Coronavirus (COVID-19)

For the latest HSE advice, we’d recommend you check here.

If you are worried about Coronavirus (COVID-19) we answer 5 of the most important questions below.


A note on Coronavirus / COVID-19 and Children

Dr Nick Flynn (not a Webdoctor GP, but a great GP from Cork) issued the following statement that we want you all to see:

The schools closed so that children would not meet each other so please do not arrange play dates, sleepovers and parties for your kids. Remember with corona children are vectors (they spread it) and are not normally victims. In most epidemics young children are the transmitters.

Therefore for school closure to be effective it’s really important that the kids aren’t mixing with other kids while out of school. They will give it to each other silently pass it on to our loved ones. What we do now will contribute to how this develops in Ireland.

Avoid situations that the children will meet.

The solution to this virus outbreak is everyone’s responsibility.


1. What symptoms do I need to be worried about?

Symptoms of coronavirus may appear up to 14 days after exposure, and these include:

A cough - this can be any kind of cough, not just a dry cough

Shortness of breath

Breathing difficulties

Fever (High temperature)

The National Public Health Emergency Team has advised anyone who has ANY of the above symptoms to self-isolate for 14 days.

2. When do I need to get advice about coronavirus?

- Seek advice if you have been to an affected region in the last 14 days AND are feeling unwell.

Note: this list will be updated on a daily basis, for the most up to date list of areas affected see here.

- Seek advice if you have been in close contact with a confirmed or probable case of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the past 14 days.

- Seek advice if you have been in a hospital or healthcare facility treating patients with coronavirus in the past 14 days.

- If you are returning from an affected area and feel well, the current advice (correct as of 13/03/2020) is to carry on with your normal routine and follow the advice listed here.

- For most people who have these symptoms now, it is more likely to be an infection that is not coronavirus. But if you have symptoms of coronavirus, you need to self-isolate and phone your GP. They will assess you over the phone and will arrange a test for coronavirus, if required.

3. What do I need to do?

If you fit the criteria above you need to:

- Stay away from other people and do not go out in public.

- Phone your GP without delay or book a video consultation with Webdoctor here.

- For advice, contact HSELive using the options listed or call on 1850 24 1850. The HSELive service is open Monday to Friday 8am - 8pm and 10am - 5pm on Saturday and Sunday.

PLEASE NOTE: Do NOT present yourself to your GP, local hospital or emergency department if you meet the criteria listed above. You need to call ahead first and ask for advice.

4. What advice should I tell my friends, family or employees?

If you or someone you know is concerned about coronavirus you should advise them to:

- Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people - even if your symptoms are mild.

- Call your local GP, GP out of hours service or local emergency department or book a video consultation with us here.

You will only need to be tested for Coronavirus if you have:

- been in contact with a person who has confirmed coronavirus

- been to one of the affected areas (listed above)

- been in a hospital/ healthcare facility that is treating patients with coronavirus.

- have been to the areas listed above AND have symptoms of cough, high temperature and shortness of breath.

As an employer, follow the HSE advice here.

Advise family, friends or work colleagues to avoid non-essential travel to Italy and China. For the latest information on travel advice around the world see the Department of Foreign Affairs Website.

5. How can I prevent the spread of the virus?

Use good hygiene practices:

- Wash your hands regularly and properly to avoid contamination.

- Cover your mouth when you sneeze using a tissue or your sleeve.

- Avoid touching eyes, nose, mouth with unwashed hands.

- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

- Stay at home if you are sick and avoid the spread of infection to others.


See the below links for further information:


Last updated 10/03/2020 (by Webdoctor Medical Team)