We had forecast this when politicians first locked down nations, and now it’s a fact.
Research conducted by Johns Hopkins University, which was released last week but barely got any coverage, shows the global shutdown of economies by governments has created massive suffering to millions of children worldwide.
The study specifically points to hunger and malnutrition causing the deaths of 10,000 children per month along with stunting the growth of some 550,000 more every month.
Published in the medical journal Lancet, it opens with: “The unprecedented global social and economic crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic poses grave risks to the nutritional status and survival of young children in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs).”
The report went on to state, “Of particular concern is an expected increase in child malnutrition, including wasting, due to steep declines in household incomes; changes in the availability and affordability of nutritious foods; and interruptions to health, nutrition, and social protection services.”
Commenting on the report, Henrietta Fore, Executive Director of UNICEF, said, “It’s been seven months since the first COVID-19 cases were reported, and it is increasingly clear that the repercussions of the pandemic are causing more harm to children than the disease itself.”
While hunger and malnutrition were a serious global issue before the virus, evidence is mounting that government shutdowns have made this problem worse. Ms. Fore writes, “UNICEF reports from the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic suggest a 30% reduction in the coverage of essential nutrition services in LMICs and declines of 75-100% under lockdown contexts.”
As dire as the hunger and malnutrition consequences of the global shutdown have proven to be based on known data, the Johns Hopkins University study concludes the situation will likely become even more severe:
“The wasting-focused estimates we present here are likely to be conservative, given that the duration of this crisis is unknown, and its full impacts on food, health, and social protection systems are yet to be realized. The disruption of other health services during lockdowns will further compromise maternal and child health and mortality.”
Summing up the global harm caused by hard government shutdowns, the head of UNICEF’s nutrition program, Victor Aguayo, stated, “By having schools closed, by having primary healthcare services disrupted, by having nutritional programs dysfunctional, we are also creating harm.”
The probability that the “cure” chosen by governments worldwide to shut down will likely end up causing more harm than the coronavirus itself is not new news.
TREND FORECAST: One of our “2020 Top Trends” was “New World Disorder.” In 2019, uprisings, riots, and demonstrations were breaking out across the globe as millions were taking to the streets in protest against lack of basic living standards, crime, violence, and government corruption.
While many nations used the virus outbreak to shut down the protests, the issues in which they were rebelling against – economic hardship, crime, violence, government corruption – have greatly worsened as a result of the lockdowns.
As we have forecast, with few exceptions, such as Hong Kong, where Beijing is in full control, as socioeconomic conditions further deteriorate, national uprisings will evolve into civil wars, many of them spreading into neighboring countries.