According to the CDC, there have been about 300,000 more deaths this year in the United States as of Oct. 3 compared to the average of the last five years.
Yet only about two-thirds of those deaths are attributed to COVID-19, the disease caused by the CCP virus.
That leaves about 100,000 extra deaths this year. Stanford professor and epidemiologist Dr. Jay Bhattacharya speculates the mass lockdown measures caused the additional deaths.
“That’s almost certainly due to the lockdown. The physical harms people avoiding getting chemotherapy, people avoiding getting treatment for heart attacks, people avoiding getting treated for diabetes, the psychological harm, suicides, opioid, a whole host of physical harms and mental harms, resulting in 100,000 additional deaths on top of what we’d expect from just COVID,” he said.
Studies have shown lockdowns lead to short-term consequences such as increased anger, confusion, and symptoms of PTSD. There are also suspected long-term effects of lockdowns, including an estimated 250,000 preventable deaths of cancer patients who don’t get necessary screenings. Bhattacharya predicts the non-COVID death toll will continue into the future.
“So you avoid going to get a mammogram this year. Well, next year, now you have more people showing up with stage four breast cancer. You avoid getting a colonoscopy, and now you have the later stage colon cancer diagnosis. The death toll from the skipped medical care will last into the future. We still haven’t seen the worst of that.”
Bhattacharya said that to take no precautions and simply let the virus spread unchecked would have been a mistake. But, he says broad lockdowns have cost additional lives in the United States, as opposed to Sweden, which did not lockdown.
“You can contrast that with Sweden. So Sweden, through that same time period roughly, they’d have about on the order of about 6,000 COVID deaths. Only 1,800 total excess mortality. They had negative excess—when you subtract off the COVID deaths—they saved lives by avoiding a strict lockdown.”
According to data collected from 50 seroprevalence studies around the world, people under 70 years old have a 99.95 percent chance of surviving a CCP virus infection. Yet people over 70 have a 5 percent chance of dying after being infected. For this reason, Bhattacharya recommends protecting the vulnerable while lifting the lockdowns for the rest of the population.