I read the letter to the editor, “Unfriendly welcome,” in the May, Watauga Democrat objecting to the 14-day quarantine order of second home owners and visitors who come to Watauga county from areas outside it.

Just to remind you, Gov. Roy Cooper issued statewide isolating-at-home orders in March. Those orders were for the population of the entire state, not just Watauga County.

The restrictions regarding out-of-area visitors or second home owners were intended to help prevent our small hospital facilities from being overwhelmed, as well as lowering the rate of person-to- person contagion.

These types of restrictions were repeated in many places in the U.S. where second-home owners and tourists could have escaped more heavily populated areas, where the possibility of large numbers of people might have fallen ill, requiring emergency care, which often includes intubation. Some patients require breathing assistance for a few days, others for weeks.

No one could forecast precisely which local populations might have so many of the desperately ill, some dying, as to bring a veritable storm of people needing the most extreme life-saving care. Medical communities in many states have seen large numbers of patients, have also saved many lives. But not all of those stricken survived.

I hope you will re-think your reaction to a a wise and appropriate decision, taken by state leadership, guided by the CDC, NIH, NC Health Dept. and leaders of the largest health organizations in the U.S.

It isn’t personal. The self-isolating orders will remain in place, according to the governor as of May 6, until at least May 22. If our county leadership, in cooperation with Appalachian Regional Health System, evaluates the data regarding new cases in our area to be accelerating at an unacceptable pace as businesses reopen, there could be an extension of the self-isolation period.

We all wish we could return to the pre-Covid-19 time, but, as for me, I’m grateful that a lot of capable public health and medical professionals are keeping track of the virus’s rise and fall.

I respect their intention to keep as many as possible healthy.

Susan M. Miller


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(2) comments


I would also like to add that the 14 day quarantine applies not only to people with second homes in the county, but also to permanent residents who have stayed overnight outside of the county. The order is not trying to single out part-time residents especially since it applies to the permanent residents as well. This is a very nice response to the original letter, I appreciate you taking the time to reply to it in such a diplomatic way.


Excellent letter!

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