December 21, 2020

As Indiana Hits 7,000 Deaths, Health Experts Urge Vigilance Against COVID-19

Article origination IPBS-RJC
IUPUI epidemiologist Thomas Duszynski said the overall number of deaths has been high, because people have had the power to do more to help stop COVID-19 from spreading, and just haven’t.  - Justin Hicks/IPB News

IUPUI epidemiologist Thomas Duszynski said the overall number of deaths has been high, because people have had the power to do more to help stop COVID-19 from spreading, and just haven’t.

Justin Hicks/IPB News

More than 7,000 Hoosiers have now died due to COVID-19, according to state data. Health experts are not straying from the same message on how to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

Thomas Duszynski is an epidemiologist at IUPUI. He said it’s been difficult to really zero-in on what the pandemic was supposed to look like. But he said the overall number of deaths has been high, because people have had the power to do more to help stop COVID-19 from spreading, and just haven’t. 

He said while the vaccine is exciting, it will take time for it to have a significant impact. Duszynski said inoculating 6 million people is ambitious and will take time. Plus, it takes time for vaccines to actually begin working. 

"I sound like a broken record. I’ve said, 'wear a mask, wash your hands, stay physically distanced' so many times," Duszynski said. "I get tired of hearing it. But those are the tools we have, those are the tools that work, until we have more people vaccinated in the population, those tools will still be important."

READ MORE: How Will Indiana Distribute COVID-19 Vaccines? Here's What You Need To Know

He said it might be easy to forget how far away from over the pandemic is, especially the closer we get to the last holidays of the year.

"I think with the Thanksgiving surge we’re seeing, we’re telling people not to gather for the Christmas holiday and such for New Year's, but with community spread being as high as it is, our numbers in the next couple of months aren’t going to look great," Duszynski said.

Duszynski also urges Hoosiers to get their flu shots. He said it is possible to get both the flu and COVID-19 at the same time.

Contact reporter Bárbara at banguiano@lakeshorepublicmedia or follow her on Twitter at @radiospice219.

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