Three weeks ago we were seeing a rise in Corona cases and the alarm bell was sounded. Of course I’m not in the prediction business and do not know what’s in store the next several months, but so far so good.

Local hospital officials tell me, “Just a few cases and no one in the ICU.”  While our offices have seen a few cases we have not seen the high fevers, respiratory distress, and critically ill individuals like we did in the spring. We have sent no patients to the hospital for COVID since June.

Most people in fact are either asymptomatic or have mild cold symptoms.

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Please do not buy into the hysteria no matter which side of the political aisle you fall on. For example on my way to work today the news radio said the virus was raging in South Dakota. Researching the facts show that they are having about 1,000 positive cases a day, but they reported 0 deaths yesterday! In fact since the pandemic began they have only attributed 345 COVID deaths to the whole state. During the same time many more people in South Dakota have died from heart disease, cancers, car accidents, to name a few. This is hardly “raging” by any reasonable measure, yet the media propagates the narrative.

So has the virus mutated and become less virulent? It’s a question for the epidemiologists and scientists and I do not pretend to be either of those. However, I see what’s happening locally and as I previously said so far so good. Nothing so far reminds me of what we experienced this spring. This was a deadly virus but it’s no longer acting this way. We pray that this continues to be the case.

We should remain vigilant. Common sense prevention always remains forefront and center. Individuals who are at greatest risk should take extra precaution but for the vast majority we should continue abiding by the rules (with masks and social distancing), but go about our lives and keep our country open. The blame game on both sides of the political spectrum needs to end, and the reporting needs to be based on the facts.

We will prevail.

Brendan J. Mulholland, M.D.