COVID-19 » COVID-19 HOME | Frequently Asked Questions

COVID-19 HOME | Frequently Asked Questions

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness caused by a new virus known as SARS-CoV-2.  The newly identified virus has caused a worldwide pandemic of respiratory illnesses.

The virus that causes COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly from person to person, mainly through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. Spread is more likely when people are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).

COVID-19 seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in the community (“community spread”) in many affected geographic areas. Community spread means people have been infected with the virus in an area, including some who are not sure how or where they became infected.

People with COVID-19 have reported a wide range of symptoms – from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. If you have fever, cough, or other symptoms, you might have COVID-19.
Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread from person to person through respiratory droplets. Currently, there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. Before preparing or eating food it is important to always wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds for general food safety. Throughout the day use a tissue to cover your coughing or sneezing, and wash your hands after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing, or going to the bathroom.
Visit the How to Protect Yourself & Others page to learn about how to protect yourself from respiratory illnesses, like COVID-19.

Most people who get COVID-19 will be able to recover at home. CDC has directions for people who are recovering at home and their caregivers, including:

  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
  • Use a separate room and bathroom for sick household members (if possible).
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Provide your sick household member with clean disposable facemasks to wear at home, if available, to help prevent spreading COVID-19 to others.
  • Clean the sick room and bathroom, as needed, to avoid unnecessary contact with the sick person.

However, some people may need emergency medical attention. Watch for symptoms and learn when to seek emergency medical attention.

When to Seek Emergency Medical Attention

Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19. If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately

  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New confusion
  • Inability to wake or stay awake
  • Bluish lips or face

*This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.

Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19.

    • Be alert for symptoms. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
    • Take your temperature and follow CDC guidance if you have symptoms.
    • You can encourage your child to help stop the spread of COVID-19 by teaching them to do the same things everyone should do to stay healthy.
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
    • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
    • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw the tissue in the trash.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, like tables, countertops, light switches, doorknobs, and cabinet handles).
    • You can find additional information on preventing COVID-19 at How to Protect Yourself & Others. Additional information on how COVID-19 is spread is available at How COVID-19 Spreads.
    • More information on Keeping Children Healthy during the COVID-19 Outbreak is available online.
CDC recommends that everyone 2 years and older wear a cloth face covering that covers their nose and mouth in public settings when around people not living in your household, particularly where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
  • Watch your child for any signs of illness.
  • Watch for signs of stress in your child.
  • Teach and reinforce everyday preventive actions.
  • Help your child stay active.
  • Help your child stay socially connected.

For more information, see Keep Children Healthy during the COVID-19 Outbreak.

Cleaning with soap and water removes germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces. It lowers the risk of spreading infection. Disinfecting kills germs on surfaces. By killing germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection.
Links & Resources
 
Mississippi Department of Health: https://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/_static/14,0,420.html
 
Center for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
 
World Health Organization Coronavirus: https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus#tab=tab_1
Need Help or Information? 
 
If you have questions or need additional information about coronavirus and Mississippi, the information below will provide you with a hotline dedicated to COVID-19.
 
COVID-19 Hotline: 877-978-6453
Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.