What you need to know about the coronavirus (COVID-19)

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What you need to know about the coronavirus (COVID-19)

It’s hard to know where to turn for coronavirus news and updates. This following contains general information on the coronavirus (COVID-19), including reliable information sources for up-to-date information.

Print a quick reference guide on coronavirus. Available in: EnglishSpanishPortuguesePolishChinese, and Russian.

What is a coronavirus?

A coronavirus is a family of viruses that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to more serious respiratory illnesses. People with COVID-19 can have a range of mild to severe symptoms. Some people may never have any symptoms, but can still carry the virus. The most common symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. Other symptoms include chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and loss of taste or smell. It can take anywhere from 2-14 days for symptoms to appear. Visit the CDC site for more information.

Who is most at risk?

For the general American public, the immediate health risk from the virus is considered low. Those who are most at risk are older adults, babies, and those with underlying health conditions or compromised immune systems. Health care workers caring for patients with the virus should also exercise extreme caution. The risk increases for anyone traveling through infected areas or those who come into contact with people who have traveled in these areas. Please see the “Should I change my travel plans?” section for more information.

Is there a vaccine for coronavirus?

There is no vaccine against coronavirus to date. Researchers around the world are working to learn more about this virus.

What can I do to protect myself and my family?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other health care guidance, the best way to prevent any virus from spreading is to:

  • Wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. Using a hand sanitizer can help as well, but washing your hands is always preferable. Teach children early on how to properly wash their hands.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don’t have a tissue, cough into the crook of your elbow, not your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and touchpoints like doorknobs, handles, light switches, and your phone.

We have some tips to help parents protect and talk to their children about COVID-19.

Continue to practice good hygiene to prevent coronavirus, and other severe illnesses like the flu, from spreading.

Should I change my travel plans?

The CDC maintains a list of current travel advisories related to the coronavirus. Please view the CDC website for more information about traveling during the outbreak.

How can I get accurate information about this virus?

We recommend that you get your health information from trusted sources, such as:


ConnectiCare is proud to partner with Project COVID  which uses Conversational AI to have a conversation with millions of pages of information from the CDC (United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), NIH (National Institutes of Health), and WHO (World Health Organization) to quickly get your covid-19 questions answered.


DO NOT enter your personal information including member or any health information into the Avaamo chatbox service. For more information regarding your member benefits click here or visit our contact us page.

The Avaamo service provides general information and discussions about COVID-19. The information and content provided in the Avaamo chatbox or in any linked materials are NOT intended for and should not be construed as medical advice and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment.

If you or any other person has a medical concern, you should consult with your health care provider or seek other professional medical treatment. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something that you read on the Avaamo chatbox or any linked materials. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or emergency services immediately. 

 The Avaamo chatbox is not under the control of ConnectiCare and ConnectiCare is not responsible for the content provided by Avaamo or any changes or updates made by Avaamo. ConnectiCare is making the Avaamo service available only as a convenience and the inclusion of this service does not imply endorsement by ConnectiCare or any association with its operators.

While we believe the information in this communication is accurate as of the date published, it is subject to correction or change during the rapidly evolving response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

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In an emergency, call 911 or go to an emergency room.