Distancing and masks cut COVID-19 risk, says largest review of evidence

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 2 weeks ago

So says the experts.

LONDON (Reuters) – Keeping at least one metre apart and wearing face masks and eye protection are the best ways to cut the risk of COVID-19 infection, according to the largest review to date of studies on coronavirus disease transmission.

In a review that pooled evidence from 172 studies in 16 countries, researchers found frequent handwashing and good hygiene are also critical – though even all those measures combined can not give full protection.

The findings, published in The Lancet journal on Monday, will help guide governments and health agencies, some of whom have given conflicting advice on measures, largely because of limited information about COVID-19.

“Our findings are the first to synthesise all direct information on COVID-19, SARS, and MERS, and provide the currently best available evidence on the optimum use of these common and simple interventions to help ‘flatten the curve’”, said Holger Schünemann from McMaster University in Canada, who co-led the research.

Current evidence suggests COVID-19 is most commonly spread by droplets, especially when people cough, and infects by entering through the eyes, nose and mouth, either directly or via contaminated surfaces.

For this analysis, an international research team conducted a systematic review of 172 studies assessing distance measures, face masks and eye protection to prevent transmission of three diseases caused by coronaviruses – COVID-19, SARS and MERS.

The researchers noted that the findings, while comprehensive, have some limitations for the current pandemic since most of the evidence came from studies of SARS and MERS.

Ooo … I’m askeerd, hold me Uncle Bob!

Since I’ve gone on record saying that I don’t believe them without certain studies being performed in a certain manner with certain credentialed professionals, am I now so beaten down by the academic bureaucrats that I retract my position?

Then there’s this.

They found, however, that physical distancing of at least 1 metre lowers risk of COVID-19 transmission, and that a distance of 2 metres could be more effective. Masks and protective eye coverings may also add protective benefits, though the evidence for that was less clear cut, they added.

Yea, it’s less clear cut because not a damn thing has been done to prove it.

I repeat myself.

I won’t believe any of your models or data until [at least] the following has been done.  Assemble an interdisciplinary team of experts, in fields such as industrial hygiene, air filtration engineering, physics, chemistry, and medicine.  Formulate hypotheses on the distribution of particle sizes (there isn’t one particle size, there is a distribution, and it may be a normal distribution, or it may not, it may be a right skewed distribution, or it may be a left skewed distribution); back up your hypothesis with experimental data; assemble a panel of experts to test filters of various types, from cotton, to N95, to HEPA filters, on those particle sizes; report the results; next, do the same with the [possibly] polar composition of viruses and their travelling companion water molecules or other particles, and report results; results shall at least include and consider (a) trajectory, (b) evaporation, (c) re-evolution of particles and viruses into the air stream, (d) and where the collection of particles occurs.

Determine, based on this team’s judgment, whether there is an unhealthy buildup of viruses on the masks you have tested, both for the patient and the worker (or any passerby).  Include in this analysis not only SARS-CoV-2 viruses, but other pathogens as well.  Specifically include in your analysis the buildup and concentration of Legionella bacteria, what we found to be so problematic at the Bellevue-Stratford Hotel when the HVAC engineers directed intake air flow over the top of the condensate discharge from the evaporator units.  Masks collect moisture.

Considering the whole of the findings of this investigation, perform a probabilistic risk analysis for various populations wearing masks under various conditions (including people who have a low oxygen saturation level anyway).  After coming to agreement between the entirety of the committee of experts, prepare a formal report under the authority of a professional engineer’s seal and signature.  Publish all mathematical models, data and test results for peer review.  I want this seal because the researchers have nothing to lose if the contents are wrong.  A professional engineer has his reputation and livelihood to lose.

Only then are you doing science.  Only then will I believe anything you have to say.

Nothing has changed, and no one to date has done anything even remotely approaching real science on this matter.  Everything thus far has been fake.  I do science.  I know fake science when I see it.


Comments

  1. On June 4, 2020 at 11:28 pm, Herschel Smith said:

    BTW, you’ll have to contract a reputable CFD engineering firm to carry out at least some of this analysis. Otherwise, your analysis is crap.

  2. On June 5, 2020 at 5:31 am, Tom said:

    Thank you for continuing to provide a viewpoint based on facts.

  3. On June 5, 2020 at 7:47 am, Fred said:

    Sigh. The plan would appear to be a shutdown again, if not this fall then next. You have mere months to get your health in order, including dental. Do it now.

  4. On June 5, 2020 at 10:17 am, Elmo said:

    “… and that a distance of 2 metres could be more effective.”

    Kind of like the sea levels could rise 6 feet by the end of the century.
    The science is settled. 97% of scientists agree.

    ‘Could’ is Crap. And Crap is King in both today’s science and news reporting.

    Thanks. I feel better now.

  5. On June 5, 2020 at 10:54 am, penses said:

    “No new COVID-19 cases from Lake of the Ozarks crowds, Missouri health director says”

    “Organizers have scrapped plans to mandate social distancing during Pres. Trump’s appearance at a July 3rd Mount Rushmore fireworks display. South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem says they won’t limit the crowd due to coronavirus concerns.”

    Planneddemic, and it is Trump’s baby. He endorsed the shutdowns and gave Newsom, Cuomo, et. al. rousing endorsements for shutting down while at the same time chastising those who stayed open (7). The gov’ner of GA was ridiculed for several days by Rump for opening up too early. He has singlehandedly destroyed a zero unemployment economy by abdicating his office and turning the governing power over to medical quacks, big pharma and the Bill Gates/Soros crowd.

    But the American people are the worst offenders. Told to ruin their lives by not going to work, school or church should have started a rebellion. But employers and churches complied with big brothers edicts to the letter and the sheep instead of exercising their constitutional rights, laid down and stayed in a Gulag of their own design, wear masks that are no protection at all and are seeing the country being destroyed from their private prisons.

    Trump is in a world all his own completely separated from reality. This week his Sec.Of Def. said using troops to suppress the rebellion was not necessary. So, just who is the COC? Of course the Military may show up and end up taking a knee just like the Nat’l Guard, giving Americans even more reason to prepare for the inevitable.

    And be aware the same officers who told the Guard to kneel will be coming after the vigilantes next.

    PS: The commies went after a children’s hospital in Houston this week.

  6. On June 6, 2020 at 6:54 am, Fr. John+ said:

    Yeah, right. And now we find that THE premier ‘study’ on the efficacy of a cheap and already past patent medicine, was FLAWED!?
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jun/03/covid-19-surgisphere-who-world-health-organization-hydroxychloroquine

    Thousands of people DIED because some perverts and AIDS activists (Fauci) wanted to make Gates’ a quadruple gazillionaire, instead? Son of a …….

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