CDC has updated its guidance for people who are fully vaccinated. See Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People.
CDC recommends schools continue to use the current COVID-19 prevention strategies for the 2020-2021 school year. Learn more

Things to Know about the COVID-19 Pandemic

Things to Know about the COVID-19 Pandemic

Important Ways to Slow the Spread

If You are at Risk of Getting Very Sick

Girl holding books

Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine

  • Authorized COVID-19 vaccines can help protect you from COVID-19.
  • You should get a COVID-19 vaccine when it is available to you.
  • Once you are fully vaccinated, you may be able to start doing some things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic.
illustration of group wearing masks

What to Do If You're Sick

  • Stay home except to get medical care. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, contact your healthcare provider and get tested.
  • Isolate yourself from others, including those living in your household, to prevent spread to them and the people that they may have contact with, like grandparents.
  • Call 911 if you are having emergency warning signs, like trouble breathing, pain or pressure in chest.
illustration of someone staying home

How to Get a Test for Current Infection

test tube sample and swabs

What Symptoms to Watch For

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are

List of Most Common Symptoms
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea

Other symptoms are signs of serious illness. If someone has trouble breathing, chest pain or pressure, or difficulty staying awake, get medical care immediately.

person with fever
I wear a mask because...

CDC staff give their reasons for wearing a mask.

Wear a mask because...
image with people in background with text I wear a mask because