web analytics

Johns Hopkins Professor Says…Lockdowns Didn’t Help?

Last week a client came in and the first thing he said to me was “have you heard about that new Johns Hopkins study that just came out?” “No, I haven’t” I told him. 

“I just heard about it on the radio.  They found that lockdowns didn’t do anything to keep people from dying of COVID,” he said. 

We went on to talk about this for a while and when I got home that night, I began reading about it.  The study was done by a professor at Johns Hopkins University, and a “working paper” of it was posted on the school’s website. The man leading the study is economics professor, Steve Hanke.  Steve was interested in discovering whether the trillions of dollars spent to enact lockdown measures, combined with the massive economic consequences, were “worth it” based on its total impact on saving lives. He and his research team performed what is called a “meta-analysis” of 24 medical studies on lockdowns and published a 62-page summary paper.  

Here is the link his paper- A Literature Review of The Effects of Lockdowns on COVID-19 Mortality 

The abstract of his paper reads: “This systematic review and meta-analysis are designed to determine whether there is empirical evidence to support the belief that “lockdowns” reduce COVID-19 mortality. Lockdowns are defined as the imposition of at least one compulsory, non-pharmaceutical intervention (NPI). NPIs are any government mandate that directly restrict peoples’ possibilities, such as policies that limit internal movement, close schools and businesses, and ban international travel. This study employed a systematic search and screening procedure in which 18,590 studies are identified that could potentially address the belief posed. After three levels of screening, 34 studies ultimately qualified. Of those 34 eligible studies, 24 qualified for inclusion in the meta-analysis. They were separated into three groups: lockdown stringency index studies, shelter-in-place order (SIPO) studies, and specific NPI studies. An analysis of each of these three groups support the conclusion that lockdowns have had little to no effect on COVID-19 mortality. More specifically, stringency index studies find that lockdowns in Europe and the United States only reduced COVID-19 mortality by 0.2% on average. SIPOs were also ineffective, only reducing COVID-19 mortality by 2.9% on average. Specific NPI studies also find no broad-based evidence of noticeable effects on COVID-19 mortality. While this meta-analysis concludes that lockdowns have had little to no public health effects, they have imposed enormous economic and social costs where they have been adopted. In consequence, lockdown policies are ill-founded and should be rejected as a pandemic policy instrument.”  

If you don’t want to read all 62 pages, here is a succinct article explaining more about its content- Lockdowns Only Reduced Deaths By 0.2 Percent, Study Finds 

Not surprisingly, in recent days the paper has come under scrutiny.  Critics have said that you can’t trust a preprint paper, that the researchers aren’t doctors and therefore shouldn’t be trusted, and so on.   I get where they are coming from and I’m sure there is more research needed to be completely conclusive, but you don’t have to be a doctor or have peer review oversight to simply take the summaries of 24 different studies (done by qualified medical professionals) and interpret the findings as either positive or negative.  In fact, if you want to see the summaries of the studies they used in the analysis- check out pages 15-23 of the 62-page paper.  

Anyway, forgive me if I’m being controversial by sharing this, but since I didn’t see it covered much in mainstream media, I figured I’d tell you about it so you could draw your own conclusions. 

Blessings and love!


Comments are closed.