The Regional Municipality Of York

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Symptoms, Transmission, Treatment and Testing

Symptoms

COVID-19 symptoms can range from mild (like the flu and other common respiratory infections) to severe. Common symptoms of COVID-19 include:

Graphic illustration of symptoms of COVID-19: fever, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath, sore throat or diffiiculty swallowing, new smell or taste disorder(s), Nasea/vomiting, diarrea, abdominal pain, runny nose or nasal congestion

Less common symptoms/signs of COVID-19 should be considered, particularly in children, older persons and people living with a developmental disability. Less common symptoms and signs include:

Unexplained fatigue, malaise or myalgia (tiredness, unwellness, or muscle aches), Delirium (confusion, hallucinations, loss of balance), Unexplained or increased number of falls, Acute functional decline (trouble concentrating or doing regular tasks), Exacerbation of chronic conditions (worsening), Chills, Headaches, Croup, Conjunctivitis (pink eye), Multisystem inflammatory vasculitis in children*

Clinical or radiological evidence of pneumonia, Unexplained tachycardia (including age specific tachycardia for children fast heartbeat), Decrease in blood pressure, Unexplained hypoxia (even if mild i.e. O2 sat <90%), Lethargy, difficulty feeding in infants (if no other diagnosis)

If you have any severe symptoms, such as difficulty breathing or chest pain, call 911

Complications from COVID-19 can include serious conditions, like pneumonia, and in some cases, death. Your risk of severe disease may be higher if you have a weakened immune system. This may be the case for:

  • People over 70 years of age
  • People who are immunocompromised or those with chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, heart, renal or chronic lung disease

* Recent reports indicate that there may be an increase in rare but serious multisystem inflammatory vasculitis, which appears similar to Kawasaki syndrome, impacting children diagnosed with COVID-19. While the link between this inflammatory illness and COVID-19 is not proven at this time, the Ministry of Health has added it to the COVID-19 case definition so that cases of this inflammatory illness will be reported and monitored.


Treatment

There is no specific treatment for COVID-19 and there is no vaccine that protects against the coronavirus that causes it. Most people who get COVID-19 will recover on their own. Typical treatment methods include:

  • Drinking plenty of fluids
  • Getting as much rest and sleep as possible
  • Using a humidifier or taking a hot shower to help with a sore throat or cough

Transmission: How COVID-19 Spreads

COVID-19 is most commonly spread from an infected person through:

  • Respiratory droplets shared when you cough or sneeze
  • Close, prolonged personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
  • Touching something with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands

Current evidence suggests person-to-person spread is efficient when there is close contact.

COVID-19 is not known to be spread through the airborne route in community settings. The virus is also not known to spread through ventilation systems or through water.

Overview of what is close contact is


Testing and Assessment Centres

If you believe you have symptoms of COVID-19:

Seek assessment and testing at a COVID-19 Assessment Centre located at:

Get in touch with everyone you have been in close contact with from 48 hours before your symptoms started and while you had symptoms and ask them to immediately self-isolate for 14 days

  • Close contacts are people you live with, have had intimate relationships with, people who have cared for you or that you have cared for (for example with bathing, feeding or dressing) and people that you have visited with, spent time with at work, or that have come to your home

York Region Public Health will also notify contacts of known cases of COVID-19 if they are at risk of getting the disease

You must remain in self-isolation for 14 days after your symptoms started

If you have travelled outside of Canada you must remain in self-isolation for the full 14 days, even if test results are negative

If you are unsure if you need to self-isolate or get tested, please contact York Region Public Health at 1-800-361-5653.

Have You Been Tested at a COVID-19 Assessment Centre?

If you live in York Region and have been tested for COVID-19, you must complete this brief survey to help York Region Public Health connect with you as soon as possible with further directions after we know your test results.

Completing the survey will help York Region Public Health staff obtain information on who you may have been in contact with so if you are positive for COVID-19 we can contact (or instruct you to contact) those individuals in a timely manner to ask them to remain home and help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

How to Get Your Test Results

If you were tested by your health care provider or a medical clinic, the attending physician who carried out the test will provide you with results. 

If you were tested at a York Region Emergency Department or a COVID-19 Assessment Centre, York Region Public Health will call you to inform you about your results or you can check your test results online. Test results will be available in approximately 7 days.

The Ontario government online test results portal offers secure access to test results on your computer or mobile device. It does not work with Internet Explorer of iOS 11 and older. You might also need to disconnect from your corporate network or virtual private network (VPN).

York Region Public Health does not provide testing for COVID-19.

Testing is not required if you do not have symptoms of COVID-19.

The tests used in Ontario measures the amount of COVID-19 virus in a sample / swab taken from an infected patient. The test does not always provide accurate results if the sample or swab doesn't have a lot of virus in it to measure. Asymptomatic patients do not always produce enough virus for the test to give accurate results.


Contact Tracing

Contact tracing is public health’s most effective tool to slow the spread of COVID-19. It has helped successfully control the spread of COVID-19 in many other parts of the world, including South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore. Contact tracing aims to interrupt the spread of disease between an infected person and the ring of close contacts around them.

Close contacts include people you live with, have had intimate relationships with, people who have cared for you or you have cared for (for example, with bathing, feeding or dressing), people that you have visited with, spent time with at work, or have come into your home.

If you have been told by a healthcare provider that you have COVID-19 (tested positive) or likely have it (whether or not you have been tested or are waiting for results):

  • Contact everyone you have been in close contact with during the following time period: two days before your symptoms started until when you started self-isolating
  • Request that those who you identify as close contacts self-isolate for 14 days since they last interacted with you
  • Contact those in your ring of close contacts that regularly interact with anyone over the age of 70 or individuals who are immunocompromised right away

If you tested negative for COVID-19, but have symptoms or have close contact to a case of COVID-19:

  • Continue to self-isolate and monitor your symptoms for the remainder of your 14-day period
  • If symptoms develop, change or worsen, call your health care provider, York Region Public Health at 1-800-361-5653 or Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000
  • Seek prompt medical attention if your condition worsens

If you receive a negative COVID-19 test, be sure to inform any close contacts that you previously notified before getting tested. If your close contacts have no symptoms and no exposure to a case of COVID-19, they may not need to self-isolate.

If you test negative for COVID-19, it doesn’t mean that you can’t get COVID-19 in the future. Negative test results only mean that you did not have COVID-19 at the time of testing.

If you don’t have symptoms, please continue to follow all preventative measures including:

  • Stay home as much as possible
  • Practice physical distancing (2-metres)
  • Wash your hands thoroughly and often
  • Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands
  • If you cannot maintain physical distancing between yourself and others, you should wear a 2-layer non-medical mask or face covering

If you are still going to work every day (e.g., essential worker):

  • Track your daily whereabouts in a journal, including where you went and who you interacted with
Carefully monitor your health for any signs and symptoms of illness and immediately self-isolate for 14 days if you start developing any symptoms


Related Resources

External Resources



covid The Regional Municipality of York en-US Symptoms, Transmission, Treatment and Testing Symptoms of COVID-19 range from mild to severe. Find out specifics on how to get testing and treatment if you have symptoms.

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