2019 Novel Coronavirus

COVID-19 Hotline Information

A DSHS COVID-19 Call Center was established and an email box created to receive incoming 

questions from the general public.

Email: coronavirus@dshs.texas.gov

DSHS COVID-19 Call Center: 211 ext. 6

Hours: 7:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Monday – Friday

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, CDC recommends that travelers avoid travel to mainland China and South Korea, and reconsider cruise ship travel to or within Asia. The recommendations to avoid travel to China applies only to mainland China and does not include Hong Kong, Macau, or the island of Taiwan. CDC has posted several country-specific travel health notices for COVID-19. After travel, if you do not feel well, call your doctor and tell them where you traveled and your symptoms.

Preparing Individuals and Communities for COVID-19

On Wednesday, February 26th, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the United States’ 15th case of COVID-19. The individual’s exposure source is not immediately known, and it may be the first reported case of community transmission within the U.S. CDC, along with federal, state, and local partners, are working to prepare communities for the potential of further community spread in the U.S.

CDC recommends individuals and families follow everyday preventative measures as the frontline of defense against COVID-19 and other seasonal respiratory viruses:

  • Voluntary Home Isolation: Stay home when you are sick with respiratory disease symptoms. At the present time, these symptoms are more likely due to influenza or other respiratory viruses than to COVID-19-related virus.
  • Respiratory Etiquette: Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw it in the trash can.
  • Hand Hygiene: Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with 60%-95% alcohol.
  • Environmental Health Action: Routinely clean frequently touched surfaces and objects

Routine use of these measures by individuals and their families will increase community resilience and readiness for responding to an outbreak.

To learn more about preventative measures to take should an outbreak occur in your community, visit the CDC’s Community Mitigation Guidance webpage.

Frequently Asked Questions

Information for the General Public

What You Need to Know about Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) (CDC)

What To Do If You Are Sick with COVID-19 (CDC)

What The Public Should Do (CDC)

Stigma Related to COVID-19 (CDC) | Share Facts, Not Fear (CDC)

COVID-19 and Pregnant Women - Frequently Asked Questions and Answers (CDC)

Guidance for Schools


Interim Guidance for Childcare Programs and K-12 Schools

Public Health Resources

FAQs for Schools and Families (NYCDOH)

Interim 2019 Novel Coronavirus Guidance for Colleges and Universities (NYCDOH)

Information for School Nurses and Administrators (WA DOH)

Coppell ISD Letter

Countering Stigma and Bullying

Fighting Stigma and Bullying (MCDPH)

Stigma Related to COVID-19 (CDC)

Share Facts, Not Fear (CDC)


Stop the Spread of Germs (CDC)

Guidance for Businesses and Employers


Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to 2019 Novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2)

CDC guidance for Travelers and Airline Crew provides interim recommendations for the commercial airline industry about the 2019 novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2)


Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued interim recommendations to help prevent workplace exposure and transmission of 2019 novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2)

Information for Clinicians/EMS

CDC HAN (PDF), Update and Interim Guidance on Outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), 2/28/20 (CDC)

Provider Resources

COVID-19 Physician Checklist

Travel Alert Posters (English | Chinese (Simplified) | Korean | Spanish | Vietnamese)

PUI Assessment and Infection Control

CDC Interim Guidance, Infection Control, and Home Care Information for Healthcare Professionals

CDC Person Under Investigation (PUI) Case Report Form

CDC Flowchart to Identify and Assess 2019 Novel Coronavirus

CDC Criteria to Guide Evaluation of Patients Under Investigation (PUI) for COVID-19

PPE Sequence - How to Properly Don, Use, and Doff (CDC)

Clinical Management of Severe Acute Respiratory Infection When Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Infection Is Suspected, 1/28/2020 (WHO)

CDC Interim Guidance for Discontinuation of Transmission-Based Precautions and Disposition of Hospitalized Patients with COVID-19

CDC Interim Guidance for Discontinuation of In-Home Isolation for Patients with COVID-19

Laboratory Guidelines

CDC Interim Laboratory Biosafety Guidelines for Handling and Processing Specimens Associated with 2019-nCoV

Resources From Other Health Departments

WA Dept. of Health - Resources include guidance on risk assessment, monitoring contacts, transport and arrival of PUIs, and other evaluation tools for healthcare professionals.

EMS Resources

NYS DOH Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Trauma Systems Policy Statement (NYS DOH)

Interim Guidance for Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Systems and 911 Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) for COVID-19 in the United States (CDC)

CDC Travel Alert Key

CDC Watch Level 1: Practice usual precautions for this destination, as described in the Travel Health Notice and/or on the destination page.

CDC Alert Level 2: Practice enhanced precautions for this destination. The Travel Health Notice describes additional precautions added, or defines a specific at-risk population.

CDC Warning Level 3: Avoid all non-essential travel to this destination. The outbreak is of high risk to travelers and no precautions are available to protect against the identified increased risk.