South African Data Analysts: “Lockdown Is A Humanitarian Disaster” That Will Kill 29 Times More People Than Coronavirus

In Coronavirus Health Facts, Coronavirus Lockdown by Jeffrey Lee PierceLeave a Comment

Excerpted From Summit News: The model also showed that based on European data, “90% of Covid-19 deaths were in people 70 or older with one or more comorbidity, while the relative risk to the young and healthy is negligible.”

The researchers have sent a letter to South African President Cyril Ramaphosa demanding an end to the lockdown and calling it a “humanitarian disaster” that will “dwarf Covid-19.”

A data analyst consortium in South Africa asserts that the economic consequences of the country’s lockdown will lead to 29 times more people dying than the coronavirus itself.

“The model, which will be made public today for debate, was developed by a consortium calling itself Panda (Pandemic ~ Data Analysis), which includes four actuaries, an economist and a doctor, while the work was checked by lawyers and mathematicians,” reports the Financial Mail. “The process was led by two fellows at the Actuarial Society of SA, Peter Castleden and Nick Hudson.”

According to the research, the 29 times figure is a “conservative estimate” of how many lives will be lost due to the impact of poverty caused by economic hardship over the long term.

South African Defense Forces patrol downtown Johannesburg, South Africa, Friday, March 27, 2020. Police and army started patrolling moments after South Africa went into a nationwide lockdown for 21 days in an effort to mitigate the spread to the coronavirus. The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people, but for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death.(AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

Excerpted From The Financial Mail: The lockdown will lead to 29 times more lives lost than the harm it seeks to prevent from Covid-19 in SA, according to a conservative estimate contained in a new model developed by local actuaries.

The model, which will be made public today for debate, was developed by a consortium calling itself Panda (Pandemic ~ Data Analysis), which includes four actuaries, an economist and a doctor, while the work was checked by lawyers and mathematicians. The process was led by two fellows at the Actuarial Society of SA, Peter Castleden and Nick Hudson.

They have sent a letter, explaining its model, to President Cyril Ramaphosa. In the letter, headed “Lockdown is a humanitarian disaster to dwarf Covid-19”, they call for an end to the lockdown, a focus on isolating the elderly and allowing children to go back to school, while ensuring the economy restarts so that lives can be saved.

“Had the prospect that coronavirus could kill tens of millions of people been increasingly confirmed, lockdowns may have been justified. That possibility no longer exists. It now seems unlikely that more than a 1-million will die worldwide. The humanitarian crisis provoked by lockdown, however, is a matter of sheer certainty,” they say.

Castleden and Hudson stress that this shouldn’t be seen as a willingness to swap the lives of the elderly for ending the lockdown. It’s an accusation, they say, which is desperately naive. “The effects of poverty in terms of death and sickness are well known — so well that they are even modelled by insurance companies when they set their premiums … hunger causes long-term illnesses, retards development and condemns children to lives of misery and dependence,” they say.

Rather, they say their model aims to use science and data to help political leaders make choices that will lead to the least harm for the country. It notes that deaths from poverty are slow, out of the public eye and easier to ignore.

Either way, it’s an important contribution to the debate about SA’s response to the virus, since the government has not publicly released models of either projected Covid-19 deaths or the economic implications of the lockdown.

‘Years of life lost’

The actuaries used a model comparing “years of lives lost” from Covid-19, to “years of lives lost” from the lockdown. Panda’s analysis says “the impact of the virus on the vast majority of the population, particularly the economically active and schoolchildren, has been massively overstated”. Keep reading

Here’s the analysts’ actual report:

Pandemic _Data and Analytic… by Tiso Blackstar Group on Scribd