Coronavirus 'Poses Much Less Risk' Than Flu, Brigham Doctor Says

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — While the public's fear has been focused on the coronavirus, health officials in Massachusetts say the flu has gone from bad to worse.

There have been 15 cases of coronavirus in the United States; there have been 26 million cases of the flu in the U.S. this season, and 10,000-20,000 people have died from influenza.

And to make matters worse, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health just rated the flu severity for this week as "very bad." Their rating doesn't go any higher.

Dr. Paul Sax, Clinical Director of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, pointed out there's only been one confirmed coronavirus case in Massachusetts.

"We're being very vigilant about it, appropriately, but it poses much less risk to us than a bad case of flu," he said. "Flu is everywhere right now."

Dr. Sax said it's never too late for a flu shot, since flu season still has weeks to go.

WBZ NewsRadio's Karyn Regal (@Karynregal) reports

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(Photo: Getty Images)

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