US President Donald Trump told people to «just stay calm» saying the coronavirus outbreak would «go away» as he compared it to the death toll from the influenza virus during remarks at the Capitol in Washington DC on Tuesday.
«And we're prepared, and we're doing a great job with it. And it will go away. Just stay calm. It will go away,» he said.
«As you know, it's about 600 cases, it's about 26... Еще deaths, within our country,» Trump said, citing numbers from Monday.
«If you look at the flu, for this year we're looking at 8,000 deaths. And, you know, hundreds of thousands of cases, but we have 8,000 deaths. So you have 8,000 versus 26 deaths, at this time,» he added.
Experts have cautioned against comparisons between the two diseases as the coronavirus, which has no treatment yet, is estimated to be nearly twice as contagious and more than 20 times deadlier.
Trump also said it's «not a big deal to get tested», after having been in contact with several Republican lawmakers who have been exposed to the virus and are currently self-quarantined, but that the White House doctor «sees no reason to do it» due to his lack of symptoms.
By Tuesday night, confirmed cases of the COVID-19 disease passed 1,000 in the US, with hundreds of new cases reported in the last 24 hours. Worldwide, the disease has infected over 119,000 people and killed more than 4,200 as of Wednesday morning.