COVID-19 - General Information
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by a novel (new) coronavirus. We are still learning how it spreads, the severity of illness it causes, and to what extent it may spread in the United States.
According to the CDC, the virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.
• Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
• Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
The CDC notes that reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases.
The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus:
• Shortness of breath
If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include*:
• Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
• Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
• New confusion or inability to arouse
• Bluish lips or face
*This list is not all inclusive. Please consult your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19, but there are ways to protect yourself. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus. You can take steps to protect yourself by:
• Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially if you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, sneezing, and coughing.
• If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Put a distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community.
• Stay home if you are sick
• Wear a facemask if you are sick
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily.
COVID-19 has affected our lives with school closures, changes to our work routines, as well as our daily activities. Some people have experienced job loss. Many of us are concerned for our loved ones who are elderly, and/or have underlying health problems. The resources in Related Links are intended to provide information about the COVID-19 pandemic.
Source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD)