A new strategy to prevent COVID-19 deaths and, at the same time, save the economy, by Dr. Govindarajan.

September 10 02:41 2020
Targeted Prevention can reduce mortality by preventing the infection reaching its potential victims without lockdowns, thus avoid the destruction of the economy. This new strategy will allow the non-vulnerable population to work, consume and sustain the economy, while the vulnerable population to protect itself.

A new strategy to prevent COVID-19 deaths and, at the same time, save the economy, by Dr. Govindarajan.

A doctor publishes a scientific work* on an alternative to lockdowns.

General lockdown will not be needed:

Lockdowns have been useful to regulate the demand for health service without taking into account its economic consequences. It is estimated that only 4% of the population was infected during the first wave in Europe. As more waves are needed to achieve herd immunity, it is not viable to perpetuate lockdowns.

After a first wave of the pandemic, we now know something critically important: who is likely to become seriously ill and potentially die if COVID-19 infection is not prevented. That information cannot be ignored in our strategy to control the pandemic. The author points out that only 4% of the world’s population is at high risk for severe COVID-19 and would require hospitalization if infected.  He proposes to target this population for all preventive efforts.

The new strategy proposes to focus on managing the risk of the virus being transmitted to the vulnerable rather than focusing on controlling all those who can potentially transmit it. Protecting the vulnerable through targeted lockdowns and other measures will be more effective and efficient than confining the entire population and destroying their economies that are equally critical to life.

What are the advantages of Targeted Prevention?

1. It is likely to reduce mortality by preventing the infection reaching its potential victims.  (Less infection rate in the vulnerable group will lead to less mortality rate).

2. Fewer resources will be needed to control the pandemic, because the “target” population is about 20% of the overall population.

3. The strategy would allow the non-vulnerable population (which happens to be at its productive age), to work, consume and sustain the economy, while the vulnerable population (most of which is retired) may stay at home, if needed, to protect itself.

A video abstract of Targeted Prevention is available at:

https://youtu.be/mSjD26xqZ8M

Dr. Rajaram Govindarajan

*Govindarajan R. Targeted Prevention of COVID-19, a Strategy to Focus on Protecting Potential Victims, Instead of Focusing on Viral Transmission. Risk Manag Healthc Policy. 2020;13:1413-1418

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