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Is herd immunity the best way to beat coronavirus? Show more Show less

As governments have struggled to kill the spread of the coronavirus, policies have varied. Herd immunity - followed by countries including Sweden - has come under scrutiny. The strategy assumes a large section of the population will inevitably be infected whatever is done. Rather than enforce lockdown measures, herd immunity encourages social distancing in public places. The aim is to have as many low-risk people infected as possible. Immune people cannot infect others. Therefore, the more there are, the faster we kill its exponential growth, and the easier it will be to treat the vulnerable. The WHO has criticised the approach, as have many others. Is the Swedish government correct?

Herd immunity is a risky bet Show more Show less

There are far too many variables to the coronavirus pandemic to have any confidence in the British government's policy of herd immunity.
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A lot of people have already died from the coronavirus

The coronavirus has claimed thousands of lives around the globe.
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The Argument

Over 300,000 people have died from the coronavirus globally. Most of the people who died are more susceptible to not recovering from infection. According the Mayo Clinic, people who are elderly, obese, experience heart and lung problems, and have diabetes will have a harder time recovering from the coronavirus.[1] In 2017, the World Health Organization estimates that about 235 million people in the world suffer from asthma.[2] If there are that many people who suffer just from asthma alone, imagine the amount of people around the globe who are elderly and suffer from heart and lung diseases. Waiting for herd immunity to take affect could produce deadly consequences.

Counter arguments

Herd immunity would be able stop the spread of coronavirus before it reaches people that could die from the coronavirus. If the people who were more prone to dying from the virus stayed away from the public long enough, immune people would soon outweigh the infection rate.



[P1] Over 300,000 people have already died from the coronavirus. [P2] In 2017, 235 million people suffer from asthma globally. [P3] People who are elderly and have health issues such as asthma are more susceptible to dying from the coronavirus. [P4] Using herd immunity would put people susceptible to dying from coronavirus at risk.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P4] Herd immunity would save more people from the coronavirus in the long run.


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This page was last edited on Friday, 22 May 2020 at 01:56 UTC