Congressman Chris Jacobs complains that President Joe Biden's vaccine mandate “serves no public health interest and will only further divide an already fractured nation.” Meanwhile more than 1,500 American citizens are dying every day because of COVID-19 and most people sick enough to be in the hospital and dying are unvaccinated.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (DHW) issued a “Crisis Standard of Care” for hospitals in its panhandle. DHW Director Dave Jeppensen issued the following statement: “Crisis standards of care is a last resort. It means we have exhausted our resources to the point that our healthcare systems are unable to provide the treatment and care we expect. The best tools we have to turn this around (are) for more people to get vaccinated and to wear masks indoors and in outdoor crowded public places. Please choose to get vaccinated as soon as possible – it is your very best protection against being hospitalized from COVID-19.”

Hospitals in Florida and Texas are ordering mobile morgue units to handle overflow of dying patients. The Waco Tribune-Herald reported, on Aug. 25: “Local mortuaries have brought in a second mobile morgue to handle COVID-19 deaths, hospitals are short on nurses and Waco’s mayor is warning that the local health care system is near ‘the brink of collapse.’”

Hospitals are having to turn away patients with cardiac, pulmonary, kidney or other illnesses because all their beds are full of COVID-19 patients. The public health interest is served when hospitals are not overcrowed and resources are not exhausted.

Vaccines are safe and effective, as Mr. Jacobs noted in his press release. The science is clear: masks work, vaccines work. There is no politics in the science.

I am sure that Mr. Jacobs cares about the health of his constituents, but for some reason he must feel he can exploit the issue for political gains. That is very shameful.

WILLIAM FINE, Brockport

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