From Wired’s Roxanne Khamsi piece on November 16th, 2020.
New Yorkers are still puzzling over a new, state-wide rule that bars, restaurants, and gyms must close at 10 pm to stop the spread of Covid. Was this based on some brand-new evidence that the virus mutates like a gremlin, getting worse at night? You wouldn’t know it from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s announcement, which did not cite any research whatsoever that might justify this policy. The announcement did claim, however, that New York uses “more science than any state in the nation.”From Wired, https://www.wired.com/story/a-lack-of-transparency-is-undermining-pandemic-policy/
I’ve seen this happen again and again since the start of the pandemic: a new, “science-based” Covid-19 measure is prescribed, but the science in support of it is either vague or missing altogether. Just last week, for example, I was working on a story about the latest research into quarantine procedures. The best data to this point suggests that an eight-day stretch of quarantine, combined with a Covid test, provides the same level of protection as the traditional 14-day quarantine. But then I saw New York state’s new policy: Some people who arrived from out of state are allowed to quarantine for just four days. I asked New York’s Department of Health how they’d come to this decision, and they sent me another statement from Cuomo, in which he said only that he’d “worked with global health experts” on the plan. A formal guidance from the state health department gave no research citations, either, but it did find space to boast about New York’s record of “strict adherence to data-driven, evidence-based protocols.”
Read the full Wired article here: https://www.wired.com/story/a-lack-of-transparency-is-undermining-pandemic-policy/