Dr. Jason Huikko of Stevens Community Medical Center. (Photo: Marshall Hoffman)

At a special meeting of the Stevens County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday, Dr. Jason Huikko of Stevens Community Medical Center in Morris detailed the deadly seriousness of COVID-19.

“There’s been some debate I’ve heard out there about the severity of COVID-19 and whether it’s similar to common colds or influenza,” said Huikko. “I want to say, without a doubt, this is much more severe than influenza. This is backed up by data.”

Huikko noted that there are now 194,000 deaths in the United States chalked up to the new coronavirus, ranking it 3rd on the list of leading causes of death – only behind heart disease and cancer. And that is only after about 9 months since the first cases were being reported. Huikko said the death rate is much higher than influenza and pneumonia combined, which totals 60,000 per year. He told County officials that it was important to focus on controlling this pandemic.

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