Novel Coronavirus Health Advisory

There is a large amount of concern about the Novel Coronavirus. Below you can find prevention tips and links to more information.

What You Should Do

Remember to take everyday preventive actions that are always recommended to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid close contact with sick people.
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs.

If you feel sick with fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, and have traveled to China or were in close contact with someone with 2019-nCoV in the 14 days before you began to feel sick, seek medical care. Before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about your recent travel and your symptoms.

What You Should Not Do 

  • Do not show prejudice to people of Asian descent due to fear of this new virus. Do not assume that someone of Asian descent is more likely to have 2019-nCoV.
  • Do not travel to China.
  • Do not use facemasks. CDC does not recommend the use of facemasks for the general public to prevent the spread of 2019-nCoV.

Remember to get your Influenza Vaccine immunization as another additive preventive action.

2019 Novel Coronavirus Defined

Coronaviruses are named for the crown-like spikes on their surface. There are four main sub-groupings of coronaviruses, known as alpha, beta, gamma, and delta. Human coronaviruses were first identified in the mid-1960s. The seven coronaviruses that can infect people are:

  1. 229E (alpha coronavirus)
  2. NL63 (alpha coronavirus)
  3. OC43 (beta coronavirus)
  4. HKU1 (beta coronavirus)
  5. MERS-CoV (the beta coronavirus that causes Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, or MERS)
  6. SARS-CoV (the beta coronavirus that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS)
  7. 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)

People around the world commonly get infected with human coronaviruses 229E, NL63, OC43, and HKU1.

Sometimes coronaviruses that infect animals can evolve and make people sick and become a new human coronavirus. Three recent examples of this are 2019-nCoV, SARS-CoV, and MERS-CoV. The most recent new or novel Corona Virus was reported by China and associated with outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. Chinese authorities identified the new coronavirus, which has resulted in thousands of confirmed cases in China, including cases outside Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China.

Last Updated 2/13/20