The nation’s emergency physicians are on the frontlines of treatment and prevention of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). You should take appropriate precautions and consider simple steps to minimize your risk of getting or spreading the virus.
Reduce your risk
Protect yourself the same way you reduce your risk of getting the flu.
- Get the flu shot, if you haven't already.
- Wash your hands regularly and cough or sneeze into your arm or a tissue.
- Help slow the spread by practicing "social distancing" and staying home as much as possible.
- Always know when to go to the emergency department.
Call your doctor if you’ve been in contact with someone who already has COVID-19 or has traveled to an affected region and within 14 days you develop the following symptoms:
- Shortness of breath
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is allowing anyone to get tested for COVID-19 with a physician’s referral. However, it will take time for the health care system to ramp up its testing capabilities and locations. Tests should be reserved for those who meet the criteria for COVID-19 risk.
This comprehensive patient resource guide from ACEP answers frequently asked questions, dispels misinformation, and provides tips on how to minimize the risk of contracting the virus and how to determine if you should visit an emergency department.
A one-pager that outlines what to do if you think you're sick with COVID-19, including information about getting tested, and how to know when to go to the emergency department.
A one-page tip sheet on how to reduce your risk of contracting the virus—including whether you should wear a face mask.
In addition to advocating for federal policy changes to ensure emergency departments are equipped to handle the growing outbreak, ACEP is providing up-to-date clinical guidance for emergency physicians via the National Strategic Plan for Emergency Department Management of Outbreaks of COVID-19.