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.
MEHMET OZ: That staffer is doing well. I got to 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. He didn't have significant symptoms.
Thankfully, he took himself out of the circulation very early when we were trying to as much as we can remotely, but the new normal is to go all remotely. We can get through it, but shifting a television production to your home means everyone is continually online talking to each other because it's a fast-moving operation.
And I've seen that being done by all of our brethren in different parts of the news cycle, and it's working. I think Americans feel informed, maybe too informed.
There's no point getting all worked up about it because you've already been exposed. Now, if you're in the same little cubicle, you're [? spending ?] a ton of time together, 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, but there's probably someone else you ran into contact with that may have infected you or, you know, were holding the subway handle because, you know, the virus lives for two days on that.
Fever is present in 90% of people. About 2/3 are going to have a feeling of fatigue or a dry cough. Those are the key symptoms to look for. And if you get those, you probably ought to get a coronavirus test if you can find one, and that's becoming easier but still not easy.
If you test positive, tell everybody because they deserve a right to know. Your spouse probably has it. Kids likely have it. Thankfully most children are spared. There's 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.
So we're talking about, for most people, a two-week quarantine period. You get through the worst of it.
In addition, you want to cordon off a part of the house. So if you've got multiple rooms, your room is your room. Avoid going out. That doesn't help anybody. And definitely don't get near people who have an increased risk of having complications.
Don't think this is an old person's disease. Half the ER spots in France and probably many here in the United States are filled by younger people. They'll survive, but they're sick.
Well, testing is slowly growing. We are still a week or two from being able to get just the current demand satisfied, and that's not really addressing what I'm arguing for, which is a South Korean model. Listen, it worked there. They didn't shut the whole country down. And I think that South Korean approach was to go after the places where they were heavily infested with infections, identify everyone at risk. They had a really good idea who was sick and who wasn't sick, and people who weren't sick got to go out and do what needed to be done in their country. People who were sick took a couple of weeks off and they could re-engage. That's the model we should be copying.
The fear of the virus and what it's doing to our people is now greater than the virus risk itself, and that is a dangerous tipping point. The most important thing we have to do is get everybody tested so we know who's sick and we know who's not, and people aren't sick can go back, engage the workforce because we've got to get our economy in the right legging, and we can't do that if everyone's quarantined because we don't have to quarantine everybody.