UP health official says stay alert when it comes to COVID

Nov 25, 2020

MARQUETTE, MI--   The medical director for most of the U.P.’s health departments says COVID levels are surging in the region because residents have let their guard down.

Dr. Robert Lorinser says cases are at a critical level.

“Critical means I’m concerned about the hospitals being able to take care of the sick people. That we have enough ICU beds available, we have enough floor beds available. That we have resources to take care of people if they need to be transported to other places.”  

Dr. Lorinser says right now one out of every 100 people in the Upper Peninsula is actively infected, so there’s a good chance that someone in a group of ten people has the coronavirus.

The medical director says half the people who spread the coronavirus don’t even know they have it. People are letting their guard down in small groups, then taking COVID back to their families. That’s stressing hospitals and especially staffing levels.

''Sometimes there's just no room at the inn.'' --Dr. Robert Lorinser

“Sometimes there’s just no room at the inn.” 

Lorinser says businesses are doing a good job of following the rules, and if people followed CDC recommendations every day the surge could be flattened. 

“If we could divide populations, schools, communities, businesses… if they did the current recommendations—maintained greater than six feet, wear a mask, hand hygiene—how much of the COVID would be prevented? Most of us would say a lot.”

People need to stay aware of potential risks, Lorinser stresses. Infection happens when you let your guard down, no matter where that is.