Northeast Tennessee mayors warn of “devastating and catastrophic” COVID-19 pandemic outcomes in open letter


TRI-CITIES (WJHL) – When we look back at the COVID-19 pandemic, what will we remember?

Northeast Tennessee mayors addressed their communities in an open letter this week, pleading for community members to comply with infection prevention measures to control the surging COVID-19 pandemic.

Signed by mayors in Unicoi, Johnson, Sullivan, Washington, Carter and Greene counties, the letter is underscored with a sense of urgency and fraught with warnings of what a continued surge of COVID-19 could mean to the community.

“No health system is capable of caring for a limitless number of patients,” the letter reads. “There are constraints on space, on staffing and on the well-being of frontline healthcare workers that must be taken into consideration.”

The letter warns that without a collective effort to control the pandemic, the region could suffer “devastating and catastrophic outcomes.”

The letter implores residents to stay home as much as possible, avoid large gatherings, and to wear a mask when leaving their homes. It echoes pleas from healthcare officials over the past nine months, asking citizens to do whatever is necessary to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“Will we think of how our healthcare workers and businesses crumbled?” the letter asks. “Or will we see this year as the time our community came together, stepped up and did everything they could to overcome this virus?”

You can read the full letter here:

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Coronavirus COVID-19 videos

Biden slams Trump for 'knowingly' lying on COVID

McEnany: Trump 'never lied' to the public on COVID

Trump bemoans virus restrictions in North Carolina

University of Tennessee relocating Massey Hall residents to make room for COVID-19 self-isolation cases

Coronavirus in Tennessee: Knox County reports 100 new cases, 157 new inactive cases

Knox County Health Dept. says plan in place for vaccine distribution

UT Chancellor: Some dodging COVID-19 precautions

Two Tennessee women participating in a COVID-19 vaccine study

Tennessee teachers asking for more safety measures

State launching COVID-19 schools dashboard

Knox County Health Dept.: Numbers reflect new timeframe for inactive cases

Clinton High School cancels next 2 weeks of games due to virus

UT chancellor: Fraternities trying to avoid COVID-19 precautions

Trending Stories

WATE 6 Storm Weather School

WATE 6 On Your Side Twitter