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Doctor who worked on frontlines in NYC says we can flatten the curve

"We need to lose the fear and gain respect for this virus."

TAMPA, Fla. — Every day we are hit with new statistics about the coronavirus: how many tests, how many cases, percent positive and the number of deaths.  

For some people, the information is overwhelming and often downright scary, for others, it's become background noise. The fact is, we need that information, but one doctor believes we need to change the message. 

Dr. Jaime Salas-Rushford was on the front lines early on in New York City and is currently practicing in Puerto Rico. He has seen first hand the toll this disease has taken. He says we should learn more to be less afraid.

He says he's noticed two groups of people: those who are too scared to come out and those who just don't care and are doing whatever they want. 

"We need to lose the fear and gain respect and I think the respect for the disease, we're losing that as a society."

Dr. Salas-Rushford says we know so much more now about the coronavirus that slowly reopening businesses and schools is possible if it's done right.

"We now have knowledgeable ways of preventing spread. We need to create that part of society that it's sociable, that it's interactive and also they need to learn that people who are sick can stay home. It's a responsibility."

He also says right now, we shouldn't be counting on something we don't have, a vaccine. 

"What we know right now is there's no vaccine. What we know right now is we can treat symptoms, what we know right now is what we can do to prevent the spread. But, I think people are resting their hopes in this vaccine rather than just learning how to cope with this because I am sure COVID is not going to be the only virus in the next decade to hit us."

So, what does Dr. Salas-Rushford say we should be doing?

  • Keep your immune system strong by eating healthy, exercising and getting plenty of sleep. He also recommends certain supplements that he believes will help build your immune system like zinc and AHCC.
  • Take precautions by wearing a mask, social distancing and washing your hands.
  • Treat your symptoms if you do get sick. Most likely symptoms are fever, diarrhea and dehydration. He says you can take fever reducers, drink lots of fluids and rest.

Also, doctors are so much more accessible now with virtual and telehealth visits, so call one before your symptoms get out of hand. 

Dr. Salas-Rushford says if we focus on those commonsense things we will all start to lose the fear and gain respect for this virus, which in turn could help flatten the curve.

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