Coronavirus News: Separating fact from fiction on COVID-19

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Monday, March 2, 2020
Coronavirus: Separating fact from fiction
Lauren Glassberg speaks to an infectious disease specialist from NYU.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- There are many misconceptions about the coronavirus, and Dr. Vanessa Raabe, an infectious disease specialist at NYU Langone, is helping quell any panic separating fact from fiction.

You should wear a mask to protect yourself from getting the coronavirus: False.

"So when you wear a mask, you still get air coming in around the edges of the mask," Raabe said. "So it's not going to protect you from getting infected."

RELATED: How to protect yourself from coronavirus

Avoid the subway because it's easier to get coronavirus in a crowded space: False.

"So at this point, we're not seeing enough transmission in the United States that people need to change their daily routines," Raabe said.

However, she says you should wash your hands after riding as it will help cut down on getting germs, including colds and flu.

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"In America right now, the greatest threat by far is the flu," she said. "We see a lot more flu in the United States."

Raabe says the U.S. has had over 18,000 deaths in the U.S. during flu season and over 125 children who don't die from the flu.

"There have only been two deaths so far in the U.S. from COVID-19," she said.

RELATED: Tips for parents on speaking to children about coronavirus

There is no vaccine for coronavirus? True.

"We don't have vaccines that we know work to prevent coronavirus, but we have vaccines and development for diseases like this," Raabe said.

If you have a cold or a fever, should you go to the emergency room?

"Don't come to the emergency room," Raabe said. "Stay home if you're not sure what to do. Call your doctor saying 'These are the symptoms I'm having, should I come in?' The last thing we want is for you to be in an emergency room with somebody who really is sick and be exposed to that."


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on coronavirus

New York State information about coronavirus

New York City information about coronavirus

John Hopkins' coronavirus tracking dashboard


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