Frequently Asked Questions on Covid-19 testing

FAQs on Coronavirus

What is Coronavirus?

On 11 February 2020, the World Health Organization announced an official name for the disease causing the new coronavirus outbreak of 2019, identified for the first time in Wuhan in China. The new name of this disease is coronavirus disease in 2019, abbreviated COVID-19. In COVID-19, "CO" stands for "crown", "VI" for "virus", and "D" for the disease. Previously, this disease was called "novel coronavirus 2019" or "2019-nCoV". A new coronavirus is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified. The virus that causes the disease coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) is not the same coronavirus that commonly circulates among humans and causes minor illnesses such as the common cold.

What is the source of Covid-19?

The coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some cause illness in people, and others, such as coronavirus canines and felines, infect only animals. Rarely, there were animal coronaviruses that infect animals to infect people and can spread between people. It is suspected that has occurred for the virus that causes COVID-19. The Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) are two other examples of coronavirus that originated from animals and then spread to people. More information on the origin and spread of COVID-19 is available in the Summary of the situation: origin and spread of the virus.

How does Covid-19 spread?

This virus was detected for the first time in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. The first infections were linked to a market of live animals, but now the virus is spreading from person to person. It is important to note that the spread from person to person can occur on a continuum. Some viruses are highly contagious (like measles), while others are less so. The virus that causes COVID-19 appears to spread quickly and sustainably in the community ( "spread within the community") in some geographic regions affected. Dissemination in the community means that people have been infected by the virus in the area, including some who are not sure how or where they have been infected.

Can someone who has had COVID-19 infect other people?

The virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading from person to person. Someone who is actively ill COVID-19 can spread the disease to others. This is why it is recommended that these patients be isolated in hospital or at home (depending on how they are sick) until they are no better and no longer pose the risk of infecting others. The duration of active disease can vary, so the decision on when to release someone from isolation is taken case by case in consultation with doctors, prevention experts and infection control and public health officials and involves consideration of the specific situation of each, including the severity of the disease, signs and symptoms of the disease and laboratory test results for that patient.

Can warm weather stop the pandemic Covid-19?

It is not yet known whether the time and temperature affect the diffusion of COVID-19. Some other viruses, such as the common cold and flu, spread most during the cold months, but that does not mean it's impossible to get sick of these viruses during the other months. At this moment, it is not known if the prevalence of COVID-19 will decrease when the weather becomes warmer. Much more to be learned about transmissibility, gravity, and other features associated with COVID-19, and investigations are underway.

Can Coronavirus spread through food, including chilled or frozen foods?

It is generally believed that the coronavirus is spread from person to person through respiratory droplets. Currently, there is no evidence in support of the transmission of COVID-19 associated with the food. Before preparing or eating food, it is essential to always wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds to overall food security. All-day wash your hands after you blow your nose, you cough or sneeze, or after going to the bathroom. It may be possible that a person can contract the COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that hosts the virus and then touching their mouth, nose or perhaps their own eyes, but it is believed that this is the primary way the virus spreads. In general, due to the poor survival of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely a shallow risk of spread from food products or packaging shipped over days or weeks at room temperature, chilled or frozen.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, tiredness, and dry cough. Some patients may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhoea. These symptoms are usually mild and gradually start. Some people become infected but do not develop any symptoms and do not feel bad. Most people (about 80%) cured of the disease without requiring special care. About 1 in 6 people who contract the COVID-19 became seriously ill and develop difficulty breathing. Older people and those with underlying medical problems such as hypertension, heart problems or diabetes are more likely to develop serious diseases. People with fever, cough and difficulty breathing should seek medical advice.

Do I have to wear a mask to protect myself and others?

The face masks reduce the spread of the coronavirus droplets by coughing, sneezing and talking. In Italy, you are currently asked to wear masks where social distancing is not possible, and the virus could pass easily between people, for example, on public transport or shops. Cutting the transmission is necessary because there is still much virus in circulation, and many people still need to be protected by vaccination. FFP2 or surgical masks must be worn in places and public transportation.

Stay home and call your doctor: if you think you have been exposed to coronavirus and develop a fever & any symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice.