The CDC and WHO are actively monitoring the outbreak of a new coronavirus strain called COVID-19, which causes respiratory illness. The virus, which has infected thousands of people worldwide and caused deaths, originated in Wuhan City, China. As of March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization has declared the situation a pandemic. Additional cases have now been reported in the United States. Visit the CDC Traveler’s Health website for travel notices and precautions.
What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death.
Who is at a higher risk for COVID-19?
Older adults, as well as people with underlying chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease, seem to be at higher risk for developing serious complications with COVID-19.
How is COVID-19 spread?
Human coronaviruses are usually spread from an infected person to others through the air by coughing and sneezing and through close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands.
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 spreads.
For more information about the transmission of COVID-19, please see the CDC website.
What is the official name for the disease caused by the new coronavirus?
The World Health Organization announced the official name for the disease caused by the new coronavirus on February 11, 2020. The new name is COVID-19, short for “coronavirus disease 2019.”