As the coronavirus pandemic drags on, the number of health experts and medical professionals speaking out against the use of lockdowns is growing.
To date, thousands of doctors and specialists have taken a stand against the use of lockdowns. However, governments across Canada have continued to plunge Canadians into further lockdowns.
Earlier this month, five medical professionals published a response in the Canadian Medical Association Journal urging for an end to sweeping lockdowns.
The experts included two respirologists, a medical microbiologist and two infectious diseases specialists.
“It is impossible to accurately describe the social and economic impact for all people,” they wrote.
“Places with heavy lockdowns and severe limitations of economic activity have still seen high case transmission continue despite these measures. Furthermore, having moderate rates of transmission correlates with little, if any excess mortality.”
In October 2020, 20 doctors and professors of medicine urged Ontario Premier Doug Ford to not plunge the province into a second lockdown.
“We are writing this letter in support of the government’s plan to use a tactical localized approach, rather than sweeping new lockdown measures, to deal with the increasing COVID case numbers in Ontario,” claimed the letter.
“Lockdowns have been shown not to eliminate the virus. While they slow the spread of the virus, this only lasts as long as the lockdown lasts. This creates a situation where there is no way to end the lockdown, and society cannot move forward in vitally important ways including in the health sector, the economy and other critically important instrumental goods including education, recreation, and healthy human social interactions.”
In October 2020, the Special Envoy on COVID-19 for the World Health Organization, Dr. David Nabarro urged world governments to avoid using lockdowns as the “primary control method” against the coronavirus.
“We in the World Health Organisation do not advocate lockdowns as the primary means of control of this virus,” said Dr. Nabarro.
“The only time we believe a lockdown is justified is to buy you time to reorganise, regroup, rebalance your resources, protect your health workers who are exhausted, but by and large, we’d rather not do it.”
To date, over 13,200 medical and public health scientists have signed the Great Barrington Declaration calling for an end to lockdowns.
Signatories include health experts from all around the world. Over two dozen Canadian doctors, professors and scientists have signed the document so far.
“Coming from both the left and right, and around the world, we have devoted our careers to protecting people. Current lockdown policies are producing devastating effects on short and long-term public health. The results (to name a few) 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,” claims the declaration.
“Keeping these measures in place until a vaccine is available will cause irreparable damage, with the underprivileged disproportionately harmed.”
In August 2020, Ontario doctor and President of Concerned Ontario Doctors, Kulvinder Gill Kaur, took to Twitter to call for an end to the province’s strict lockdowns.
“There is absolutely no medical or scientific reason for this prolonged, harmful and illogical lockdown. #FactsNotFear,” tweeted Kaur.
In October 2020, the head of Internal Medicine at St. Michael’s Hospital, Dr. Robert Sargeant spoke out against additional lockdowns and claimed that the better solution was to focus on high-risk areas.
“I am not for additional broad lockdowns. We need to be looking at high-risk individuals in high-risk settings and focusing our energy on that,” said Dr. Sargeant.
Dr. Ari Joffe from the Stollery Children’s Hospital at the University of Alberta expressed his concern last year that the lockdown approach will have a negative effect on future generations economically.
“I’m truly worried the (lockdown) approach is going to devastate economies and the future for our children and our grandchildren,” said Dr. Joffe.
Dr. Matt Strauss who is also a professor at Queen’s University medical school has been a strong advocate against lockdowns. According to Strauss, lockdowns have been proven to be ineffective and have caused great social harms.
“Lockdown is high-risk and of no proven benefit. Standard laws of medical evidence demand that we stop prescribing it,” tweeted Strauss.