Sachi Kuhananthan, MD, a retired physician from El Paso, began posting on nextdoor.com‘s health and nutrition section a little over a month ago. His posts were well-received, garnering unanimously positive comments and becoming among the most popular items on the site—until August 13, when he posted a brief article entitled “Scams and Lies Related to COVID19.” Hours after posting the article, Dr. Kuhananthan discovered that his post had been removed and his account had been suspended for four days, allegedly for “violating terms of service.”
Dr. Kuhananthan immigrated to the US from Sri Lanka in part because of America’s reputation for freedom of expression. Now, he says, “All of a sudden I am feeling like I am living in Russia or North Korea.”
Here is an updated version of Dr. Kuhananthan’s post, featuring minor editing but preserving the gist of his argument:
Scams and Lies Related to COVID19
by Sachi Kuhananthan, MD(1)
Our government has reserved and is paying for at least 700 million doses of COVID19 vaccines. Our population is 330 million. Why are we ordering so many? Are we going to vaccinate cats and dogs also? Who is making the money?(2)
The media repeatedly cites “expert” claims that 2% of Americans (about six million people) are infected. Are they ignorant or lying? I estimate that between 25 million and 72 million Americans are already infected.(3)
JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) has a recent article where it claims that the fatality rate for Covid19 is as bad as 1918 Spanish flu. Bunch of nonsense. The Spanish flu killed 50 million worldwide. I expect 2 to 4 million will die from covid19 worldwide. In 1918 the world population was one third of the current population. Therefore the COVID19 fatality rate is only one percent of that of Spanish flu.
Why are our government and AMA lying and misinforming the public? Profit motive? You decide.
(1) Board certified in internal medicine and emergency medicine until retirement; MS in Physiology and four year residency from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana.
(2) Also note that by the time a vaccine becomes available a large number will have already been infected. Already-infected people will not need the vaccine. If we assume that 100 million get naturally infected, the remaining 230 million will need the vaccine. That’s 700+ million doses for 230 million people. Even if we assume that two doses are needed for each person, we need only 460 million doses. Also note that to achieve herd immunity we need to vaccinate at most only 60 to 80 percent of the population—possibly much less. That means fewer than 200 million will need to be vaccinated. Therefore 400 million doses will be plenty if we have to give two doses for each person.
(3) Up to 80 percent are asymptomatic and the reported positives of about 6 million will give a figure of 30 million total real infections. I am assuming they have tested only patients with symptoms. One can also estimate the actual number of infections by counting deaths and multiplying by the inverse of the fatality rate, which I estimate could be as low as one in five hundred based on studies I have read. The lowest fatality rate reported was 0.28 percent based on a study of a German town. The total deaths of 165,000 multiplied by 500 leads to the figure of 60 million total infections. If the 165,000 death figure represents a 20% undercount as a JAMA study argues, total infections would be around 72 million.
A study in Montana found a .6 percent (1 in 175) fatality rate which would yield around 25 million total infections nationwide. A New York study found a .5% fatality rate, which would translate to about 30 million infections nationwide. Note that fatality rates have gone down with the average age of people who contact COVID and are expected to continue dropping.
If these numbers are anywhere near correct, herd immunity may not be nearly as far off as alarmist “experts” have stated or implied. That would mean that Dr. Fauci’s claim that we can only reach herd immunity after an “enormous” death toll may be grossly exaggerated—but enormously profitable to the pharmaceutical-industrial complex.