During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is critical to separate medical advice from politics. Doctors are subject to high regulatory standards, can be struck off for ethical violations and are bound by a common standard. Politics graduates aren't bound by such standards. It is further important to note that political academic material should not be treated with the same weight as scientific evidence (especially Randomised Control Trial evidence).

Devi Sridhar is a notable COVID-19 commentator who holds a position as a Professor of Global Public Health at the University of Edinburgh and is a notable advocate of a ZeroCovid policy.

She holds a BSc in Biology from the University of Miami and a DPhil in politics from the University of Oxford. Neither of these qualifications allow someone to practice as a medical doctor.

The UK's General Medical Council holds no record for a Devi Sridhar having a license to practice medicine in the UK. Her Google Scholar profile indicates she is well versed in writing political pieces on global health, but she has no experience whatsoever of conducting clinical trials or scientific evaluation of treatments.

Whilst I am not aware of instances where Devi herself has directly claimed to be a doctor, she has made worrying claims that should be left to qualified medical professionals. She has commented on the symptoms of COVID-19 and made comments on treatment. Her comments on treatment showed a dire lack of understanding with evidence based medicine, comparing dexamethasone, a drug proven in Randomised Control Trial evidence, to other drugs in other studies which are based on weak observational data. The fact she could only consider the scientific material on the basic of whether it was published in an academic journal shows she possesses a complete lack of understanding on the design of scientific experiments (for the record, the RECOVERY trial's results on dexamethasone are not only now published but also validated in a published systematic meta-analysis).

Aside from her lack of understanding of evidence based medicine; it if further important to note that Professor Peter Horby and Professor Martin Landray, who are Co-Chief Investigators of the RECOVERY trial, are medically qualified doctors unlike Devi Sridhar.

Devi has also repeatedly made comments on non-pharmaceutical interventions; this includes her making a u-turn on school re-opening in Scotland despite all UK Chief Medical Officers warning: "against a certainty of long-term harm to many children and young people from not attending school." She has appraised the rigour of evidence on face masks despite the fact that Professor Carl Heneghan (of the University of Oxford's Centre for Evidence Based Medicine, both an actual scientist and an actual doctor) warning that we were masking lack of evidence with politics and that there is currently an absence of Randomised Control Trial evidence in favour of mask wearing.

When the general public base their medical understandings of the COVID-19 epidemic on the basis of professional evidence (which, in itself, scientists consider to be a very weak form of evidence), they should at least have the understanding to know which professionals are qualified and regulated to give such professional advice. Do not risk your own health by taking advice from pretend doctors.