January 15th, 2021

Special SACPA to discuss response to COVID-19 lockdowns


By Lethbridge Herald on December 12, 2020.

A special session of the Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs on Tuesday will discuss the response to the provincial COVID-19 lockdown: “Do lockdowns cause more harm than benefit?”
The response to COVID-19 across the world has involved lockdowns in order to “flatten the curve” of cases and deaths. The public health response was initially based on inaccurate estimates of infection mortality rates and high-risk groups, overestimating the threat from COVID-19, SACPA said in a release.
In addition, the response did not consider many unintended effects of lockdowns on population well-being, including so-called collateral damage (for example, unemployment, loneliness, interrupted health care, interrupted education), and economic recession.
Recently, debate has framed decisions as a trade-off between “lives and the economy,” but Tuesday’s speaker, Dr. Ari Joffe, will argue that this could be a false dichotomy, because the economy is about lives, and a cost-benefit analysis of lockdowns shows that they cause more harm than benefit in terms of population well-being and deaths.
Joffe is a pediatrician who specialized in pediatric infectious diseases and critical care medicine. He has practised as a pediatric intensive care physician since 1995 at Stollery Children’s Hospital, and is a clinical professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Alberta.
Tuesday’s session will take place at 10 a.m. on YouTube Live link: ttps://youtu.be/J5ZTElYGGA0.
In order to ask questions of the speaker in the chat feature of YouTube, you must have a YouTube account and be signed in.
Link to SACPA’s YouTube Channel is https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFUQ5mUHv1gfmMFVr8d9dNA. For further information, visit the SACPA website at http://www.sacpa.ca.

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