Masks, Distance Only Real Tool To Slow COVID Spread
With more than one hundred thousand cases of COVID-19 in Florida now, public health experts are saying a second spike in infection is underway.
Donna Petersen is dean of the College of Public Health at the University of South Florida. She says it's impossible to completely eliminate the illness, but wearing face coverings and keeping 6-feet apart from others really does help slow the spread.
She said that was the case three months ago, and it continues even as the state has reopened many activities.
"People need to follow this advice whether we didn't shut down at all, whether we opened earlier or opened up late. As long as the virus is still with us, we have to do what we can to prevent it. That's just a fact."
Petersen said until there is a vaccine, or the vast majority of people become immune to coronavirus, social distancing and masks are the strongest tools available.
Cities including St. Petersburg, Tampa and Orlando all are requiring that businesses and patrons wear masks in public.
Petersen said the uncertainty of the novel coronavirus and the lack of treatments and vaccines leaves us with few options for prevention.
"The only way we can do is to try to prevent that spread and you do that by keeping your distance and wearing a face covering. It's just that easy."
Petersen said it's impossible to completely eliminate the illness, but wearing face coverings and keeping 6-feet apart from others really does help slow the spread.
Petersen was a guest earlier today on The State We're In - a Facebook Live show from WUSF and WMFE in Orlando. To see the full conversation with her and Health News Florida Editor Julio Ochoa, visit The State We're In facebook page.
This story is produced in partnership with America Amplified, an initiative using community engagement to inform local journalism. It is supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.