendous deficiencies in it.

The proposed agency would be housed under the National Institutes of Health, which collaborated with the private sector on rapid, point-of-care tests and COVID-19 vaccines that were developed and tested in record time.

“Every moment counts in a pandemic, and I’d like to see us maintain a permanent capability to leverage federal investment and expertise to better anticipate and respond to public health emergencies and other threats we face.”.

Disease experts caution that the death toll, as bad as it was, could have been worse without limits on social interaction during the wait for pharmaceutical fixes, namely the COVID-19 vaccines.

The communist government in China used an early, draconian lockdown and then widespread testing to wrangle the virus after it was discovered in Wuhan at the end of 2019, but similar limits on public movement would have been unacceptable and too difficult to implement in the U.S.

It leveraged early testing and tracing, an integrated system of electronic health records and a culture of mask-wearing from the 2003 outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) to protect its population.

It shut off travel from China early but lacked diagnostic tools for many of the early weeks of the pandemic.

resorted to shutdowns because it lacked a public health system that could test, trace or isolate diseases, said John Hopkins’ Dr.

“It was like a halfway, halfhearted shutdown,” Arthur Caplan, director of the division of medical ethics at the New York University Grossman School of Medicine, said of the early response.

Complicating matters are variables that determine a state’s pandemic trajectory, said Dr

The impact on economic and social life is easier to follow because the damage is coming into sharp focus

Rather than displacing deaths from other causes, federal data shows, the pandemic resulted in excess deaths from diseases such as Alzheimer’s and diabetes

The leading theories are that people deferred needed care and that some of the deaths were caused by COVID-19 but were misclassified

Biden championed was muscled through on a partisan vote, with Republicans accusing Democrats of spending large sums on priorities that had nothing to do with the pandemic even as vaccines offered a path to a natural economic recovery


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