Catalyst Health, Wellness and Performance Coaching

A Better Approach? Covid-19, Lockdowns and More with Harvard Biostatistician Dr. Martin Kulldorff (Episode #141)

November 16, 2020 Dr. Martin Kulldorff Season 3 Episode 76
Catalyst Health, Wellness and Performance Coaching
A Better Approach? Covid-19, Lockdowns and More with Harvard Biostatistician Dr. Martin Kulldorff (Episode #141)
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Catalyst Health, Wellness and Performance Coaching
A Better Approach? Covid-19, Lockdowns and More with Harvard Biostatistician Dr. Martin Kulldorff (Episode #141)
Nov 16, 2020 Season 3 Episode 76
Dr. Martin Kulldorff

Are the generic lockdowns the best solution to Covid-19? What is Harvard Biostatistician and Epidemiologist Dr. Martin Kulldorff saying about how our health & wellness is being negatively influenced in the bigger picture by the lockdown? Are we missing the veritable forest for the trees in the larger public health picture? In this episode, Harvard's Dr. Martin Kulldorff, co-author of the Great Barrington Declaration, joins us to discuss why lockdowns are not necessary the best step in their current form and what this has to do with our health, wellness & performance. 

This is not intended to provide medical advice or make specific recommendations. Rather, it is an interview with one of the world's foremost experts on the topic, potentially providing our viewers and listeners with some additional insights to consider during this difficult time of the Covid-19 Pandemic.

If you'd like to view the unedited video version of this podcast episode, it is available here: https://youtu.be/Gf_0HkGMU00

Show Notes Transcript

Are the generic lockdowns the best solution to Covid-19? What is Harvard Biostatistician and Epidemiologist Dr. Martin Kulldorff saying about how our health & wellness is being negatively influenced in the bigger picture by the lockdown? Are we missing the veritable forest for the trees in the larger public health picture? In this episode, Harvard's Dr. Martin Kulldorff, co-author of the Great Barrington Declaration, joins us to discuss why lockdowns are not necessary the best step in their current form and what this has to do with our health, wellness & performance. 

This is not intended to provide medical advice or make specific recommendations. Rather, it is an interview with one of the world's foremost experts on the topic, potentially providing our viewers and listeners with some additional insights to consider during this difficult time of the Covid-19 Pandemic.

If you'd like to view the unedited video version of this podcast episode, it is available here: https://youtu.be/Gf_0HkGMU00

Speaker 1:

Welcome to the latest episode of the catalyst, health, wellness, and performance coaching podcast. I'm your host, dr. Bradford Cooper of the catalyst coaching Institute and today's guest might just be the most important interview we've had joined us in a very long time. Harvard biostatistician and epidemiologist, dr. Martin called off the wall street journal recently did a full page article on his recent work, focusing on whether the generic lockdowns are truly the wisest course of action. We don't have a horse in this race, and this is not a political discussion, but I reached out to him. He was willing to join us on very short notice. And I will tell you this conversation had a significant impact on the way I see COVID-19 and the way I'm approaching it personally, for those looking to pursue certification as a health and wellness coach, the final opportunity of 2020 has come and gone, but you can get registered for the January 23rd and 24th event. If you'd like all the details are [email protected], and we're always happy to set up a call and answer any questions that you might have. The email is [email protected] for everyone else. If you haven't yet checked out the YouTube coaching channel, it's youtube.com/coaching channel. Please take a peak . I think you like what you'll see, including a video version of dr. Calder's interview. If you'd like now let's tune into this fascinating interview with Harvard biostatistician, dr. Martin colder sharing some intriguing thoughts about COVID-19 the generic lockdown strategy, and much more in the latest episode of the catalyst, health, wellness, and performance coaching podcast. Dr. Martin caller. Thank you so much for joining us today. Short notice a very important topic, and we're really grateful to have you join us. So obviously we got a little controversy we're talking about today. Um, let's talk about why there is such a controversy. We have bright, bright minds, some of the best scientists in the world on both sides. W w why , why is there, why , why can't we get the answer figured out? Why , why can't we have something for the public where this is what we need to be doing? This is what the, you know, the government should be going. It's it seems like we're on these two different sides of the coin. Any general thoughts about why there's such a , a span here going on.

Speaker 2:

So , uh , uh, it's not an easy question, but the way I interpreted this, that they are basic principles of public health that has been thrown out the window. Uh, one of them is that we can't just look at this short term. When you look at public health, you can't just look at a short term. Uh , if you're a physician, I attribute a cancer patient. Then you look at your short term because you want to extend the life by another six months, maybe a year, so they can spend more time with the children and grandchildren, but in public health, you have to look long-term , that's the best, the key principle of public health. And we have failed to do that. If you look at the, at the newspapers or media, they look at what are the current , uh, case in this country or this region, and compared to the next one, that's sort of like judging a marathon based on who is leading at the five kilometer Mark. Good comparison . So a second principle that we have ignored is you can't in public health. We can't look at a single disease. Again, I'm doing it is teaching the patient. Well , they are focusing on that particular cancer, other things also, but that's the focus where you treat that patient because that's the disease the patient has, but in public health, you can't just focus on one disease. COVID-19. So with the counter measures and the lockdowns, there's been enormous collateral damage on other aspects of public health , uh, childhood vaccination rates have plummeted. Cardiovascular disease are currents on mass . Worst people don't get to the hospital in time. Uh , and they might die at home, or the prevention measures some up here because they're not going to the primary care physicians, cancer screenings are down. So we are detecting best counselors . Now that's not because it's the less cancer just have not detecting it so that some, so somebody who maybe didn't get their pap smear, she might now three or four years from now instead of 15 to 20 years from now. And because that doesn't show up in the statistics right this year, but it's still something that we're going to live with and die with for , for many years to come , uh, the mental health aspects. Uh, I think our renders, what the lockdown has as cost for that. And of course the other diabetes to treat them all those things. So there's an enormous collateral damage. Also when there's house evictions, that's not good for public health. And if, as scientists, we need to use these global and international lists , if we look at it in the developing world, in Africa and Asia and Latin America. And so , um, uh, there are children who are starving to death because of the lockdown. The parents cannot afford to parents to live day by day, getting the income to buy the food for that day. They cannot afford to feed their children. There are people from the cities who have been forced to walk home many, many miles to get home to the village because the ride was pulled out of them in the cities and the some making of them, some not making it onto their villages. So there's , uh , the collateral damage that has been cost , uh, due to , uh, due to the lockdown has been enormous. And you have to look not only at COVID-19. You also have to look at all these other aspects of public health,

Speaker 3:

So great points across the board. And why is that getting missed? Why are the scientists that are saying no, no, no, no. Lockdown is the answer this, and it seems to be tilted that way, as , as you're aware from the pushback that you're getting , um, w why are they missing these two core aspects of public health analysis?

Speaker 2:

So some scientists are completely missing it, and I don't understand why, because to me, it's not rocket science, but , uh , I think most scientists, or at least most the majority of the efficient disease technologists that I know personally, and that I talk to personally about these things , uh , are ingredient or agreement with me that , uh , lockdowns are not a good thing. It was good in the beginning to flatten the curve. Let's not overburden the hospitals, right ? Because you don't want everybody to go to the hospital at the same time, because they can't take care of it. So some form of such measures plus needed in the spring for a short period of time. But , uh, among my colleagues that I talked to the majority, do not agree with lockdowns and think that we should have a focus protection , where we have to do a much better job protecting all the people, because what high-risk while letting children go to school in person is no public health. Isn't where they shouldn't. And letting young people live close to normal lives, they should wash their hands. And those kind of basic things. There's no reason to do a lifetime for young adults. Everybody knows that there's a difference in risk between the by age, but it's not just a, like a two fold or five fold , 10 fold . It's not even a hundred fold difference . Different risk is what everybody can get effected . There's more than a thousand fold difference in the mortality risk of death . So for all the people, COVID 19 is the very serious disease and dangerous, and they have to take precautions. We have , as a society, we have to help protect that this group, but for children COVID-19 is less dangerous than the annual influenza. So for children, and this is not a dangerous, they will get infected. And if you start testing people in schools and colleges, you can have a lot of positive cases for sure, but this is not a dangerous things to , uh , to children. I might have an 18 year old son, and I'm much more concerned about him driving 19 .

Speaker 3:

So, okay. Let's, let's stay in college kids for a second. We , we've got so many colleges that they're starting class, and then they're taking a two week break, or there are in the spring, they were sending kids back home to, in my mind, infect other people that maybe were at risk. Is it just protection ? Is it just the administration feeling like we have to do this because it's what everybody else is doing. And we can't be the one school that w w any thoughts on that? Why is that happening? It seems like with the data that you're providing, that the risk factors so low, that the concern wouldn't be there, they just be, Hey, we're in a somewhat protected area. We're able to move forward. Let's not then send these kids back to grandma and older parents. And those, those folks in any extrapolations on that,

Speaker 2:

You and I , 100% correct. And maybe there's some her thinking going on here, but closing , uh, uh, universities and colleges , uh , is actually damaging for public health, because that's you saying, if they are college and if they fight each other, that's not a public health concern because they're not at risk, but risk is minimal. All the t-shirts the older professionals. If you have professors that are older than 16, they have to be protected. So they should, I think, do online teaching the students can still go to the classroom, and maybe there's a TA there in the classroom with them so that they can do a collaboration , social license or interact with , but all the professors over 60 should do online teaching. But other than that, the university should operate normally and to send children home to , uh, their families. Uh, some of them have family . Uh, parents can do six business so on, and they're not going to sit in their room all the time. They shouldn't , that's unhealthy for them. So , uh , it's actually bad for public health to close the universities. And it's of course also bad for the students because they need , uh , uh, they needed a better education with in-person teaching, but also it's good for their mental health and where a social, a social life. There's no public health reasons. And another problem is that the university is , uh, testing children , uh , the students, when they come to the universities, right.

Speaker 3:

Which they already have it at that point. Like, what is , what good is that doing?

Speaker 2:

That's nonsensical, right ? If they are sick, let them stay in the dormitory room until like a , well, if he has some symptoms or whatever, if it's COVID or not. On the other hand where it bank stands to do the testing is actually before they go home again, right before they go home for Thanksgiving or Christmas, when they're going to actually meet their parents or their grandparents or aunts and uncles, that's when actually it makes sense to do testing, not when they come to the university, it's sort of backwards.

Speaker 3:

And again, I know you don't know the answer to this, but I just don't get, why, why is this happening? Because that's the pattern across all. We have kids that are also college age 20, actually, one's a fifth grade teacher. So two in college and one's is teaching the younger kids. And it's exactly what you described. Why is this happening? And you're like, I'm trying to change it, Brad.

Speaker 2:

I mean, w when , uh, when I tried to speak out and many others in March and April, but both me and many , uh , other scientists that we should do a different approach. We had a very difficult time to be heard . I, I played the publisher . I was rejected by both , uh , the regular media, as well as more scientific oriented media. Uh, I was able to publish three op-eds in the major daily newspapers in my native Sweden. So that was not a problem, but in the us, I was unable to publish anything. Interesting. It was some kind of a reluctance to have a open scientific discourse on these matters,

Speaker 3:

Which is stunning because that's what scientific, that's what the research is . Therefore , the scientific method is put it out there, get it reviewed. It seems so conscious , intuitive to the way it's supposed to be.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. That's how we have done science for about 300 years since the age of enlightenment started. So , uh , uh, I think it has actually worked quite well for us during those. Yeah .

Speaker 3:

Hello? Exactly. Huh ? All right. All right. So let's talk about S for people that want to look this up in more detail, it's called the great Barrington declaration. Uh, I can't say your co-writers name correctly, is it but to Charia ?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. [inaudible]

Speaker 3:

And dr. Gupta , uh, came out against lockdowns economic restrictions. You talked about focus protection for those at minimal risks . Now, two questions about something you said earlier, you said kids are not at risk. Is that up to age 12, 14, 16? Is it the college kids? Is it 30 kind of, where does that, and I know there's not a blanket locked down specific answer, but is there kind of a general trending that up until literally up to 59? Or is it, you know, the , the curve continues to progress as you age after age 20 or 27 or something like that?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So first of all, we have to differentiate between the risk of infection and getting sick and risk of serious things. So give me affection is a growth across all Asia. Absolutely many of the young ones will be asymptomatic. They'll still getting infection infectious , but they will still will have mild symptoms, not will have symptomatic. So the difference in risk by age is really in mortality and serious complications. It's, it's the gradual thing. So , uh , if there's no cutoff where suddenly you at higher risk, if the gradual thing that is , uh , so if you're in six days, I think you're a little higher risk, but it's much less than actually if 30th , your seventies and in the seventies, you actually much less risk. And in the eighties , uh, if you're below 50, you're at low risk, but those in the forties are slightly higher risk than those in the twenties or thirties. So gradually it's sort of a gradual thing and more cut off .

Speaker 3:

And then let's check just slightly about this age thing. Um , we have a lot of masters athletes that listen to this show and they know that there are plenty of 50 and 60 year olds that are far fitter, far healthier, et cetera, than frankly, a lot of people in their late thirties, early forties is that 60 number just, we had to pick a number somewhere. It's a generic thing, or should we be looking more at risk factor versus chronological age? You know, if you have a 60 year old, who's a, I don't know, a , a fit triathlete, are they at far less risk than the 40 year old who's got diabetes and is smoking and, and some of those kinds of things.

Speaker 2:

So that's a great question. And a very important one. So age is by far the, the, the major risk factor , uh, which sort of makes everything else much, much less important. So Asia is by far the biggest risk factor, but there are risk factors also for, for example, obesity and diabetes. And we don't know the exact estimates for those, but it's around the two fold excess risk if you have , uh , these risk factors. So that means that somebody who is 50 years old, who is obese and will be , uh , diabetes might have the same risk as somebody who's maybe 60 years old, without those things, those risk factors, maybe it's about five, 10 years of correspondent got about five, 10 years of age. So even if you have these risk factors, then you're in your twenties, you're still very low risk, but it is something that needs to be taken into account because maybe I said, a professor or a teacher in schools , if there was six of us to do at home, but if they are 55 and obese diabetes patient, probably be moving into that category, there's also, this also means that , uh , one of the things that we can actually do to reduce our own risk, and if you haven't done it before, this is a perfect time to do that is to exercise more and live more healthy lives. So don't sit inside at home in front of your computer because you think that it's the safest go outside or walking, hiking, running bicycling around , uh , in the parks or in the forest or wherever, or just on the streets. That is a healthy thing to do. And of course eating healthy is always important, not just for COVID, but for everything. So, so if, if ever we're thinking about ramp to start to move into a more healthy lifestyle, I would suggest that 2020 would be a good year to do that

Speaker 3:

Excellent point. All right. So let's dig into the great Barrington declaration. Can you start us off by explaining exactly what would this look like in practical terms?

Speaker 2:

Uh, so there's two components of it. One is to do a better job protecting , uh, older and other high-risk groups. And the other one is to remove the lockdowns and let children and young adults live near normal lives . So to start with the high-risk groups and the older, they are sort of four , roughly four groups there , those at highest risk, both because of age and frailty or the people living in nursing homes and similar places, they are absolutely at the home . Yes, risk. Uh , we have done a terrible job protecting the nursing home residents , uh , not the, the country, but in many parts of the country. Um , this would be very tragic. So what we have to do is that the first thing is , uh, unless the staff has already had COVID so that they are immune, they need to be tested frequently to make sure that they don't bring in the infection into the nursing home. And it's much more important to test the staff of the test , the residents, there's no harm in testing the residents. Uh , the most important thing is to test the staff. If transmission is very high in the community at the moment, it has to be very, very frequent testing. If it's less transmission in the community, maybe once or twice a week would be the other thing, nursing home residents, and needs to be have visitors from family , uh , friends , Bessie important part of their, not just their , uh, social life, but for the actual physical wellbeing to have those kinds of visits. So we need to be able to arrange so that the family members can be tested, ambience it . So are these tests and all that can be done and you get the results the same day. So that's very important. And if you're visiting your grandfather and you happen to test positive, well, then you should wait and visit him three weeks later. It's that , uh , and maybe your sister or cousin can go, obviously , basically instead . So that's the second thing that's important. The third one is to minimize staff rotation so that the same resident don't meet 20 staff person during the week, but maybe only four or five, because the fewer there is the less the risk, the less the risk of transmission. And then of course, we have to make sure that when new residents enter a nursing home, they have to be tested, but also, and you can , you cannot do as it was done. Hmm . For example, New York and New Jersey and Massachusetts, that you, the sick COVID-19 patients back to the nursing homes, then infecting the other residents with that nursing home. You absolutely cannot do those things. Those are the key aspects for nursing homes. And I know for example, Scott Atlas, who has been pushing very hard for all those things. And I think we're doing with the nursing home now than we were in the spring, for sure. But there still has to be a be better protection . The second group is, is those who , uh , live at home, but who live , uh , but two are retired people. Maybe they live by themselves or they live with spouse or somebody else. So for them, it's important that they of course also have to see family and friends. So we should help with testing for that also, but it might not be the most important thing to go to the supermarket that might not be the most important part of your life. So , uh, there, we should make it possible to have a grocery list . Another essential is delivered to the home. And when I go to the supermarket, I still see all the people and , uh, we should do a better job helping them with those things. And also when they need family and Francis is going to do outdoors rather than indoors , uh, as much as possible just to minimize the infection risk. A third group are those over 60 are still in the workforce. And if they can, as much as possible, they should work from home, but there are some who cannot work from home. Then we need to find a way to offer them to do a sabbatical for a few months, like three or four months. And this is just the high risk group. That's in that. Yeah , those are about 60. I would say, Oh , everybody is about 16 . And , uh , not for a long time, because if we do this focus protection, we're not going to drag out this pandemic for a long time. It will be over much sooner. So while there is high transmission in the community, like three or four months, we should offer them some kind of a sabbatical. For example, we can say, well, you can actually use some of your social security funds now instead of later. And that will , uh, we will cover you for the asleep , but you have to be home. So that's the real practical way to do it. The fourth group is actually the most difficult one are those who are living multi-generational homes. And there was a study out of stock on that show that if you're about 70 and you live with somebody about your own age, who is not in the workforce compared to, if you live with a family member who is below 65 and in the working age than those who live with, which could be , uh , it could be a younger spouse, but often I think if there's a child, a son or daughter is working. Those who live with , uh , a working age adult are about 60% higher risk of COVID compared to those who live alone , live with somebody who has their own age. So there is an increased risk from these multi-generational homes. So they are the salute . But interestingly, actually, if you also live with the child, typically grandchild less than 16, then you are not in any additional risks compared to older living with your working age family members. So the children are not the ones that are risk putting your risk to these older people in my generation home is the working age adults in both households that are generating the excess risk.

Speaker 3:

Not I'm not completely following this. So it seems like just mathematically, if I've got, if I'm 70 and I've got somebody who's 45 outworking, and then I also have a grandchild who's 12 going to school. Aren't you bringing in more variables into the equation by doubling that potential?

Speaker 2:

No. So the interesting thing is that living with the 45 year old is increasing your risk by about 60% compared to if you were living with somebody who was 75, like your spouse or something. But if you live with a 40 to 45 year old, as well as the 12 year old, the 12 year old does not increase the risk any further. Okay? The only living with girls especially come from the children, the risk comes from the adults, and there is a biological explanation for that, which there was an interesting study from Iceland, where they looked at the genetics of the viruses. So they could actually track who infects who . So they found that adults will often affect children, but children with very little , very seldomly . In fact, adults, it can happen very rare and that's different from influenza, but that's pretty influenced , uh , the kids , kids bring it home as schools . That's sort of a driving force behind the, in France , uh , epidemic every year, but COVID operates differently. Interesting . It's not the , so if you're a 17 year old, you should be afraid of your sons and daughters, but the grandchildren are not as dangerous.

Speaker 3:

Interesting. So a little quick sideline here. You may have mention that if you've already had it, you're immune. I know there's some different studies saying different things along those lines. Do we, I know we don't know. So I'm not asking you to put your name on paper here, but from your greatest knowledge, if you've had it, are we thinking you are immune or are you immune for a certain time period? Do we have any insights into that at this point?

Speaker 2:

Yes, we do. And there's been a lot of confusing confusion and miss information about it. If you had it, your immune Gilliad , there have been a handful of cases where there has been a second infection, but there's very, very few, almost all of them has been very mild. So considering the millions of people who have been infected have had it with still a few, getting it. The second time is very clear that we have , uh , immunity to the COVID-19. Now that's the first part of that. So the second part, how does the immunity lasts ? So for some viruses, if you had it, you would be in for the rest of your life, but otherwise this you're immune for a certain period of time, and then they're going to do wings for COVID-19. We don't know which category it is for obvious reasons. Uh , my guess is that this is just a guess, but is that it does not last for the whole life. That would be my guess for COVID-19.

Speaker 3:

And as your guests, that it does give us a year, or it just it's too early to make even some, any kind of assumptions.

Speaker 2:

Well, we know it gives at least for half a year and more so for more for the vast majority. So yeah, I , it will, I think it will last for several years

Speaker 3:

And it seems I've seen some headlines about people are getting it a second time, or it seems like there was a study out of the UK a couple of weeks ago that the antibody levels had dropped by 30% from what they were originally in the, in these folks. Am I missing some key data into this?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So there's the confusion about antibodies and immunity ? So antibodies is one form of immunity, but, and that study that came out, I think last week, was that nothing really new, because we knew from before that antibodies goes down with time after effective , but that doesn't mean that you no longer immune that's because he cannot detect the antibodies. And as I said, they're very , has been very, very few real infections . They make the news, but we have ,

Speaker 3:

And when you say very few, we're talking less than 1%, less than half a percent, something like, I mean, is it minuscule or is it just not,

Speaker 2:

I mean , it's less than a 10th of a percent, less than a hundredth of a percent minuscule. Okay . Super helpful. And also in addition to antibiotics, not everybody who are infected , uh , produce antibodies because we also have T-cell immunity . So there are different forms of Indiana, this a complex system. So , uh, there's also other forms of , uh, uh, immunity. So grant, for example, somebody says that 10% of the population have antibodies that are detectable, but that's a meme that is only 10% that are doing it means that at least 10%, but it's , it's more, we can't measure how much more, but we know that it's more than 10% that have immunity.

Speaker 3:

So that leads in really nicely to this idea of herd mentality, which I know you use, you said, makes people think about mass murderer and these horrible things. How does that actually play a role? What does it really mean help us understand this concept and how does it fit into your broader recommendations?

Speaker 2:

So that's probably the most misunderstood term of 2020. And as the scientists and technologists is sort of stunning to observe because herd immunity is just well-proven scientific phenomena , just like gravity and physics. So to discuss with the 30 minute, Jake seems to not test like discussing with the gravity system, also whatever strategy we use for COVID-19, we will eventually reach herd immunity. That's unavoidable. That's just like many other diseases. Uh , that's sort of the natural and state of a pandemic COVID-19 is not a disease that can be eradicated even after the pandemic is over. People entered and Deming States where it was still being the population, but not many people have died from it. Just a few, few people every year. It will never disappear completely, but the cost of herd immunity, that's what sort of ends the pandemic phase . And it means that the pandemic will end before everybody gets infected. So 100% of us are not going to be infected. Only a proportion of us would be infected and then the pandemic will be over. So that means that we have a sort of a choice. There are certain people who, what I was sharing with you is I'm going to go and get infected. There are other people who will not need to get affected . So how many people do we put in each of these groups? Only if we do nothing, if you do, no countermeasures what's going to happen is that some old people were getting faded and some young people, some old with not , and some young will not. And since a fair amount of old people are getting effected , we can have a high mortality because they are the high risk. Uh, if we do lockdown measures that are across the board age wise. So we protect everybody equally by age when we are, when we are pushing things forward, but eventually people are going to get infected. So again, if we can have some young people, in fact, there are some old, some [inaudible] and some old people not infected . So that means, again, that will be a fair amount of all people getting infected . And while it will happen later , uh, there still will be old people who die because they are high risk . On the other hand, if you do focus protection while we're doing it is we're trying as much as possible to protect the older people. So we are minimizing the number of older people who are in the effective group. It can't be done a hundred percent, that's impossible, but we are trying to minimize as much as possible and maximize the number or people who are in the group. We're not getting affected . And that's how we minimize the total mortality from COVID-19 by protecting those older people,

Speaker 3:

Where does the vaccine fit into this whole equation? Let's assume we've got one by next spring, March, April, something like that. That's actually effective and available. How does that fit into this broader strategy?

Speaker 2:

So when it comes to herd immunity, one can achieve herd immunity, either through natural infection, which is sort of the process we're currently in where more and more people are getting immune, or we can get her in a deer through a vaccine, which is for example, how we now have herd immunity for measles, or , uh , we can do it with a combination of the two [inaudible] herd immunity and the best way to use it is obviously through a vaccine or good affective and safe vaccine. Now we don't know when the vaccine will become, they are enormously good. We're trying to develop vaccines. Not all of them are going to work out, I think, but there are, hopefully some of them will. Um , uh, we would hopefully have a vaccine , uh , when we do, we do have, that has to sort of playing into the focus protection , some plan that we basically prioritize the high risk groups for getting the vaccines. That is the older people, as well as healthcare workers, because they also have a high risk because of potential exposure. So getting a vaccine sort of fits in as one additional measure to use for this focus protection. Okay .

Speaker 3:

So let's , let's go broad here. So many headlines people can't stop reading about this stuff. It's the leading news story every single day, any clarification that you'd like to put out there for people that are, they really want to understand, they don't want to just follow the, you know, whoever wrote that headline that may not be a scientist may not understand what's really happening here. Uh, are there some headline busting clarifications that you can provide us where you say now, remember when you hear this, it actually means this. When you hear that they're leaving out this other key piece in any of those types of things that you could help us to , to read between the lines, if you will,

Speaker 2:

If I could change only one thing with our current approach, it would be to open all the schools for in-person teaching immediately . Uh , because I think that the, the collateral damage on our children is, is very serious. They needed education. School is not only important for that. It's also important for physical health, for mental health , uh , for social development. And obviously the school closings are affecting working class a little bit most because children in more privileged families, they can't afford to put them in a private school or having a part school or hire a tutor, et cetera. So it's really the working class , uh , children who are , uh, affected the worst most times in school. And it's something that, that can have ripple effects for , for many, many years , uh, uh, ahead, including into the adult life. So if there's one thing I would like to change, that's it. And it's important that to, to , uh, look at because people are scared of it and they shouldn't be because we , as a site , we should look at it scientifically. And there was only one major Western country who did not close the schools during the height of the pandemic in the spring. And that was Sweden. So it's really on all the daycare and schools were open for a full day. For time. In-person teaching from Asia's want patients 15, and they are , they are 1.8 million children in this age group in this medium . And during this time there were exactly zero COVID death among these children, children , and they want a house full of hospitalizations, but they all , uh , they all came on weld. So again, this is not a theist . This is for children , uh , is less dangerous than Daniel flu, which in the U S actually kills them between 200 and a thousand children every year in Vilas . It's not tragic. So COVID-19 is less dangerous than that. Also, if you look at the teachers, the teachers were at had the same risk of COVID as , uh , the average of other professions since we done so as acceptable risks , because they are our , uh, t-shirts and they actually have more dangerous from the fellow t-shirts and they are from the children interested . Do you want us to do protectionists in the schools ? He said, sort of keep the teachers away from each other, but that don't work with , uh , with the children. And this, this , uh, this result is we know it was accomplished. Uh, they did, they did do some , uh , safety measures in schools. For example, they increased the cleaning in schools, surfaces and stuff, a child who was sick for any reason, they didn't do testing, but any child who was sick at symptoms were told to stay home. And if they showed symptoms in school, they were sent home. Uh, also they didn't do any , uh , school-wide gatherings of a few hundred kids. So they kept it to the classrooms where there were like 20, 30 kids in each classroom. So those were the measures that were taken. And there were no masks , Houston, the schools, since you've been, there were no social distancing, the classroom was set up the normal way. They were allowed to play. There were a lot of play on the playgrounds, sort of like kids normally do. So the case that was very normal life. And despite of that, there were , uh , fear of COVID after my , my children and our excess risk for t-shirts compared to other professions .

Speaker 3:

Yeah. You talked about the grandchild child to the 70 year old, all within the mixed home that I think you mentioned a genetic component to the spreading it. Why are the teachers at less risk with the kids where they might have 24 of them at one time versus co co-workers, other teachers who might be three of them, w what is going on there? So for some reason,

Speaker 2:

And I don't think we know why, but for some reason, children do not infect others. Interesting way I sit downstairs .

Speaker 3:

That's fascinating. And , and the numbers that you share , the 1.8 million students in Sweden and no mortality, not, not, not a small number, not 20 zero out of 1.8 million. Why is this not being, I know you're trying, but why is this not being talked about? Like , how is this being missed? That that's incredible data.

Speaker 2:

It is stunning because as a scientist, if you want to know if smoking is bad or not for you, you have to look at smokers who are exposed. Okay. If you want to know if a vaccine is good or not, well, you have to look at people who got the vaccine and see if they got less sick. That's what we do in science. If you want to know what something, how something affects your health, you have to look at those who were exposed to that thing. So in terms of schools , uh, Sweden was the one country or the one major Western country where, where they were exposed in the sense that they had in-person teaching. So that is the obvious data to look at. That's the most valuable, most reliable, most important data. But when , uh, when the summer, there was a article in a journal of medicine talking about schools and whether they should open or not . Uh, and that, that he didn't mention that study that had came out from Sweden, even as that's the best scientific information. So even the best, one of the best scientific journals, medical journals sort of ignored, completely ignored that , uh, that information. And I think it's as baffling, the science would operate that way.

Speaker 3:

We've got to be responsible with your time here. A couple more questions, and we'll wrap this up. So your personal advice you're , you're in Massachusetts, correct? Correct. You're there at Harvard. Yeah. So if you, if a friend came to you, they're under 60 and they said, Mark, I guess they're a friend . So let's say, Martin, we won't go with dr. Caldwell for on that case. And they said , Hey , Martin, you know, I'm trying to decide, do I go out to eat? I'm under 60. I don't have major risk factors. Should I go out to eat? Should I spend time with, you know, six, seven, eight friends who, I don't know what their stuff , or would you say, no, you know, don't, don't push it here. What would be your personal advice? Or what advice would you implement for your own life and things like eating out in an indoor setting, not a crowded one, but an indoor setting. You know, some of these different than going to sporting events, where it's spread out a little bit more, what would your personal guidance be?

Speaker 2:

Uh, I try to live as normally as possible. And I tried to have my children live as normal as possible. So , uh, I think if , uh, if you're 50 years old or four years old going to restaurant is fine, I like sitting outdoors, but I will stop doing that. Um, but I generally like sleeping out doors . So I , I do that. I think I go see friends if they want to see me, not all of them wants to , uh, because they are afraid they do. I will, I will meet. I encouraged my 18 year old son this summer, for example , uh, I wanted, he was out playing basketball with his friends. I encouraged him to do that, hanging out with friends. Uh , so , uh, I think if you're an , if you're, if you're 20 and 30 years and you wanted to go to the, to the, to the path , I think you should do that. That's perfectly fine. You should be careful when you visit your grandmother. I think it's good to take a task before we do it. Uh, or if you can't try to meet outside , uh , where it's less risky , uh don't. Don't invite your grandmother to go to the bar with you. She should stay a little bar.

Speaker 1:

Fair enough. Fair enough. That that's super helpful. Anything else that you'd like to put out that I haven't asked the right question? We've missed something key that you'd like to get out there to everybody just as we kind of wrap this up.

Speaker 2:

No, I think you've asked very good questions. I've been great pleasure talking to you. So thank you . Thank you

Speaker 1:

For taking the time hugely important, and we really appreciate you making this happen. Thank you. Take care. So did that help? Did it shift your thinking a little bit? Like it definitely did for me, I know there are and will continue to be so many questions about what we should be doing through all of this. We're not here to advise you. And this was obviously not medical guidance in any way. We simply wanted to provide you the opportunity to hear from one of the world's leading experts who happens to have a contrarian view on what we might be hearing elsewhere. Thank you for tuning into the number one podcast for health and wellness coaching next week, we're featuring our first ever hidden gem episode. Now that we're approaching 150 episodes, we're super psyched when you subscribe and you binge your way through all of them, but we get it. Sometimes you miss some of the big ones as you go through that, because there are so many right now. So every once in a while, we're going to bring back a hidden gem , an episode that isn't in our all-time top 10 list . But based on feedback we received probably should be next week. You'll hear a real live unscripted coaching session. If you're a coach, you'll pick up plenty of tips along the way as you, as you listen in, but everyone will love this one . As you're likely to see your own life opening up in the process of hearing someone else being coached by a nationally board certified health and wellness coach. A quick favor to ask of our listeners. If you enjoy video tools and resources, we've now produced over 75 videos over at youtube.com/coaching channel. And we really appreciate it. If you pop over there, sometime check out a couple of them. There here's three to five minutes long. In most cases, and subscribe , find them beneficial as always feel free. Reach out to us with any questions. You might have [email protected] Now it's our turn to be a catalyst to invest in the lives of those around us as we move toward better than yesterday. This is dr. Bradford Cooper of the catalyst coaching Institute. I'll speak with you soon on another episode of catalyst, health, wellness, and performance coaching podcast, or maybe over on the YouTube coaching channel.