INDIANAPOLIS (TEGNA) - Fears regarding the outbreak of the new coronavirus, which causes COVID-19, has led to a lot of rumors circulating online.
There are so many claims popping up each day that VERIFY will now compile a week’s worth of coronavirus fact-checks every Friday. That way, you can easily find every fact-check the team has made about the coronavirus every week.
Here are the fact-checks for the week of March 27:
‘Coronavirus Act Now’ chart uses worst case scenario to promote action
A website shows the worst case scenario in each state if no social distancing measures are taken and lists a point of no return for each state. The creators don’t claim or try to predict the future, they are merely using data that’s already available to showcase a possible outcome. The point of the website is to push politicians toward stay-at-home orders and other such measures.
There is a list of disinfectants you can use against the coronavirus
The Environmental Protection Agency has a list of over 280 disinfectants that should be effective against the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The list isn't final, and can be updated with new products. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends using household bleach solutions and alcohol solutions of at least 70% alcohol.
A sudden loss of smell or taste could indicate you have COVID-19
Studies in various countries have found a significant number of patients with positive cases of COVID-19 lost their sense of smell or taste while they were sick. It's possible that it could be an early symptom before any other symptoms present themselves. The World Health Organization doesn't list this as a symptom yet, but they are investigating it.
The CDC and WHO do not recommend using homemade masks
Homemade masks should only be used as a last resort when no other options are available, the CDC says. If you must use a homemade mask, you should also use a face shield that covers the entire front and sides of the face. The WHO says cloth is not recommended under any circumstances. Additionally, the WHO says masks should only be used if you are sick or taking care of someone who is sick.
Plasma treatments for COVID-19 are limited because they're still in the testing phase
These plasma treatments take blood from someone who has recently recovered from COVID-19, and transfusing it to someone who currently has COVID-19 to help fight it. This has worked for some respiratory infections in the past, and so there's hope this could work with COVID-19. However, it's not guaranteed it will work and thus the Food and Drug Administration has only recently approved it for testing. As a result, it's a treatment mostly limited to those who are seriously ill or with life-threatening infections for now.
More research is needed on ibuprofen's effect on COVID-19 patients
A viral message that claims a majority of people who died from COVID-19 had ibuprofen or Advil in their system is untrue. What isn't untrue, however, is the very real debate over the potential harm ibuprofen may cause COVID-19 patients. The WHO says they do not recommend against using ibuprofen for patients with COVID-19, and the FDA is now aware of scientific evidence linking ibuprofen use to worsening COVID-19 symptoms.
COVID-19 stands for 'COronaVIrus Disease 2019'
An online post tried to link the name 'COVID-19' to an acronym standing for 'Chinese Originated Viral Infectious Disease'. Instead, the disease's name stands for 'coronavirus disease 2019'. The WHO, who named the virus, said they chose a name that "did not refer to a geographical location, an animal, an individual or group of people, and which is also pronounceable and related to the disease.”
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