What you need to know about coronavirus


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — As fears grow over the impact of the coronavirus it’s important to understand what the risk is to you and your family and the steps the CDC is recommending for everyone.

Dr. Mathew Devine, the Medical Director at Highland Family Medicine and Accountable Health Partners, discussed the deadly virus Thursday during News 8 at Sunrise.

“The origins of this date back to Wuhan City in China,” said Dr. Devine. “The coronavirus is a fairly common type of virus, but there are multiple sorts of species or families within it. Usually, coronaviruses are passed animal to animal, like a bat to a bat, or camel to a cat, or other types of things. This has kind of gone from animal contact to human contact, and now there’s some human to human transmission that’s occurring.”

Dr. Devine asserted the coronavirus is a public health concern. “Right now there are multiple cases in China. There are some cases pocketed internationally, even into the United States. The CDC is obviously following this very closely and we’re trying to learn more. At this point, it’s still considered low risk, but there’s still a lot of information we’re gathering.”

He added, “It’s an upper respiratory infection that affects the person. They can get pneumonia or flu-like symptoms. And that can be extreme enough that it has caused some fatalities.”

Dr. Devine said the CDC is limiting some travel to and from China. They are monitoring people who have been traveling to and from China who are back into the United States. Those who have been affected are being quarantined so that they can be followed closely as we continue to learn more.

“I think the thing to keep in mind is we are almost at the height of our influenza or flu season right now,” the doctor noted. “So this makes it a little more complicated. If you’re having a fever, chills, upper respiratory symptoms, call your primary care office to get further advice about that. Because I think right now, we want to make sure that we are treating all of those different viruses that could be there. It’s a likely low risk that it’s a coronavirus right now in this area. But we want to continue to follow along with people as they are being concerned. We want to help them to manage their health as well.”

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