With two deaths from the coronavirus reported in the U.S., dozen more across the country infected and coronavirus research being done at the Tulane Primate Research Center in Mandeville; are fears over the coronavirus justified?
“I think we should be concerned and I think we should be vigilant but I don’t think ‘fear’ is a good term to use,” says David Mushatt, Associate professor of medicine for Infectious Diseases at Tulane University. “Let’s keep up with the latest developments but in many ways, we need to be more concern about the flu which is circulating wildly at this time.”
Mushett says at this point, it is unclear what the actual mortality rate is for the coronavirus. Current estimates are about 3% for the mortality rate.
“The coronavirus appears to have a higher mortality rate,” says Mushett. “You are more likely to die from coronavirus than you are from the flu, but flu infects many, many more times Americans every year. Its estimates to be in the tens of millions and up to 35, or 40, or 50 thousand Americans die every year from the flu.”
Mushett says there are simple habits you can do to protect yourself from the virus, “you can avoid touching your eyes, or your nose, or your mouth because that is how the virus can transfer from the fingers to the body and wash your hands regularly with soap and water and use hand sanitizer with at least 60 or 62% alcohol.”