David L. Katz MD, MPH, FACPM, FACP, FACLM, founding director of Yale University's Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center, writing in the New York Times: "I am deeply concerned that the social, economic and public health consequences of this near total meltdown of normal life — schools and businesses closed, gatherings banned — will be long lasting and calamitous, possibly graver than the direct toll of the virus itself. ...I believe we may be ineffectively fighting the contagion even as we are causing economic collapse."
John P.A. Ioannidis, a professor of medicine and of health policy at Stanford, in an article worth reading in full ("Coronavirus Disease 2019: the harms of exaggerated information and non-evidence-based measures"): "Maintaining lockdowns for many months may have even worse consequences than an epidemic wave that runs an acute course. Focusing on protecting susceptible individuals may be preferable to maintaining country-wide lockdowns long-term...The global economy and society may get a major blow from an epidemic that otherwise accounts for less than 0.01% of all 60 million annual global deaths from all causes and that kills almost exclusively people with relatively low life expectancy."
John Hinderaker, of the Center of the American Experiment in Minnesota, who writes: "People in Minnesota (and elsewhere) are acting as if is catching this virus is somehow inevitable, when it presently remains a remote possibility. I think that everyone needs to calm down a bit and use common sense with social distancing, but we also need to think seriously about how much self-inflicted damage we're doing to our economy and what those consequences will be."
Corey Casper, MD, MPH, of the Seattle-based Infectious Disease Research Institute, in a public Facebook post (also worth a full read): "our public officials clamped down quickly on schools and gatherings. But is the "control" gained with this approach worth the panic and disruption of daily life?...In sum, my perspective is that SARS-CoV-2 causes an illness akin to a moderate flu. I am NOT trying to minimize the potential severity of the disease or the toll it has taken on those infected, their families, and our communities. And as I have stressed already, we know preciously little about this new virus and more severe disease with a greater toll on human beings is something we must vigilantly watch for. However, the level of panic I am seeing feels rooted in something beyond the virus itself."
As I wrote yesterday, I would emphatically caution readers to follow the advice being given by federal, state, and local authorities about washing hands frequently and keeping six feet away from other people. Medical doctors I do know are concerned about the risk of the hospitals being overwhelmed. However, as the measures taken to slow the spread of the virus become more cumbersome and economically costly, it will be worth weighing these different points of view carefully. In my view it may make sense (or did make sense) sharply to curtail public activity for two weeks or six weeks to get more testing online and available, and to resupply masks, gloves, and other personal protective equipment. Shutting down the global economy for 18 months while a vaccine for this is developed and produced, or a treatment is tested in a randomly controlled clinical trial, is a different matter. This Medium post from Tomas Pueyo, which is overall more concerned/alarmist than the other posts linked, has some useful thoughts about the timing of the strong countermeasures and the timing of easing them.