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A Johns Hopkins study says 'ill-founded' COVID lockdowns did more harm than good

Virus Outbreak California
Eric Risberg
/
The Florida Channel
Lisa Kreyer holds up a sign during a protest by hair salon owners and workers against lockdown orders in 2020, in San Rafael, Calif. A study has concluded that lockdowns “are ill-founded and should be rejected as a pandemic policy instrument.”

The researchers say lockdowns had no noticeable effect on reducing COVID-related deaths and a "devastating effect" on economies and social ills.

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have concluded that lockdowns have done little to reduce COVID deaths but have had “devastating effects” on economies and numerous social ills.

The study, titled “A Literature Review and Meta-Analysis of the Effects of Lockdowns on COVID-19 Mortality,” said lockdowns in Europe and the U.S. reduced COVID-19 deaths by 0.2 percent.

Shelter-in-place orders were also ineffective, reducing COVID-19 mortality by 2.9%, the study said.

“We find no evidence that lockdowns, school closures, border closures, and limiting gatherings have had a noticeable effect on COVID-19 mortality,” the researchers wrote in the report, issued Monday.

The study concluded that lockdowns “are ill-founded and should be rejected as a pandemic policy instrument.”

“They have contributed to reducing economic activity, raising unemployment, reducing schooling, causing political unrest, contributing to domestic violence, and undermining liberal democracy,” the report said.

The study was written by Jonas Herby, Lars Jonung and Steve H. Hanke of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health and the Study of Business Enterprise.

Read the study below.

I’m the online producer for Health News Florida, a collaboration of public radio stations and NPR that delivers news about health care issues.