Joy Behar is going into a self-induced quarantine. The co-host of The View is taking an unspecified amount of time off her job and is citing growing coronavirus concerns as her reason. According to Variety, Behar's decision was announced on Thursday while pre-taping an episode of her daytime talk show.
"I'm in a higher risk group because of my age, but I'm perfectly healthy," Behar told the crowd. "I don't look my age, but I'm actually up there. The number makes me dizzy."
She will be absent from the show next week entirely and will evaluate her return after that time. Currently, none of the cast and crew of The View have tested positive for the disease. Whoopi Goldberg, Meghan McCain, and Sunny Hostin will hold down the fort in the meantime.
Behar's decision is not a surprising one, given the abundance of canceled or postponed events that were prompted by coronavirus concerns. SXSW, Coachella and New York's Saint Patrick's Day parade have all been canceled or postponed in the past few days. Additionally, touring acts ranging from Pearl Jam to Adam Sandler have all opted to push back their fall tour dates.
On Wednesday, the World Health Organization officially classified the outbreak as a pandemic. Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that the WHO "has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and we are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity and by the alarming levels of inaction."
"Pandemic is not a word to use lightly or carelessly. It is a word that, if misused, can cause unreasonable fear, or unjustified acceptance that the fight is over, leading to unnecessary suffering and death," Ghebreyesus continued. "Describing the situation as a pandemic does not change WHO's assessment of the threat posed by this coronavirus."0comments
In the meantime, viewers will have to make do without Behar's on-set antics, which include regular confrontations with co-host McCain. Just last week, the hosts were all lamenting the country's lack of female presidents, when McCain said "I'm going to be 36 by the next election. Where's my woman president? I would like a woman to be president in my lifetime."
"Maybe you should run then. Just run," Behar pushed back at McCain, to which she coyly responded, "Would you vote for me, Joy?"