Signs and symptoms
People with COVID-19 have a wide range of symptoms that may appear 2-14 days after exposure. Mild to severe symptoms include:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
If you experience trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, pale, gray or blue-colored skin, lips or nail beds, go to the hospital or seek emergency medical attention right away.
- Get tested for COVID-19: It is free. IEHP will pay, no matter what type of test. Your doctor bills IEHP directly for these tests.
- Visit your doctor or urgent care within 24 hours of first symptom.
- If you can’t reach your doctor or if it’s after-hours, call IEHP’s 24-Hour Nurse Advice Line at 1-888-244-IEHP (4347) or 711 for TTY users, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- COVID-19 medications work best when started as soon as possible, within the first 5-7 days of symptoms.
- COVID-19 medications are free in California.
- COVID-19 medications, including Paxlovid, can lower the risk of serious illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19 by half or more. They also reduce the risk of long COVID symptoms.*
- COVID-19 medications are recommended for people 12 years and older who have certain health conditions or other common factors that increase risk.
- COVID-19 medications are effective whether you are vaccinated or not.
* Seek treatment if you are 50 years old or older –OR– are unvaccinated or not up to date with COVID-19 vaccinations –OR– have a health condition or other factors that increase risk.