What is Coronavirus

What is Novel Coronavirus

Novel Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that cause illness in humans and animals. It is referred to as ‘novel’ as it is a new virus first reported in humans in December 2019. The virus can cause symptoms which range from a mild cough to pneumonia.

How it spreads

When spread from person-to-person it  is most likely spread through:

  • Close contact with an infected person
  • Touching objects that are contaminated by an infected persons droplet (e.g. doorknobs) and then touching your mouth or face.


Common symptoms include:

  • Respiratory symptoms
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing

Who is at Risk

There is a limited amount of people at risk of getting the virus including:

  • Those who have recently been in mainland China
  • Those who have been in close contact with someone who has a confirmed case of coronavirus.


In order to protect against infection, it is important to practice good hygiene including:

  • Washing your hands often with soap or water
  • Using a tissue to cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing
  • Avoiding close contact with others

Have any Concerns?

In Australia as of 10th February 2020 there are only 15 confirmed cases of coronavirus [i], 5 of which have recovered. The Australian Government are advising people to  hold off travelling to China.

If you have any concerns regarding coronavirus, book a video consultation with one of our excellent GPs online. We have doctors available 24/7 and are accessible across Australia through your mobile, laptop or smart device.

[i] https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert#what-is-coronavirus

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