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The best doctor in Illinois shares a message to those who think that COVID-19 is like the flu – NBC Chicago



Illinois Director of Public Health Dr. Ngozi Ezike shared a message to those who believe that the coronavirus is no worse than the flu or just “another cold.”

“The bottom line is that it’s real and it’s worse than a typical cold,” she said during a coronavirus update on Wednesday. “This ‘unreal’ virus is invading our hospitals. It currently occupies one in four hospital beds in our country’s hospitals. This ‘just another cold’ puts hundreds of people in the intensive care unit and ventilators.”

According to Ezike, estimates show that the flu causes 12,000 to 61,000 deaths in the United States each year. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the 201

9-2020 flu season, according to CDC estimates, show that the flu is linked to 38 million illnesses, 18 million medical visits, 405,000 hospitalizations and 22,000 deaths.

“This year alone, we have more than 246,000 deaths due to COVID-19,” Ezike said on Wednesday. “We have to call out the untruths. We have to tell the truth. COVID-19 is very real and has been very deadly to so many.”

According to Illinois Governor J. B. Pritzker, 11,014 deaths attributed to the virus in Illinois, make it the third leading cause of death in the state, following only heart disease and cancer.

According to the IDPH, the virus caused more deaths between March and October than strokes and accidents, the fourth and fifth leading cause of death in the state combined.

Ezeke added that he also heard people say that “only the elderly or those with a healthy condition” die from coronavirus.

According to 140 deaths reported in Illinois on Wednesday, two were 30, three 40 and nine 50, according to IDPH.

“The populations at greater risk are our older people, but I believe that the death of a 90-year-old or a 50-year-old or a 20-year-old is important,” Ezike said.

The top government official in public health warned that while people can believe what they want, their actions affect others.

“If people want to bury their heads in the sand and pretend that the virus doesn’t exist or isn’t so bad, I guess they’re free to do it. What you shouldn’t be able to do is risk your health. to other individuals and everyone you come in contact with because you will not wear a mask or because you will not stop hosting or attending events or gatherings or because you will not have a social distance, “said Ezeke. a person of a potentially deadly virus. So even if you can’t see how real this virus is, can we at least agree to respect others and wear a mask and keep our distance? “

Pritzker warned that without intervention, the state could see between 17,000 and 45,000 more deaths before March 1, 2021, according to models cited by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Some communities are already experiencing a shortage of beds as more residents are hospitalized due to the virus.

Several hospitals in Illinois now report more coronavirus patients than during the spring rush, as medical experts warn that they are trying months ahead, according to information provided by many hospitals.

“Thanksgiving evenings can be super distributors,” Dr. Robert Zitronberg, executive medical director of infectious diseases and hospital prevention, said Monday. “It’s so critical that we don’t do this. The numbers are devastating right now. Our health care system can’t take the doubling or tripling of those numbers. “

As of midnight, 5,953 patients are currently hospitalized for COVID-19 or coronavirus-like illness, the largest number of patients affected by the virus since the pandemic began. More than 1,100 of these patients are in intensive care units, the highest number since the spring peak, and 547 patients are currently on ventilators.

“Everyone’s actions affect others,” Ezike said. “And remember, if you really want to give thanks on this Thanksgiving, give the gift of life and don’t put anyone’s life in danger.”




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