There are no additional benefits of keeping a lockdown - Dr Glenda Gray
The Health Department ministerial advisory council member Dr Glenda Gray over the weekend expressed views that seem to be at odds with government decisions in relation to certain aspects of how the COVID-19 pandemic is being contained in South Africa.
On Saturday told News24 that the lockdown has no basis in science and should be lifted.
Speaking to Eusebius McKaiser Gray says the pandemic is six months old and no one knows how it will unfold in various parts of the world.
We have lots of variables that are unknown in South Africa, we have HIV, TB, non-communicable diseases and issues of diabetes, hypertension and obesity. We have no way of knowing how this virus will interact with those immune systems and how our demographics will interact with the virus.Dr Glenda Gray, Ministerial advisory council member - Health Department
The country needs to realise that it has no way of predicting how the virus will deal with that data, she says.
As the data emerges, we see that there are things we can predict. We know that the older you get, the more susceptible you are and if you have comorbidities you are more vulnerable. That additional data can give us some guidance about how to manage the virus but it doesn't give us the gateway to success.Dr Glenda Gray, Ministerial advisory council member - Health Department
She says she believes the minister of health and the health department have a job ahead of them.
When we make comments about some of the regulations, they are not directed at the minister of health or his department. Their job is to make sure that hospitals are ready for this pandemic. The grey areas come in the narrative of regulations. My issues have been around the regulations. As a pediatrician, I don't know why my child can't go to the shop to buy a car with me.Dr Glenda Gray, Ministerial advisory council member - Health Department
She says there is no science in the regulations around keeping children out of school and not buying open-toe shoes.
E-commerce doesn't cause COVID-19 and making people exercise from 6am to 9am causes congestion. There were compelling reasons for the lockdown. But there comes a time when the value of the lockdown becomes negligible and we are at that stage of the pandemic.Dr Glenda Gray, Ministerial advisory council member - Health Department
The country needs to make the best decisions based on science, she says.
Let the children out, they wont be adversely affected, protect the vulnerable and keep them safe and let us go out and do what we do. But we have reached a point of no longer having additional benefits of keeping the lockdown.Dr Glenda Gray, Ministerial advisory council member - Health Department
She says the ban on cigarettes is therefore not going to stop the smoking of cigarettes and nicotine addicts finding cigarettes illegally.
The addiction is too hard to manage, and people will buy it illegally, more expensively even if that means less food, she says.
Prohibiting cigarettes will not stop people from smoking it means people will go out and find it somewhere else.Dr Glenda Gray, Ministerial advisory council member - Health Department
Listen below to the full conversation:
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