Those living with COPD and their caregivers must be well-informed about COVID-19 and variants of the virus. For up-to-date information on COVID variants, Visit CDC’s COVID Data Tracker:
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

People with COPD are not at a greater risk of becoming infected with COVID-19 than others but are more likely to experience severe complications if they become infected. If you have not already, please consider getting a COVID-19 vaccine to protect yourself and others.

Transmission Of Virus

  • Both influenza and COVID-19 spread in similar ways. Droplets or smaller virus particles from a sick person can transmit the virus to other people nearby. The smallest particles may linger in the air, and another person can inhale them and become infected.
  • People can touch a surface with viruses and then transfer the germs to themselves by touching their faces.
  • People infected with Covid-19 or influenza may not realize they are sick for several days, and during that time can unknowingly spread the disease to others before they even feel sick.


Symptoms can appear 2-14 days after exposure and range from mild to severe illness.
Possible symptoms include but are not limited to:

  • Fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea

Important Steps For People Living With COPD as Coronavirus Spreads

  1. Establish a COVID-19 hygiene routine for people entering the home (i.e., wearing a mask, using hand sanitizer, handwashing, etc.),
  2. Avoid contact with sick people.

Everyday Steps Those Living With COPD Can Take To Further Protect Against Coronavirus

  1. 1. Wash your hands often during the day with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, which is as simple as humming the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice. Visit our YouTube link for an excellent handwashing video. Hand Washing
  2. Routinely disinfect surfaces in your home and avoid directly touching surfaces that may contain germs. This includes your cell phone, doorknobs, light switches, TV remote control, and your car’s steering wheel.
  3. Contaminated hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose, and mouth, so avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
  4. Always cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or the crook of the arm.
  5. Always keep hand sanitizer available.
  6. If you feel sick, stay in your home and avoid close contact with others.
  7. If you still need to quit smoking, please do so now.
  8. Get a COVID-19 and Influenza vaccine and encourage people you know to do so.

COVID-19 Resources

Coronavirus and COPD: What You Should Know.
COVID-19 vs. the Flu | Johns Hopkins Medicine.
COVID-19 | University Health Service.
Symptoms of COVID-19 | CDC.
Coronavirus and COPD: What You Should Know.