Originally Posted by applejuice
In my opinion it's really a Catch-22, because there are so many unknowns. Yes, more people will die if "herd immunity" is attempted, but lockdowns do have devastating economic and psychological impacts - particularly in countries without a strong social safety-net. Also, a lot of media makes "herd immunity" sound like a free-for-all, when no one is advocating that we leave the most vulnerable unprotected. The idea, as I understand it, is to increase protections for those most at risk.
Additionally, there is increasing evidence that the measures taken to prevent the spread of the virus have triggered mutations allowing the virus to circumvent these measures, and become even more contagious. There is fear that this will continue once a vaccine is developed. This was certainly an unintended consequence of social-distancing measures, and may have occurred even without these measures, albeit more slowly.
But if mutations continue to develop and become the norm, it could alter the way we approach the vaccine year-to-year, similar to the flu shot.
Children also may eventually be put a greater risk from Covid-19 as a result of social-distancing and remote learning - measures meant to protect them in the short term. This, again, would be an unintended consequence based on our still developing and limited understanding of this novel virus. https://www.theguardian.com/science/...-worsens-covid
Adults get common colds caused by coronaviruses once every two or three years. In contrast children get them five or six times a year because they constantly reinfect each other at school, said Kassiotis. As a result about 60% of them have coronavirus antibodies, 10 times the adult level. Crucially, it appears coronavirus antibody levels drop steeply when children leave school and that raises a worry: children may have lost immunity during the lockdown.
If only we had a crystal ball, or could at least acknowledge that there are too many unknowns to definitively dismiss either argument. Certainly there are things everyone can agree upon? Testing of all nursing home residents and staff every other day, for one. If the health of NBA players is deemed valuable enough for this level of testing, certainly we can confer the same level of respect and protection to our seniors.