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McClintock remarks misleading about Covid-19

Dear editor,

An April 18 article by California Representative Tom McClintock gave information that could be misleading for those needing healthcare in our area. McClintock alludes to healthcare services, such as cancer screenings, not readily available due to the Covid-19 preparation at hospitals.
Last year, I had chemotherapy, preceded by cancer surgery. Currently, I’m scheduled for a CT scan… no delay. Emanuel Radiology/Oncology is treating cancer patients. In his article, McClintock writes, “How many of the 1.8 million new cancers each year will go undetected for months because routine screenings and appointments have been postponed? How many heart, kidney, liver, and pulmonary illnesses will fester while people’s lives are on hold?” I sincerely hope people understand that only elective procedures have been put on hold. Please don’t put off health concerns, call your doctor.
McClintock continues, “How many drug and alcohol deaths can we expect as Americans stew in their homes under police-enforced indefinite home detention orders?” This is irresponsible to lead people to believe they can be arrested if they leave their homes.
McClintock asks, “How many new cases of obesity-related diabetes and heart disease will emerge as Americans are banished from outdoor recreation and instead spend their idle days within a few steps of the refrigerator?” Again, irresponsible, implying that people are banished from outdoor recreation.
And, he states...” last year, 38,000 Americans died in automobile accidents and no one has suggested saving all those lives by forbidding people from driving — though surely we could.” McClintock makes little sense when he compares 38,000 deaths from a 52-week period (one year) to 39,014 Covid-19 deaths from Feb. 29 — April 18. Covid-19 patients have overwhelmed hospitals and many of those hospitals have lost doctors, nurses, and staff to the virus. I hope the congressman understands that injuries and deaths from automobile accidents don’t expose healthcare workers to Illness and possible death.
McClintock wraps up his article with this, “In 1957, the Asian flu killed 116,000 Americans... “The Eisenhower generation didn’t strip grocery shelves of toilet paper, confine the entire population to their homes or lay waste to the economy. They coped and got through.”  In 1957, there was no social distancing or bans of large gatherings. Schools opened as usual and the flu spread like wildfire. America’s population was 172 million, today it is 328 million. With nearly half of today’s population, they “got through” as 116,000 loved ones and community members died... a staggering number in 1957, as it would be today.
I hope anyone with health issues will contact their healthcare provider; locally, doctor’s offices and hospitals are taking care of patients. There is not a ban from going outside; sidewalks and pathways are open and experiencing big numbers of walkers, joggers and cyclists practicing 6-foot social distancing, with many wearing masks. Be safe and take the time to fact-check information.

— Jeani Ferrari, Turlock