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Group of Tennessee doctors call for mask mandate, urge Gov. Lee to go to COVID-19 unit

A group of doctors is calling for Governor Bill Lee to issue a mask mandate. They also invited him to a COVID-19 unit to see what they are like.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A group of doctors is urging Governor Bill Lee to issue a mask mandate in Tennessee after the state reported one of its worst weeks during the COIVD-19 pandemic.

Doctors held a virtual conference call where they shared their experiences in hospitals, treating people diagnosed with COVID-19. They were part of Protect My Care, a group of health professional advocates. The group is a part of a project from ForwardTN.

During the call, they urged the governor to issue a statewide mask mandate and said they wanted him to witness a COVID-19 unit first-hand.

Organizers said Dr. Jessica Rosen and Dr. Katrina Green, emergency room physicians, would participate in the conference. Dr. Matthew Semler also participated, a critical care physician, as well as Dr. Amy Gordon Bono who is an expert in public health.

They said that the state reported one of its worst weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic on Saturday, with 26,905 new cases. They also said that Tennessee's ICU capacity reached its lowest point of the coronavirus pandemic last Thursday.

The doctors said that businesses and schools should not return to pre-coronavirus levels as long as it continues to spread at the same rates.