This New York Times article shows how the W.H.O., the CDC and other scientists took so long to get it right.
The first article written by a scientist that a layman can understand without any political undertones.
Kudos go to Dr. Zeynep Tufekciz, a contributing New York Times opinion writer for revealing the snafus about how the World Health Organization and a vast array of “experts” got it wrong when they issued sweeping, far over-reaching demands that they said were essential (and undebatable for some) for fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
Only a week ago did the W.H.O. and the Centers for Disease Control finally get around to saying what other scientists long have argued: That the virus is spread not only by droplets, but also by aerosols.
I’ll let Tufekciz explain it in the opening paragraphs of her article:
A few sentences have shaken a century of science.
A week ago, more than a year after the World Health Organization declared that we face a pandemic, a page on its website titled “Coronavirus Disease (Covid-19): How Is It Transmitted?” got a seemingly small update.
The agency’s response to that question had been that “current evidence suggests that the main way the virus spreads is by respiratory droplets” — which are expelled from the mouth and quickly fall to the ground — “among people who are in close contact with each other.”The revised response still emphasizes transmission in close contact but now says it may be via aerosols — smaller respiratory particles that can float — as well as droplets. It also adds a reason the virus can also be transmitted “in poorly ventilated and/or crowded indoor settings,” saying this is because “aerosols remain suspended in the air or travel farther than 1 meter.”
The change didn’t get a lot of attention. There was no news conference, no big announcement.
Then, on Friday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also updated its guidance on Covid-19, clearly saying that inhalation of these smaller particles is a key way the virus is transmitted, even at close range, and put it on top of its list of how the disease spreads.
There was no news conference by the C.D.C. either.
The implications, as Tufekciz goes on, is eye-opening. It should be a lesson for elected and non-elected government officials long, need to question the demands imposed on them by experts.
It’s also a valuable lesson against assuming that “consensus” equals good science. About how scientific understanding develops and moves forward. About how good science requires an open mind.
Some scientists might argue with this article and that’s fine. That’s part of science. The truth about the pandemic is that everyone began this journey with a blank slate. The virus is called “novel” for a reason.
But there is no overlooking the unprecedented and historic response: The analysis of the virus and the miraculous creation of a vaccine to fight it. That’s not the only miracle: the logistics for distributing the vaccine were mind-boggling.
So praise or blame whomever you want for whatever reason you want. But patiently read this informative article for a better understanding of this complex issue.