Coronavirus | CCHC
What You Need to Know About Coronavirus
We understand you may have many questions about the novel Coronavirus. CCHC is committed to providing you the information you need to make decisions about protecting the health of you and your family. Please review the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) below to learn more.
For the latest information, please refer to trustworthy health and government websites such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, and the California Department of Public Health. You can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
If you believe you are experiencing Coronavirus symptoms and they are not severe, you can treat them as you would a cold by staying home, taking over the counter medications like Tylenol/Ibuprofen or other cold medicines. Avoid other people until your symptoms or fever go away for 24 hours without having to take these medications.
If you develop more severe symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, cough or shortness of breath and believe you have been exposed to Coronavirus, you should call CCHC at (818) 265-2264 for evaluation especially if you have other health conditions.
What is the 2019 Coronavirus or COVID-19?
Coronaviruses are a type of virus that commonly affect animals. A newly identified Coronavirus has begun to infect humans and is called COVID-19. This new virus started in China in December 2019. Since it is not common in humans, we do not have natural defenses against it and we are not sure how the human body will respond to a Coronavirus COVID-19 infection. The symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, which can lead to pneumonia and, in rare cases, death.
How do I get Coronavirus?
Similar to colds and the flu, we get Coronavirus when we are around someone that has been infected by it and they cough or sneeze around us. This illness can go into our eyes, nose and mouth and make us sick. We can also get the virus from touching surfaces that have been contaminated with Coronavirus and then touching our face.
Is Coronavirus treatable?
There is no treatment and no vaccine for the Coronavirus at this moment. Specialists are working on developing treatments and vaccines, but this may take several months. Most people with mild infections will feel better by following treatment recommendations for the common cold and flu: stay home, keep away from others, and take over the counter remedies.
How do I prevent myself or others from getting Coronavirus?
The best way to prevent infection is to stay away from people who are sick, sneezing or coughing. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) advises people to follow these tips to help prevent the Coronavirus, colds, and flu.
- 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.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick with cold/flu symptoms.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cough or sneeze in your elbow or into a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash. Wash hands again.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Avoid unnecessary travel, public gatherings, or any meeting with large groups of people.
What does Social Distancing mean?
This means reducing risk of exposure by keeping distance between people. Avoid events and places where there are 50 or more people, such as conferences and concerts, farmer markets, and sporting events. Avoid gatherings that do not allow you to keep a distance of 10 feet from others. Avoid unnecessary contact, such as shaking hands. If you need to go to the supermarket, work, or school, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after touching any object or surface that others may have touched.
How do I get tested?
The Health Department is waiving the cost-sharing and co-pays for medically necessary screening and testing for COVID-19 (Coronavirus). If it is determined that you are sick enough to need evaluation in the clinic, you must wear a mask upon entry and identify yourself as needing to be tested for possible Coronavirus. You will be evaluated by the clinic to see if you are able to get testing approved through the County Department of Health. Most people do not meet the criteria for testing and will be sent home to recover with over the counter remedies.
What is the Health Department?
This is a state and federal organization that assists in identifying and preventing contagious infections in our communities.
What is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)?
The CDC or Centers for Disease Control is a federal agency that helps to protect the American public from outbreaks of infections in the community.
What is close contact to a Coronavirus patient?
Close contact is being in the same room with someone with the illness, ten feet or closer, for a prolonged period of time without wearing protective gear such as a facemask, gown, or gloves.
Is the Coronavirus (COVID-19) the same as SARS virus or MERS?
No. They are cousins to the Coronavirus COVID-19 virus. COVID-19 is not as severe as SARS and MERS but it spreads faster.
What if I recently traveled to another country and I am now sick with fever, cough, or shortness of breath?
If you developed symptoms within 14 days of being in another country such as China, Italy, Iran (list is getting longer), where there is a Coronavirus outbreak, you should immediately call Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Acute Communicable Disease Control (ACDC) at (213) 240-7941, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Friday, and (213) 974-1234 (After-hours Emergency Operator). They will work with a health care provider to assess your symptoms. If you seek medical attention, it is extremely important that you call before you go and describe your symptoms and travel history.