Transcript for Latest updates on COVID-19: July 1, 2020
known cases of coronavirus here in the U.S., 2.6 million and climbing, at least 127,000 deaths. Do need to let you know, 720,000 Americans are recovering. With me now is ABC chief medical correspondent Dr. Jen Ashton. I can't believe we're starting here, Dr. Fauci is talking about another virus That's right, T.J. So, again, we have to remember to keep this in perspective now but we have to be able to watch more than one emerging infectious disease at a time. A new strain of swine flu. It's identified and found in China and it's carried by pigs. It's a relative, a descendant for the swine flu that was responsible for the 2009 pandemic. This was just announced on Monday, peer reviewed data published in the proceedings of the national academy of sciences, researchers have found that this virus has acquired human infect tifty. This is the most important thing -- at this time it hasn't caused disease in humans. Okay, we're talking about it. How big of a concern? Well, it has the potential to be a real one-two punch and that's why Dr. Fauci brought it to everyone's attention. Right now, one of the issues is that public health officials and infectious disease experts, are saying, quote, while this virus is not an immediate problem, we should not ignore it. We've heard those words before, remember, and it's also important to understand that animals, in this case pigs, are intermediary hosts and the virus has shown traits. Serious potential pandemic. Potential. How can we do two at the same time? First of all, is that one of the questions that's out there? Here's how people should think about this at this time, remember in science, public health, observation never stops. At this point, we are in the observation stage of this new stage of swine flu. It's also very important to prepare for co-existing viral pandemics. Whether influenza or this new strain of swine flu. Also, we're starting to look at whether this becomes a greater issue, would this strain need to be in future flu vaccines. I'll emphasize, again, in medicine, you can't hone in one area we have to treat the whole body. This is the global viral equivalent of that. We have to keep our eyes on multiple things at the same time. Dr. Ashton, thank you so much.
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