Ian Lipkin, Medical Consultant on 'Contagion,' Tests Positive for Coronavirus

Infectious Disease Expert Cautions After Testing Positive for Coronavirus: ‘If It Can Hit Me, It Can Hit Anybody’

During an interview with comingsoon.net in 2011, Soderbergh commended Lipkin for his work both on the film and in his lab, calling him "brilliant".

Lipkin consulted on Steven Soderbergh's film Contagion, which has seen a resurgence in popularity over the past few weeks as it became uncomfortably relevant amid the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. He is said to have been instrumental in identifying the West Nile virus which was the cause of the encephalitis epidemic in NY in 1999. As of midday Tuesday, the death surpassed 550 in the USA and 18,600 worldwide.

"I would just like to say on this show tonight that this has become very personal for me, too", he said, revealing that he tested positive for "COVID as of yesterday". "I know where I think I got it but that's not the same as proving".

Lipkin said it remains unclear where he contracted the virus, however, it "doesn't matter" as the "virus can be found all over the United States".

Lipkin said research is underway at prominent medical schools such as Columbia and Johns Hopkins, in some cases using blood from recovered patients.


Ideally, the tests will help reveal new methods of treatment that "can prevent infection or progression of infection" but that it's not easy to rapidly scale up the procedure for the entire country.

"This is something we've only begun to explore and we don't know the optimal dose", he said.

"Contagion" is now available to stream on Netflix.

The renowned professor announced the news on Tuesday during a live television interview with Fox Business's Lou Dobbs. "It's extraordinarily important that we harmonize whatever restrictions we have across the country because we have porous borders between states, between cities". The doctor advised that "the best tool we have is isolation and confinement".

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