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Local doctor says overdoses, suicides increasing; voices concerns about cancer prevention during pandemic

Some health officials in the region are voicing concerns about increases in suicide, as well as other health issues getting brushed to the side.

Dr. Robert Cole, who serves as Steuben County Coroner, spoke with Finger Lakes News Radio about this topic.


“My own experience through this COVID epidemic is that I’ve seen an increase in drug deaths, increase in deaths from chronic conditions when patients were not able to go back and see their providers last spring and early-summer,” he explained. Many doctors offices were closed as a precaution during the early days of the pandemic.

He cited an increase in suicides as well. “I have no reason to believe that this is not going on around the state,” Dr. Cole added.

The longer-term risk, with the pandemic now reaching its 10th month is more cancer-related deaths, according to Dr. Cole. This would be caused by the lack of follow-ups and fear associated with going to the doctors office.



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