DHSS and the CDC are responding to an outbreak of respiratory disease caused by a novel (new) coronavirus that was first detected in many locations internationally, including in the United States. The virus has been named "SARS-CoV-2" and the disease it causes has been named "coronavirus disease 2019" (abbreviated "COVID-19").
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How can people protect themselves?
There are steps people can take to reduce their risk of getting any viral respiratory infections. These include:
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands
Avoid close contact with people who are sick
Avoid close contact with others
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands
Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces – EPA list of disinfectants
It is also important for people to stay at home away from others if they are sick.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms of COVID-19 may appear 2-14 days after exposure and include:
Shortness of breath
If you develop symptoms, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or if you have recently traveled from an area with widespread or ongoing community spread of COVID-19, call your health care professional.
If you have been notified by public health authorities that you might have been exposed, follow instructions provided by your local health department.
Click here for additional information from the CDC
How is it spread?
Human coronaviruses most commonly spread from an infected person to others through:
The air by coughing and sneezing
Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands
Rarely, fecal contamination
All information on this page is from health.mo.gov website. Click here for more information.