Dear Premier Kenney,
Many Albertans, myself included, commended you on your previous commitment to a balanced approach to protecting Albertans from COVID-19, while at the same time not completely abrogating our freedoms and rights such as free speech, peaceful assembly, association and our ability to earn a living and care for our families.
Yesterday you imposed new lockdown measures which severely limit and, in some cases, shut down entirely many social, family, friendship, spiritual, recreational and entertainment pursuits that Albertans rely on for their well-being, just as you did in the spring.
While you have commendably spared small businesses from suffering the complete shut-down they experienced this past spring (and your apology for this mistake is laudable and honourable), it seems that you have not learned much from the lockdown harms which Albertans experienced earlier this year.
The evidence that you provided for this lockdown is both suspect and incomplete and does a disservice to Albertans who deserve more from you. A major tenet of the Hippocratic Oath that physicians like myself ascribe to is “First Do No Harm”, which is ignored by this imposed lockdown.
Is it too late to correct this lockdown error? No, not if you are willing to be better informed.
We have learned a great deal since the onset of this pandemic, much of which is the result of how different regions and countries have attempted to control the spread of COVID-19 and treat those infected.
Now we know who is at greatest risk and have proven effective therapies for those who are seriously ill, as reported by the National Institute of Health on Dec 3, 2020 https://www.covid19treatmentguidelines.nih.gov/whats-new/; and we are on the cusp of mass immunization consequent to multiple vaccines soon to be available worldwide.
The public should be re-assured, rather than locked down.
Within the last few weeks, new evidence informs a more nuanced approach to better protect Albertans without unintended and unacceptable consequences, such as defined in the excellent recommendations of the Great Barrington Declaration, further addressed below.
I acknowledge with reverence those Albertans who have passed on from COVID-19, just as I acknowledge many others like Jerry Dunham who have died because lockdowns prevented their access to healthcare for very serious non-COVID-19 illnesses and conditions.
I acknowledge the many with despair who have died from suicide and drug overdose. We now know that lockdowns are more lethal than Covid-19 https://www.jccf.ca/government-data-shows-lockdowns-more-deadly-than-COVID-19, and must learn from what has transpired to ensure we do NOT continue to make the same mistakes: https://www.hsgac.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Bhattacharya12-08-2020.pdf
Were you not informed of these facts, or did you simply ignore them?
Please consider the following evidence and unintended consequences that should give you courage to retract the restrictions:
1.) We are nowhere close to overwhelming our healthcare system. As of Dec 9, 2020, there were 654 COVID-19 patients in 8500 beds, or 7.7 per cent of capacity.
There were only 112 patients in 272 ICU beds, or 41.2 per cent of operational capacity, however you have stated publicly that the ICU capacity can be increased to 1,081 beds.
This implies that, at present, only 10.4 per cent of potential ICU beds are filled: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/alberta-all-about-icus-covid-19-critical-care-1.5723342.
Have you evaluated what percentage of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 are actually in hospital because of COVID-19, as opposed to with COVID-19, wherein it is the underlying disease that is the actual reason for the admission?
The public deserves to know.
Have you evaluated the percentage of patients who died with, but not from COVID-19?
This information is extremely important to share with the public who deserve a fair and balanced presentation of the facts to both prevent fear and panic, as well as garner buy-in of government policy.
Are you aware that the PCR test for COVID-19 has a false positive rate of up to 50 per cent according to the CDC (USA Center for Disease Control), and up to 90 per cent by other sources? https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/antibody-tests-for-covid-19-wrong-up-to-half-the-time-cdc-says-1.4956506 and https://academic.oup.com/cid/advance-article/doi/10.1093/cid/ciaa1764/6018217 and https://www.zerohedge.com/medical/first-time-us-state-will-require-disclosure-pcr-test-cycle-data.
Are you aware of how many people have died or become seriously compromised because they could not access healthcare for non-COVID-19 disease, including treatments for heart disease, cancer, and other life-threatening problems?
Lockdowns are more lethal than COVID-19, which cannot be over-emphasized. https://www.jccf.ca/government-data-shows-lockdowns-more-deadly-than-covid-19.
Do you not think that the public should know this?
Are you aware of how many people have committed suicide due to government-imposed lockdowns and the shuttering of businesses, schools, colleges, and universities? Have you tried to find out?
Do you believe that it is ethically and morally appropriate for government to pick winners and losers by defining what is an essential versus a non-essential business, or activity such as, but not limited to, social, recreational, fitness-related, or spiritual pursuits?
Are you fully aware of the magnitude of the economic devastation Alberta has sustained, and that we are spiralling down rapidly to a have-not province, according to the Fraser Institute? https://calgaryherald.com/opinion/columnists/corbella-alberta-likely-to-be-a-have-not-province-soon-and-thats-bad-for-canada
Are you aware of how many divorces have occurred consequent to lockdowns and loss of income?
What about the increase in domestic abuse, family violence and increase of substance abuse?
Are you aware of the short- and long-term effects on the mental health of our most vulnerable, including our children?
Have you been apprised of how much crime has increased due to people becoming desperate just to stay alive?
Finally, in the interests of transparency, please provide the information highlighted above to all