New information about COVID-19 is released daily. And with social media, anyone has a platform to share news, whether it is true or not. It can be overwhelming to try to filter through everything that’s out there. That’s why we’re taking a look at a few popular COVID-19 theories circulating the internet and seeing what’s fact and what’s fiction.
1. COVID-19 can live on surfaces.
True. The coronavirus can live on surfaces anywhere from a few hours to multiple days. Materials made of wood, metal, plastic, stainless steel, glass, ceramics, and paper can carry the virus for up to 5 days, while it can stay on copper, cardboard, and aluminum for up to 24 hours.
2. Once you get COVID-19, you’re immune to getting it ever again.
Undetermined. In South Korea, 163 people who recovered from COVID-19 have retested positive. They are not considered contagious at this time, even though roughly 44% showed mild symptoms. This poses the question, are they becoming re-infected, or is the test picking up remnants of the virus? Until further studies are conducted, we won’t know for certain whether someone can contract the virus more than once.
3. Only older people and immunocompromised people are at risk.
False. Although these demographics are at higher risk, every person is essentially at risk of contracting the virus and experience severe or fatal side effects. The majority of fatal cases have been seen in those over 80 years old, but there have been many fatal cases found in young, seemingly healthy individuals.
4. You can be a carrier without showing any symptoms yourself.
True. One compelling study that proves this to be fact is that of the outbreak on the Diamond Princess cruise ship. Out of the 3,063 tests administered to quarantined passengers, 634 came back positive, but about 17.9% of those positive patients showed zero symptoms. Because so many carriers show little to no symptoms, it’s impossible to know how many people truly carry the virus. Thus, reinstating the importance of Americans’ effort to stop the spread.
5. Pets can get COVID-19.
False. This one is tricky because there are animals that have tested positive for a strain of the coronavirus, but there are no reports of an animal showing COVID-19 symptoms. Many animal health organizations and infectious disease experts claim there is no evidence that animals are becoming ill with COVID-19 or spreading it. However, the CDC recommends staying away from pets, just as you would humans, if you become ill with the virus.
For indisputable news and updates on COVID-19, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention webpage.
The Colony ER Hospital hopes you and your family are staying home and staying safe during this time!
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