By Dr. Mallika Marshall

BOSTON (CBS) — Dr. Mallika Marshall is answering your coronavirus-related medical questions. If you have a question for Dr. Mallika, email her or message her on Facebook or Twitter.

Dr. Mallika is offering her best advice, but as always consult your personal doctor before making any decisions about your personal health.

My live-in boyfriend helped his mom in her house and, while he wore a mask, she did not. They stood next to each other. She works in a store and is around customers. Could she have put him at risk for COVID? – MJ

Whenever you’re around others in close proximity, you should wear a mask and try to keep at least six feet apart otherwise, you could be putting them at risk.

Why are hospital employees allowed to wear scrubs to and from work?

You may see healthcare workers walking around wearing scrubs but that doesn’t mean that they are soiled or contaminated. When we do perform procedures or see patients with COVID, for example, we wear gowns and other protective clothing so that the scrubs underneath are spared. And some providers actually change their scrubs before they head home. So just because you see someone wearing scrubs, it does not mean they are dirty, and they are unlikely to pose a risk to you or others.

What are your recommendations about traveling out of state to visit grandchildren and grown children now that restrictions are being lifted in many states? – Elizabeth

It really depends. If you or anyone you would be visiting are at high risk for COVID-related complications, you need to think twice about it. People who are at higher risk may not be able to enjoy the same liberties that people at low risk can. And some states are still asking visitors to quarantine for 14 days. This is a good question for your primary care physician.

I am 65 and my husband is 63. Should we get tested even if we have no signs of having COVID-19? What about having the antibody test? – Lisa

Antibody testing is not widespread at this point. But as for coronavirus testing, if you’ve been quarantined since March with little opportunity to have been exposed to coronavirus and you don’t have any symptoms, there is no reason for you to get a coronavirus test right now. It really only represents a point in time. So even if you have a negative test today, you could go out and about and get exposed tomorrow. If you develop any symptoms or if you have contact with someone with COVID, call your doctor to see how you can get tested.

Dr. Mallika Marshall


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