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Keep perspective on COVID-19

To the editor:

It is not my intent to minimize the significance and/or seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic issue. But maybe we need to take a step back and try to keep things in perspective.

The ever-present and highly respected Dr. Anthony Fauci, longtime director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, has testified that COVID-19 could be ten times more lethal than influenza which has about a 0.1 percent fatality rate. That would seem to suggest the COVID-19 rate is about 1 percent. And if we assume –as many experts do — the number of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic cases is several times as high as the number of reported cases it would seem to follow the COVID 19 fatality rate is indeed less than 1 percent.

Shuttering down businesses for a short time while people exercise due diligence i.e frequent hand washing, social distancing, etc., to slow down the spread of the virus while medical professionals treat the afflicted seems appropriate. But extending these bans to months, I think, will have serious unintended consequences for employers, workers and the economy in general.

Bob Jentges

North Mankato

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