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Local physicians say in open letter, ‘vaccines are the best protection against COVID-19’

Written by on September 28, 2021

Roseburg, Ore. – Several local physicians sign open letter stating they strongly support the use of vaccines as the best protection against COVID-19. They also stated they oppose the use of unproven treatments for COVID-19 that are not effective and put patients at risk. Read letter below.

Dear patients and neighbors,

Douglas County’s community of healthcare providers are being tested like never before. COVID-19 is a unique and devastating disease that is causing death and suffering like none of us have ever seen. We’ve watched hospital beds and the ICU overflow with patients, elective procedures cancelled, and healthcare resources become scarce. This is undeniably deadlier than the worst flu year for a hundred years and it continues to get worse. As members of this community, we and our families are getting sick too. It is heartbreaking to see patients fall critically ill and being unable to save them, and to know that those who are admitted to the ICU may not ever walk out. It is discouraging to see our warnings and entreaties continue to go unheeded or contradicted, which has led to our county becoming one of the sickest in the nation.

We strongly support the use of vaccines as the best protection against COVID-19. Vaccines clearly prevent the worst manifestations of this terrible disease. There is nothing more disheartening than to see patients struggling with serious complications that could have been prevented. Improving vaccination rates will free up our hospital resources, allowing our patients to get the elective surgeries and other care they need. Vaccines will also help end the economic devastation this pandemic has brought to our community. Professional medical societies have unanimously spoken out in support of vaccination.

We strongly oppose the use of unproven treatments for COVID-19 that are not effective and put our patients at risk for unnecessary complications. We also oppose the promotion of these experimental treatments in a way that obscures the risks and exaggerates the potential benefits. It is inappropriate and unethical to subject patients to experimental treatments without informed consent and outside of randomized controlled trials. As healthcare providers we are obligated to heed the guidelines of our professional organizations and to use the best evidence available to guide the treatment of our patients.

We strongly support the use of masks indoors and in crowded areas by all who can wear them. Masks reduce the spread of the virus and reduce the risks for everyone.

We support and applaud the efforts of our local public health officials who have worked tirelessly to protect and educate our community. They have faced incredible challenges and yet remain committed to the challenge. We will continue to follow their guidance and support them in the measures they have enacted to protect our community.
We, the physicians of Douglas County, share the commitments we’ve outlined above. Standing in solidarity against this pandemic will strengthen our resolve to continue our work in the face of continued tragedy for our community and our patients.

Michael Krnacik, MD, PhD Bart Bruns, MD
DCIPA Board Chairman DCIPA CEO
Sarah Agsten, DO
Hennie Abrio, MD
Kate Bayliss, MD
Jacob Benford, MD
Heidi Beery, MD
Phillip Benedetti, MD
Brandon Bishop, DPM
Diane Bolduc, MD
Kurt Brickner, DO
Bart Bruns, MD
Julia Coppi, MD
Bob Dannenhoffer, MD
Kevin Dean, MD
Gerald Engstrom, MD
Wade Fox, MD
Michael Fucci, DO
Razvan Gosman, MD
Andrea Gray, MD
Wilson Gutierrez, MD
Allen Hack, MD
Bret Hansen, MD
Emmanuelle Hebert, FNP
Marie Hebert, MD
Rachel Hebert, FNP
Travis Inglis, DO
Laurentiu Istrate, MD
Neha Jain, MD
Gerry Jaworski, MD
Angela Jones, MD
Layne Jorgensen, DO
Ovais Khan, MD
Robert Kloepper, MD
Michael Krnacik, MD, PhD
Elliott Lange, MD
Michael Llewellyn, MD
Subhajit Mukherjee, MD, PhD
Siobhan O’Reilly, MD, MPH
Jolanta Olson, MD
Eric Ory, MD
Edward Ottenheimer, MD
Sandesh Pandit, MD
Mark Ramirez, MD
Julee Richards, MD
David Rickman, MD
Rishi Saigal, MD
Preeti Satyanarayana, MD
Christine Seals, MD
Brad Seely, MD
Polly Sepulvado, MD
Chris Spence, MD
Cordell Smith, DPM
Keneilwe Tlaang, MD
Rodney Todd, MD
William Townsend, MD
Sharon Trammell, PA
John Traul, MD
Vanessa Vu, MD, PhD, CASC
Victor Wallenkampf, MD
Jonathan Waller, MD
Jerry Warren, MD
Joshua Weese, MD

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