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Flu vs. Coronavirus: The similarities and big differences

We’ve seen your emails, we’ve read your messages and here’s what we dug up on differences between the flu and coronavirus.

The symptoms are similar: Dry cough, some may get a sore throat, some breathing difficulties.

But public health experts say coronavirus and flu are not the same.

“We have heard reports that COVID-19 is just another flu, or just another this, or just another cold. COVID-19 is a new virus and it’s something people should take precautions for,” said Kristine Hollingsworth with the Florida Department of Health in Collier County.

Illustration by CNN. Sources: CDC, Mayo Clinic.

Experts stress because the coronavirus is new, there’s no vaccine and our bodies aren’t immune.

“It’s more serious than influenza,” said Dr. Jay Gupta, director of public health at FGCU. “There is no doubt about that. The case mortality rate is much higher than seasonal influenza. But the good thing is, once again, in most cases, approximately 80%, they are resolving even without any specific medical treatment.”

On top of a vaccine, Gupta says we don’t know if coronavirus will be seasonal like the flu.

Right now, researchers are working to figure out how easily it spreads.

“It’s just a new virus and a lot of research is being done,” Gupta said.

Top U.S. Health Officials sounded off in Washington, D.C. Wednesday warning Americans to take proper precautions, echoing COVID-19 is not just a flu.

“I mean, people always say, well, the flu, you know, the flu does this, the flu does that,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. “The flu has a mortality of 0.1%. This has a mortality of 10 times that.

Reporter:Taylor Petras
Writer:Briana Harvath
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