WALNUT CREEK, Calif. (KGO) — Doctors at John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek say they have seen more deaths by suicide during this quarantine period than deaths from the virus.
“The numbers are unprecedented,” said Dr. Michael deBoisblanc, referring to the spike in suicides.
“We’ve never seen numbers like this, in such a short period of time,” deBoisblanc added. “I mean we’ve seen a year’s worth of suicide attempts in the last four weeks.”
Kacey Hansen, a trauma nurse who has spent 33 years at the hospital, said she has never witnessed self-inflicted attacks on such a scale.
“What I have seen recently, I have never seen before,” Hansen said. “I have never seen so much intentional injury.”
The unintended consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic have been severe. Government actions have cost forty million US jobs. A looming recession. Hundreds of thousands of businesses wiped. 401ks and retirements have been gutted.
Anecdotal evidence, like the testimony of doctors at John Muir Medical Center and reported surges in calls to suicide hotlines around the country, suggest the mental toll of lockdowns could be as great as the material costs.