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Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that can cause respiratory illness in humans. They get their name, “corona,” from the many crown-like spikes on the surface of the virus. Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) and the common cold are examples of coronaviruses that cause illness in humans.
An outbreak of a new strain of coronavirus, called COVID-19 (formerly 2019-nCoV), was recently reported in Wuhan, China. Travelers from that area of the world have since carried the virus to other countries including the United States.
Patients with confirmed infection from the COVID-19 virus reported these symptoms:
In 80% of patients, COVID-19 causes only mild cold symptoms. The elderly, and those with pre-existing medical conditions appear to be more vulnerable to the virus.
If you suspect you may have COVID-19, call or message your healthcare provider and tell them about your symptoms and recent travel. They will instruct you how to proceed with any care you need.