This is an update on COVID-19 as East Tennessee is seeing a rise in cases, and Knoxville has become somewhat of a hot spot.


Is it finally hitting our area?


Yes. Mainly because they’re testing more for it.


Are our hospitals overwhelmed? No.


Are many people dying from this? No.


Are some people getting fairly sick with this? Yes.


Is it a reason to panic? No.


I’m going to bring you some good news.


One piece of good news is that I’m actually glad that we’re having some positive tests in this area. We know that we need to develop herd immunity, and in my opinion that’s going to be the answer to this pandemic before they develop a reliable vaccine that people are willing to take.


Sweden allowed a herd immunity to develop, and kept the susceptible people quarantined. Guess what? That strategy worked.


Another example is New York City, where it hit very hard before they knew how to handle it. They’re biggest mistake was sending nursing home patients who had been to the ER with symptoms and tested positive, back into nursing homes.


Note that half the deaths in New York State came from nursing home patients.


Now in New York, because of herd immunity, they’re one of the states that’s having very little problems with it. Herd immunity developed.


A good piece of news is they’ve discovered that you only need 20% herd immunity to essentially end this pandemic. To dive into the details check out this article.


The most important thing to notice in Tennessee is that we’re doing a lot more testing, which is why we’re getting a lot more positive tests.


What More Positive Tests Means


Over half the people that test positive for COVID-19 have no symptoms at all, and it’s not because they’ve developed antibodies.


It’s because they have this thing called T-Cell immunity. We’ve all been exposed to coronaviruses before. The common cold is a coronavirus. So most of us, probably 85%, already have this T-Cell immunity. This means that if that 85% gets COVID-19, they’re not going to get very sick with it.


Of course there are outliers, but it’s good news that the number of cases are going up and more testing is being done.


I’m all for this.


As we’re heading toward herd immunity, the most important thing to look at is the death rates and what that’s saying. The number of people who are testing positive is going up, but the death rates are going way down.


There’s still people dying from this, but they’re usually very ill, elderly people.


Note: Here are some other people who are more susceptible to complications: Obese people with diabetes and hypertension.


I’m really optimistic and excited that we are on our way to developing herd immunity.


I’m also excited that we now know how to treat it better.


COVID-19 Treatment Update


You really want to stay out of the hospital with this if you can. If you do get it, you need to get in touch with a doctor that knows how to keep you out of the hospital.


What does that mean?


That means recognize and treat it early. I hope all of you reading this are already taking higher doses of Vitamin C, D, and Zinc.


Here are a few other suggestions.


Wearing a mask is controversial, but because it’s recommended just do it. If anything, it will remind you to keep your hands out of your face and continue to social distance.


I think glasses may help too, because a lot of times the virus can go through your eyes. There’s a lot of practical things you can do.


The problem with the tests is that if you think you may have COVID-19 and you get tested, the results will probably take at least 5 days to come back.


So if you get sick you need to go ahead and start treatment.


In my opinion, there are a lot of good treatments out there.


I’ve treated several over the phone through telemedicine, and haven’t gotten any negative feedback.


An exciting piece of news is that there’s medicines that I’m going to be using to treat this. It’s medicines we’ve used before. It’s inexpensive and it works.


One of these medicines is an asthma medicine called Pulmicort (Budesonide).


You can use it in a nebulizer or a handheld. The nebulizer is probably more effective in getting it down to your lungs.


COVID-19 is a respiratory, inflammatory disease. So, if you hit it with these steroids in the lungs through inhaling early on, your symptom relief is going to be pretty quick.


I would combine that with a Z-Pak, which can prevent secondary bacterial infection. It also has some antiviral properties too, as does Zinc.


There’s also a lot of little things we’re doing that can help this.


Higher doses of Vitamin C. Maybe even an H2 Blocker like Pepcid, which has been shown to help. In some cases, home oxygen may be needed.


This Pulmicort nebulizer seems to be a really effective treatment for it, and I think you’re going to start to hear a lot about it.


I still feel that hydroxychloroquine works also. There’s no doubt in my mind that it works. I know it’s been controversial, but I wouldn’t hesitate to take it.


I’ve prescribed it for a few people and it seemed to really help them.


There are things you can do to treat this and keep yourself out of the hospital.


Of course, if you’re short of breath and can’t breathe, you need to go to the ER. Not an Urgent Care Center. Go to the ER. They’re set up to handle it.


The point of this Doctor’s Note is to equip you with the knowledge of how to avoid going to the hospital if at all possible.


Don’t freak out with the news you’re hearing on main stream media. Simply educate yourself, protect yourself, and be ready to get treated early if you come down with it. Again, the earlier you treat this thing the better.