Dr. Dan Erickson and Dr. Artin Massihi from Accelerated Urgent Care held a news conference April 22 at their Coffee Road facility to talk about coronavirus trends and the impact on the economy.

A call by two local doctors last week to reopen the economy and lift social distancing orders caught fire on social media over the weekend, landing them an appearance on Fox News tonight while drawing strong criticism from medical and health professionals.

Doctors Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi, both licensed California physicians and co-owners of Accelerated Urgent Care in Bakersfield, were praised in a tweet by Elon Musk on Sunday for making "good points" and will appear on "The Ingraham Angle" with Laura Ingraham on Fox News tonight. 

The doctors have also been roundly criticized on Twitter and elsewhere by some health and medical professionals who say their calculations and analysis are faulty. 

Carl T. Bergstrom, a biology professor at the University of Washington, noted on Twitter that the doctors' calculations of COVID-19 having a low death rate were not statistically sound and likened it to "estimating the average height of Americans from the players on an NBA court."

In a news conference held by Erickson and Massihi last week, the doctors cited their own testing data as well as state and national figures to argue the coronavirus has a low death rate, similar to flu.

They arrived at that conclusion by taking the infection rate (the number of cases positive out of the total number of tests done) and extrapolating it to the general population. Statewide, Erickson said, 12 percent of people tested for COVID-19 are positive. Assuming this is the rate of infection among the general population, he estimated as many as 5 million Californians have had the virus (5 million is 12 percent of the state's population of 40 million). He then used the number of reported deaths in California — around 1,200 last week — to calculate that 1,200 deaths out of 5 million people who have likely had the virus works out to a .03 percent death rate, which is similar to the death rate for flu. 

"Millions of cases, small amount of death," Erickson said repeatedly in the news conference.

However, that analysis has been called incorrect because of sampling bias, according to UC Irvine associate public health professor Andrew Noymer. Because most people tested for COVID019 were likely to have symptoms, the infection rate among those tested is going to be much higher than among the general population.

The doctors are also scheduled to appear "Greg Kelly Reports" on NewsmaxTV, according to a post on Accelerated Urgent Care's Facebook page.

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(24) comments


Face it....NOBODY knows what will happen. I'm betting (no I'm not an Epidimiologist) that there are far more infections than believed. Trump's moronic takes have led to late testing. It's the only way to get a grip on it. You can compare coronavirus to suicides or drownings or whatever...it's up to 70,,000 dead. That's more than 15 years of Nam deaths. if it were to have the pattern of the Spanish flu, we'd have 3/4 s of a million dead by January. That's not likely, but still a scenario you cant dismiss, especially if it mutated to something more virulent.

One thing is certain, going around packing an AR15 to show the governmemt whose boss is idiotic. If you need to go to work that s one thing, but demonstrating how "brave" you are by protesting, thus hinderimg the sacrifices so many others have made is monumentally stupid. But these are the same people that think wearing an American flag Tee shirt automatically makes them Patriots, or worse yet, invulnerable to viruses.


At the top of his prime time show Tuesday night, Tucker Carlson hyped a video featuring two California doctors who downplayed the threat of the coronavirus. The doctors, Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi, are the co-owners of an urgent care clinic in Bakersfield. They went viral in the last few days for delivering a presentation last week in which they suggested the mortality rate of Covid-19 is similar to the flu.

The arguments the doctors put forward have been widely criticized. The American College of Emergency Physicians and the American Academy of Emergency Medicine said in a joint statement that they “emphatically condemn the recent opinions released” by Erickson and Massihi. And YouTube removed the video for violating its community guidelines, which have been strengthened to prevent coronavirus misinformation from spreading rampantly on the platform.


So I can safely assume since my comment was deleted that comments are not open to opposing views. I mistakenly thought that the Californian would champion the right to free speech. If an echo chamber is all this newspaper is then shame on you. The Californian is corrupt and complicit in the destruction of our local economy.

She Dee

The photo of these two "Doctors" are telling. I wonder how long they have been breathing in that toxic Kern County air and stuffing their bodies with high carb foods? Their thinking on this subject appears to be based on local facts in the fish bowl of their tiny pond mentality...in my opinion! Where did they study medicine? What were their test scores? Why did they settle in Kern?

Terry McGuire

They are urgent care doctors... the ones that see the patients once in a blue moon for 10 minutes to apply a bandage, write a prescription, or ship them off for care at a hospital where specialists are. They own the 6 clinics. Business was plummeting per what they said. They started doing testing (where money could be made) and infomercials on their site. It averaged 3 stars of five so CoVID may not have been the only issue. I did wonder about their test scores while studying medicine. They don't have a clear-cut picture of viable statistical analysis. And they are going after the Trump market as their marketing niche. Little wonder since they are in Kevin McCarthy's city. Not one of the three of them were around during the Hepatitis C epidemic.

I realize that running 6 urgent care centers create a fat advertising budget for the local media to fight over, but I think putting public health at risk over their business is rather short-sighted all the way around. I would say it looks like they have learned to use the news for free advertising like political candidates have.

She Dee

Great input! I know that my own Urgent Care Clinic is a side dish to the Family Practice, where there are no actual doctors on staff and the clients are seen by Nurse Practitioners who refer people out to providers on their lists. It somehow seems like another Ponzi Scheme to get the funds flowing into their own circle of "friends". Much like organized crime in my view! The US needs a different system to weed out the money hogs who appear to be taking advantage of the health system!



Terry McGuire

That is an excellent article on what is wrong with them.


Their Infection Fatality Rate is an extreme outlier compared to the results from 7 studies referenced in this recent article..



Here's the official response from the American College of Emergency Physicians and American Academy of Emergency Medicine. This should attract national attention, as well. acep.org/corona/COVID-19/covid-19-articles/acep-aaem-joint-statement-on-physician-misinformation/?fbclid=IwAR3ppOCNZSwkBlYK-tM10DOCTtznK9YNFtnL4QHjIxeAfbYO1dqqCFcpCnM


These two doctors are business owners who are seeing a decline in business so will use their doctor status to day what ever they can to bring business back. They lied in their first statement saying they were agreed with by the CDC and other government offices. They had to retract that statement. Oh ya they were so smart they new about this a long time before everyone else and had thousand of test ready and tested way before the state, ya right. 23 news stated tonight that everyone is tunning nto their story that they broke. Not something to be proud of, two Doctors who lied about their findings and the discussions they had about who agreed with them. Bottom line they are business owners who need customers. So ya good idea go hangout in crowds so you can go to their urgent care when you get sick and they can test you and get paid.


Two of Bakersfield’s finest quacks and ardent Trump fantasy puppets. Next they will disclose that ingesting Clorox really cures this virus. No surprise that FOX and Ingram eat this up. Birds of a feather always flock together. Quacks like to associate with quacks.

Why is it that current statistics show that the US has 1/3 of the total world infections, and 1/4 of the deaths? Is it from the incompetence of quacks?

Independent Voter

Proud of these local doctors not drinking the Kool-aid and


I completely agree. Thank God there are doctors that will think for themselves.

Comment deleted.
Inconvenient Truth

Great work Doctors!

Since you had the guts to come forward with SCIENTIFIC FACTS, more scientific testing is confirming your hypothesis:

1) Actual Testing in Miami shows Covid is 16 TIMES MORE PREVALENT in the population than the ‘official’ numbers show:


2) Testing shows 21% of New York residents are positive for Covid; 12 TIMES THE OFFICIAL’ FIGURES:




Here's something that's not a guess or conjecture by two Trump cultist Doctors in Tide Pod Trump Land. And of course they were on State Run Television! Bakersfield is Boomer Rube Capital of California.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has applied her trademark empathy to rally her country of 5 million to attempt what few states have tried: eradicate, not just mitigate, the novel coronavirus.

As of Friday, New Zealand has registered a total of 17 deaths from COVID-19 and 1,456 infection cases, with only two new cases confirmed on Friday. The country has done better than flatten its coronavirus curve, public health expertssay — it has crushed it.

Empathy! Crushed it! Leadership! Woman! Hear that Docs?

Dang Liberals with their math, readin, writin and facts!

Gene Pool Chlorinator

Dweeb, you do know that New Zealand is an island country with a population a little more than half of New York City, right?

Hardly an apples-to-apples comparison, but I guess that's your idea of "math, readin, writin and facts"???


We should not shut down all of civilization until the virus is "eradicated." Next year there will be a new flu virus: Do we shut down civilization again?


Bakersfield representin' its finest.


As I commented previously, these guys are neither epidemiologists nor data analysts, so are operating far outside their lane of expertise which is why they are rightfully getting harsh criticism from experts in this field. FoxNews apparently doesn't care about the "study's" lack of scientific or statistical validity because it somehow fits their political agenda.


Time and time again "experts in their field" have been wrong. These doctors have something more important to share and it's called anecdotal info. from their own experience and from other doctors. I trust them more than the government.


Telling the truth today is a revolutionary act. Not enough doctors and scientists are stepping up because they either 1) fearful of losing their job 2) actually believe all of the COVID-19 garbage 3) sold their soul to the devil by keeping their mouth shut. Here are credible facts that the mainstream does not like to share. https://thehighwire.com/did-america-get-it-wrong/


You are absolutely correct!

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