Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Stratification of shielding

Is stratified shielding from covid-19 feasible and ethical?

BMJ 2020; 370 doi: (Published 07 July 2020) Cite this as: BMJ 2020;370:m2660
  1. Irene Petersen, professor of epidemiology and health informatics
  1. Department of Primary Care and Population Health, Institute of Epidemiology and Health Care, University College London, London, UK
  1. i.petersen{at}

The concept of stratified shielding from covid-19 is interesting but complex and potentially unethical to implement in practice. As described by Davey Smith and Spiegelhalter,1 the risk of covid-19 mortality can be described as a two step process: the risk of getting infected and the risk of dying after infection.

In theory, it would be relatively straightforward to derive a risk prediction …

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