The COVID-19 Pandemic
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is caused by a coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2. Older adults and people who have severe underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness.
It is thought to spread mainly from person to person, mostly 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. Spread is more likely to occur when people are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet). It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. This is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads, but we are still learning more about this virus.
Help stop the spread of coronavirus, by staying home as much as possible. Additionally, everyone should:
- Clean your hands often, either with soap and water for 20 seconds or a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Put distance between yourself and other people (at least 6 feet).
- Wear a cloth face covering or mask over both your mouth and nose when around others.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces daily.
If you believe you have symptoms of COVID-19, call the testing hotline and know where your local testing sites are. For facts, check the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the latest updates.