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President Donald Trump listens during a demonstration of ways NASA is helping to combat the coronavirus, in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Friday, April 24, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Doctors across the nation have signed their name onto a letter urging President Donald Trump to end the lockdown, calling it a “mass casualty incident” that may claim more lives if he doesn’t.

The letter was composed by Doctor Simone Gold, an emergency medicine specialist in California, and subsequently signed by over 500 doctors.

The letter itself contains a warning to Trump that, as the Coronavirus lockdown continues to eat up resources and time, other patients suffering from far more dangerous diseases are being neglected, resulting in large amounts of death.

As Gold explains, hospitals color-code patients based on how serious their condition is and uses this to visualize where the American people are now:

The red group receives highest priority. The next priority is to ensure that the other two groups do not deteriorate a level. Decades of research have shown that by strictly following this algorithm, we save the maximum number of lives.

Millions of Americans are already at triage level red. These include 150,000 Americans per month who would have had a new cancer detected through routine screening that hasn’t happened, millions who have missed routine dental care to fix problems strongly linked to heart disease/death, and preventable cases of stroke, heart attack, and child abuse. Suicide hotline phone calls have increased 600%.

Tens of millions are at triage level yellow. Liquor sales have increased 300-600%, cigarettes sales have increased, rent has gone unpaid, family relationships have become frayed, and millions of well-child check-ups have been missed.

Hundreds of millions are at triage level green. These are people who currently are solvent, but at risk should economic conditions worsen. Poverty and financial uncertainty is closely linked to poor health.

Gold proceeded to give real-life examples of how people will downgrade a level should the lockdown continue. She mentions a furloughed husband and a wife whose hours were reduced to part-time work. The family has descended into depression with increased drinking and ill-managed sicknesses. She also tells of a woman whose elective hip replacement surgery was delayed, causing her to become sedentary, which resulted in a pulmonary embolism in April. She goes on to mention a stroke victim who has been able to get no therapy to improve his condition and is, instead, deteriorating.

Meanwhile, results like these from the lockdown are going under-reported, Gold writes.

“The downstream health effects of deteriorating a level are being massively under-estimated and under-reported. This is an order of magnitude error,” wrote Gold.

“It is impossible to overstate the short, medium, and long-term harm to health with a continued shutdown. Losing a job is one of life’s most stressful events, and the effect on a person’s health is not lessened because it also has happened to 30 million other people. Keeping schools and universities closed is incalculably detrimental for children, teenagers, and young adults for decades to come,” she continued.

Gold’s warning has a lot of merit to it. Not only are suicide prevention hotlines seeing a massive increase in calls, a study by the Well Being Trust noted that we could see deadly results from “deaths of despair” thanks to the economic collapse, with the dead numbering some 75,000.

(READ: Lockdown May Cause “Despair Deaths” From Suicide, Drug, and Alcohol Abuse Says Study)

In the United Kingdom, deaths have increased thanks to would-be patients staying at home and dying from various illnesses, rather than going to the hospital to be treated according to The Guardian:

About 8,000 more people have died in their own homes since the start of the coronavirus pandemic than in normal times, a Guardian analysis has found, as concerns grow over the number avoiding going to hospital.

Of that total, 80% died of conditions unrelated to Covid-19, according to their death certificates. Doctors’ leaders have warned that fears and deprioritisation of non-coronavirus patients are taking a deadly toll.

The data shows 8,196 more deaths at home in England, Wales and Scotland compared with the five-year average for this time of year, including 6,546 non-Covid deaths. It also indicates a drop in non-Covid deaths in hospital, however, leading experts to conclude that many who would ordinarily have been admitted to a ward and died there are instead dying at home.

The media tends to report on doctors here and there warning of mass death should we end the lockdown, but it would appear that it’s already happening because of it.

Brandon Morse
Senior Editor. Culture critic, and video creator. Good at bad photoshops.
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