COVID-19 – What To Know

COVID-19 – What To Know

This article is for educational purposes only and not a substitute for professional medical advice.

Bayview Hospital would like to educate the wider public on some of the things you should know about COVID-19 and how to safeguard yourself and your family.  

Barbados COVID-19 Hotline 1-246-536-4500

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What is COVID-19?

According to the World Health Organization, COVID-19 is a strain of the Coronavirus. Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold, headaches, difficulty breathing to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). 

Symptoms of Coronavirus Bayview Hospital
Symptoms of COVID-19 may include:
  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Human coronaviruses can sometimes cause lower-respiratory tract illnesses, such as pneumonia or bronchitis. This is more common in people with cardiopulmonary disease, people with weakened immune systems, (infants and the elderly).

How To Protect Yourself From COVID-19

There are a number of known coronaviruses which circulate in animals that have not infected humans.

Little is known about COVID-19 presently, even though human-to-human transmission has been confirmed.

Common human Coronaviruses usually cause mild to moderate upper-respiratory tract illnesses, like the common cold. Most people get infected with these viruses at some point in their lives. These illnesses usually only last for a short period of time.

Persons who are immunocompromised should take extra precaution in an effort to safeguard themselves from contracting the virus.  

Stop The Spread of Germs

There are currently no vaccines available to protect you against human coronavirus infection.

You may be able to reduce your risk of infection by doing the following:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe
What is Article

Your healthcare provider may order laboratory tests on respiratory specimens and serum (part of your blood) to detect human coronaviruses. Laboratory testing is more likely to be used if you have severe disease or are suspected of having COVID-19.

If you are experiencing symptoms, you should tell your healthcare provider about any recent travel or contact with persons who may have travelled to an infected area. Most COVID-19 infections have been reported mainly from Wuhan China, but there has been an increase in global cases. Therefore reporting a travel history or contact with persons from these affected areas is very important when trying to diagnose and contain COVID-19.