ABC: Bakersfield doctors push to lift shelter-in-place order, Bay Area health experts disagree


Dec 12, 2018
SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Tonight sparks are flying between those who believe that Governor Newsom should lift the stay-at-home order and others who believe it would be catastrophic to do so. Two doctors in the Bakersfield area are pushing for the California shelter-in-place order to be lifted and doctors we talked within the Bay Area are strongly opposed to the idea.

Dr. Dan Erickson and Dr. Artin Massihi own and run an urgent care facility in Kern County.

"Do we need to still shelter in place? Our answer is no. Do we need businesses to be shut down? No. Do we need to test them and get them back to work? Yes we do," says Dr. Dan Erickson.

The two say they have their own statistics that show COVID-19 is similar to the flu.
Dr. George Rutherford of UCSF disagrees with that saying that the mortality rate of COVID-19 could end up being 30 times worse than the flu.

"What we're trying to do is prevent people from dying that's what we're trying to do in the Bay Area," Rutherford says. "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."

The latest data from the local health officials shows the Bay Area currently has over 250 deaths.