Dr. Rajeev Fernando has been recognized as one of America's top doctors in New York for the specialty of Infectious Disease since 2014. He is an accomplished doctor, with a generous heart and compassion for making this world a better place.

Here are some of the highlights from our conversation this week:

Our first question is from Diane in New Fairfield who sent this through the chat feature on our mobile app, she ask's without personally getting tested or vaccinated, how do we know when it is safe to kiss or hug another person?? 

"That's a great question. The current trend and what people are doing right now is the elbow meets elbow thing, it's the new version of the hand shake or hug. The vaccine is no where near ready, it's going to take some time. The problem I have with this testing situation, and I think it's a big problem, the whole country and the CDC tells everyone to get tested, but the results are so variable, it's easy for a doctor to say your antibody levels are negative, you've never been exposed, be careful, done. Now for people who make antibodies, we're not even sure whether that confirms immunity. I don't think these tests are ready for prime time interpretation. You can do these tests, but it's very challenging to interpret the results. This is why I feel bad, the American people have been looking for answers, and they haven't gotten any solid answers so far. There is nothing conclusive and we don't have the data at this point to let us know if it is indeed safe to have any type of physical contact with someone that you haven't been quarantined with".

Nancy in New Milford ask's, since the holiday weekend is coming up, I feel people are not following the social distance guidelines, so I'm wondering if you think we're opening things up too soon, even though number of cases have declined, but this seems like a very sneaky virus.  

"It is a sneaky virus, I agree. Let's call it what it is, any place that is re-opening right now, and in places that have opened up in the last few weeks, we are and probably will be seeing a surge in cases. If we put the planet in perspective, China re-opened and we're seeing more new cases there. South Korea was looked upon as the model for the world, they have re-opened and we're seeing more new cases there as well. Last weekend, with the nice weather people got together and 9 students got infected, 29 in contact tracing. Sweden was the big European experiment since they did not do a shut down. Initially we started seeing that working out, however the herd immunity failed and backfired. All in all now Sweden has among the highest cases in Europe. We are going to see new cases once everything opens back up, you can take that to the bank".

Mike In Danbury wants to know since Hydroxychloroquine has been back in the news this week, putting politics aside, what is your professional opinion on this drug to be able to prevent or stop the spread of the virus.

"I'm glad you asked this question because this is simply irresponsible behavior from some of our politicians. Hydroxychloroquine has been used all over the planet to treat COVID-19 without any clinical success. I always say it's reasonable to try a drug to see if it works, but when it can actually harm people, then that's a problem. For patients who have a history of heart arrhythmia, or are taking other medications, together with Hydroxycloroquine it can actually increase your mortality. If there is one single thing you should be doing right now is put on a mask. It's a respiratory virus and can be stopped from a respiratory perspective. There is no comprehensive data on Hydroxychloroquine, except for just 20 patients in France, and since the whole world heard about it, and they reacted. Unfortunately, I can't say the drug has been successful".

Every Thursday morning at 7:10, 7:20, and 7:50, and also again at 8:10, 8:20, and 8:50 Dr. Fernando joins Mr. Morning on KICKS 105.5 to answer your questions about the coronavirus and how it pertains to the Greater Danbury area.

If you have a question you would like answered, just send a chat message through your KICKS 105.5 mobile app or call Mr. Morning at 1-877-303-1055.

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