Big Rapids, MI 49307
Hours: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m
After Hours Care
For Emergencies, please call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.
For Non-emergent health issues, please contact your local health provider or hospital.
Visit the Ferris COVID-19 hub for detailed information on the coronavirus, including the University's response and local, state and national resources.
COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) is a disease caused by a virus named SARS-CoV-2 and was discovered in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. It is very contagious and has quickly spread around the world.
COVID-19 most often causes respiratory symptoms that can feel much like a cold, a flu, or pneumonia. COVID-19 may attack more than your lungs and respiratory system. Other parts of your body may also be affected by the disease.
COVID-19 is caused by a virus called SARS-CoV-2. It is part of the coronavirus family, which include common viruses that cause a variety of diseases from head or chest colds to more severe (but more rare) diseases like severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).
Like many other respiratory viruses, coronaviruses spread quickly through droplets that you project out of your mouth or nose when you breathe, cough, sneeze, or speak.
The word corona means crown and refers to the appearance that coronaviruses get from the spike proteins sticking out of them. These spike proteins are important to the biology of this virus. The spike protein is the part of the virus that attaches to a human cell to infect it, allowing it to replicate inside of the cell and spread to other cells. Some antibodies can protect you from SARS-CoV-2 by targeting these spike proteins. Because of the importance of this specific part of the virus, scientists who sequence the virus for research constantly monitor mutations causing changes to the spike protein through a process called genomic surveillance.
As genetic changes to the virus happen over time, the SARS-CoV-2 virus begins to form genetic lineages. Just as a family has a family tree, the SARS-CoV-2 virus can be similarly mapped out. Sometimes branches of that tree have different attributes that change how fast the virus spreads, or the severity of illness it causes, or the effectiveness of treatments against it. Scientists call the viruses with these changes “variants”. They are still SARS-CoV-2, but may act differently.
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms.
Possible symptoms include:
This list does not include all possible symptoms. CDC will continue to update this list as we learn more about COVID-19. Older adults and people who have underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes are at higher risk for getting very sick from COVID-19.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, consider the following options:
When to Seek Emergency Medical Attention
Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID 19:
If someone is showing any of these signs, call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility. Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19.
*This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.
If you have tested positive or are showing symptoms of COVID-19, isolate immediately.
If you were exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 or have been told by a healthcare provider or public health authority that you were exposed, here are the steps that you should take, regardless of your vaccination status or if you have had a previous infection. Learn how COVID-19 spreads and the factors that make risk of spread higher or lower.