The mission of CovidStrategies is to track mainstream
and integrative Covid therapies and to understand
Covid as a catalytic contributor to the global polycrisis.
CovidStrategies is a project of Commonweal (commonweal.org).
Founded in 1976, Commonweal is home to over 30 creative initiatives in health and healing,
education and the arts, and environment and justice.
We founded CovidStrategies for three reasons:
We couldn’t find another site on the web committed to balanced coverage
of complementary & controversial Covid therapies. Since we have researched complementary cancer therapies for four decades
at Commonweal, we know these “outsider” therapies can sometimes be quackery and other times be truly beneficial. We always
seek to be as objective as possible. We have evaluated over 90 complementary cancer therapies at Beyond Conventional Cancer Therapies,
and we wanted to begin to undertake a similar effort on Covid therapies. [bcct.ngo]
Most reporting on Covid therapies follows a quite circumscribed line.
- Covid vaccines are effective,
- They are also safe,
- Everyone should get vaccinated,
- Those who “hesitate” are misinformed,
- Reports of safety concerns are discounted,
- Reports of benefits of “outsider therapies” are fake news, and
- The interests of Big Pharma play no significant role in reporting on any of the above or in influencing CDC, FDA, governmental and academic responses to the pandemic.
We are strong believers in the efficacy of the vaccines, their relative safety to date, and the public health benefits of vaccination — so we give a qualified yes to the first three points above. But we differ on the last four points. We believe safety concerns should be evaluated seriously, that outsider therapies should also be objectively considered, and that Big Pharma has a strong influence on regulatory agencies and the whole Covid narrative.
Commonweal also carefully tracks the global polycrisis — the intersection of the two dozen social/political environmental, technological and financial/economic stressors the world faces today. [resilienceproject.org] .Covid is the leading poster child for the polycrisis. So CovidStrategies is also tracking what seem to us critical developments in the social/political, environmental, technological and financial/economic arenas. For example, Covid has (1) overturned governments around the world, (2) had numerous different effects on the environment, (3) had a major impact on technological developments, and (4) transformed many aspects of the global economy and finance. We don’t see the impact of Covid on the polycrisis addressed systematically in many thoughtful places.
We’re doing this on a tiny budget with a miniscule staff and a dozen gifted advisors. We’re just at the start. We welcome your interest and your support.
Michael Lerner works and studies at the interface of human and planetary health.
Michael is co-founder and president of Commonweal. In addition to guiding Covid strategies, he also helps guide the Commonweal Cancer Help Program, Healing Circles Global, Beyond Conventional Cancer Therapies, The New School at Commonweal, and the Resilience Project. He was on the Yale faculty in the early 1970s in political science and at Yale Medical School. He is also president of the Jenifer Altman Foundation, co-founder of the Health and Environmental Funders Network, and co-founder of the Omega Resilience Funders Network. A graduate of Harvard (BA) and Yale (PhD), Michael also worked in journalism with several major publications.
In all of his work, Michael seeks to bring journalistic objectivity and an informed scientific perspective to complex questions
for which clear answers are rarely obtained. He launched CovidStrategies because the pandemic falls directly at the interface of human and environmental health. He seeks not to take sides on controversial issues such as the ivermectin controversy but rather seeks to present the best available evidence on subjects of central significance.
He received a MacArthur Prize Fellowship for contributions to public health in 1984. He is the author of Choices in Healing: Integrating the Best of Conventional and Complementary Approaches to Cancer [MIT Press] and was senior advisor to the Office of Technology Assessment for its report Unconventional Cancer Treatments.
Read letter from Michael here
Coordinator, MBA/MHA, C-IAYT, RYT500
Sue functions as the project coordinator for CovidStrategies after she spent almost 20 years working in finance and administration in an academic medical center. Most of her time was spent in the Department of Pediatrics as the Administrator, and also in physician reimbursement, managed care contracting, internal charge audit, medical practice management, and institutional strategic planning.
She has been a yoga practitioner since 2000 and in 2013 took her first yoga teacher training and became a certified Integral Yoga teacher. As a full-time yoga teacher, she is now certified to teach Integral Yoga through the advanced level and Yoga for Stress Management. She has additional training to teach yoga to those living with cancer and chronic illness (YCat). She teaches a weekly chair yoga class through the local Comprehensive Cancer Center to survivors, those in active treatment, and those living with chronic illness and their caregivers.
As a yoga teacher, Sue has been involved with several federally funded research projects to measure the effects of yoga on fatigue, pain, and other symptoms in cancer- colon and GYN and for MS. One of these projects has resulted in publication in a peer-reviewed journal and presentation at a national scientific meeting. In 2020 she became a Certified Yoga Therapist and works with clients privately and virtually. Sue teaches The Transformative Practice of Yoga as an Adjunct Lecturer at Wake Forest University in the Department of Health & Exercise Science.
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