The rules may vary between countries but staying at least 1-2 metres away from people that you do not live with can prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Find out more about COVID-19, access our resources, and read patient stories.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more serious diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).
COVID-19 or coronavirus disease 2019 is caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2. This is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been seen in humans until now. It was first linked to Wuhan’s South China Seafood City market in December 2019.
The virus has spread worldwide and was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization on 11 March 2020.
The symptoms of COVID-19 can vary from person to person, but there are some symptoms that are more common than others.
Up to half of all people who get COVID-19 will have mild symptoms or not show any symptoms at all.
The most severe complication of a COVID-19 infection is pneumonia. This means that the infection is in the lungs. Feeling very breathless might be the worst symptom.
In COVID-19, unlike some other lung infections, the symptoms are often at their worst about 1 week after the symptoms start and can take 2-3 weeks to improve in severe cases.
You are also likely to experience:
You may also experience:
We have worked closely with patients and lung disease experts to produce a factsheet all about COVID-19. The factsheet is available to download in 22 languages.
We also have the factsheet in an easy read format. This means it is written in clear, short sentences, with pictures. This makes the text easier to read if you have learning difficulties or do not speak English as a first language.COVID-19 Factsheet COVID-19 Easy read
Read about the experiences of people throughout the pandemic, whether they have had COVID-19, they suspect they have had it, or if they have a lung condition and have been shielding.Read patient stories
We have worked closely with lung health experts to bring to the information you have asked us for about COVID-19
Would you like to contribute to new research on COVID-19? We are looking for people from across Europe to join our Patient Advisory Group to work with several research projects in this area. This will make sure that patients and the public are at the centre of research.Learn more about our patient advisory groups
COVID-19 materials produced by patient organisations and national societies
If you have any questions or concerns about COVID-19, please refer to our Q&A. If you do not find the answer to your question, please contact us using the button below. We are receiving a large number of questions about COVID-19, so we are unable to respond directly to these emails. We will combine the questions that we receive, and these will be updated on the Q&A section of the website regularly.