Debunking Global COVID-19 Myths
You asked and we answered. With fear and misinformation spreading almost faster than the virus itself, it is more important than ever to ensure myths are debunked and accurate health information is accessible to all. Below you will find common myths related to COVID-19, and evidence-based responses from Dr. Seema Yasmin, Director of the Stanford Health Communication Initiative and Clinical Assistant Professor at Stanford University Department of Medicine. Use the form to ask your COVID-19 questions, and we will do our best to respond.
Another myth says that if you have received malaria treatment such as quinine, that you are immune.
But this is not true. Malaria treatments such as quinine are not proven to work against this new infection. Taking malaria treatments will not make you immune from the virus and taking the wrong medicine for a disease can cause serious harm to your health.
Here’s a myth you have heard about the coronavirus: there is no COVID at night.
This is not true. The new coronavirus spreads from person to person when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and possibly via surfaces that are contaminated with the virus. Infection can happen at any time of day, including nighttime. It is important to follow guidelines to protect your health. These include staying six feet away from other people because this is the distance the virus droplets can travel when an infected persons coughs or sneezes, and regular hand washing.
Here’s a myth you have heard about the coronavirus: BCG-vaccinated people are immune to COVID.
This is not true. People who received the BCG vaccine are not immune to the new coronavirus. Some studies have shown lower rates of infection in countries where BCG vaccines are given, but it has not been proven that these countries have possibly lower COVID-19 rates specifically because of the BCG vaccine. There is currently no vaccine for the new coronavirus.
While we may not be able to individually respond to your questions and myths, we value your input and will be aggregating submissions and responding to the most common myths.
About Dr. Yasmin
Dr. Seema Yasmin is a Stanford Clinical Assistant Professor and Director of Research and Education at Stanford Center for Health Education. She is also an Emmy Award-winning journalist, poet, medical doctor and author. She served as an officer in the Epidemic Intelligence Service at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention where she investigated disease outbreaks and was principal investigator on a number of CDC studies.