Thursday, September 10, 2020

Harvard weighs in (with the help of Vox) on how to mitigate the coronavirus risk in your life (and some profound ethical questions about expecting sacrifices from young adults)


Ezra Klein presents an interview with Harvard epidemiologist Julia Marcus, “How to think about coronavirus risk in your life” with subtitle “A Harvard epidemiologist offers a framework for making key life decisions while managing pandemic risk”, on Vox. 

Marcus notes that young adults on campuses are being expected to make a personal sacrifice for other people, that may not be recoverable (in terms of missed experiences) and that was demanded suddenly.  I could go back and compare all this to the moral uncertainties of the military draft and student deferments in the Vietnam eras.

A colleague of Marcus, Michael Mina, an epidemiologist at Harvard, is proposing a system of Rapid Testing that could provide a roadmap to getting things reopened safely, but that leaves complicated compliance questions open.

Harvard student John Fish had mentioned in a recent video that he would be taking (virtually) a course n ethics and the pandemic this fall.  That might be taught in part by Marcus. 

 Kenneth Chang of the New York Times describes a "rapid test" strategy at the University of Illinois, and yet some students who test positive seem to party on, like it was just survival of the fittest. 

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