By Mike Cugno

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – More than 70 doctors, physician assistants and nurses from a number of South Florida hospitals are pleading with the citizens of Miami to take the coronavirus pandemic seriously.

“If people need to personally experience COVID-19 by having a loved one or close friend infected in order to take this crisis seriously, then it will be too late and we will suffer the full brunt of this epidemic. The worst-case scenarios indicate that over a million Americans may eventually die of COVID-19 if we are unable to control its spread,” read the medical professionals’ open letter to CBS4 news partner the Miami Herald.

The medical professionals are asking that residents adhere to social distancing guidelines, which help stop the spread of the virus.

The doctors, who are on the front lines of this outbreak, stress that the number of confirmed cases that are being recorded isn’t a true representation of what they are seeing in the hospitals. They say those numbers just reflect how behind we are in testing.

The letter also highlighted another misconception – young people are immune to the outbreak.

“Young and otherwise healthy people are also becoming severely ill from COVID-19. This is not just a problem for the elderly and chronically-ill. It is a dangerous threat to all of us,” the letter continued.

The message for these medical professionals was simple. The quicker we adopt the social distancing practices, the faster we get back to our lives.

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