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California doctor calls lockdowns ‘failure of imagination,’ as state becomes epicenter of outbreak

2020-12-20 | 🔗
Stanford University professor of medicine Dr. Jay Bhattacharya explains on ‘Fox and Friends Weekend.’
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Will, despite enacting some of will, despite enacting some of the toughest lockdown rules in the country, Governor Gavin Newsom is facing a surge in new covid cases across California. Our next guest calling strict lockdowns a failure of imagination on behalf of lawmakers here to explain is Dr Jay Batac Heria, professor of medicine, at Stanford University. Thanks, so much for being with us, it does seem like lockdown lockdown, lockdown, its the cure all and the almost reflexive response from policy makers. Tell me why thats a fail youre of imagination, I mean the key thing: is it doesnt respect the facts about this epidemic and the virus the virus spreads in households? It spreads basically in ways that we kind of know where the lockdown sort of suppresses society in places where the virus doesnt necessarily spread a lot it also, I mean it reduces our ability to react to the virus. So, for instance, we closed our schools.
Well, that means a lot of people who work in frontline settings. They have kids and they cant go to work because they have to take care of their kids, the lockdown itself, all it ever. Even theoretically, all it does is it delays. When the infections occur in a sense, whats happened in California. We have bunched them up all right now and our hospitals are starting to get stressed. As a result, I mean our hospitals are empty for large parts of the spring and the summer weirdly will right the idea behind lockdowns wasnt to kill the virus. It was to bend the curve thats what we were told in early spring. So what would have been a better policy response doctor? Well, we know that older people, people over seventy, have a ninety five percent survival rate from the virus. Five percent mortality is pretty high, whereas under seventy, the survival rate is. Ninety nine point. Ninety five percent, so those zero point, zero. Five percent mortality. Older people are the ones who are at risk. We should have done everything
we could possibly do to protect older population. Let me give you one failure where I think it just is so obvious. Once you say it, there are people who are say sixty four sixty five. They have diabetes. They are actually at my risk of mortality and maybe a clerk in a grocery store or a janitor, so we call them essential and expose them to the virus. We should have been protecting them. Our policy should have been designed to give them leave, will more tailored less blunt. That seems pretty obvious. I have to get to two big important stories really quickly. You brought up elderly people in our society who are most vulnerable. There is this emerging debate among health experts who should be prioritized when it comes to the vaccine, should it be older Americans, or should it be used as a chance for racial equity? Should we prioritize essential workers who have more minority populations more represented by minority populations? Should we be taking race into account doctor? I think that the key thing is if we want to minimize
mortality from this virus, what we need to do is prioritize older people and especially people with chronic conditions. Minority populations with chronic conditions should be prioritized absolutely especially older people. I mean, I think, thats the key question. What do you want if you want to reduce death from this virus? Prioritize older populations will seems obvious really quickly because youre from Stanford, I have to ask you about the story controversy about Stanford, prioritizing professors at the higher level, not the frontline workers whats your response to what happened in Stanford in the vaccine distribution there yeah. I think they made a mistake with people like me. I guess I havent had the vaccine as yet, but they should have been prioritizing people who really were he frontline, especially those who take care of older people, will really good information a lot in a little amount of time.
Transcript generated on 2020-12-20.