What is COVID-19?

Last updated 24 August 2021

What is COVID-19

COVID-19 is a contagious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).

It typically spreads from person-to-person through small droplets, for example by coughing, sneezing or even talking and singing. These droplets can remain in the air for long periods. If ingested, the virus can reach your lungs and cause you to contract COVID-19.

In January 2020, Chinese authorities confirmed a new type of coronavirus, known as COVID-19, which affects the respiratory system. 

On 11 March, 2020, the World Health Organisation labeled the virus a global pandemic. Within New Zealand, District Health Boards (DHBs), including MidCentral DHB, are working closely with the Ministry of Health (MoH) in response to the pandemic's spread in New Zealand.

Resources and links

MidCentral DHB Public Health Unit COVID-19 factsheet (PDF, 187 KB)

Read the MidCentral DHB Pandemic Plan (external website)

Official government COVID-19 website (external website)

Ministry of Health website (external website)