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Experts: Don't let fear of coronavirus affect domestic travel

Posted at 11:22 PM, Jan 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-29 10:50:23-05

CINCINNATI — Medical professionals said there is little reason to be concerned about contracting the coronavirus in the United States but warned travelers to use caution when overseas.

"If your gut tells you 'don't go,' or 'I need to leave if I'm near that area,' trust your gut," AAA spokesperson Jenifer Moore said Tuesday night. "It never fails you."

AAA helps travelers steer clear of trouble on the ground and in the air.

"Of course now with reports closer to home, now everyone's like, 'Okay, what should I do?'" Moore said.

In the last two weeks, AAA has fielded calls from corporate partners and everyday travelers concerned with contracting coronavirus.

"What we are striving and telling everyone to do is listen to the CDC and the travel department," Moore said. "They know what's best. They're out there fielding the cases with our partners over in China."

Dr. Steve Feagins, medical director for Hamilton County Public Health, said coronavirus has symptoms similar to the flu — fever, cough and difficulty breathing. The chances of an American contracting coronavirus are low.

Medical professionals are currently screening for the coronavirus at twenty airports, but he says the fear is spreading faster than the virus.

"Even if you haven't been to China in the last 14 days, you're way more likely to have influenza than a novel coronavirus.," Feagins said.

The AAA said some airlines are issuing waivers to let people travel at a later date.

Currently, there are 132 deaths related to the coronavirus outbreak and nearly 6,000 reported cases in China.

There are currently five confirmed cases of the virus being found in the United States, 2 in California, and one each in Washington, Arizona and Illinois.

A source told ABC News airlines have been briefed on the possibility of the White House suspending flights between the U.S. and China.