We’ve been urged to “observe the science” so many occasions in the course of the previous six months that we suspect many individuals are rising sick of the recommendation.
Moreover, what if the scientists aren’t following the science? A few of them should not.
Individuals grew to become justifiably suspicious of the World Well being Group earlier this yr, when its officers seemed to be appearing as apologists for Chinese language leaders who weren’t being sincere about COVID-19. Now the United Nations group is drawing fireplace once more.
WHO officers have launched a brand new research suggesting that remdesivir, a drug now being touted for therapy of COVID-19 sufferers, is little or no assist.
Perceive that nobody has referred to as remdesivir a remedy for the illness. Its proponents say solely that it shortens the restoration time of COVID-19 sufferers by 5 days, on common.
WHO officers say their research, involving greater than 11,000 sufferers in 30 international locations, signifies remdesivir doesn’t shorten restoration occasions, nonetheless.
One other research, by the U.S. Nationwide Institutes of Well being, did assist the decrease restoration time conclusion, nonetheless. WHO officers insist their analysis ought to be believed as a result of they used a bigger variety of sufferers. “It’s only a a lot higher-powered research,” one WHO physician insisted.
Finish of story? No.
Critics of the WHO research level out shortcomings in the way it was carried out. For instance, WHO medical doctors administered 10-day programs of remdesivir, which means some sufferers could have been hospitalized longer than mandatory merely with the intention to end being handled — whether or not they required that or not.
And, WHO’s critics add, there was no use of placebos. COVID-19 sufferers and their medical doctors knew what sorts of therapy they had been receiving, starting from remdesivir to hydroxychloroquine. That alone is a severe disadvantage to any well being care research.
So, who’s proper and who’s flawed about remdesivir? That could be a troubling query — and one that ought to remind us merely “following the science” is dangerous recommendation. All of it will depend on which “science” we depend on, and that isn’t a comforting thought.
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