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Frequently asked questions: Novel Coronavirus


April 11, 2020

What is a novel coronavirus?

A novel coronavirus 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.

What are the symptoms of coronavirus?

Reported illness ranges from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed COVID-19 cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The following symptoms may appear two to 14 days after exposure:

• Fever

• Cough

• Shortness of breath

What should I do if I have coronavirus symptoms?

If you are experiencing symptoms of respiratory disease, we encourage you to call your primary care physician or clinic before arriving at the hospital. If clinically necessary, your primary care physician or clinic will give you instruction on how to get tested in order to limit the risk of exposure to other people.

Call your doctor if:

• You develop symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath)


• You have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19.

If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19, you can also visit and click on the “questions about coronavirus” chat tool.

What’s the treatment for novel coronavirus?

There is no specific antiviral treatment recommended for COVID-19, according to the CDC. People with COVID-19 should receive supportive care to help relieve symptoms. For severe cases, treatment should include care to support vital organ functions.

How do I protect myself from catching coronavirus?

Here are some prevention measures you can take to avoid contracting any virus:

• 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 sanitizer

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

• Get a flu shot (for everyone six months and older).

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

• Stay home when you are sick.

• Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

• Practice social distancing.

About Adventist Health

Adventist Health is a faith-based, nonprofit integrated health system serving more than 80 communities in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. Our workforce of 32,900 includes more than 23,600 employees; nearly 5,000 medical staff physicians; and 4,350 volunteers. Founded on Seventh-day Adventist heritage and values, Adventist Health provides compassionate care in 20 hospitals, more than 280 clinics (hospital-based, rural health and physician clinics), 15 home care agencies, seven hospice agencies and four joint-venture retirement centers. Visit for more information.


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