Dr. Mehmet Oz has been on the frontlines of covering the coronavirus outbreak on his show, but the recent news that one of his own staffers had been infected took even him by surprise.
Speaking to Yahoo Lifestyle via Skype from his home, where The Dr. Oz Show will be taping remotely for the time being, Dr. Oz shared an update on the staff member’s condition and revealed he didn’t think he fit the typical profile of someone infected.
“That staffer is doing well,” he said. “I gotta say, I didn’t expect him to test positive. I lobbied to get him tested because I didn’t want him to come back if he was positive, but I was pretty sure he didn’t have coronavirus. He didn’t have significant symptoms,” he added.
Dr. Oz admits “we had to use a little bit of our pull to even get a test for him,” which he says won’t be the case for people in just a couple of weeks.
“Testing is slowly growing,” says Dr. Oz. “But we are still a week or two from being able to get just the current demand satisfied,” he adds.
Dr. Oz also has some advice for people who find out a coworker or loved one has tested positive.
“There’s no point getting all worked up about it because you’ve already been exposed,” he says. “Watch your symptoms. There’s about a five-day incubation period. Once you get past those five days you can probably take a little bit of a deep breath,” he adds. (Note: According to the World Health Organization, while the average incubation period is indeed five days, it can range from one to 14 days.)
If you do test positive, Dr. Oz has some important advice: don’t keep your diagnosis to yourself.
“Tell everybody because they deserve a right to know. They’ll probably be fine, but you should let them know,” he says. “Your spouse probably has it, the kids likely have it. Thankfully most children are spared and there have been no deaths under the age of 10 around the world, but by knowing who is at risk you will start to cordon folks off,” he continues.