THE CORONA YEAR DIARY OF SIGURD BERGMAN, MD
By Joseph A. Bonelli
A fictional diary of a medical doctor and his reflections on Covid-19.
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Dr. Sigurd Bergman is a psychiatrist with twenty years of experience in various areas of psychiatric practice in Las Vegas, Nevada. He is also an amateur epidemiologist. As the Covid-19 pandemic rages, he keeps a diary of local events mixed with expert analysis of medical protocols for treating Covid. He compares Nevada and California death rates, predicts we will not see the end of Covid for several years, and suggests genetic testing of the fatally susceptible, in anticipation they will not respond to vaccines. Dr. Bergman discovers secrets neither the nationís top doctors nor our presidents knew. He concludes that the pandemic is more than a medical problem with viruses; it is a mental health epidemic, a psychiatric emergency, of massive proportions due to widespread individual and systemic hysteria. The 10% positive rate for Covid testing means only one person in ten has the bug and nine out of ten are suffering from mild to severe hysteria, yet no one acknowledges this. He sees the national increase in insomnia as another indicator of his diagnosis. It seems like Hans Christian Andersenís fairy tale of The Emperorís New Clothes. Just as no one noticed the Emperor was nude, so no one but Bergman notices that Covid-19 is cyclical, not seasonal, coming in predictable (and ever larger) waves of two or three months. He feels that encouraging everyone, even those with no symptoms, to get tested, slowed down discovery of positives and fueled the surge, the equivalent of shooting ourselves in the foot. His conclusion: hysteria caused political leaders to needlessly shut down the economy and close schools, ended the ascending career of at least one politician, and made a scapegoat of a president. He determines that next time we must have learned from these lessons.
Joseph A. Bonelli holds a Bachelors degree in Comparative World Literature from the University of Southern California and a Masters degree in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago. He has worked in policy analysis evaluation and regulatory writing in Washington, DC and for the State of California. He has been a child protective services supervisor, substitute teacher, and medical social worker. He is also the author of the novels Congo Ape Kitabu and The Cassandra Group, the biographies The Caballero from Catalonia: The Life of Juan Duval and Bruce Lakofka, The Peopleís Artist; and 769 Movies You Must See Before Your 100th Birthday.
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