If you think you have the coronavirus infection (also called COVID-19), here’s what you need to know about getting medical care and preventing the spread of infection to others.
If You Have COVID-19 Symptoms, Call Your Provider Before You Visit
If you have a cough, fever or trouble breathing, your health care provider can give you medical advice and answer questions about COVID-19 testing. About 8 in 10 people who get sick with COVID-19 have mild symptoms and can recover at home.
If you have COVID-19, your provider can guide you on how to know when you’ve recovered and it’s safe be around other people. It’s important to monitor your symptoms while you’re sick and keep in touch with your provider.
If your symptoms worsen or you think you have a medical emergency, call your provider, the Emergency Department or 911 and tell them you have or may have COVID-19. This way, they can prepare to protect themselves and other patients if you need medical care.
If You’re Sick with COVID-19, Stay Home
To help prevent the spread of infection, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises anyone who is sick with COVID-19 to stay home unless their symptoms get much worse.
Limit Contact with Others at Home to Prevent Spread of COVID-19
To help prevent spreading the infection:
- Limit contact with family members or others.
- Use a different bathroom, if possible.
- Avoid sharing personal household items (drinking glasses, towels, dishes, etc.).
- Clean and disinfect surfaces you touch frequently, including phones, remote controls, counters and doorknobs.
Protect Others From COVID-19 Infection if You Need to Leave the House
Leaving your home to seek medical care risks spreading the coronavirus to other people. To protect yourself and the community, here’s what you can do:
- Wear a face mask. If you can’t wear a mask, stay at least 6 feet away from other people.
- Avoid public spaces and the use of public transportation.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have one handy, cough or sneeze into your arm.
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds after sneezing or coughing. If soap and water aren’t available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
- Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.