Coronavirus concerns in the Piedmont Triad

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ARCHDALE, N.C. -- What are you more worried about, the coronavirus or the flu?

From Feb. 16 to Feb. 22, 2020, 15 people died from the flu in North Carolina, bringing the total deaths in the state to 115 this flu season. Meanwhile, there have been no confirmed cases of coronavirus in the state.

But despite those numbers, people FOX8 spoke to are still more concerned with the coronavirus.

Local pharmacies are on the front lines and they're in prep mode.

"We started getting phone calls from customers today, requesting three month supply of their medication," said Ryan Hoskins, the owner and pharmacist of Archdale Drug on North Main Street. "They want to make sure they get their medication in case medication shipments are halted or seized or stopped, in case of a future coronavirus outbreak."

There's also an empty spot on a bottom shelf at the back of the store, where the N-95 masks usually sit.

"People have been coming in. They've been calling on the phone looking for masks," Hoskins said.

There's been a mad rush to get them by people hoping they will protect them against the coronavirus.

Now, there's a shortage.

"When we try to order, it says there's 0 in the warehouse," Hoskins said. "You can't get them."

FOX8 checked in with several other local pharmacies. None had the masks in stock.

A Lexington pharmacy representative even told FOX8 they're telling people to try and find the masks online.

But some people think this is overkill.

"I understand the concern, but buying stuff for the sake of buying stuff may not help you out," David Seneres said.

Seneres thinks people should treat the virus like the flu, focus on hygiene, and take it day by day.

"We don't have viral or an antibiotic right now, so how do you react to that?" he said. "You just have to take normal measures until they have time to figure out a solution."

Officials say it's not too late to get a flu shot.

For those who are still worried about the coronavirus, there's a hotline (1-866-462-3821) to call and get more information.

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North Carolina Coronavirus Hotline: 1-866-462-3821


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