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Category: Facts and Figures

The children of the pandemic

From 22 February 2021, masks were compulsory in schools. This was justified by an assessment of the epidemiological situation in a press conference of the Ministry of Education on 12 February. A critical examination of this argumentation leads to the question of the proportionality of the measure, and a...

Invasion of the Mutants

Forecasts Professor Dr John P. A. Ioannidis of Stanford University, one of the world’s leading epidemiologists [1], has always viewed scientific research with a critical distance [2]. In epidemiology in general, and the current pandemic in particular, he considers the reliability of predictions to be rather problematic [3]. Among...

The egg, Corona and some news about vaccinations

A year ago, a remarkable article appeared in the British Medical Journal [1]. I wrote about it in more detail in my column in Karger Compass Pneumonology. Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health rehabilitated the egg as a food after more than 50 years of research. No:...

The mathematics of fear

Numbers have probably never played such a dominant role in the public eye as they have since the beginning of the pandemic. Who does not almost instinctively consult the daily results of PCR tests and the occupancy of hospital beds? The statistical interpretation of all these data should make...

Incidence for everybody

In the search for a “reliable” indicator for assessing the current epidemiological situation, pretty much every possible and impossible variable has been used over the years: daily new infections and/or death figures, utilisation of hospital capacities or, for example, the reproduction figure.
 In recent weeks, the good old “7-day...

Pandemic 2020?

Population data for Luxembourg, ordered by age and sex, can be downloaded from https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/population-demography-migration-projections/data/database. Death figures from 1980 to today, ordered by age and sex, are available at https://gd.lu/dXhZ0q.   I’ve dived into these two data series, to gain a clearer understanding of the extent of the so-called pandemic,...

Keep moving, there’s nothing to see here!

Editor’s note: On 05 March 2021, we forwarded this article to the Luxembourg media, assuming that this information would be of interest to them. We would like to thank Mr François Aulner of RTL for taking up our offer, for his interest and for his time. Expressis-Verbis On the official...

Why were we actually taught arithmetics?

Or: how to make headlines nowadays on the basis of absolute numbers and thus spread fear and terror unnecessarily. On 23 February, in typical American dramatic Hollywood style, the newly-appointed Joe Biden and his First Lady went to the White House to commemorate the victims of the Corona pandemic. ...

Statistical Gaslighting [1]

Every Monday, the previous week is statistically concluded with the announcement of the number of positive PCR tests from Sunday. On 01.02.2021 [2] and 08.02.2021 [3], RTL published an article on this. Each time, the article was titled with the statement that the infection figures had increased by 19%...

How (not) to break a wave

It has been said many times that the measures had no impact. This is not true, the measures have had an impact and we see it when we look at the timeline. First, the exponential increase has been broken and this is very important. I cannot say exactly which...