The following is a letter to Mendocino County Residents published by Public Health Officer Dr. Andy Coren:
Hello Mendocino County,
I am making this strong recommendation to you as your Public Health Officer and as a family doctor. I am very concerned about the increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in our county. In the past month we have seen the average new COVID cases triple from 3.7 to 11 per day and the number of people hospitalized has almost tripled from 5 to 14—numbers we have not seen since the terrible surge last winter.
The Delta Variant, which is now in our county, is twice as contagious, spreading to more people faster than we’ve seen before. It mostly targets the unvaccinated people but even vaccinated people who are immune-compromised (advanced age, some illnesses or medications) are at risk. COVID-19 is targeting younger adults and it is now the 10th leading cause of death in children.
Therefore, I am strongly recommending that everyone in our community (who is not exempt) WEAR A MASK INDOORS AND OUTSIDE in a crowd with unvaccinated people.
Masks are proven to slow transmission to friends, family and the community. Masks should be 2-3 layers of cloth and should fit tightly over the nose and under the chin for optimal protection of those around you. People who need more protection should consider a more effective N95 type mask.
Masks will help control this pandemic. But vaccines can help get us back to normal. So GET VACCINATED NOW. Vaccines are extremely effective. Unvaccinated people get COVID 8 times more than vaccinated. And those who are vaccinated who get COVID have milder disease, rarely need the hospital and almost never die. Immunity obtained from the vaccine is greater and more reliable than getting COVID. The science behind the vaccines has been around for over 20 years and has been used successfully for influenza, rabies, ebola and others.
Vaccines are safe. There is no evidence that they change our DNA, tag or “chip” us or interfere with fertility. In fact, Infants and nursing babies whose mothers have been vaccinated get immune globulins that may protect them. American Academy of Family Practice, American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, and the CDC all recommend vaccinating pregnant and nursing women. ‘Long COVID’ has already proven to be much worse than any long-term side effects of the vaccine.
Bottom line: the risk of getting COVID is much greater than the vaccine.
Finally, if you get sick with even mild symptoms, STAY HOME and GET TESTED, even if you are vaccinated, so we can stop further transmission. None of us want to get sick, get others sick, or go back to “lock-down mode” again.
Our community successfully fought this pandemic last year by working together. If we follow these common sense, scientifically proven recommendations we can get control of this surge sooner and get back to normal again.