What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The virus, which can cause mild to severe respiratory illness, was first identified in Wuhan, China, and has now spread globally, including the United States. There is limited information available to characterize the spectrum of clinical illness associated with COVID-19 but it likely spreads to others when a person shows signs or symptoms of being sick (e.g., fever, coughing, difficulty breathing, etc.).