Stars of the movie Contagion which has seen a surge in popularity as the coronavirus has spread across the globe, Friday urged fans to listen to experts, wash their hands frequently and practice social distancing.

“That was a movie. This is real life,” said Matt Damon, who played someone who was immune to the virus featured in the 2011 film about a pandemic.

Kate Winslet, Matt Damon, and Laurence Fishburne are among the actors taking part in the virtual reunion, filming themselves sharing evidence-based information about COVID-19.

Rentals, sales, and downloads of Contagion have soared in recent weeks. On Friday, it was in 10th place on the iTunes movie charts for the United States, one spot above the newly-released Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

The thriller follows a mysterious deadly infection that spreads quickly around the world, causing a breakdown in society, and efforts by US scientists to find a cure.

Ehle, who in the movie played a scientist who helped discover a vaccine, urged people to heed the advice of scientists and medical experts “and that means tuning out the voices with other agendas, no matter how powerful they might be.”

He tells fans: “That was a movie. This is real life. I have no reason to believe I’m immune to COVID-19 and neither do you, no matter how young you are.

“You can literally sit on your sofa or chair and save a life. Now is the time to spend all the time you want staring at your phone or tablet, and if anyone gives you a hard time about it tell them not to bother you because you are saving lives.”

Coronavirus Overview :
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.

Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. 

Older people and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

The best way to prevent and slow down transmission is to be well informed about the COVID-19 virus, the disease it causes and how it spreads.

Protect yourself and others from infection by washing your hands or using an alcohol-based rub frequently and not touching your face. 

The COVID-19 virus spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes, so it’s important that you also practice respiratory etiquette (for example, by coughing into a flexed elbow).

At this time, there are no specific vaccines or treatments for COVID-19. However, there are many ongoing clinical trials evaluating potential treatments.

WHO will continue to provide updated information as soon as clinical findings become available.

Coronavirus Symptoms :

COVID-19 virus affects different people in different ways.  COVID-19 is a respiratory disease and most infected people will develop mild to moderate symptoms and recover without requiring special treatment. 

People who have underlying medical conditions and those over 60 years old have a higher risk of developing severe disease and death.

Common symptoms include:

  1. fever
  2. tiredness
  3. dry cough.

Other symptoms include:

  1. shortness of breath
  2. aches and pains
  3. sore throat
  4. and very few people will report diarrhoea, nausea or a runny nose.

People with mild symptoms who are otherwise healthy should self-isolate and contact their medical provider or a COVID-19 information line for advice on testing and referral.

People with fever, cough or difficulty breathing should call their doctor and seek medical attention.


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