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WHEELING – The Medical Director of the Emergency / Trauma Department at WVU Medicine Wheeling Hospital describes the last few days there as “Hell” due to the COVID-19 pandemic and has dire predictions for the future if people don’t mask and get vaccinated .
Dr. C. David Burkland addressed the Ohio County Board of Education this week just before they voted not to make it compulsory to wear masks in school buildings.
Burkland predicts that schools will serve as a COVID “vector” – an organism that transmits a disease or parasite from one animal or plant to another.
This will happen whether or not students wear masks in the classrooms, he said.
“(Wearing) without masks is going to be a massive vector,” he said. “They (students) are likely to overwhelm some of the hospital systems. So this is extremely dangerous. Masks can contain our oral bacteria. They carry the bacteria around. But as long as you clean the masks, they are not a problem. “
Burkland said he wears a mask every day to protect both his patients and himself.
“If you don’t want to believe the science, that’s fine,” he said.
“Just be aware. You will find something on the internet that confirms your belief. I go to the highest medical authority I can find for my medical opinion – the CDC (Centers for Disease Control). “
Burkland said he was dealing with COVID every day.
“For the past three days, I’ve actually been wondering what I’ve been doing for the past 40 years,” he said. “The last three days have been hell because people aren’t vaccinated.
“I can assure you – I didn’t care about people who were vaccinated. I bring dying and seriously ill people upstairs every day because they are not vaccinated. “
Burkland acknowledged that every person has a choice whether to get vaccinated.
“But you are stupid if you don’t get vaccinated,” he said. “Actually, I get a little angry. Last year when I was caring for people and there was no vaccine, I was ready to risk my health to take care of people who came to us with COVID – because there was no alternative. There was no prevention that people could take.
“I get a little annoyed when I walk in and they breathe Covid over all of my other employees. I’m 67. Even though I have the vaccine, I’ve been out eight months and can’t get the booster, so I’m probably at risk now. So people who have not been vaccinated come and put me in danger. “
He described the Delta variant as “bad”.
“It’s sweeping through communities quickly and viciously,” he said. “It will mean that our systems will be (overwhelmed). At the moment, people are waiting five days to move to other facilities.
“We called another facility yesterday. They said unless it’s a bad stroke, heart attack, or trauma, don’t even call us. So if you have something else, you can’t go to another hospital because of COVID.
He fears that the situation will get worse.
“It’s scary. I’ve been doing this for 40 years. I wasn’t afraid until last winter. And I was scared every day that we wouldn’t be able to provide the medical care they needed. We just didn’t make it.
“I’m afraid this Delta variant will explode. If you have an accident with your car, just pray that the emergency room won’t be overwhelmed that day, ”he said.
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