Coronavirus: What You Need to Know

Nuvance Health is closely monitoring this new infectious disease surge and is prepared to provide the communities it serves with the safest, most current care and information. Please visit for the latest information.

A letter to our patientsWith all the information swirling around about coronavirus, it’s important to understand the facts. Here’s what you should know:

What Is It?
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a virus that causes respiratory illness. It was first found in people in Wuhan, China, in late 2019. In 2020, several cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the U.S.

What Are the Symptoms?
Symptoms of COVID-19 can appear up to 14 days after contact with the virus and may include:

  • Fever
  • Coughing
  • Trouble breathing

Some people have no symptoms or only mild symptoms. However, COVID-19 can cause severe pneumonia, which can lead to death. Those at highest risk are older people, as well as people with chronic health conditions such as lung or heart disease.

Am I At Risk?
If you’ve been to a place where people have been sick with this virus, you are at risk for infection. If you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness—such as a cough—within two weeks after international travel, call your health care provider. Call, too, if you’ve had close contact with someone showing these symptoms who has recently traveled. Please do not go to your doctor’s office or local emergency department without calling ahead. 

Preventing Respiratory Illnesses
COVID-19 spreads spreads through droplets of fluid that a person coughs or sneezes into the air, or if you touch a surface with the virus on it and then touch your mouth.

The best prevention is to not have contact with the virus. Follow these steps, which will also help protect you from colds and flu:

  • Wash your hands or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer often
  • Only touch your eyes, nose, or mouth with clean hands
  • Don’t have close contact with people who are sick. For example, avoid sharing utensils and cups
  • Clean surfaces often with disinfectant
  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow

For more information on coronoavirus (COVID-19) please visit