Yet another Op Ed

Three days ago the Washington Post published an Op Ed titled “It’s time for children to finally get back to normal life”.

Many of you, understandably, have lots of questions. So I thought I would provide a reaction.

Disclaimer: I didn’t know how to do this without sounding like a professor. This was the easiest and most straightforward way to write this blog post. So, this looks like one of my students’ papers with edits/comments/reactions. In the document, the colors are meaningful. And I tried to associate a comment box with every yellow and red color. 

  • GREEN (I agree); 

  • YELLOW (I agree and I disagree); and 

  • RED (I disagree).

As you can tell, I do agree with some of their statements. However, I also disagree with a lot. Overall,

  • They cherry picked studies, which doesn’t give the full story. As scientists we have a responsibility to give the full story.

  • They ignored fundamental epidemiological concepts, which is surprising given some authors are epidemiologists.

  • They ignore guidance from pediatricians, which is confusing for the layman. And, quite frankly, could lead to vaccine hesitancy for parents.

Here we go…

And the links to the scientific studies I mention throughout the article…

  1. Masks work in schools: Here, here, here, and here.

  2. Long COVID19: low prevalence (here) vs. high prevalence (here)

  3. Vaccines reduce transmission between 70-95%: There are about 15 studies in this now. I’ve summarized them in my vaccine table here.

  4. 2020-2021 Flu Season: 1 pediatric death recorded (here)

Love, YLE