Top European Doc – No Evidence Masks Work, 3173
Good evening, I’m still reporting on masks.
Denmark has one of the lowest COVID-19 death rates in the world. As of last week, only 616 death according to Johns Hopkins.
Every year, 3 times as many people die of pneumonia or influenza in Denmark.
Not surprisingly, almost no one in Denmark wears face masks. Recently this prompted the nation’s oldest newspaper to complain that Danes were to the right of Trump on the mask issue. But if it’s working, why change it?
Well Danish public health officials have responded. According to an article last week in the Foundation for Economic Education – or FEE – Danish public health officials believe that there is little conclusive evidence that face masks work to help limit the spread of respiratory viruses.
The chief physician at Denmark’s Rigshospitale, Henning Bundgaard, put it this way:
“All these countries recommending face masks haven’t made their decisions based on new studies.”
Europe is divided on the face mask issue.
Finland and the Netherlands agree with Denmark. Eighty to 90% of their population says they never wear masks when they go out, but 80-90% of the people in Spain and Italy say they always wear masks when they go out.
The top public health official in the Netherlands, Medical Care Minister Tamara van Ark does not even recommend mask wearing.
“From a medical point of view, there is no evidence of a medical effect of wearing face masks, so we decided not to impose a national obligation."
Coen Berends, the spokesman for Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment agrees:
“Face masks in public places are not necessary, based on all the current evidence. There is no benefit and there may even be negative impact.”
This position is shared by the Netherlands’ Outbreak Management Team. It first ruled against masks in May and has re-evaluated the evidence several times, including last week.
Christian Hoebe, a professor of infectious diseases in Maastricht and a member of the Outbreak Management Team, points to a Norwegian study showing that it would take 200,000 people wearing surgical masks for one week to stop a single COVID-19 case.
In Sweden, a nation that was all-in for depending on herd immunity from the start, COVID-19 deaths have now slowed to a crawl.
According to Anders Tegnell, Sweden’s top infectious disease expert:
“With numbers diminishing very quickly in Sweden, we see no point in wearing a face mask in Sweden, not even on public transport.”
Even in the U.S. the science is increasing that face masks are not effective.
According to Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal, in an Aug. 4th Opinion piece entitled: The Hidden Dangers of Masks:
“None of the six trials published over the past decade found that masks alone had a significant effect on the spread of the flu or similar illnesses in health-care workers or the general population. The only trial with reusable cloth masks suggested they’re ineffective. They could even increase the risk.”
I’m still reporting from just outside the citadel of American freedom. Good day.
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