Facts about COVID-19

When to call your healthcare provider or local clinic

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing.

Graph highlighting the different symptoms between COVID-19, Flu, Common Cold, and allergies Opens in new windowWhat are the symptoms?

The most common symptoms are fever, shortness of breath, and cough. These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.

Some patients may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. These symptoms are usually mild and begin gradually. 

Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment. Older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness.

Use the state’s symptom checker to report your symptoms and help public health build a better picture of how the novel coronavirus is spreading in Colorado. Read more about COVID-19 symptoms from the CDC. 

What to do if you are sick

Watch for symptoms and emergency warning signs

Pay attention for potential COVID-19 symptoms including, fever, cough, and shortness of breath. If you feel like you are developing symptoms, call your healthcare provider or local clinic.

If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. In adults, emergency warning signs*:

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New confusion or inability to arouse
  • Bluish lips or face

*This list is not all-inclusive. Please consult your healthcare provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning. Learn more at CDC.

Should I Get Tested?

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, first CALL a healthcare provider, clinic, or hospital. The provider will give you instructions on whether you need to be tested and on where to go to for care and testing.

If instructed to seek care, follow the precautionary advice of the healthcare provider BEFORE going to any health facility. For more information, review CDPHE’s testing standards

How does COVID-19 spread?

The virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading from person-to-person. The virus is thought to spread mainly through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. 

The virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading from person-to-person. The virus is thought to spread mainly through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouth or nose of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. 

Review the CDC’s guidance on Preventing COVID-19 Spread in Communities.

What is COVID-19?

A respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by the most recently discovered coronavirus. This new virus and disease were unknown before the outbreak began in Wuhan, China, in December 2019.

What is Coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that may cause illness in animals or humans. In humans, several coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory infections ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). The most recently discovered coronavirus causes coronavirus disease COVID-19.