COVID-19 & Flu create concerns of ’twin-demic, doctors say act now

Preventing a "Twindemic"

FLORIDA —

An infectious disease expert with Mayo Clinic warns of a ‘twin-demic’ coming if people don’t act now. Dr. Gregory Poland said your best line of defense is wearing a mask and getting your flu vaccine.

“Wearing a mask, physical distancing, sanitizing your hands along with getting a flu vaccine is the most powerful thing you can do right now,” he said.

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Flu season usually comes in the colder months which Dr. Poland said creates a breeding ground for some of these viruses. It’s also the time when many people head indoors and congregate, especially with holiday get-togethers around the corner.

“It only takes one breach. For some families it has led to deaths, hospitalizations, and even if they survive — a great diminished quality of life,” he said. Family members in your bubble are typically safe, but Dr. Poland said inviting guests from out-of-town comes with a risk. He encourages social distancing and masks even when you’re with family members.

Now is also the time he said you should get holiday shopping done, rather than wait for the last-minute shopping crowds. He also recommended get your shopping list done online.

Dr. Poland has studied the COVID-19 pandemic since the beginning, and he worries a flu epidemic on top of that will stress out an already busy medical field.

COVID-19 and flu symptoms are similar, however he said lost of taste and smell is one indicator you could have coronavirus.