Oxford University professor Sunetra Gupta, an epidemiologist, has been tagged ‘Professor Reopen’ for her argument against lockdowns as a countermeasure against the Covid-19 pandemic. In a conversation with Hindustan Times, professor Gupta explained why most people won’t need a Covid-19 vaccine and how lockdowns are not a long-term solution to contain the spread of coronavirus.
“What we’ve seen is that in normal, healthy people, who are not elderly or frail or don’t have comorbidities, this virus is not something to worry about no more than how we worry about flu,” professor Gupta told HT.She said that the vaccine, when it will come into existence, will be used to support the vulnerable, “most of us don’t need to worry about coronavirus,” she said.
Gupta said that she thinks the coronavirus pandemic will end naturally and will become part of our lives just like influenza.
“Hopefully with a lower death toll than influenza. I think it is fairly easy to make a vaccine for coronavirus. By the end of this summer, we should have proof that the vaccine works,” she added.
The professor described the lockdown as a sensible measure but not enough to keep the virus out for long.
“A lockdown is a noble and a sensible idea to keep the virus out but is very difficult to put in place without non-pharmaceutical interventions,” she stated.
Gupta said what has been described as the second wave of the virus outbreak is essentially the first wave reaching a different geographical region.“However, there have been countries that have successfully managed to implement the lockdown and are now facing a resurgence of the virus,” she noted.