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Gottlieb says screening and fist bumps over handshakes will help protect against coronavirus

Scott Gottlieb, M.D.

By Scott Gottlieb, M.D. (original source CNBC) 

“Coronavirus is spreading in Hong Kong, Thailand, and Singapore. Community spread is suspected in other nations. Models suggest that for every person who traveled into the U.S. infected with coronavirus, and who was successfully diagnosed and quarantined, maybe three more arrived undetected. It was only toward the end of January that we started to even look for sick travelers.

Singapore, where community spread seems to be taking route, has about as many travelers arriving from China as the U.S. does — around 3 million a year. It’s understandable that small outbreaks might become evident in that small and dense island nation of 5.7 million before they can be spotted in the U.S. But if one assumes that the virus was also imported into U.S. communities in low numbers in early January, and is now replicating, more cases could emerge.

The risk to any American remains low, but that could quickly change. It will be critical that we identify small outbreaks early, in order to prevent larger spread. There are policy steps that we can take now to reduce these viral threats, and precautions that Americans can take to lower their individual risk.”

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