Jan. 19, 2022

When the cure becomes worse than the disease

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has a tough row to hoe. She’s a medical expert but not an economist. The latest extension of her shutdown Health Orders has many British Columbians scratching their heads.

One word from her impacts many lives. At times she appears to be in over her head as the pandemic spins out of control. More balls in the air than she can handle? As this drags on, more and more people are questioning her orders. 

The mandates have a far greater impact than just shutting down a virus pandemic. The shut downs are leading to business failures, an inability to hire staff, and an inability to plan operations from day to day. The supply chain is broken down – granted, part of that is federal jurisdiction.

The education system is disrupted by unclear and often conflicting pronouncements. School districts and teachers don’t know whether they are coming or going. Masks, vaccine passports, classroom learning or online classes?

Dr. Henry’s public health orders as based on numbers – the rising hospital counts are more than health staff can handle. Burnout has become a serious issue. The tests which she bases her decisions on are flawed. She says many of them are unreliable, giving false readings. She has also changed how the figures are arrived at, conceding they are likely inaccurate and probably much higher.

She has been on top of the pandemic for a couple of years with overwhelming public support, but as with everything, there comes a time when support for that leadership fades with the public simply weary of the uncertainty, a lack of confidence in the system, disagreement over personal rights and our basic freedoms.

At what point is the cure worse than the disease?