A Covid 19 treatment protocol has led to a decline in the death rate in Northern California, according to KCRA 3 news.

The news site cited the work of  Dr. Vanessa Walker in battling the disease.

Dr. Walker  said the decline in the death rate is partly because of three treatment methods:

· Administering steroids

· Avoiding intubation

· Using Remdesivir -- a medication that is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis

Walker is a critical care physician with Pulmonary Medical Associates and cares for COVID-19 patients. On Tuesday, she was operating out of Sutter Roseville’s intensive care unit.

“We know exactly what to do, what the first steps are to manage this disease,” Walker said.

While flattening the curve with the novel coronavirus is also presenting a learning curve for doctors, Walker said she has observed that the steroid Decadron is helping people survive the disease.

“I’d like to stress that does not mean you want to run out to your primary care doctor and ask for Decadron,” she said. “It is only for people that are hospitalized with COVID-19 and that meet certain criteria. Those are the ones that we would be using that medication for.”

Secondly, she said avoiding intubation appears to help patients.

“Initially, we all were thinking we had to put everyone on a ventilator," Walker explained. "Now, we’re pulling back on that, realizing patients actually don’t need ventilators and they’re doing much better with really high levels of oxygen and just waiting for their body to recover on its own."

Dr. Neal Kaushal is an internal medicine and gastroenterology physician in Sonora. He said another reason for the declining death rate may be rooted in demographics.

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