Amid conflicting pandemic modelling, stay home anyway
Testing has been sporadic — in some places, shambolic — and everyone agrees that many cases never reach official notice
Wishful thinking is a powerful thing. When I read about a new disease-modelling study from the University of Oxford I desperately wanted to believe. It is the most prominent exploration of the tip-of-the-iceberg hypothesis, which suggests that most coronavirus infections are so mild as to have passed unrecorded by the authorities and perhaps even unnoticed by the people infected.
If true, many of us — perhaps most of us in Europe — have already had the virus and probably developed some degree of immunity. If true, the lockdowns have served a valuable purpose in easing an overwhelming strain on intensive care units, but they will soon become unnecessary. If true. But is it true?