Source: Center for Disease Control (CDC)
The CDC is responding to a pandemic of respiratory disease spreading from person-to-person caused by a novel (new) coronavirus. The disease has been named “coronavirus disease 2019” (abbreviated “COVID-19”). This situation poses a serious public health risk. The federal government is working closely with state, local, tribal, and territorial partners, as well as public health partners, to respond to this situation. COVID-19 can cause mild to severe illness; most severe illness occurs in older adults.
Different parts of the United States are seeing different levels of COVID-19 activity. Nationally, the U.S. is in the initiation phase of the pandemic. States in which community spread is occurring are in the acceleration phase. The duration and severity of each pandemic phase can vary depending on the characteristics of the virus and the public health response.
Who’s At Risk & How to Stay Safe
Older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions may be at higher risk for more serious complications from COVID-19. These conditions include heart disease, diabetes, lung disease and auto-immune diseases.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person, between people who are in close contact with one another. It is transmitted through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- Wash hands often with soap and water, use hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your nose, mouth or eyes.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Distance yourself from other people, especially if you are in the at-risk popluation.