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Anyone agree with Lord Sumption?

(120 Posts)
eebeew Mon 06-Apr-20 00:21:15

Lord Sumption is against the extreme measures being taken to prevent spread of the cv which will cause great future suffering.
“He believes it is fear which has prevented governments and the public from thinking about 'remote costs' of the measures brought in to avoid tragic coronavirus deaths, and adds that we do not know enough about the Covid-19 mortality rate, which he hints is lower than stated due to limited testing.
Making the comparison to cars, which he calls 'the most lethal weapons ever devised', as they kill and injure thousands every year, he states that society has accepted that fact as a 'Faustian bargin' in order to drive in comfort - suggesting we may have to take the same approach to the virus.
Lord Sumption said current government measures are inflicting suffering on other less obvious victims of the coronavirus, such as future generations who will be left to deal with 'high levels of public and private debt' and the one fifth of businesses being pushed into bankruptcy.”
(Quoted from Daily Mail)

JTK1 Thu 16-Apr-20 20:38:27

By shutting the e conomy down as we have done and continue to do we are storing up more than any recession since the 1930s the vast amount of money we are borrowing at present will all have to be paid back by us our children and grandchildren.
and if you were the one loosing your job i wonder if you would be so flippent about it.
with regard to last part of the comment we are one of the highest death rates in the world when you compare our critical outcomes we have a 90% mortality rate
soutj Korea, japan and sweden have much better recovery rates than th Uk
what is really concerning is this will all happen again and if we do not learn the right lessons now and make all of the same mistakes again it will be economic death for the UK
a country with a poor economy cannot afford high quality health care or high standards of living
so we have some difficult choices and so far we have made poor decisions based upon fear and not facts

M0nica Thu 16-Apr-20 20:44:02

JTKI you cannot make comparisons between different countries because the basis for the statistic gathering everywhere is so different and so disparate.

It is not even comparing apples and pears, it comparing apples and china teapots.

JTK1 Thu 16-Apr-20 20:48:21

yes they are doing it much better as we should be and their death numbers are less and surely that is what counts?

JTK1 Thu 16-Apr-20 20:56:57

surely a death is a death wherever it is counted, they have more critical cases than we do and yet a 90% recovery rate
the PHE have stopped showing our recovery rate as from late march lasrt time i checked we were at something like 4% recovery 96% deaths
Sweden who have not adopted such stringent lockdown fare similar to us with regard to death rates which are calculated by number of cases divided by number of deaths which gives a factor
ours is approx 8 germanys is approx 35 ours are close to spain italy and france

JTK1 Thu 16-Apr-20 21:02:56


JTK1 Thu 16-Apr-20 21:18:25

some stats for germany april 16th
51,338 mild/moderate.92%
4288 critical 8%
closed cases 80,943
77000 recovered 95%
3,943 deaths 5%

Uk ran at approx 95% deaths and 5% recovery by beginning of april but now figures are Not available on worldometer site due to PHE
i have made a f.O.R and are still waiting

growstuff Thu 16-Apr-20 22:30:20

Yes, the death rate is what counts and I'm glad you agree that Germany is dealing with the critically ill better than the UK.

If, and only if, the UK can start dealing with the critically ill better, by learning from Germany and providing better healthcare facilities, should we start to relax restrictions and let the infection run wild. Otherwise, we're imposing an unnecessary death sentence on many elderly and vulnerable.

Oopsminty Thu 16-Apr-20 22:39:39

I imagine we'd have to adopt Germany's method of paying for healthcare, growstuff

It's very different to the NHS.

They have a dual public-private system.

Something we tend to be opposed to here.

growstuff Thu 16-Apr-20 22:52:35

No, it is not very different from the NHS as far as employees are concerned. I've worked in Germany and I've paid into the healthcare system and I know how it works. As far as an employee is concerned, the two main differences are

a) that the money is paid to government-backed insurance schemes (Krankenkassen) rather than the Treasury and is obviously ring-fenced,

b) Germans pay more.

The system for booking appointments is different, which means Germans have greater choice, but the crucial difference is the amount they pay. It is the not the fact that it is not directly run by the government which makes it better.

growstuff Thu 16-Apr-20 22:54:03

PS. I've also used the German healthcare system as a patient, so I know how that works too.

growstuff Fri 17-Apr-20 03:35:48

It would appear Sweden is making a U-turn:

M0nica Fri 17-Apr-20 07:35:45

No wnder so many people believe fake news when so many can arrive at all sorts of conclusions condemning and praising governments etc on what are little more than fake statistics.

For all we know, Germany could have the worst medical outcomes for Covid and the UK astoundingly the best.

We just do not know, because none of the statistics are comparable and all are inaccurate.

JTK1 Fri 17-Apr-20 08:29:20

ok M0nica, if that is the case then what model are we following? based upon what evidence, as you say if it is difficult to match countries what is our reference point?
less infection= less critical cases = less deaths
the only problem is that we cannot economically go on taking such measures when these things reoccur and they will.
what we are looking is a failure to build a health service to accomodate the 21st century needs of the uk and the nhs is now medically firefighting.
its pay back time for lack of investment and reform of our NHS

JTK1 Fri 17-Apr-20 08:37:47

Hi growstuff.
i partially agree with you, we need to deal with this but we must not learn the wrong lesson. i woukd suggest the social medical isolation for the vunerable would have been a better way forward, but it again relies upon a health care system it for such events.
what i feel really strongly about is that people are only thinking in the now about this and not the consequences of what we are doing.
i would suggest that people take a look at the Office of National statistics figures on normal death rates in the uk to get some perspective of Covid19
here are some
approx 1600 people die per day
average of 17,000 from influenza per year which went up by 10k when the beast from the east hit us
500,000 total deaths per year
covid 19 is ongoing we will have to wait and see

M0nica Fri 17-Apr-20 08:47:49

But how does comparing incomparables help?

The broad direction of the incidence/death statistics of the disease in any country measures roughly what is happening in that country over controlling the disease - and then you have said all you can say and that, within country is useful.

Policy makers have no alternative to using them to make their decisions based on the broad trends within those figures, but, for example, to rely on the precise figures produced each day for deaths, which, in the UK, we know exclude figures for all those dying who were not tested for the disease, are clearly inaccurate, and to start arguing, about the minutae of those particular statistics is farcical. As for using any of the figures from any country as a basis for international comparisons when we know that each country has a different basis for its figures, collects them in different ways with varying degrees of reliability. You would be better off just making up some statistics that suit any argument you want to make. There is the same probability they would be as accurate as the published figures.

Your last paragraph is a non-sequitor to the arguments about the statistics, you do not need detailed statitistics to make that argument. You certainly do not want to be using statistics that are inaccurate and wrong to make it.

Elegran Fri 17-Apr-20 08:58:46

We only know for certain what is recorded as a statistic. That depends upon the criteria in place in that country at that time, and on them having a system for -

a) recording everyone who catches the infection, including those who don't inform the authorities of the fact and just stay at home coping with it themselves.

b) testing all those who think they might have it, including the worried well.

c) monitoring every one of those who tested positive, and retesting the ones who tested negative every few days in case the worried well now have it.

c) having the capacity to treat the seriously ill.

d) having an agreed standard to which someone has recovered to be placed in that "recovered" category.

e) time -it takes three or four weeks from infection to having worked through the symptoms/testing/confirmation/paracetamol/ deterioration/hospitalisation/recovery list. Without the deterioration phase the delay is shorter, but if you didn't inform the statisticians that you thought you probably had the virus, you aren't going to inform them that you feel better now.

Elegran Fri 17-Apr-20 09:14:17

I could tell the statistician about three unrecorded and recovered probable cases among immediate friends - people who had an illness a few weeks ago which they dealt with themselves and recovered from. Once the symptoms of CoVid19 were publicised, they could identify it.

Harris27 Fri 17-Apr-20 09:29:50

Quite agree. Can I bring a point of the people who are having hospital appointments cancelled quite rightly to this virus. No one wants to be in a hospital at the moment. I have family waiting for appointments to be re scheduled one extended member has been diagnosed with cancer and was due to start chemo which has been put on hold another has had vital injections received very 12 weeks cancelled and the list goes on. Yes some may not life threatening but they could end being so. Where is the line? How long will people have to wait? Extending another three weeks may be the right thing to do but we have stayed at home and reduced the numbers but what about the numbers they will have to deal with when we return to ‘ normal’ ?

M0nica Fri 17-Apr-20 16:28:29

I think 'normal' will need to be phased in bit by bit. The 'clarification' issued yesterday to police officers about what is and is not permissible, contained relaxations, the clear, and generous interpretation of how far we can drive to take exercise. DH and I will now be driving 5 miles tomorrow to take a walk on The Ridgeway, a change from all the village footpaths. The acceptance that people can sit on a bench and even have a picnic, as long as proper distance is kept.

I think the next thing would be to open tips. Control access, as with supermarkets, tips vary in design, but in ours to put a cone in every other parking place to stop getting too close would work. Perhaps only one type of rubbish dumped at one time: garden waste or wood, or landfill, to stop people wandering around from skip to skip.

National Trust, English Heritage could start to open parks and gardens on a case by case basis and with out any announcement, so that people drift back to them, first locals and only make an announcement when all are open - and of course shut individual open spaces if a problem ensues.

The one everyone wants open - Garden Centres - may have to wait because it would be very difficult to control access when they are likely to be mobbed by potential shoppers desparate to get springplanting.