Every death is a tragedy, but we need to weigh the risks posed by the coronavirus with the risks of an economic shutdown. Right now, the scales are tipped too far in the direction of viral containment.
Remember: Every percentage-point increase in the unemployment rate is associated with about 37,000 deaths, due to heart attacks and other factors. Do the math, and skyrocketing unemployment in Michigan is linked to hundreds of thousands of deaths. That is the cost of an economic shutdown.
As the economy reopens, we need to continue focusing on the health care needs of Michigan’s at-risk populations, especially the elderly. With our help, these populations — and those in close contact with them — must continue to take any and all precautions to contain the spread of the coronavirus. This includes social distancing.
But the overwhelming majority of Michigan residents — who are not in grave danger — need to go back to work.
We can do both at the same time, protecting the vulnerable and jumpstarting the state economy. Countless lives depend on it.
Read the full oped in the Detroit News from Dr. Chad Savage who is the founder of YourChoice Direct Care in Brighton and a partner of the Job Creators Network Foundation.