We’re all eager to “get back to normal” for a number of necessary and compelling reasons. But let’s not push bunk science to get there.

HERD IMMUNITY WON’T SAVE US.

All I have to add is this, from Nassim Nicholas Taleb and Yaneer Bar Yam’s March 25, 2020 article The UK’s coronavirus policy may sound scientific. It isn’t. The key point–> you need 60-70% of the population to be infected and recover to have a shot at herd immunity, and there aren’t that many young and healthy people in the UK, or anywhere.”

I think that observation likely applies to the US more than the UK or Continental Europe. I’ve been to both a number of times…and the only obese people you see anywhere in public are—American tourists.

The idea behind herd immunity was that the outbreak would stop if enough people got sick and gained immunity. Once a critical mass of young people gained immunity, so the epidemiological modellers told us, vulnerable populations (old and sick people) would be protected. Of course, this idea was nothing more than a dressed-up version of the “just do nothing” approach.

Individuals and scientists around the world immediately pointed out the obvious flaws: there’s no way to ensure only young people get infected; you need 60-70% of the population to be infected and recover to have a shot at herd immunity, and there aren’t that many young and healthy people in the UK, or anywhere. Moreover, many young people have severe cases of the disease, overloading healthcare systems, and a not-so-small number of them die. It is not a free ride.

This doesn’t even include the possibility, already suspected in some cases, of recurrence of the disease. Immunity may not even be reliable for this virus. Worse, it did not take into account that the duration of hospitalisation can be lengthier than they think, or that one can incur a shortage of hospital beds.”