At the time, the projection warranted widespread lockdown measures to give the medical community more time to prepare and stockpile personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other resources. But a lot has changed since March—including the models—and the country’s approach to addressing the pandemic should also adapt.
Dire warnings—which helped inform initial policy decisions—have gone unfulfilled. The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation now predicts fatalities resulting from the virus will be far lower than previous estimates. Death is a tragedy under any circumstance, but it’s important to consider context.
The value of actions taken by policymakers and public health officials amid the pandemic will be endlessly debated. But regardless of who did what, it’s clear the worst health impacts have been avoided. Business restrictions should continue to be lifted to reflect that change. Leaving them in place for too long will cause more harm than the virus itself.
Read the full op-ed in CNS News by Dr. Kristin Held who is an ophthalmic surgeon with a private practice in San Antonio, Texas and a partner of the Job Creators Network Foundation.