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Should COVID-19 vaccination be mandatory?
  1. Juan Victor Ariel Franco1,2
  1. 1 Editor-in-Chief, BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  2. 2 Research Department, Instituto Universitario Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  1. Correspondence to Dr Juan Victor Ariel Franco, Research Department, Instituto Universitario del Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, 1199 Buenos Aires, Argentina; juanfranco{at}

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Mandates for lockdowns seem to be implemented less hesitantly despite greater uncertainty regarding their supporting evidence and trade-offs.

Some countries have recently introduced a new series of restrictions, including military-enforced lockdowns, to reduce the surge of new cases attributable to the spread of the delta variant.1 Lockdowns may be effective tools to reduce the number of cases, and subsequently death attributable to infectious diseases; however, as a complex intervention, there are important uncertainties as to which of its components may be more effective and what are the ideal triggers for implementing and lifting each restriction.2 In addition, lockdowns and some of their components have sparked heated debates considering the short-term and long-term harms, especially in the area of school closures.3 Moreover, people may comply with lockdown regardless of its mandatory component, although the effect size of these voluntary restrictions might be smaller,4 and there might be substantial differences in the implementation of these interventions targeting complex behavioural changes across different cultures and settings. On the other hand, vaccine uptake has reached a plateau due to vaccine hesitancy in countries where sufficient supply is guaranteed, and this might be a substantial contributor to breakthrough cases in what has been called ‘a pandemic …

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  • Contributors JVAF is the sole author of this article.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.