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What is coronavirus?
COVID-19 is short for COronaVIrus Disease 2019. The coronavirus infection can cause symptoms similar to flu:
- a new continuous cough – you have started coughing repeatedly
- high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
- feeling short of breath
For most people the symptoms are mild but some will develop severe breathing problems and other complications. The evidence so far shows that the risk of severe symptoms is higher in people with weakened immune systems, older people and people with long-term conditions, including long-term lung conditions.
The government is asking us all to stay at home to save lives and protect the NHS:
- everyone is asked to stay at home
- people at a particularly high risk are advised to take social shielding measures.
You may be at particularly high risk of getting seriously ill with coronavirus if you:
- have a severe lung condition
- have had a lung or other organ transplant and are taking immunosuppressant medicine
- are having chemotherapy or radiotherapy
- have blood or bone marrow cancer, such as leukaemia
- have another serious health condition
If you have symptoms of coronavirus - a high temperature or a new continuous cough
Stay at home for 7 days
If you live with other people, they should stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person got symptoms. If you live with someone who is 70 or over, has a long term condition, is pregnant or has a weakened immune system, it is a good idea to find somewhere else for them to stay for 14 days if you can.
If you have to stay at home together, try to keep away from each other as much as possible. Tips for staying at home.
Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
- you feel you can’t cope with your symptoms at home
- your condition gets worse
- your symptoms do not get better after 7 days.
Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.
What you can read next:
- What should people with lung conditions do now?
- How can I cope with staying at home?
- What’s the difference between self-isolation and social distancing?
- What is social shielding?
Current on: Tuesday 24 March 2020
Last updated: Tuesday 24 March 2020
Did you find this information useful?
Our team of health experts is working tirelessly to provide you with the most up to date information about coronavirus (COVID-19) for people with lung conditions.
Record numbers of people now need our support. Our work is only possible through kind donations from people like you.
If you can, and are able, please donate now. Every pound will make a difference.