New study results?

Any idea how Francis Collins might respond to this?

He should ignore it, and so should everyone else.




Neither the content nor the people offering it have credibility. The article is a laughable transcript with a “hostile reporter.” Much of what the dudes say is outright false. Not worth anyone’s time.



Thank you. Can you give me an example of what is outright false? I agree that there lacks credibility, since this is promoted by an economic think tank

This is laugh-out-loud bonkers BS:
“Sheltering in place decreases your immune system. And then as we all come out of shelter in place with a lower immune system and start trading viruses, bacteria—what do you think is going to happen? Disease is going to spike.”

No, that’s not why. The dudes are not epidemiologists or virologists. It’s obvious the “think tank” is crap too but that’s not the point. I wouldn’t read anything on that site. Neither should anyone else. Have a good day!


Agree absolutely. One of my friends posted this also. These guys are a couple of low level walk in clinic owners, and have no credibility or training to be putting this out. The population they serve is low risk, the really sick people go to a real ER instead of the doc in a box. They are a good example of the malignant narcissism that has emerged from all this. Social isolation is a narcissist’s nightmare, and I see it bursting forth on Facebook like an erupting volcano.

I refuse to watch it again, but the big things I remember that bothered me was the error in extrapolating their limited experience into a general recommendation, and the bias in the population group they “studied.”

That said, in a low risk population, re-opening may be possible earlier. One problem we seem to be having is treating the US as a homogenous group, when there are wide variations in risk of disease, making a blanket policy inappropriate.


Right. Much discussion of these guys in my circles also, but what I got from it was they are more concerned about their own pocketbooks than the public and owners of private practices like this are indeed suffering from lower census and elective stuff being postponed, but using their medical credibility to conflate their own personal economic concerns is tacky, in my opinion.


True that. They probably have their urgent cares up and running, but sure it is slow, as mildly sick people are afraid to go in, fewer accidents and minor scrapes, and less infectious disease what with the social isolation. It is interesting that while the ICU docs in major cities are worked to death (literally in some cases with limited PPE, and high risk, including reports of suicides) while most docs are twiddling their thumbs like most of the rest of us. I know several who have closed their offices, several who have been furloughed who work for big clinics.


It’s truly perplexing, as I know people who have been pulled in to work in some places even without a lot of recent IM experience, etc. But then other places…furloughs everywhere!

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You may not want this here, so of course delete it if you don’t, but it does seem fitting:

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I know a couple of people that are buying into this, so may I quote parts of your responses here, @jpm, @sfmatheson and @HRankin, and would you have preferences about attribution? If I quoted verbatim, would it be searchable? I suppose I could do a little work and try to paraphrase for disguise, but “doc in a box” has a certain ring to it, not that it’s a new term. :grin:

Or could I just link to here?

uh, where are you quoting it? I’d rather my name not be included. haha. but feel free to copy whatever i said. you can even claim it as your own. haha

I just figured out it was public anyway, so the question is technically moot. But thank you! I won’t include your name, I’ll just say ‘MD’s wife’ to give it authority :slightly_smiling_face:, if that’s okay?

He’s not an MD, but feel free to say physician :wink:

Ah. Sure.  

But the video mentioned is actually being shared by my general populace fb friends… But it is true that i know people getting pulled to the front lines while others are being laid off. (not super sure what you are wanting to quote me for…haha!) There are also plenty of news stories about docs being furloughed.

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I’ve been interacting with folks on Facebook over this. I watched a 3 minute version. There’s actually an hour long version, but I … just … can’t. Here are several problems…

  1. They used a non-randomized set to extrapolate from a local situation to all of California, all of the US and all of the world. You can’t do that. You can’t even do something a little bit like that. It’s the same problem with those who misuse the (suspect) Stanford study that proposed up to 85 untested cases for every one tested case. If you extrapolate that local math to New York state, 135% of the state of New York should have COVID-19. In other words…no

  2. They argue that COVID-19 is no more lethal than the flu. That can be taken a lot of different ways (case fatality rate, annual death tally, etc.), but COVID-19 is (or will be within days) worse in every way. Barring a miracle, COVID-19 will surpass the worst annual flu tally of the past decade within the next few days. Also, New York just did a (somewhat) randomized test in New York and found that the infection rate is more likely 21% in New York City and 14% state wide (link below). Using this data, you can directly calculate the case fatality rate at 0.8% (8 times worse than the flu), and that ratio will increase because there are 2-3 weeks of already active cases who will die, likely more than 1,000 more deaths.

  1. They mention the “pressure” to overreport deaths. This is another recurring “argument” intended to undermine confidence in the data. Doctors, when testing is not available, will still report a death as a COVID-19 death if they have every (diagnostic) reason to believe it. This isn’t conspiratorial. It’s a way for the government to aggregate the best data in order to make the most well-informed decisions.

I would prefer not to use my name, as my response was a bit of a rant. I have had 2-3 other friends post this on Facebook this afternoon also, so really need to start a Facebook fast. I think my observations were accurate as to a financial bias, being staged, having a vastly different population sampled, no real expertise in virology or public health, etc.
Of course, I have no real expertise either, outside of being trained to some extent to evaluate sources as part of medical,practice, and this one has all sorts of problems.


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