SARS-CoV-2 is the name of a newly discovered virus. It is a type of coronavirus, named for the crown-like spikes on its surface, and causes the illness known as COVID-19. Coronaviruses cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome
Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people and cannot be treated using antibiotics. They cannot grow outside the body but can live in the environment for long periods of time.
SARS-CoV-2 has an incubation period of 1-14 days. The incubation period refers to the time that the virus will be in the body before any symptoms of COVID-19 illness are experienced.
The symptoms of COVID-19 illness that you should be aware of are:
- Tiredness, new and severe fatigue (recent onset)
- Aches and pains, new muscle ache for no obvious reason (recent onset)
- Headache (sinus pain, pain around eyes)
- Conjunctivitis (itchy, watery, painful or pink eye(s)
- Loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Fever (high temperature, rigors, chills, can’t get warm)
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Dry cough (Continuous new cough)
- Children and Over 80s – loose stool, mild fever, not themselves with a cough presenting later
- A rash on skin, or discolouration of fingers or toes (seek urgent medical advice)
- Chest pain or pressure, shortness of breath, chest tightness (phone the emergency services on 999)
- Loss of speech or movement (phone the emergency services on 999)
If any staff or visitors start to experience any symptoms, no matter how mild, please contact the Clinical Helpline by calling 01481 756938 or 01481 756969.