COVID somewhat forgotten, certainly not gone

There are no more business shutdowns, and it’s rare to see someone out in public with a mask on, but that doesn’t mean COVID-19 is a thing of the past. In fact, some national experts say it has been ingrained in our society to the point that it will be a part of our lives well into the future.

“We still have it around,” said Joe Bretschneider, who specializes in family medicine at Sanford Tracy. “It hasn’t really changed as far as how it spreads, but it has mutated, and we’re still seeing these variances. In Tracy, I haven’t seen the severity of the cases, which is a good thing, but we’re still seeing COVID itself.”

Bretschneider said the virus is now acting more like a bad cold than anything, and since colds are rather uncommon during the summer, the public needs to continue to be vigilant if they have cold-like symptoms at this time of the year. However, at this point, there is no reason for people to get overly concerned, at least not as much as they might have been even a year ago.

“It’s still definitely a thing,” he said. “I would say for people that are high-risk, it should still be in your consciousness. I don’t think it necessarily should dictate people’s lives the way it has, but it’s still something to be cognizant of if you have symptoms like a cough or runny nose.”

See more in this week’s paper!