When news came out on Monday that over 700 cases of novel coronavirus had been reported over the weekend, we should have seen our new interim health officer and the Spokane Regional Health District board jump into action to reassure the public, communicate needed behaviors to quash the virus, and let us know how the district is planning to amplify its response. Instead, as the kids say: crickets.
It’s now Wednesday, and there has been no press conference at the county level. No word from Dr. Velazquez, the interim health officer and most board members. This has allowed rumors to fly on Facebook and distrust in the health district to grow.
The public has a right to hear:
- Is contact tracing being increased? Is everyone being contacted within 48 hours when a case has been identified?
- Where are the outbreaks?
- What changes is the district going to make to better control the spread of the virus?
- What changes does the public need to make?
- How are our most vulnerable populations going to be protected?
- How are we working with Panhandle Health to ensure that our area is not impacted by differing restrictions across state lines?
- How are our schools being protected?
We need answers, and the silence so far has been unconscionable from a health district that supposedly works for us.