Take the Coronavirus Quiz: Do You Know Truth from Myth?
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, myths and misinformation abound. Test your knowledge with this quiz about coronavirus, and check the answer key below to find sources for the most up-to-date, official information.
1. If I was in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, I should quarantine for 14 days.
TRUE. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, anyone who had close contact with someone who has COVID-19 should stay home for 14 days from their most recent encounter with the individual. Those in close contact should also be tested. People in quarantine should be alert for symptoms, and stay away from others if possible, especially those who are at higher risk.
2. I should not wear a mask when I exercise.
TRUE. The World Health Organization says people should not wear masks while exercising, as a mask can reduce the ability to breathe comfortably. The safest thing to do during exercise, according to the WHO, is to maintain a safe distance from other people.
3. There are no specific medications to prevent coronavirus.
TRUE. While symptoms can be treated by medical professionals, there is currently no proof that any drug can cure or prevent COVID-19. Several drug trials are ongoing.
4. My children need to wear masks or cloth face coverings in public.
TRUE. The CDC recommends everyone 2 years and older should wear a face covering when they are in the community. Cloth face coverings should not be put on babies or children under 2 years old, due to the risk of suffocation.
5. It's safe for me to donate blood during the pandemic.
TRUE. The CDC is encouraging people who are well enough to donate blood if they are able, and are providing recommendations to blood centers to ensure the safety of donors and staff.
6. COVID-19 can be passed through breastfeeding.
FALSE. To date, there is no data showing transmission of active COVID-19 through breast milk or breastfeeding, according to the WHO.
7. I can't have the flu and COVID-19 at the same time.
FALSE. According to the CDC, it is possible to test positive for COVID-19 and the flu or other respiratory infections, simultaneously.
8. Young people are susceptible to coronavirus, as well as older people.
TRUE. Although older people and those with pre-existing medical conditions appear to be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill with the virus, people of any age can become infected.
9. Vitamin and mineral supplements are not a cure for Coronavirus.
TRUE. There is no current guidance from the WHO on using micronutrient supplements such as vitamins C and D, as well as zinc, to treat COVID-19, despite these vitamins and minerals playing an important role in general immune health.
10. Wearing contact lenses increases the risk of catching COVID-19.
FALSE. According to the CDC, there is currently no evidence that contact lens wearers are more at risk of acquiring COVID-19 than people who wear eyeglasses. Contact lens wearers should continue practicing safe wear and care hygiene habits, including washing their hands with soap and water before touching the lenses.
11. Hydroxychloroquine offers no proven clinical benefits in treating COVID-19.
TRUE. The WHO says that, while more decisive research is needed, current data shows hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine do not reduce deaths among hospitalized patients with COVID-19, nor does it benefit those with moderate disease.
12. I can get COVID-19 if my pet is carrying the virus on its fur or skin.
FALSE. The CDC says there is no evidence that viruses, including the coronavirus, can spread from animals to people from their fur or skin.
13. I can get infected if I track COVID-19 in my house on my shoes.
FALSE. According to the WHO, the likelihood of COVID-19 being spread on shoes and infecting someone is very low.
14. I tested negative for COVID-19, so I definitely don't have it.
FALSE. While a negative result means coronavirus was not found in an individual's sample, the CDC says it is possible the virus will not be detected in the early stages of infection.
15. Smoking can increase the risk of getting the coronavirus.
TRUE. While there are currently no peer-reviewed studies showing a link between COVID-19 and smoking, the act of smoking requires contact of people's fingers to their lips, which increases the possibility of hand-to-mouth transmission, per the WHO.
HOW TO SPOT A MYTH
The World Health Organization (WHO) is regularly updating a list of myths about coronavirus: Source: WHO
Here are 5 facts from the Center for Disease Control to help stop the spread of rumors and misinformation: Source: CDC
Johns Hopkins has 3 tips to help spot a rumor or misinformation: Source: Johns Hopkins
Peter Adams from the News Literacy Project discusses with NPR how and why misinformation spreads, and how the public can improve "information hygiene." Source: NPR
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