Dr Carpen has seen the light

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Dear editor,

I was more than happy to read that Dr. Carpen had his  belated eureka moment. For three months ago I argued that the variants were in Guyana, a month ago the PAHO representative concurred but now Dr. Carpen, just awaken from his somnolent state, to echo the same sentiments.

But having done so, he has publicly demonstrated his foot fetish by placing all of it in his mouth. For faced with the issue of the airports closing to prevent more Covid breaching our stratosphere, Dr. Carpen proclaimed that will not be happening even as he proceeded to support his position with his facts.

For argumentation as lame as a paralytic limb , Dr Carpen articulated the following.


1. Trinidad and Tobago lockdown is a failure: That’s far from the truth. Trinidad has a population of 1.5 millions with 211 Covid deaths. Guyana has a population of 750 thousand with 325 deaths. If we are to do the maths, if Guyana had the population of Trinidad, we would have had 650 deaths. Isn’t that Covid success by Trinidad? Further, the UK airports have be closed since February and in tandem with vaccination has reduced UK Covid deaths to an all time low.

2. Trinidad locked their airports but still has the variants. This is clearly the consequence of a simple mind trying to understand complex matters.

Dr. Carpen, when variants are detected in any given country it is likely that they there for a while. The fact is, the variants on arrival take time to announce their presence therefore when their presence is confirmed by testing, it is likely they were there for months. Therefore, closing Trinidad’s airports at that point, to keep the variant out, would have been futile.

But that’s not the point Dr. Carpen. You are conflating the issues. Closing the airports is not meant to keep the variants out of Guyana, it is an attempt to stop more variants and Covid from entering. Surely, this complex rationalisation is one for my cerebral cortex. Hypothetic alert: If GPHC is flooded with patients what would a sensible medical director do if discharges and other measures failed? He would lock the hospital down to new patients, treat all present inpatients and when patients numbers are back to a safe level then reopen the hospital. Clearly, Guyana is bursting with Covid and her variants. Closing the airports and having lockdowns would result in less Covid and variants in the streets to infect. Treating or isolating those infected would result in reduction of Covid cases and deaths. That’s the point Dr. Carpen. No one is that stupid, apart from the Quintet, in trying to keep out variants which are so long present to have acquired Guyanese accent.

3. Natural history of diseases: let me break this down for Dr. Carpen. The natural history of a disease is the course of the disease from onset to resolution of symptoms, excluding complications. For Covid, the natural history is one of flu like symptoms for a few days with decreasing symptomatology in two weeks. I pursued this preamble to express umbrage with Dr. Carpen describing our Covid crisis as a natural epidemiological history. Dr. Carpen you are wrong. Let me state the “N” word you rather not hear. This is not natural history rather it is negligence by PPP. Months ago when I argued that increasing cases and deaths were as a result of under testing, you argued that PPP increased testing is now identifying APNU+AFC under testing. In effect you argued the case that increase testing leads to increase deaths. When I argued that PPP is lax with their Covid management, you defended them. When I argued that the donated vaccines are useless you sit quietly without standing up for the poor. Not that you stand up for the poor anyway. The fact is, PPP were being warned of this crisis months ago but every time I did, PPP would send out one member of their quintet to spew propaganda.
But you and the quintet have just one problem; there is medical scholar looking over your shoulders.


Dr Mark Devonish MBBS MSc. Med. Ed. FRCP(Edin)  FRCP

Consultant Acute Medicine

Nottingham University Hospital

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