What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It is caused by a virus called coronavirus.
Coronaviruses are a family of viruses common across the world in animals and humans. Certain types cause illnesses in people.
The current novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak began in December 2019 and presents a significant challenge for the entire world.
The symptoms of coronavirus are:
- a cough
- a high temperature
- shortness of breath
Symptoms are similar to other illnesses that are more common, such as cold and flu, and do not necessarily mean that you have the illness.
Because COVID-19 is a new illness, we do not know exactly how it spreads from person to person. It is very unlikely that if can be spread through packaging or food.
As it is a new virus, the lack of immunity in the population means that COVID-19 has the potential to spread extensively.
There is not a vaccine or proven antiviral medication to treat COVID-19, therefore it is important to take precautions to protect yourself and others from contracting the illness.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Advice on best practice is available here.
- Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available, ask a member of staff where the nearest supply of gel is
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue, or use your sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Dispose of the used tissue immediately and wash your hands afterwards
- Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth if your hands are not clean
- Your health and mental wellbeing is of utmost importance, please continue to take your medications, and access services that you require
- Avoid close contact with people who are unwell
- Masks are not recommended as a precaution unless you are caring for someone with COVID-19
- Do not panic-buy products
- Reduce the spread of misinformation – rely on trusted sources for news and up-to-date guidance (www.nhs.uk) (www.gov.uk)
- Check FCO travel advice if you must travel
If you think you might have coronavirus, or have been in close contact with someone who has it:
- Stay at home and avoid close contact with others
- Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy, or hospital, you may be putting others at risk
- Visit NHS 111 online for guidance. You will be asked to complete a short form, and then advised on what you need to do next (self-isolation, or if you require medical help)
Let your Recovery Coordinator or a member of staff at Restore know that you are ill, contact details can be found on the website.
There is no specific treatment for coronavirus. Antibiotics will not help as they do not work against viruses.
NHS 111 will be able to advise you on the best treatment for you to relieve the symptoms while your body fights the illness. You will need to stay in isolation away from others until you have recovered.
More information about COVID-19 can be found