* Rep. Blaine Wilhour writing in the Illinois Review…
An Ivy League professor recently published an article in the Federalist stating that the longer we quarantine the entire population – the more we delay herd immunity which could lead to more people succumbing to the virus in the long run. The author suggested that a more targeted approach to quarantining might be the better solution.
Is this a better approach? Maybe. Maybe not. But can we at least have the discussion?
* They had a vigorous discussion about herd immunity in England last month…
Britain’s chief scientific adviser stoked controversy on Friday when he said that about 40m people in the UK could need to catch the coronavirus to build up “herd immunity” and prevent the disease coming back in the future.
Defending Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s decision not to follow other European countries by closing schools and banning mass gatherings, Patrick Vallance said it was the government’s aim to “reduce the peak of the epidemic, pull it down and broaden it” while protecting the elderly and vulnerable.
But Sir Patrick told Sky News that experts estimated that about 60 per cent of the UK’s 66m population would have to contract coronavirus in order for society to build up immunity.
“Communities will become immune to it and that’s going to be an important part of controlling this longer term,” he said. “About 60 per cent is the sort of figure you need to get herd immunity.”
* But that idea didn’t last very long…
Donald Trump has said that Boris Johnson’s abandoned plan for creating “herd immunity” to the coronavirus in the UK would have been “catastrophic” and caused “a lot of death.”
The president said that the UK government’s original coronavirus strategy plan, which involved allowing the virus to spread in order to achieve resistance to the virus in the population, would have caused millions of deaths if adopted in the US.
“If you remember, they were looking at that concept - I guess it’s a concept if you don’t mind death, a lot of death - but they were looking at that in the UK, remember,” Trump told a White House press briefing on Tuesday.
“And all of a sudden they went hard the other way because they started seeing things that weren’t good, so they put themselves in a little bit of a problem.”
* And then…
Boris Johnson, the British Prime Minister, who was transferred to intensive care Monday night, has become a potent symbol of the dangers the coronavirus pandemic poses.
The fact Johnson has become so ill highlights that this disease can be deadly to even the young and healthy. It also highlights what’s so problematic about the policy his government initially pursued to combat the virus: herd immunity.
Johnson’s government was much slower to impose social distancing measures than many other European countries.
* Back to Rep. Wilhour…
On April 8th, the Governor’s 30 day-emergency powers come to an end. It is time for the Governor to bring the Legislature to the table. Our constituents deserve input on potentially opening parts of the state less affected by the virus.
Just one of the bills Rep. Wilhour sponsored in this GA has become law…
Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Provides that red or white oscillating, rotating, or flashing emergency lights may be used on a vehicle operated by a qualified deputy fire chief or assistant fire chief (in addition to a fire chief).
And only one other bill he’s introduced has attracted co-sponsors from beyond a tight-knit group of far-right legislators.
…Adding… From Rep. Wilhour…
Way to completely ignore context and cherry-pick one small section while ignoring the rest. Perhaps you should tell your readers to read the whole thing and then comment specifically to the content.
I am not arguing for herd immunity. I am advocating for a more targeted approach based on actual numbers. Lets look at taking into account who is the most at-risk and formulate policies to protect them, our most vulnerable.
If you read the article, what is is really calling for is full transparency on relevant data, benchmarks and safeguard ideas for reopening of the economy-based on the data, open consideration of regionalization-again , based on data. All very reasonable discussion points.
Furthermore, how about some considerations on the lasting effects this blanket shutdown will have on working people?
I just saw a report where the Indiana suicide hotline has had increases in call volume from 1000-25,000.
The Governor and the Mayor both pointed to disproportionate effects on the African American community.
The Mayor attributes it to factors such as: health care accessibility, jobs, and hunger.
These huge across the board shutdown policies are making all of these factors exponentially worse.
If you read the article, I am clearly not calling for a free-for-all. Stop marginalizing dissent from the group-think.
BTW, I am chief sponsor on more bills than you indicated.
Look it up. www.ilga.gov
I did look it up.