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About . Safety + Security . FAQ: COVID-19 


What is novel coronavirus?

March 10, 2020: Novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is a virus strain that has only spread in people since December 2019. Health experts are concerned because little is known about this new virus and it has the potential to cause severe illness and pneumonia in some people.

What are symptoms of Coronavirus?

March 10, 2020: People who have been diagnosed with novel coronavirus have reported symptoms that may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure to the virus:

  • fever
  • cough
  • difficulty breathing

Students with symptoms should call 216.368.2450 before visiting CWRU Health Services. A nurse will speak with you and arrange for you to see a medical provider to determine the nature of your illness. A nurse is also available on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 216.368.2450 for advice.

How does novel coronavirus spread?

March 10, 2020: Health experts are still learning the details about how this new coronavirus spreads. Other coronaviruses spread from an infected person to others through:

  • the air, by coughing and sneezing
  • close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
  • touching an object or surface with the virus on it and then touching your mouth, nose or eyes
  • in rare cases, contact with feces

How severe is novel coronavirus?

March 10, 2020: Experts are still learning about the range of illness from novel coronavirus. Reported cases have ranged from mild illness (similar to a common cold) to severe pneumonia that requires hospitalization. So far, deaths have been reported mainly in older adults who had other health conditions.

Who is at risk for novel coronavirus?

March 10, 2020: Currently the risk to the general public is low. At this time, there are a small number of individual cases in the U.S. To minimize the risk of spread, health officials are working with healthcare providers to promptly identify and evaluate any suspected cases.

Travelers to and from certain areas of the world may be at increased risk. See the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s travelers’ health guide for more information.

How can I prevent getting novel coronavirus?

March 10, 2020: If you are traveling overseas (to China but also to other places) follow the CDC’s guidance:

Right now, the novel coronavirus has not been spreading widely in the United States, so there are no additional precautions recommended for the general public. Steps you can take to prevent the spread of flu and the common cold will also help prevent coronavirus:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others.
  • Close your mouth/nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.

Currently, there are no vaccines available to prevent novel coronavirus infections.