Courtesy of FWD>DFW

A North Texas doctor states the facts about coronavirus

by Allison Hatfield | March 23, 2020

In a special edition of Morning After, produced by FWD>DFW and The Dallas Morning News, journalist Ron Corning and Dr. David Winter of Baylor Scott & White Health discuss the gravity of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. 

On March 20, the day this show aired on Facebook Live, North Texas had reported 136 confirmed cases and the governors of California, New York and Illinois had issued shelter-in-place orders for their residents. 

“We all need to take steps to prevent the spread of this virus,” Dr. White says, but it’s been hard for some to understand the importance of staying away from others. He puts it simply: “This virus goes away in 15 days, so if we all stop spreading it, it would be gone. Our bodies can cure this.”

Here’s what else he shared in order to clear up the confusion:

  • People are getting well after contracting the virus.
  • New cases are on the decline in some areas of the world.
  • In D-FW, the curve is going up.
  • The numbers we see are only positive tests, not actual numbers of people who are infected.
  • Some people have coronavirus and have no symptoms.
  • Young people are getting it: 20% percent of those who have tested positive are ages 20 to 40; 12% of those seriously ill are in that age range.
  • It appears that once you get coronavirus and recover, you don’t get it again.
  • You should cancel elective surgeries until this crisis passes.
  • A flu shot will not protect you from coronavirus.
  • There is no treatment for the virus right now.
  • The best things to do to keep from getting it and spreading it are to stay 6 feet away from other people and wash your hands after touching something someone else has touched. “If we do those two things, this virus will be stopped in its tracks,” Dr. White says.

Baylor Scott & White has added a feature to its MyBSWHealth app to help people decide what to do if they think they are experiencing symptoms of infection. If you don’t already have the app, download it here. Then you can take the questionnaire to determine if you need to consult a physician or be tested.

“We need to be serious about this thing. It’ll go on forever. It could go on for months, months, and months if we don’t take steps to prevent the spread,” Dr. White says. 

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Stay up-to-date on the latest news surrounding COVID-19 and its effects on the D-FW community here.

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