Coronavirus is affecting us all so we speak to Dr. Anuradha at Bareen Hospital so you can be better informed and decipher between fact and fiction.
How worried should we be at the moment in Abu Dhabi?
Presently, we shouldn’t be worried about the Coronavirus health issue, however we should be more vigilant and take all necessary precaution to stop the spread of the virus.
As per the directive of the Ministry of Health & Prevention (MOHAP), soon as the spread of the virus was reported from China, all hospitals in Abu Dhabi took all necessary precautions in line with the World Health Organization (WHO), protocols.
It’s important to note that Abu Dhabi has enough reserves of necessary medical supplies.
How long do you think this health issue will last?
Evaluating the current spread of this health issue, it is likely that this new strain of coronavirus will circulate in the coming few weeks and continue into months at least. There is no proof that this is a seasonal flu and there is no vaccination or treatment protocol to treat coronavirus.
What kind of people does coronavirus affect the most? What should those people be doing to protect themselves?
According to WHO, most patients were aged 30 years to 69 years. Other vulnerable groups are individuals with conditions like asthma, diabetes and heart disease. However, recently it has been noticed that coronavirus is spreading to all age groups including children.
Is washing our hands enough to stop us contracting the virus?
Washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rubs kills viruses that may be present on your hands. But only hand washing will not stop you from contracting the virus.
What steps can we take to prevent us contracting this virus?
Maintain a distance of at least a metre between you and a person who is coughing or sneezing. This is because that person can spray small liquid droplets from the nose and mouth which could contain the virus which you may breathe in.
Avoid touching the eyes, nose and mouth because contaminated hands can transfer virus to those areas and from there the virus could enter your body.
Always cover your mouth and nose with your elbow or a tissue when you cough or sneeze and dispose of the tissue immediately.
Always seek medical advice if you have fever, a cough or breathing difficulties. Call in advance and follow the direction of your local health authority.
There seems to be quite a few myths about the virus. How can we decipher fact from fiction?
Myth: Face masks can protect you from the virus.
Fact: A face mask cannot fully protect you from the virus if not used properly. The mask can only prevent infected persons from spreading the virus by blocking any respiratory droplets that could be expelled from their mouths.
Myth: Contracting Coronavirus means death.
Fact: That’s not true. About 81% of people who are infected with the coronavirus have a mild form of the disease, according to a study published 18th February by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Myth: Avoiding Chinese people is the best way to avoid contracting corona virus.
Fact: Close personal contact with infected persons regardless of race or ethnicity is the most likely way to become infected with Corona virus.
Myth: Drinking bleach will keep the virus away.
Fact: The Food and Drug Administration warns against this, as it can cause serious health risks and adverse events.
Myth: Coronavirus is transmitted off packages mailed from China.
Fact: The virus is transmitted through respiratory droplets. There are currently no confirmed reports of this.
Important: Always seek medical advice if you have fever, a cough or breathing difficulties. Call in advance and follow the direction of your local health authority.
Dr. Anuradha Ajesh, Specialist – Pediatrics, Bareen International Hospital, Mohammed Bin Zayed City, zone 15.
Contact: 02 554 5555 or for more information, visit: bareenhospital.ae