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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Myths to be Aware of

There are a lot of Coronavirus (COVID-19) myths and misinformation. Here are some myths that the World Health Organization (WHO) has identified that are important to know!

Are hand dryers effective in killing the COVID-19 coronavirus?

No. Hand dryers are not effective in killing the COVID-19 coronavirus. To protect yourself against the new coronavirus, you should frequently clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. Once your hands are cleaned, you should dry them thoroughly by using paper towels or a warm air dryer.

Can pets at home get infected and spread the new coronavirus (COVID-19)?

There have been a small number of reports of cats (domestic cats and a tiger), dogs, and minks that have become infected with the COVID-19 virus after close contact with an infected individual. Experimental studies have shown that cats, ferrets and hamsters are susceptible to infection and disease. At this time, there have been no reports of livestock being infected by COVID-19. This situation is being monitored very closely and any new information on the ability of the virus to cause illness in pets or other domestic animals will be updated as it becomes available. There have been no reports of cases where pets or other domestic animals have transmitted the virus to people.


Do vaccines against pneumonia protect you against the new coronavirus?

No. Vaccines against pneumonia, such as pneumococcal vaccine and Haemophilus influenza type B (Hib) vaccine, do not provide protection against the new coronavirus.

The virus is so new and different that it needs its own vaccine. Researchers are trying to develop a vaccine against COVID-19, and WHO is supporting their efforts.

Although these vaccines are not effective against COVID-19, vaccination against respiratory illnesses is highly recommended to protect your health.

Does the new coronavirus affect older people, or are younger people also susceptible?

People of all ages can be infected by the new coronavirus (COVID-19). Older people, and people with pre-existing medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease) appear to be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill with the virus. 

WHO advises people of all ages to take steps to protect themselves from the virus, for example by following good hand hygiene and good respiratory hygiene.

FACT: The new coronavirus cannot be transmitted through goods manufactured in China or any countries reporting COVID-19 cases.

Even though the new coronavirus can stay on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days (depending on the type of surface), it is very unlikely that the virus will persist on a surface after being moved, travelled, and exposed to different conditions and temperatures. If you think a surface may be contaminated, use a disinfectant to clean it. After touching it, clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.

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 This was just one of the lessons in our Global Inequality section. There are over 60 lessons on Kids Boost Immunity just like this one on a variety of subjects. Each lesson includes a quiz, and every time a student scores 80% or higher on a quiz, we will donate life-saving vaccines to UNICEF Canada. Sign up now!

To see other sample lessons, click here.

  May 21, 2020