the United States. Some international destinations now have ongoing community spread with the virus that causes COVID-
The complete clinical picture with regard to COVID-
Learn more about the symptoms associated with COVID-
A pandemic is a global outbreak of disease. Pandemics happen when a new virus emerges to infect people and can spread between people sustainably. Because there is little to no pre-
The virus that causes COVID-
This is the first pandemic known to be caused by the emergence of a new coronavirus. In the past century, there have been four pandemics caused by the emergence of novel influenza viruses. As a result, most research and guidance around pandemics is specific to influenza, but the same premises can be applied to the current COVID-
There are ongoing investigations to learn more. This is a rapidly evolving situation and information will be updated as it becomes available.
Situation in U.S.
Different parts of the country are seeing different levels of COVID-
CDC and state and local public health laboratories are testing for the virus that causes COVID-
More and more states are reporting cases of COVID-
o Imported cases in travelers
o Cases among close contacts of a known case
Three U.S. states are experiencing sustained community spread.
Risk depends on characteristics of the virus, including how well it spreads between people; the severity of resulting illness; and the medical or other measures available to control the impact of the virus (for example, vaccines or medications that can treat the illness) and the relative success of these. In the absence of vaccine or treatment medications, nonpharmaceutical interventions become the most important response strategy. These are community interventions that can reduce the impact of disease.
The risk from COVID-
Risk of exposure:
The immediate risk of being exposed to this virus is still low for most Americans, but as the outbreak expands, that risk will increase. Cases of COVID-
People in places where ongoing community spread of the virus that causes COVID-
Healthcare workers caring for patients with COVID-
Close contacts of persons with COVID-
Travelers returning from affected international locations where community spread is occurring also are at elevated risk of exposure, with level of risk dependent on where they traveled.
Risk of Severe Illness:
Early information out of China, where COVID-
o Heart disease
o Lung disease
CDC has developed guidance to help in the risk assessment and management of people with potential exposures to COVID-
What May Happen
More cases of COVID-
Widespread transmission of COVID-
Global efforts at this time are focused concurrently on lessening the spread and impact of this virus. The federal government is working closely with state, local, tribal, and territorial partners, as well as public health partners, to respond to this public health threat.
CDC is implementing its pandemic preparedness and response plans, working on multiple fronts, including providing specific guidance on measures to prepare communities to respond to local spread of the virus that causes COVID-
Highlights of CDC’s Response
CDC established a COVID-
The U.S. government has taken unprecedented steps with respect to travel in response to the growing public health threat posed by this new coronavirus:
o Foreign nationals who have been in China or Iran within the past 14 days cannot enter the United States.
o U.S. citizens, residents, and their immediate family members who have been in China or Iran within in the past 14 days can enter the United States, but they are subject to health monitoring and possible quarantine for up to 14 days.
o On March 11external icon, a similar policy was expanded to include 26 European countries for a period of 30 days.
o On March 8, CDC recommended that people at higher risk of serious COVID-
o Additionally, CDC has issued the following additional specific travel guidance related to COVID-
CDC has issued clinical guidance, including:
o On January 30, CDC published guidance for healthcare professionals on the clinical care of COVID-
o On February 3, CDC posted guidance for assessing the potential risk for various exposures to COVID-
o On February 27, CDC updated its criteria to guide evaluation of persons under investigation for COVID-
o On March 8, CDC issued a Health Alert Network (HAN).
o On March 10, CDC issued updated infection control guidance for healthcare settings, including guidance on the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) during a shortage.
CDC has deployed multidisciplinary teams to support state health departments case identification, contact tracing, clinical management, and public communications.
CDC has worked with federal partners to support the safe return of Americans overseas who have been affected by COVID-
This is a picture of CDC’s laboratory test kit for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-
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An important part of CDC’s role during a public health emergency is to develop a test for the pathogen and equip state and local public health labs with testing capacity.
o CDC developed an rRT-
o As of the evening of March 10, 79 state and local public health labs in 50 states and the District of Columbia have successfully verified and are currently using CDC COVID-
o Combined with other reagents that CDC has procured, there are enough testing kits to test more than 75,000 people.
o In addition, CDC has two laboratories conducting testing for the virus that causes COVID-
o Commercial labs are working to develop their own tests that hopefully will be available soon. This will allow a greater number of tests to happen close to where potential cases are.
CDC has grown the COVID-
CDC also is developing a serology test for COVID-
Everyone can do their part to help us respond to this emerging public health threat:
o Individuals and communities should familiarize themselves with recommendations to protect themselves and their communities from getting and spreading respiratory illnesses like COVID-
o Older people and people with severe chronic conditions should take special precautions because they are at higher risk of developing serious COVID-
o If you are a healthcare provider, use your judgment to determine if a patient has signs and symptoms compatible with COVID-
Does the patient have recent travel from an affected area?
Has the patient been in close contact with someone with COVID-
Does the patient reside in an area where there has been community spread of COVID-
o If you are a healthcare provider or a public health responder caring for a COVID-
o If you are a close contact of someone with COVID-
o If you are a resident in a community where there is ongoing spread of COVID-
For people who are ill with COVID-
If you have been in China or another affected area or have been exposed to someone sick with COVID-
Other Available Resources
The following resources are available with information on COVID-
CORONA VIRUS CONTINUED