COVID not over yet

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

To the editor,

An analysis of COVID-19 deaths based on recent data (2/14/21 can be made between Montana and another rural low density population state, South Dakota, which currently has one of the highest death rates in the nation. South Dakota had no mask mandate, not even a recommendation to wear, voluntary only if someone wants to. The S.D. governor recently stated masks “don’t work.” There were no lockdowns or shutdowns except by corporate directive. Taking the recent death rate for both states and adjusted for a smaller population, S.D. so far has lost 748 lives that could have been saved by more protective measures. (Total S.D. lost = 1,844) And it’s not over yet. As can be observed, the attitudes of elected leaders, i.e., governors and mayors, during a pandemic, can have a major influence on outcomes, either positive or, yes, also negative.

Gary Gerth