As the headlines continue to 'scream' about rising case counts in B-F Counties (and elsewhere) it seems necessary (again) to provide the largely unreported balance of other information. Without balance and perspective, hysteria and fear are far more likely to set in with citizens.

B-F cases are now at 4509, (as of July 10 from BFHD website), but deaths remain at 114. That is a 2.53 percent death rate. Then, when you consider the demographics of that 2.53 percent, you see constants that have been largely unchanged for months.

The demographics of those COVID deaths continue to remain highest with those over 60 and most suffer from previous compromising heath conditions. As of July 10, the most recent death in Benton County was a " man in his 80's with underlying health issues," to quote the website

This does not mean there are not exceptions here or elsewhere. And it does not mean COVID should be minimalized.  But the rising cases do not appear to be translating into increasing deaths for younger persons outside of the high risk categories--which have remained unchanged for months.

Also the percentage of persons who have COVID or COVID-like symptoms in our four area hospitals sits now at 19 pecent, 68 out of 358 persons. That number has actually dropped a percent or two; otherwise it's remained hovering around 20-21 percent for many weeks. We still are not able to obtain verified  data as to how many of the area ICU beds are occupied with COVID patients vs. people suffering from other conditions.

But it's clear, as we have pointed out several times recently, the bulk of the media focus has been on new cases without also at least mentioning these data points.

When you only report or stress upon certain elements of information you do the public a disservice and perhaps only add to uncertainty, fear and panic.

Study the pictures, and to see more data for yourself from the BFHD website, click on the button below.

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