COVID-19 (coronavirus): Information and resources for SIH patients and the community

For Immediate Release March 09, 2020


We understand there’s a lot of anxiety around what to do if you suspect you or a loved one has been exposed to COVID-19 and might be sick.

Here’s what we recommend to help get the guidance you need and prevent spread in your home and community:

  • Call ahead before visiting your primary care physician (family doctor). If you have an appointment, please call your doctor’s office to let them know you may have or have COVID-19. Wear a facemask when around other people (e.g., sharing a room or vehicle) or pets before you enter your healthcare provider’s office.
  • Monitor your symptoms. Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening (e.g., difficulty breathing).
  • If you have a medical emergency and need to call 9-1-1, notify the dispatch personnel that you have, or are being evaluated, for COVID-19. If possible, put on a facemask before emergency medical services arrive.
  • Stay home except to receive medical care. People who are mildly ill with COVID-19 are able to isolate at home during their illness. Don’t go to work, school or public areas. Avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing or taxis.
  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home.
  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day. This includes counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, phones, keyboards, tablets, remote controls and bedside tables.
  • Follow CDC's recommendations for using a facemask.

    a.) CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.

    b.) Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a healthcare facility).

  • Wash your hands often and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

Need more guidance? Call the Illinois Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Hotline at 800.889.3931 or email DPH.SICK@ILLINOIS.GOV. Both resources are available 24/7.