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Dr. Bobby Mukkamala: Large gatherings still pose COVID-19 threat

Published: Sep. 13, 2021 at 6:40 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - Fall is just about to be in the air and that means football games, school events, festivals and other large gatherings.

“It’s not all blue skies and sunny days here right now even though it seems like that,” said Flint doctor and American Medical Association Trustee Dr. Bobby Mukkamala.

Dr. Mukkumala is referencing what’s happening where many snowbirds in Michigan go and that’s Florida.

“There’s a lot to be aware of and we’re going in a direction that other people have already gone through, and we should learn from that instead of repeating the same mistakes,” he said.

He said that many hospitals in Florida are having a hard time getting the medications and supplies needed to intubate people.

And with the way Michigan’s hospitalizations and COVID-19 cases are rising, he’s afraid that Michigan is not far behind.

He was in Ann Arbor this last weekend for the game with 107,000 people in attendance. He wore his mask.

“As we gather -- we still need to be cautious, so we don’t go in the direction of Texas, or Louisiana, or Arkansas or Florida,” he said.

When asked about indoor gatherings versus outdoor gatherings and masking in certain situations, he said that a lot of it comes down to common sense.

“If you’re sitting next to somebody outside for 30 minutes- that’s less risk. But if the person next to you in COVID positive -- and you’re inhaling what they’re exhaling even though it’s outside for 3.5 hours -- absolutely that’s a risk, and that’s exactly what we’re trying to avoid,” he said.

Hospitalizations in Michigan have only been on the upswing over the last couple months.

That in of itself should serve as a reminder that the virus is still here, it’s still spreading, and there are simple steps we can do to protect ourselves, and others.

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