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‘I thought it was all hype’ Pocatello doctor says we need to act now

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POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - Some people in southeast Idaho may feel like we’re watching the coronavirus unfold at a distance. However, one Pocatello physician is sounding the alarm and says we should be taking this much more seriously.

“I understand the naysayers. When this all started to come out at the very beginning, I thought this was all media hype.”

Pocatello physician, Mark Mansfield, is a former skeptic of the coronavirus pandemic. However now, he’s had a change of heart.

“As it developed and I started studying the actual virus and what was happening, I realized this is the real deal,” Mansfield said.

A commonly asked question is how COVID-19 compares to the seasonal flu. Dr. Mansfield says there’s virtually no comparison. In a lighter season, the flu kills around 16,000 to 22,000 people.

California Governor, Gavin Newsom, estimates 25 million could become infected with COVID-19. That’s why he ordered a historic state-wide shelter-at-home order. To avoid a similar event, Dr. Mansfield says it’s important to act now.

“If everyone does their part for a short period of their life, they can reduce transmission of the infection, lower the peak of the infection, lower the spread of the disease…”

His message to the Millenials is to limit social interaction, if any at all.

“So when they spread it to someone else, and that someone else spreads it to the next person, that person may be immunocompromised.”

When it comes to COVID-19 testing, there’s not enough to go around. That’s why health experts are suggesting to limit testing to those who meet the strict criteria.

“The supplies aren’t there. The labs can’t keep up with the demand, so right now, the mild patients do not need to be screened.”

For more information, you can visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website by clicking HERE. You can also call the Southeastern Idaho Public Health COVID-19 hotline at (208) 234-5875 or join there facebook live broadcasts weekdays at 11:00 a.m. 

Coronavirus Coverage / Idaho / Local News / Pocatello / Top Stories
Brady Halbleib

Brady Halbleib

Brady is a reporter for Local News 8 and KIDK Eyewitness News 3.

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