Covid myths: Doctor debunks Covid myths like ’empty wards’ and ‘vaccine safety’ | UK | News (Reports)


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Dr Robin Roop is an emergency department consultant at Wrexham Maelor, North Wales. He has witnessed first-hand the harsh realities of coronavirus. He wants to dispel Covid myths which can be damaging to health and could make it more likely to catch and spread the virus. Dr Roop reiterates that the most effective way to prevent the virus is social distancing, wearing masks and washing your hands.

Empty hospitals

Videos circulating social media have claimed to show empty hospitals across the UK. Some allege that this is evidence the pandemic has been exaggerated.

Health officials say this is simply not true. The footage has been filmed by individuals walking through quiet hospital corridors, then uploaded to social media and shared by Covid sceptics and anti-lockdown activists.

Dr Roop told the Daily Post: “What these people need to do is come and spend a day in our shoes. Yes, sometimes wards might look different, but that is because of certain social distancing measures that have had to be introduced on particular wards.

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Dr Robin Roop

Dr Robin Roop is debunking Covid myths. (Image: Ian Cooper/North Wales Daily Post)

Dr Robin Roop

Social distancing, wearing masks and washing your hands is the best protection against the virus. (Image: Ian Cooper/North Wales Daily Post)

“And there may also look like there is less staff, but it’s because staff have either had to isolate, or become ill themselves.”

Due to the way hospitals have been reorganised, and the cancellation of non-urgent care, some parts of hospitals will currently look empty. Dr Roop says these changes do not mean hospitals are not still under tremendous pressure.

Vaccine safety

20 million people in the UK have now received their first Covid vaccine.

Dr Roop

Dr Roop debunks Covid myths. (Image: Ian Cooper/North Wales Daily Post)

However, the Government is still facing the challenge of tackling vaccine hesitancy. One of the main misconceptions is that the vaccine was approved too quickly and may not be entirely safe.

Dr Roop said that although the vaccine has been made in “record time”, it has been “phenomenally done”. He urges everyone who is offered the vaccine to accept the invitation.

He said: “The vaccine has been brought out in record time and we have to be really grateful to all the people working in the background who helped get this done.


Vaccinations LIVE (Image: Express)

“Yes, it is something that will evolve over the next couple of years and we may have some changes to the vaccine, but it is something that has been phenomenally done.

“It’s going to give protection and give us our life back.”

The NHS says: “The Oxford vaccine has been approved for use in the UK and has met strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness set out by the Independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).


Dr Roop says hospitals are still under pressure. (Image: Getty)

“Any coronavirus vaccine that is approved must go through all the clinical trials and safety checks all other licensed medicines go through.

“The UK has some of the highest safety standards in the world, and although clinical trials have been carried out more rapidly than they have for other vaccines, this has been achieved by conducting some of the steps in parallel rather than sequentially and vaccine safety has not been compromised.”

Reliable sources

Dr Roop says: “People need to make sure they’re getting their facts from reliable sources – that can either be from Public Health Wales, Public Health England or health boards, rather than relying on social media posts.”

The NHS is working with social media platforms to ensure the public get access to accurate information.

Google also provides easy access to verified NHS guidance when someone searches for coronavirus.

5G mobile networks help spread coronavirus

Viruses cannot travel on radio waves/mobile networks. Covid is spreading in many countries that do not have 5G mobile networks. The virus is spread through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks.

Covid map

UK Covid map LIVE (Image: Express)

Exposing yourself to the sun or temperatures higher than 25°C can protect you from Covid

You can catch the virus, no matter how sunny or hot the weather is. Countries with hot weather have reported cases of Covid.

Vaccines against pneumonia can protect against the virus

This is false. Vaccines against pneumonia do not provide protection against the new coronavirus. The virus is so new and different that it needs its own vaccine.

Although these vaccines are not effective against Covid, vaccines against respiratory illnesses are still highly recommended to protect your health.

Vitamin and mineral supplements cure Covid

No, they do not. Although they play a role in promoting health and nutritional well-being, there is no guidance on the use of supplements as a treatment for Covid.

Hydroxychloroquine does not have clinical benefits in treating Covid

True. Hydroxychloroquine is a treatment for malaria, lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. Current data shows that this drug does not reduce Covid deaths.

Covid masks

The most effective way to prevent the virus is social distancing, wearing masks and washing hands. (Image: Getty)

People should wear face masks while exercising

Official advice from WHO says people should not wear masks when exercising as they may make it difficult to breathe comfortably. Sweat can also promote the growth of microorganisms if the mask gets wet.

The important preventative measure during exercise is to maintain a distance of at least one meter from others.

Water or swimming helps transmit the virus

No, the virus does not transmit through water. The virus spreads between people when someone has close contact with an infected person.

Taking a hot bath can prevent Covid

Taking a hot bath will not prevent you from catching Covid.


Dr Roop urges everyone who is offered the vaccine to accept the invitation. (Image: Getty)

Drinking alcohol can protect you against Covid

No, drinking alcohol does not protect you against Covid. The harmful use of alcohol increases your risk of health problems.

Adding pepper to meals can prevent or cure Covid

No, hot peppers cannot prevent or cure the virus.

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Eating garlic can prevent Covid

There is no evidence that eating garlic has protected people from the new Covid.

Covid can be transmitted through houseflies

There is no evidence to suggest the virus is transmitted through houseflies. The virus primarily spreads through droplets generated when an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks.

Additional reporting by Lydia Morris.


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