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Information About COVID-19, the New Coronavirus

Take daily preventive actions to avoid the coronavirus

What You Should Know About COVID-19

Preparedness, not panic.

Information updated April 7, 2020

Public health experts all over the world are working hard to manage COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.  

While they work to find a successful treatment, we can all do our part to slow the spread of infection.

Be sure to follow the Safer at Home order of the Los Angeles County Public Health Department (LAC DPH). Please note that LAC DPH issued an additional order on March 27, temporarily closing beaches and hiking trails.

Take precautions to protect yourself and your loved ones. Our latest video featuring L.A. Care Chief Medical Officer Dr. Richard Seidman shows you how.



And if you need help, government agencies, organizations and companies are offering assistance in many ways.

L.A. Care Community Link

Everyone is being affected by the coronavirus outbreak. If you need help with food, unemployment, or other issues, L.A. Care Community Link can show you services near you.

Enter your zip code at L.A. Care Community Link and select "search". When you're on the resources page, enter "covid19" in the search bar at the top. You will see related services such as:

  • resources for COVID-19 testing
  • food banks
  • financial assistance
  • government food benefits
  • unemployment benefits
  • counseling hotlines


There are many more listings as organizations and companies are offering help in different ways. 

Go to L.A. Care Community Link



We have additional information about organizations offering food to those in need. Please visit our Food Resource web page.


Protect Yourself Against Fraud


Federal and local law enforcement agencies across the country are warning the public about coronavirus and COVID-19 scams. Criminals are tricking people into giving personal information and/or money with false promises like COVID-19 cures and coronavirus testing kits.

These and new types of COVID-19 fraud schemes are expected to increase over the coming weeks. Awareness is an important protector. Become familiar with these scams by going to our COVID-19 Fraud web page.


Don't Forget Self-Care


L.A. Care is offering a few tips to help you deal with these times. Take a look at our new "How to Cope While Staying Safe at Home" video. There are tips for staying up to date, self-care, and how to stay healthy — physically and mentally. And remember, it's okay to ask for professional help if you are feeling down, stressed or overwhelmed.


What are options for L.A. Care members?



If you are an L.A. Care member and can't reach your doctor, you may be eligible to use our telehealth benefit. By using Teladoc®, you can talk to a doctor by phone or video chat in the comfort of your own home.

This option for urgent care can help keep you from being exposed to or spreading the coronavirus, the flu or other illness you might have. Visit the L.A. Care telehealth page to see details and learn how to connect to Teladoc.

If you are not sure what to do, call our Nurse Advice Line at 1.800.249.3619 (TTY 711). Our nurses are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and have been staying on top of the latest updates about the coronavirus.

Pharmacy Mail Order

L.A. Care members can order prescriptions online and get them delivered by mail. Visit our Pharmacy Services web page to learn more.

Mental Health Support

The COVID-19 crisis puts members and their families under increased stress. Some members will feel worry, sadness and loneliness.

Now more than ever, it is important to take care of your mind and spirit as well as your body. These resources may be helpful to L.A. Care members:

  • Treatment of mental health and substance abuse conditions is coordinated by our partner Beacon Health Strategies. They offer the use of telehealth to meet treatment needs during the coronavirus outbreak. Call 1-877-344-2858 to get connected.
  • The nationwide Crisis Text Line offers 24/7 support right on your phone. Text HOME to 741741 to reach out about COVID-19.
  • California’s Futures Without Violence offers support to people who feel at risk for violence or mistreatment while they shelter in place. Visit the Futures Without Violence website for a list of confidential and free phone and chat hotlines.


How much do L.A. Care members pay for screening and testing related to COVID-19?


L.A. Care has waived all costs associated with screening, testing and medically-necessary treatment for COVID-19. If you are asked to pay for screening, testing or medically-necessary treatment related to COVID-19, please call the L.A. Care Member Services phone number on the back of your Member ID card.

If you are experiencing symptoms, the CDC recommends contacting your doctor or the Nurse Advice Line before going to your doctor’s office.


What is the best way to prevent infection?


Take these daily preventive actions:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. It's best to wash your hands after using the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Use hand sanitizer that has at least a 60% alcohol base if soap and water aren't available.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Avoid handshakes.


The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to the coronavirus. If you have travel plans, be sure to check the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) travel health notice web page to check which countries have travel restrictions and which ones to avoid for non-essential travel. 


What are the symptoms?


Symptoms range from little to no symptoms to severe illness and death. It is thought symptoms may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure and can include:

  • Symptoms similar to the common cold, like a cough
  • More severe symptoms similar to the flu, like a fever
  • Shortness of breath


There is no specific antiviral treatment for the coronavirus. Treatment focuses on easing symptoms. If you think you have been exposed to coronavirus and feel sick, L.A. Care members should call L.A. Care's Nurse Advice Line at the number on the back of your Member ID card or your primary care doctor right away.