What is the Coronavirus, specifically COVID-19?
- A novel coronavirus, COVID-19, is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified. The virus causing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), is not the same as the coronaviruses that commonly circulate among humans and cause mild illness, like the common cold.
- Patients with COVID-19 will be evaluated and cared for differently than patients with common coronavirus diagnosis. For more information, refer to cdc.gov.
- Current symptoms reported for patients have included mild to severe respiratory illness with fever, cough and difficulty breathing.
- Again, the CDC has said that suspected patients may have those symptoms or recently traveled to countries deemed at risk (China, South Korea, Italy, Iran and Japan) and/or have had close contact with a confirmed or suspected case of coronavirus.
How does COVID-19 spread?
- 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.
- People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
- Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
- 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, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spread.
- Symptoms of COVID-19 appear within two to 14 days after exposure and include fever, cough and shortness of breath.
Is there a vaccine or treatment?
- Currently, there is no vaccine available and no specific antiviral treatment recommended. People infected with COVID-19 should receive supportive care to help relieve symptoms. This is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation, and the CDC will continue to provide updated information as it becomes available. The CDC works 24-7 to protect people’s health.
How can I protect myself?
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Maintain social distancing of at least six feet from others.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for a least 20 seconds.
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
What do I do if I think if I am at risk?
- For Independent Living residents: Call your primary care physician, first, if you have mild symptoms, and let them know of your suspicion. Then notify your executive director.
In severe cases, if you are in need of hospitalization:
- Either present to an Emergency Department and let them know of your suspicion immediately on arrival, or
- If you need to call 911, notify the operator of your suspicion, so the ambulance team can be aware on arrival.
- For Assisted Living residents: Notify your Danbury care team of any suspicion or exposure.
The CDC recommends you safeguard yourself and others, take the following precautions:
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you sneeze or cough.
- Dispose of tissues immediately after use.
- Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, especially after coughing or sneezing. Use hand sanitizer if soap and water is not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- If you are sick, avoid contact with others so that you do not spread the infection