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COVID: Need more info

| May 22, 2020 1:00 AM

I phoned the Post Falls Health Department and the Panhandle Health Department to ask why they published the number of COVID-19 cases in counties but not in towns. The reply was that they are following HIPPAA regulations to protect patient privacy. If they gave the number by towns, people would be able to find out who is infected, violating their privacy.

Yet information is regularly published about cases in the Spokane Veterans Home. The Spokesman-Review May 20 (page 9) reported a local veteran dying of complications from COVID-19 and then reported that 10 residents tested positive for the disease. If 10 residents of the veterans hospital can be identified as having the disease, why can’t 10 residents of Post Falls (where I live) be identified by number (not by name)?

According to https://worldpopulationreview.com/us-cities/post-falls-id-population/, the population of Post Falls in 2020 is 38,145. Even if 100 residents had the disease, the ratio would be far less than 10 in the veterans home.

Now I hear that if one person is newly infected, we’ll need to start over with our protective actions. If that is true, we will never get out of that mode. How ridiculous!

ALLEN MARSH

Post Falls