What is COVID-19?
According to the WHO, COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by the recently-discovered novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) that has caused an outbreak beginning in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. It is a highly-infectious respiratory illness that can become life-threatening.
What are its symptoms?
- Sore throat
- Loss of smell or taste
- Shortness of breath
What should we do if we get sick?
The Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare currently requests that if you suspect infection, do not go directly to a medical facility. Instead please first call the dedicated COVID-19 hotline in your prefecture.
Why call a hotline instead of going to the hospital?
Many common cold-like symptoms are caused by diseases other than COVID-19, and going to medical facilities without prior consultation with an expert increases the risk of spreading COVID-19 while placing unnecessary strain on the healthcare system. (From the Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare.)
Find a hotline near you
What should I do if I have a non-medical problem?
If you need help with any non-medical problems, we recommend calling one of the foreigner support centers, where you can talk to a knowledgeable volunteer in your native language.