About the COVID-19 Outbreak

Staying informed with up-to-date information on COVID-19-related developments is one of the most important ways we can protect ourselves and our community members.


What is COVID-19?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), “Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Most people infected with the virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. However, some will become seriously ill and require medical attention. Older people and those with underlying medical conditions like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, or cancer are more likely to develop serious illness. Anyone can get sick with COVID-19 and become seriously ill or die at any age” (WHO, 2021).

Interested in learning more about the virus, check out UC Berkeley’s “Covid 19 Explained” for accessible information.

What are the symptoms to look out for?

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that “people with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. 

Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms” (CDC, 2021).

COVID-19 symptoms are as follows:

  • Fever or chills

  • Cough/Dry Cough

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

  • Fatigue

  • Muscle or body aches

  • Headache

  • New loss of taste or smell

  • Sore throat

  • Congestion or runny nose*

  • Nausea or vomiting*

  • Diarrhea*

While this is not a list of all possible symptoms, these are the symptoms that commonly present in people with COVID-19. Be advised, people can be asymptomatic and transmit COVID-19 to others.

*These symptoms are less common. 

If exhibiting some or all of these symptoms, students should call the UHS Nurse Advice Line at (510) 643-7197 or their healthcare provider for further guidance.

How can we stop the spread together?

To prevent infection and to slow transmission of COVID-19, the WHO and CDC recommend the following: 

  • Get vaccinated.

  • Wear a properly fitted mask.

  • Stay at least 6 feet apart from others, even if they don’t appear to be sick.

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or clean them with alcohol-based hand rub/sanitizer.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Choose open, well-ventilated spaces over closed ones. Open a window if indoors.

  • Avoid crowds when possible.

  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing. (If wearing a mask, remember to change to a new one as soon as you can after sneezing and/or coughing.)

  • Clean high touch surfaces daily––such as, keyboards, cellphones, desks, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

  • Stay home and self-isolate if you feel unwell. Monitor your health daily.

  • Seek medical attention early if you have fever, coughing, and difficulty breathing

(WHO, 2021; CDC, 2021)

How can we get tested and/or vaccinated?

The CDC and WHO maintain that the best way to prevent against COVID-19, is to stay informed, know your health, and get vaccinated. 

To learn how to get tested for COVID-19, visit the University Health Services Testing for COVID-19 page.

To learn how to get vaccinated for COVID-19, visit the University Health Services Vaccinations for COVID-19 page.

Want to learn more about the different vaccines? Visit WHO’s Vaccine Explained page.

Stay Up-to-Date! 

Local Updates

To stay abreast of the latest health advisory information for the Cal community, visit the University Health Services website.

For the most up-to-date information on testing and vaccinations for the Cal community, visit the University Health Services Dashboard

We encourage you to review Cal's Student Success Toolkit for further tips and best practices to navigate Cal.

National Updates

For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19's impact within the United States, check the Center for Disease Control's Cases in the U.S. page

Global Updates

For more information on COVID-19's global impact, visit the Center for Disease Control's Locations with Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Global Map.