"Tennessee, you deserve better. Ask Governor Lee to show some leadership. We need your help. Please."
As Tennessee breaks a new record on COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths, Dr. Jason Martin, who has been treating COVID patients since the beginning of the pandemic, releases a video statement making a direct appeal to Tennesseans to join healthcare workers in growing demand for action from Governor Lee.
NASHVILLE -- Tennessee COVID-19 Doctor, who has been treating patients on the frontlines since the beginning of the pandemic released this video statement today in response to Tennessee breaking a new record in the COVID-19 outbreak over the weekend.
Dr. Jason Martin said, “What we need from you is to ask Governor Lee to show leadership right now.” and “Tennessee, you deserve better. You deserve someone who can make the tough decisions rather than abdicate the responsibility to municipalities, who can be a leader and so I’m begging you if you’ve emailed the Governor before, do it again. If you’ve called the Governor before, do it again. We need you to let him know that you are watching and that you see the record numbers and that you see the record deaths, and that you demand a response.”
“I want you to know that your healthcare workers could not be prouder to be doing the jobs that they are doing right now. We come to you not complaining about the long hours. Not complaining about the trials and tribulations of the job, and there are many. We come to you lamenting the endless death and destruction that we are seeing every single day. It’s tearing us apart. It is preventable. We need your help. Please. Speak to your elected leaders and let them know that it is time for an aggressive response for this once in a lifetime, hopefully, pandemic.”
Dr. Jason Martin in his video message references the story of another COVID-19 physician and colleague, Dr. Matt King, who shared on social media his experience this weekend seeing the consequences of Tennessee's evaporating hospital capacity because of Governor Lee's refusal to take responsibility:
- It has been 25 days since another frontline physician, Dr. Katrina Green, frustrated by Governor Lee’s refusal to listen to pandemic experts—invited him to visit her ER and see the consequences of his failed ‘fend for yourself’ response to the latest wave of coronavirus cases.
- It has been 160 days since 39 Tennessee critical care doctors, on behalf of thousands more, issued this dire warning to Governor Lee that Tennessee would see the entirely avoidable increases in hospitalizations and deaths, school and business closures we are now experiencing if he continued to refuse to act.
- The White House COVID-19 Task Force has repeatedly said Gov. Lee must issue a statewide mask mandate and other interventions to get COVID under control: White House COVID Task Force says close bars and restaurants so more schools and businesses can stay open. Governor Bill Lee says, “No.”
- Vanderbilt Department of Health Policy study found that counties who never adopted a mask mandate have COVID-19 death rates twice as high as counties with mask mandates.
- Counties with mask mandates saw an economic boost.
- Counties without mask mandates are seeing death rates twice as high as those without them.
- Surrounding counties refusing to do mask mandates are undermining the progress of those that are: “Rae Bond, chair of the COVID-19 Joint Task Force, said Tuesday that the areas surrounding Hamilton County, which do not have mask mandates, are affecting residents locally"