By now, you might have heard about a Stanford study which found that mandatory stay-at-home orders and business closures may not be more effective at controlling the spread of COVID-19 than less restrictive, voluntary measures. While certainly good news for people advocating a return to more normal life, there are some things to keep in mind. The researchers came to their conclusions based on comparing the spread of the virus in Sweden and South Korea to the spread in eight countries that did implement mandatory lockdowns, including the United States. Comparing countries is always difficult because of differences in cultures, laws and many other factors. And this study doesn’t prove that lockdowns don’t reduce spread of the coronavirus, but they might not be as critical as social distancing, wearing masks in public places, and voluntarily avoiding public places if you have significant medical risks.