Lancet Editor Slams Government for Listening to his Advice

A Question Time rant from Lancet editor Richard Horton is doing the rounds this morning after he savaged the “national scandal” of “being in this position. We knew in the last week of January that this was coming – the message from China was absolutely clear that a new virus with pandemic potential was hitting cities.” Hindsight is a wonderful thing…

Richard claims the message by the end of January from China was absolutely clear – why then, in late January, did he Tweet:

The WHO at the time downplayed the possibility of Coronavirus becoming a global pandemic, and parroted the Chinese authorities ‘findings’ that there was no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission. Something Horton called “clear and confident”…

Richard’s own journal, The Lancet, included a report on the effects of Coronavirus in China published weeks later in the February edition, which said “2019-nCoV still needs to be studied deeply in case it becomes a global health threat” – implying they did not, at the time, see the virus as a global health threat. Richard is arguing that governments around the world should have seen what he, the editor of one of the world’s premier medical journals, only sees in retrospect…

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