COVID-19 in developing countries

by rootpi1 min read22nd Apr 202010 comments

45

Coronavirus
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Hi all - I thought some folks might be interested in what I wrote for the Washington Post a couple of days ago, which I was encouraged to post here:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2020/04/20/lockdown-developing-world-coronavirus-poverty/

I'm not sure I'm allowed to copy the full text, but if you can't get past the firewall and are curious I'd be happy to email it to you - just let me know.

The short version is roughly that I claim lockdowns are not practical in most low-income countries; even if they were, they probably wouldn't save more lives than they cost (this might be true in rich countries also); and even if they did, they would still be less cost-effective than the types of interventions familiar to the EA community. Of course targeted mitigation measures still make sense, but the optimal strategy is going to look different due to both resource constraints and (perhaps more importantly) different priorities and trade-offs.

-julian