Local infectious disease specialist discusses staying safe while protesting

Local News

Banks recommends protesters to take a COVID-19 test

(WKBN) – Protests have been happening all around the world to show support for George Floyd, a black man who was killed tragically by a police officer in Minneapolis.

However, as protests continue, COVID-19 is still a present issue. 27 First News spoke to an infectious disease specialist who shared a few tips to stay safe while protesting.

“It’s very difficult to practice social distancing when you’re in a protest situation, but to the extent that you can, I would advise carrying hand sanitizer with you,” said Dr. Dee Banks.

Banks said goggles are just as important as a mask because of chemical irritants sprayed in the air at some of the protests.

“The bad thing about them is that they induce coughing and we know that from coughing, the virus has a much more effective way or faster way of infecting someone or getting to someone,” Banks said.

Since there’s been an increase in COVID-19 testing and it’s becoming more available to people, Banks recommends protesters to take a test.

“I’m expecting in the next two weeks we should be able to see whether or not there has been an uptick as a result of the protesting that has been going on. It’s a little too soon to tell right now,” she said.

As the coronavirus still circulates around the world, Banks said to make sure you still focus on your health.

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