The coronavirus on Smart Talk Wednesday: Disability providers ask state for immediate help, masks in everyone’s fashion future and can dogs smell COVID-19?

Pennsylvanians living with an intellectual disability or autism are struggling during the coronavirus pandemic. About 80% have a pre-existing condition that makes them more susceptible to the illness, and the stay-at-home and shutdown orders have left many without support they normally would get.

Advocates say the provider organizations are facing a financial catastrophe due to the pandemic and the situation is going largely unnoticed.

Joining Smart Talk on Wednesday are Mark Davis, President and CEO of Pennsylvania Advocacy and Resources for Autism and Intellectual Disability Provider Association, along with Kathy McHale, President & CEO, SPIN, in Philadelphia. They are asking Governor Wolf and the legislature to address the funding crisis for these services before it is too late.

Also, dogs and their ability to smell is renown. Their superior sense of smell comes from 220 million olfactory receptors in their nose. Scientists are now researching if this talent can be used to diagnose the coronavirus.

Dr. Cindy Otto, DVM, Ph.D., Director, Penn Vet Working Dog Center, joins Smart Talk to highlight a new study researching odor imprinting and the COVID-19 virus.

So, we all must wear face masks, but this is the first-time many people have ever put one on their face. How do you know if you’re wearing them correctly?

There are different types of masks, and some are more effective than others. Appearing on Smart Talk today is Nicole Jochym, a Medical Student at Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, and the Co-creator of Sew Face Masks Philadelphia. Jochym will talk about the new grass roots organization making and donating masks, and how to wear properly for function and comfort.




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