Many of the symptoms of the virus mimic the common cold and include a wide range of illness from mild symptoms to severe respiratory illness Symptoms may appear between 24 hours and 14 days after exposure to the virus. Symptoms may be similar to other viral respiratory illnesses and include:
Also be mindful that we will be entering flu season and pollen counts are high with seasonal changes, so there are many other causes for upper respiratory symptoms.
As with any viral respiratory illness, COVID-19 can spread from person to person through small respiratory droplets, which are dispersed when a person with the virus coughs or sneezes and are then inhaled by another person or come in contact with their mouth, nose or eyes. These droplets can also land on objects and surfaces around the infected person. Other people then catch the virus by touching these objects or surfaces, then touching their eyes, nose or mouth.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The best way to prevent the spread of germs is making, social distancing and proper hand hygiene and cough etiquette. Below are some other tips:
Based on CDC guidelines, if you think you may have COVID-19 and are experiencing minor symptoms, Memorial Hermann recommends you utilize virtual care options to consult with a healthcare provider to determine if testing for COVID-19 is appropriate and self-quarantine at home for at least 10 days after the start of symptoms, if you do not have a negative COVID test result. For severe symptoms, call ahead to your local Emergency Center prior to arriving or dial 911 if you need emergent care.
Memorial Hermann follows Public Health guidelines for COVID-19 testing, which includes evaluating for relevant symptoms, and potential exposure. If you suspect you may have COVID-19 and would like to consult with a healthcare provider, you are encouraged to use telemedicine and virtual care options.
The Houston Health Department also provides free community COVID-19 testing. A complete list of testing sites and times can be found here.
No, Tamiflu will not protect you from getting COVID-19. Tamiflu is a drug to treat the flu, not a vaccine. The virus is so new and different that it needs its own vaccine. Researchers internationally have been working to test and develop antiviral medications and vaccines.
It is not certain how long the virus that causes COVID-19 survives on surfaces, but it seems to behave like other coronaviruses. Studies suggest that coronaviruses may persist. Frequent cleaning of high touch surfaces with approved cleaners is recommended. If you think a surface may be contaminated, clean it with simple disinfectant to kill the virus and protect yourself and others.
Memorial Hermann Health System is not currently accepting donations of personal protective equipment and disinfectant products. Memorial Hermann currently has a steady supply of personal protective equipment for our healthcare workers.
For more information on making a donation or for questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org
To make a philanthropic contribution, please visit our donation page.
We appreciate your thoughtfulness. With school closures and mandated stay home orders, our care providers are playing an increasingly demanding role at home. If you’re interested in assisting with childcare for families in need, visit Memorial Hermann Childcare Connect.
Memorial Hermann’s workforce has been trained to identify, isolate and treat individuals with infectious diseases, including COVID-19. The System has isolation policies and rooms across its hospitals designed to appropriately and effectively care for these patients while safeguarding others from exposure. In addition, our clinicians and physicians who provide direct patient care to affected individuals have been trained on the proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE), including gowns, gloves, eye coverings and masks. Historical outbreaks of other infectious diseases, such as swine flu, Ebola and Zika, have strengthened Memorial Hermann’s ability to respond to infectious disease situations in terms of readiness and preparedness.
Memorial Hermann is actively partnering with city and county officials, as well as other medical institutions in the Greater Houston area, to coordinate efforts and ensure our community stays safe and healthy.