“To live with this virus, not to live in fear of it”

Tuan Nguyen
4 min readAug 24, 2021

That is what our Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, and I totally agree with his view. It is time to think of an exit strategy from lockdown.

Last weekend, there were mass protests on anti-lockdown across Australia. Although I don’t condone the aggressive behavior of some protesters, I do think that we as a society must listen to their objection.

In the mean time, Australia’s lockdowns have become a sort of laughing stock around the world. Watch this video clip and you know why.

Sydney is well into the 10th week of lockdown. Melbourne is now going through another lockdown. Currently, more than half of the Australian population are in fact in lockdown. Yet, the number of cases keeps increasing, not decreasing. Figure 1 below shows that the number of positive cases in New South Wales has now passed the 800 mark! And, the more tests are done, the more positive cases will be recorded (Figure 2). So, judging in terms of the case statistics, it seems that lockdown has no appreciable effect in reducing the spread of the virus.

Figure 1: Number of covid cases since early June 2021. Lockdowns have not reduced the number of cases.
Figure 2: The relationship between the number of cases and the number of tests

Has lockdown reduced covid-related mortality? Well, the answer is No. Before and during lockdown, the 7-day average of deaths has been around 3, and this trend has remained virtually constant.

Overall, the number of deaths is still low (948 by 24/8/2021), and the vast majority of deaths occurred in people aged 60 years and older presumably with comorbidities. I have not done any analysis, but my gut feeling is that the number of Covid19-related deaths is not that excess compared with background death rate in the general population. Actually, the number of Covid-related deaths in Australia is far lower than that of influenza and pneumonia which totalled 4,124 deaths in 2019 (See table below)

Number of deaths attributed to influenza and pneumonia in Australia from 2010 to 2019.

Showing those numbers does not in any way mean that I underestimate the seriousness of Covid. It is surely a serious disease. However, other diseases (eg cardiovascular…

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Tuan Nguyen

osteoporosis | epidemiology | genetics | biostatistics | data enthusiast