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June 9, 2020/News Releases

How Many More Will Die From Fear of the Coronavirus?

New York Times op-ed by Cleveland Clinic CEO, President Tom Mihaljevic, M.D., and Mayo Clinic President, CEO Gianrico Farrugia, M.D.

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In a New York Times op-edtoday, Cleveland Clinic CEO and President Tom Mihaljevic, M.D., and Mayo Clinic President and CEO Gianrico Farrugia, M.D., write: “More than 100,000 Americans have died from Covid-19. Beyond those deaths are other casualties of the pandemic — Americans seriously ill with other ailments who avoided care because they feared contracting the coronavirus at hospitals and clinics. The toll from their deaths may be close to the toll from Covid-19.”

Drs. Mihaljevic and Farrugia point to “sizable decreases” in new cancer diagnoses (45 percent) and reports of heart attacks (38 percent) and strokes (30 percent).

“To prevent further harm, people with serious, complex and acute illnesses must now return to the doctor for care,” they write, adding, “The novel coronavirus will not go away soon, but its systemic side effects of fear and deferred care must.”

To read the entire op-ed, click here:

About Cleveland Clinic

Cleveland Clinic is a nonprofit multispecialty academic medical center that integrates clinical and hospital care with research and education. Located in Cleveland, Ohio, it was founded in 1921 by four renowned physicians with a vision of providing outstanding patient care based upon the principles of cooperation, compassion and innovation. Cleveland Clinic has pioneered many medical breakthroughs, including coronary artery bypass surgery and the first face transplant in the United States. Cleveland Clinic is consistently recognized in the U.S. and throughout the world for its expertise and care. Among Cleveland Clinic’s 81,000 employees worldwide are more than 5,743 salaried physicians and researchers, and 20,160 registered nurses and advanced practice providers, representing 140 medical specialties and subspecialties. Cleveland Clinic is a 6,690-bed health system that includes a 173-acre main campus near downtown Cleveland, 23 hospitals, 276 outpatient facilities, including locations in northeast Ohio; Florida; Las Vegas, Nevada; Toronto, Canada; Abu Dhabi, UAE; and London, England. In 2023, there were 13.7 million outpatient encounters, 323,000 hospital admissions and observations, and 301,000 surgeries and procedures throughout Cleveland Clinic’s health system. Patients came for treatment from every state and 132 countries. Visit us at clevelandclinic.org. Follow us at twitter.com/CleClinicNews. News and resources available at newsroom.clevelandclinic.org.

Editor’s Note: Cleveland Clinic News Service is available to provide broadcast-quality interviews and B-roll upon request.

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