COVID is here to stay, so we need to learn how to deal with it

September 14 — While the number of COVID cases are coming down, the virus won’t be going away any time soon and we need to be prepared to handle that. 

Bob Eadie, Administrator for Florida Health of Monroe County, joined Good Morning Keys on KeysTalk 96.9/102.5FM this morning to talk about where the county stands in terms of COVID. 

Hospitalizations for COVID have also decreased, even though some statistics can say there are people in the hospital that have tested positive for COVID, a number of those cases weren’t originally admitted for the disease.

Eadie said, “We’re doing well that way and I think people have done well. I think the message is  that COVID is still here and now it’s like it’ll be here. We need to learn to live with it. I would suggest that people become immunized. That has proven still to be the best way to protect yourself from serious injury, hospitalization or death.” 

Indeed, vaccinated people tend to not have to be hospitalized if they contract the disease. The majority of hospitalizations, serious symptoms or death come from those who are not vaccinated. 

Eadie said, “I recommend getting the booster. You can get your flu shot at the same time.”

Of course washing your hands frequently and if you’re sick, stay home are good practices in general. 

Eadie said, “For those that have some sort of a medical condition, if they want to wear a mask, go ahead and wear a mask. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s your health, so you take responsibility for it.” 

Masks do help in terms of transmission of disease. 

Eadie said, “That should be a personal preference for you, so go ahead and do it. There’s still COVID around, so if you have concerns, then you need to be aware of it. Listen to reputable sources that can tell you what’s going on.” 

Was COVID handled well on the national scale? 

Eadie said, “I think you always are going to learn lessons of how things have been. I think the political process got more involved with it — and that’s on both sides — there’s enough we should have done it better, regardless of which side of the debate you were on. What I tried to do the whole time for me was try to figure out what made the most sense based on having done this a lot of years. I think we spent so much time trying to tell the public what we wanted them to hear and that was kind of confusing. It would have been nice I think to have done like has been done before is this is what we know. When we know more we’ll tell you more. What we’re going to tell you is going to change. I think the way the messaging was handled was really difficult for people to know exactly what was going on and then there was so much background noise going on.” 

Monroe County seemed to handle the situation quite well. 

Eadie said, “The people and the leadership of Monroe County I think the proof was in the low death rates that we had. We were able to handle the hospitalizations that we had. I think Monroe County did a good job of doing what they needed to do.” 

Was the origin of the virus ever really discovered? 

Eadie said, “I think that the verdict is still out. I don’t know that that really matters in a way just in the sense that with the way the world is, I mean within 36 hours you can be anywhere on the planet. So you will see diseases emerge and they can spread quickly. We just need to be prepared for the next go around. Hopefully it won’t be nearly as bad as COVID because I hope we will learn lessons. I think that we need to be very vigilant because we could indeed have other diseases that you have outbreaks for. That’s just the way of the world right now.”

Monkeypox is one of those diseases, but it doesn’t seem to be infecting the general population — certainly not like COVID did at any rate. 

Eadie reminded, “Flu season is here, starting, and you can get your flu shot. If you need your booster shots for COVID, you can also get your flu shot for the year. I recommend that. Just practice all those things your mom told you to do. She told them for a reason I guess is the best way to put it.”