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Castlegar doctors call for help, compliance as crisis evolves

THIS IS YOUR DOCTOR’S NOTE

The physicians of Castlegar are on the front lines in the battle against COVID19. This is a crisis unlike any of us have experienced in our lifetime. We are working as hard as we can to make sure that our patients, and the public in general, get the medical care they need.

We cannot do it alone.

At this time, we desperately need your help. What our community does now will impact everyone’s health in the weeks and months to come. Lives depend on what we do today. We are seeing this virus ravage community after community around the world and if we don’t act right now we will be next.

Once the virus starts to accelerate it will be too late. As of March 23, BC has 13 deaths and over 470 confirmed cases. This includes cases in our region. These confirmed cases are only the tip of the iceberg.

Our most important strategy for stopping this virus is social distancing. If it is to work, we must all act together. We must think of each other, particularly of our more elderly and vulnerable people, who are at exceptionally high risk of critical illness and death.

Our province is in a state of emergency and there are cases of this virus everywhere.

This is what we must do:

• Stay home unless absolutely necessary — this means no dinner parties, no sports (even outside), no play dates, no gatherings of any kind.

• Stay connected with your family and friends online. Use Skype, Messenger or Facetime.

• Keep two meters apart from everyone if you must go out. That’s about two arms lengths. If you are walking outside or at a park or at the grocery store you must keep this distance to be safe.

• Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, use hand sanitizer if you have any. Avoid touching your face with your hands.

• Tell everyone to do the same.

We thank all of you who are doing your part. This is especially important for young people. We know how hard it is to stay home, away from your friends, but right now, our lives depend on you. We know that many younger people will get this virus and have no symptoms or only very mild symptoms, but some of you will get sick too and require medical attention. There is also a strong chance that you will infect someone you love.

The time is now, we cannot wait one more hour, or one more day.

Please stay home so that we can get to work.

Let’s save lives together,

The Doctors of Castlegar