Dr. Scott Atlas, former chief of neuroradiology at Stanford University Medical Center and a senior fellow at Stanford’s Hoover Institution, criticized politicians and policy makers who seemingly aren’t taking the latest “data” into account when making coronavirus-related decisions.
Appearing on Monday evening’s “The Story with Martha MacCallum,” Atlas reacted to Fox News anchor Martha MacCallum’s summary of how ongoing demonstrations sparked by the death of George Floyd are “encouraged” while businesses and churches remain closed in some states.
“I think the big question is really why these businesses and schools are closed to begin with,” Atlas said. “Really, there is an obvious denial of the science data.”
The Stanford doctor pointed to a recent World Health Organization (WHO) statement about asymptomatic coronavirus transmission being “very rare,” a fact that “means the universities and the schools should open.”
Pointing to several countries opening up, Atlas explained that the “bizarre fixation on stopping cases” is the wrong approach when cases that “require hospitalizations” or are fatal are “the only thing that matters.”
“When we open up, we are going to have more infections if there is contagious disease present,” he said. “When we test more, there will be more cases. That is not the issue. The issue is to make sure those people don’t get super sick or die getting infected. That’s the point. That is the denial of the science going on here with these closures.”
MacCallum conceded that she was concerned “about asymptomatic spread” at first. “Why was that sold so strongly when obviously, they didn’t know in the beginning whether it was true?” she asked.
Atlas cited the “tremendous amount of fear” at the beginning of the pandemic that impacted “decision-making.”
“There’s all kinds of things,” he said, citing the lack of science behind even the 6 feed social distancing regulation in the U.S. as well as the desire for universal masking. (RELATED: Staying In Place Is ‘Actually Harmful’: Stanford’s Scott Atlas Makes The Case For Herd Immunity)
“Nobody gives, by the way, publicity to the WHO’s recommendation. ‘They do not recommend masks for the general public.’ Even in their updated note if you bother to read their whole technical note, they say that, and they are talking about the only time you wear a mask is if you are at risk, high-risk group in an area of widespread transmission of the disease and when you cannot be 3 feet away from someone,” he concluded. “There is a tremendous amount of fear and there is a lot of smart people using what I would call sloppy thinking here.”