Iowa Doctors Petition Governor Kim Reynolds to Impose Shelter-In-Place Order

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Dear Governor Reynolds,

We would first like to applaud your efforts thus far to promote social distancing in an effort to slow the progression of COVID-19 in our communities. We acknowledge that these are difficult decisions that have significant economic consequences. Unfortunately, we remain deeply concerned that these measures do not go far enough to protect the health and lives of Iowans.

Analyzing the epidemiological data ourselves and personally witnessing the substantial lack of COVID-19 testing, personal protective equipment, and critical care capacity in our health care system, we believe that now is the time to impose a statewide shelter-in-place order. We must not wait for the crisis to reach disastrous proportions in Iowa before enforcing such measures. The available public health data and the experience of other governments with COVID-19 have demonstrated that social distancing and piecemeal business closures have not been successful in sufficiently slowing the progression of this disease. We do not believe that the measures that you have enacted thus far are equivalent to or as effective as a formal shelter-in-place order. More decisive action must be taken now. 

Shelter-in-place orders have proven efficacy in slowing the spread of COVID-19. It is also well-founded that the timing of such measures greatly influences the number of infections and deaths. A delay of just one day has a significant impact on a health care system's ability to manage the crisis. In the end we believe any economic advantages of a delay will be greatly outweighed by the toll in human life. One must choose life over livelihood during these historic, difficult times. We need your help in stemming the tidal wave of illness that will soon flood our hospitals. By imposing a shelter-in-place order now, you can help save the lives of countless Iowans. 

Respectfully, 

Physicians of Iowa