I write to express my heartfelt thanks to our local healthcare workers and to others in our community who are working diligently to keep us safe during this pandemic. I feel blessed to live in a community where many people who wear masks and otherwise follow the best recommendations based on science, adjust their thinking and practices as that science evolves, and strive to take care of others as well as themselves. In that light it was upsetting to read that Senator Joni Ernst is “suggesting government statistics on coronavirus infections and death have been inflated” by health care providers (Atlantic News Telegraph, Sept. 3, page 1). Without citing any evidence, she suggests that health care providers are cynically inflating coronavirus diagnoses to increase their reimbursement rates. I hope that, at least in our own community, we can recognize this claim for what it is, rubbish that does not inspire confidence in her leadership. I think that we deserve better. We should all appreciate and support our healthcare workers and each other as we continue to strive to find a reasonable balance between “opening up” and minimizing the high individual, social, and financial costs of people becoming infected. We would all benefit from citizens and officials acting from a perspective of loving and caring for each other. We all should be especially appreciative of those who are risking their own lives to care for those who are ill. I have sent a message via Senator Ernst’s website expressing my concern about this, but, as of a week later, I have received nothing beyond an automated acknowledgement of receipt.