“It seems that there is a persistent idea that the virus is seasonal (…) but we all have to keep in mind that it is a new virus, and even if it is a respiratory virus,” which are known to historically be seasonal, “this one behaves in a different way,” she said.
Referring to the “belief” that the risk of infection is lower in summer, she reiterated: “Summer is a problem. This virus loves all seasons.”
She did acknowledge that the combination of the flu virus – which is seasonal and hits in winter – and the new coronavirus was a cause for concern and could increase pressure on health systems. “So we encourage everyone to get the flu shot,” she advised.
The new coronavirus has caused more than 650,000 deaths worldwide and more than 16 million cases, according to the WHO.