A global coronavirus outbreak has led to more than 100,000 infections around the world. Some people are understandably concerned by the virus, which is most dangerous for the elderly and those with severe health conditions.
But for many, concern has given way to panic. In many stores, toilet paper and other essentials are selling out as people stockpile goods out of fear for global supply chains.
Does Tom Hanks have coronavirus?
Fans of actor Tom Hanks were shocked to learn that he and his wife, Rita Wilson, have been diagnosed with coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, during a trip to Australia.
In an Instagram post, Hanks explained to fans that the pair were tested for coronavirus after they began to feel unwell.
"We felt a bit tired, like we had colds, and some body aches," Hanks explained. "Rita had some chills that came and went. Slight fevers too. To play things right, as is needed in the world right now, we were tested for the Coronavirus, and were found to be positive."
How long will Tom Hanks be quarantined for?
Hanks went on to explain that he now faces up to two weeks in self-isolation. While healthy people usually get over the virus in a few days with mild symptoms, they can still be contagious for some time after symptoms abide.
"The Medical Officials have protocols that must be followed," Hanks explained. "We Hanks’ will be tested, observed, and isolated for as long as public health and safety requires. Not much more to it than a one-day-at-a-time approach, no?"
Hanks promised to keep fans updated throughout the process, and encouraged others to take care of themselves.
Why is Tom Hanks in Australia?
Tom Hanks is currently in Australia for production of Baz Luhrmann’s untitled Elvis Presley movie, in which Hanks is playing Presley’s iconic manager Colonel Tom Parker.
According to IMDB, the film is "a look at the life of the legendary rock and roll star, Elvis Presley." The cast includes Austin Butler as Elvis Presley, Rufus Sewell as Vernon Presley, and Maggie Gyllenhaal as Gladys Presley.
Like many countries around the world, Australia has seen coronavirus cases rise in the past week. As of Wednesday evening, there were 112 confirmed cases of coronavirus, including 3 deaths, in the country.
After learning that Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson had been diagnosed with coronavirus, fans took to social media to wish the pair a speedy recovery.
"Tom Hanks survived on an island alone for 4 years with only a volleyball I think he gonna be alright," one user joked in reference to Hanks' staring role in Cast Away.
Tom Hanks survived on an island alone for 4 years with only a volleyball I think he gonna be alright— Pressure+ (@1800xo) March 12, 2020
While another user posted a GIF along with the caption: "Me rolling up to give my life and save Tom Hanks."
Me rolling up to give my life and save Tom Hanks. pic.twitter.com/HtvvtNAFT1— Cameron Grant (@ImCoolCam101) March 12, 2020
Tom has offered Instagram updates about his and Rita's condition.
After his initial announcement, Tom took to Instagram on March 13 to offer fans an update. "Hello folks. @ritawilson and I want to thank everyone here Down Under who are taking such good care of us," he wrote alongside a photo of himself and his wife. "We have Covid-19 and are in isolation so we do not spread it to anyone else. There are those for whom it could lead to a very serious illness. We are taking it one-day-at-a-time."
Tom continued, "There are things we can all do to get through this by following the advice of experts and taking care of ourselves and each other, no? Remember, despite all the current events, there is no crying in baseball."
On March 15, the actor shared a photo of his very Australian breakfast — which included Vegemite on toast. "Thanks to the Helpers," he captioned the post, in reference to Fred Rogers' famous quote. "Let’s take care of ourselves and each other."
We wish Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson a speedy recovery.
The best way to prevent contracting or spreading coronavirus is with thorough hand washing and social distancing. If you feel you may be experiencing symptoms of coronavirus, which include persistent cough (usually dry), fever, shortness of breath, and fatigue, please call your doctor before going to get tested. For comprehensive resources and updates, visit the CDC website. If you are experiencing anxiety about the virus, seek out mental health support from your provider or visit NAMI.org.