A pair of urgent care doctors in Bakersfield, California are calling attention to clinical data that prompted them to call for an end to lockdowns.
In an interview with ABC23 last Wednesday, Drs. Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi said their facilities have tested over 5,200 patients for the coronavirus, amounting to roughly half of all tests done in Kern County. According to their data, the coronavirus death rate is similar to that of influenza.
“Now that we have the facts,” said Dr. Erickson. “It’s time to get back to work.”
Erickson told the outlet he believes businesses could reopen and, as testing continues, people could get back to work.
The co-owner of Accelerated Urgent Care even suggested that staying at home for too long could come with its own drawbacks.
“We understand microbiology, we understand immunology and we want strong immune systems,” Erickson said. “I don’t want to stay in my home and develop a weak immune system and then come out and get a disease.”
“If you study the numbers in 2017 and 2018, we had 50 to 60 million with the flu,” he continued. “And we had a similar death rate in the deaths the United States were 43,545 — similar to the flu of 2017-2018. We always have between 37,000 and 60,000 deaths in the United States, every single year. No pandemic talk. No shelter-in-place. No shutting down businesses.”
“Do we need to still shelter in place? Our answer is emphatically no,” the doctor went on. “Do we need businesses to be shut down? Emphatically no. Do we need to test them and get them back to work? Absolutely.”
“If you’re going to dance on someone’s constitutional rights you better have a good reason, you better have a really good reason, not just a theory,” Erickson said, shifting the focus to the disturbing trend of draconian lockdown measures. “The data is showing us it’s time to lift [the stay-at-home orders] so if we don’t lift, what is the reason?”
“As soon as they use the word ‘safe,’ that means ‘control,'” Erickson said of government entities enacting and enforcing such stringent measures. “They are using this to see how much of our freedom they can take from you… and it’s working.”
Unsurprisingly, the doctors’ statements have been rebutted by some health officials and other doctors.
“What we’re trying to do is prevent people from dying, that’s what we’re trying to do in the Bay Area,” said Dr. George Rutherford of UCSF. “The early projections were that there would be 44,000 deaths in the Bay Area. There have been 210 so far so I think we’re doing pretty damn good and I’ve certainly don’t want to mess with that kind of success.”
While disagreement between medical professionals is to be expected, media censorship is a far more sinister and growing aspect of public discourse during the pandemic.
According to ABC23, their full, 50-minute interview with Dr. Erickson and Dr. Massihi has been taken down from YouTube:
The video was the first of two videos playing the entire briefing from a press conference last week. Reports of the video being taken down suggest YouTube pulled it for violating community guidelines.
23ABC News verified on our YouTube page that the first part of the press briefing is no longer available. We have submitted an appeal to YouTube, but have not heard back yet.
As we recently reported, YouTube has made it standard policy to remove any videos that spread “misinformation” that contradicts the talking points of official sources like the World Health Organization or the White House Coronavirus Taskforce.
For example, if one tries to watch the video segment shared by Tesla CEO Elon Musk, an error message says the video was removed for violating YouTube’s Terms of Service:
Docs make good points https://t.co/WeXuZpMghY
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 26, 2020
“Anytime you push against the grain, you are going to have people who don’t like it,” Dr. Erickson said of the apparent censorship.
Various clips and segments from the interview still survive on YouTube. Watch the full interview in the video below—before it vanishes as well—or watch it directly from ABC23.
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