Find out what you need to know regarding COVID-19

WHAT IS COVID-19?

COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It’s caused by a type of coronavirus. There are simple steps you can take to protect you and your family/wh?nau.

 

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19

The symptoms of COVID-19 are:

  • a cough
  • a high temperature (at least 38°C)
  • shortness of breath.

These symptoms do not necessarily mean you have COVID-19. The symptoms are similar to other illnesses that are much more common, such as cold and flu.

Shortness of breath is a sign of possible pneumonia and requires immediate medical attention.

We don’t yet know how long symptoms take to show after a person has been infected, but current World Health Organization assessments suggest that it is 2–10 days.

If you have these symptoms and have recently been overseas, or have been in close contact with someone confirmed with COVID-19, please telephone Healthline (for free) on 0800 358 5453 or your doctor immediately.

 

HOW IT SPREADS

COVID-19, like the flu, can be spread from person to person. When a person who has COVID-19 coughs, sneezes or talks, they may spread droplets containing the virus a short distance, which quickly settle on surrounding surfaces.

You may get infected by the virus if you touch those surfaces or objects and then touch your mouth, nose or eyes.

That’s why it’s really important to use good hygiene, regularly wash and thoroughly dry your hands, and use good cough etiquette.

 

PREVENTION - HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF & OTHERS

  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or by covering your mouth and nose with tissues.
  • Put used tissues in the bin or a bag immediately.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often (for at least 20 seconds).
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.
  • Avoid personal contact, such as kissing, sharing cups or food with sick people.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as doorknobs.
  • Stay home if you feel unwell.
  • Call Healthline on 0800 358 5453 if you have any symptoms and have been recently been overseas or have bee

 

PROTECTING OUR MOST VULNERABLE

Whilst the majority of people who are confirmed with COVID-19 will experience mild to moderate symptoms some individuals are at risk of more severe symptoms.  Older people particularly those with pre-exisiting health problems are more likely to get severe illness and are therefore considered at risk.  High risk individuals also include people with underlying medical conditions, such as:

  • a compromised immune system
  • liver disease
  • cancer
  • kidney disease
  • heart disease
  • diabetes mellitus

 

If you want to find out more visit:

 

www.health.govt.nz

 

or

 

www.covid19.govt.nz