Israeli Defense Minister: Herd Immunity Could End Coronavirus Pandemic, But Must Isolate ‘Elderly Population’

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Israeli Defense Minister Naftali Bennett laid out a plan to fight the coronavirus pandemic through a combination of herd immunity and isolating the most vulnerable.

“The single most important insight of the entire coronavirus epidemic,” Bennett said in a Ministry of Defense video posted Saturday, “is to separate old people from younger people.”


“The single most lethal combination is when a grandma hugs her grandson,” he continued. “What we need over the next period of time is take care of grandma and grandpa, but from far away. Lots of Whatsapps and Skypes and you name it. Bring them food, clean the box before you leave and then they take it into their house, but do not enter the house, do not hug them because you’re risking them.”

Bennett contended that the isolation would not last “forever,” but things would clear up “gradually” as the “rest of the population” contracts and becomes immune to the virus.

“What will happen over the next few months gradually the rest of the population – want it or not, the rest of the population is going to get the coronavirus,” the IDF minister said. “Most overwhelming majority of people that will get the coronavirus won’t even know it. It will take three or four weeks. They won’t know they have the virus, and by the end of those four weeks they’ll be immune.”

When “60 or 70 percent of the population” is immune, Bennett argued, “the epidemic is over and then grandma and grandpa can come out.” (RELATED: Tucker Carlson: Shutting Down Economy Poses ‘Its Own Kind Of Public Health Risk’)

Last Saturday, Israel temporarily closed all non-essential stores and eateries in an effort to stop the virus’s spread. The country had 677 coronavirus cases as of Friday.