CDC to Cornell Professor: Those Aren't Our Guidelines, You Know.

Posted: Mar 28, 2020 4:15 PM
CDC to Cornell Professor: Those Aren't Our Guidelines, You Know.

Source: AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

Dr. Matt McCarthy, an Associate Professor of Medicine at the Joan & Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University, tweeted on Saturday that the Center for Disease Control would be changing guidelines to prevent the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus. Specifically, Dr. McCarthy stated Americans across the board would be told to wear masks as a precaution.

The CDC replied to his tweet, saying that is currently false and they have no plans to update their guidelines. 

Even though the CDC replied to Dr. McCarthy telling him what he said is false, the tweet still exists. 

When Americans see tweets like this from medical professionals, especially ones that are in a place of authority, like a professor of medicine at an Ivy League college, they take it seriously. They take it as a fact. 

But here's the most dangerous aspect: our medical professionals who are on the front lines are already facing a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). Masks, gowns and gloves are becoming a luxury in the medical field, which is absolutely unacceptable. 

People are scared about the Wuhan coronavirus and it's understandable. We don't know how many cases we're going to see or how many people are going to die as a result. All we can do is practice social distancing and continue practicing good hygiene. Taking PPE from our medical professionals puts them at greater risk, which means there are fewer health care providers to take care of those who are actually sick.

I can tell you from personal experience that a shortage of PPE is a very big problem. My mom, who is a chemo nurse, was given one reusable mask to wear while giving treatment to her cancer patients. My husband's aunt is a nurse in a nursing home, which is where the Wuhan coronavirus is the most rampant. Weeks ago they were told they could only get one mask per shift (which is normally 12 hours). Now they're completely out of masks, and the CDC told them the best they could do is wear bandanas so they have some kind of protection.

The last thing we need is people rushing to the stores to buy the few masks that are available. If you want to protect yourself when you're out grocery shopping or getting gas, please consider wearing a bandana or sewing your own reusable mask. We have to do everything in our power to protect those who are on the front lines.