COVID-19 Symptoms and Prevention

On This Page 

  • How to report a case of COVID-19
  • COVID-19 Testing
  • How coronavirus spreads 
  • Preventing coronavirus 
  • Returning from travel 
  • Stay home if you are ill 
  • Physical distancing 
  • SLC COVID-19 Safety Plan

St. Lawrence College (SLC) continues to closely monitor the outbreak of COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus. 
The college is in regular communication with local public health officials. 
Kingston: KFL&A Public Health 
Brockville: Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit
Cornwall: Eastern Ontario Health Unit

Current information on the status of COVID-19 can be found on the Government of Canada’s website and the Government of Ontario website

What to do if you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 

If you suspect you are ill with COVID-19 or have been exposed to COVID-19 follow the processes outlined here for students and employees.

  • If you are ill or have come into contact with someone who is a confirmed case, do not come on campus or attend an off-campus activity.
  • Take this self-assessment if you were exposed to COVID-19 or have symptoms.
  • Stay home if you are waiting for the results of a COVID-19 test, have COVID-19 symptoms, or are at risk of contracting COVID-19. 
  • If you suspect you are ill with COVID-19 or have been exposed to COVID-19 follow these processes for students and employees.

COVID-19 Testing 

The Government of Ontario has recently updated the parameters for COVID-19 testing. 

If you are showing COVID-19 symptoms

If you are showing COVID-19 symptoms, only an assessment centre can test you. Some of the more commonly reported symptoms include new or worsening cough, shortness of breath (unable to breathe deeply), fever (temperature of 37.8 degrees Celsius or higher), chills, fatigue or weakness, muscle aches, new loss of smell or taste, long-lasting headache, digestive issues (stomach pain, diarrhea, vomiting).

If you do not have symptoms

You can get tested at an assessment centre if you are not showing symptoms and:

  • Your public health unit or the COVID Alert app notifies you that you have been exposed to a confirmed case of the virus
  • You live or work in a setting that has a COVID-19 outbreak, as identified by your local public health unit
  • You belong to a specific group outlined in guidance from the Chief Medical Officer of Health

How Coronavirus Spreads

COVID-19 is spread mainly from person to person through close contact, for example, in a household, workplace, or health care centre. 

Coronaviruses are most commonly spread from an infected person through: 

  • respiratory droplets when you cough or sneeze
  • close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
  • touching something with the virus on it, then touching your eyes, nose, or mouth before washing your hands

These viruses are not known to spread through ventilation systems or through water.

Symptoms of COVID-19

Symptoms of COVID-19 can vary from person to person. Symptoms may also vary in different age groups.

Children have been more commonly reported to have abdominal symptoms, and skin changes or rashes. 

Symptoms may take up to 14 days to appear after exposure to COVID-19.

Recent evidence indicates that the virus can be transmitted to others from someone who is infected but not showing symptoms. This includes people who: 

  • have not yet developed symptoms (pre-symptomatic)
  • never develop symptoms (asymptomatic) 

While experts know that these kinds of transmissions are happening among those in close contact or in close physical settings, it is not known to what extent. This means it is extremely important to follow proven preventative measures. 

Take the self-assessment if you’re worried you were exposed to COVID-19 or have symptoms.

Preventing Coronavirus

You can take actions to help stop the spread of COVID-19, from the Government of Ontario website: 

Updates and resources from Public Health Ontario

What else can I do?

  • Wear a mask
  • Wash hands with soap and water or by using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer for at least 20 seconds 
  • Don’t touch your face 
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow/arm or use a tissue (and promptly throw the tissue into a lined garbage container) 
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces often 
  • Stay home if you are sick 
  • Work remotely where possible 
  • Consider virtual meetings whenever possible 
  • Limit the number of people in a space 
  • Follow signage regarding maximum occupancy and directions 
  • Follow directional signage and physical distancing markers 
  • Follow updated processes and procedures, including the use of PPE 

Returning From Travel

To slow the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in the country, the Government of Canada has put in place an emergency order under the Quarantine Act that applies to all travellers arriving in Canada. 

Under this order, if you have recently returned to Canada you must self-isolate (quarantine) and stay home whether you have symptoms or not. Even if you do not have symptoms right away, you are at risk of developing them and infecting others. 

If you need it, you will get immediate medical attention when you arrive in Canada. 

Learn about travel advisories related to the 2019 novel coronavirus.

Stay Home if You Are Ill

If you begin to feel symptoms of COVID-19, you should stay home and self-isolate immediately and take a self-assessment to help determine how to seek further care. 

Only call 911 if it is an emergency. 

Physical Distancing

According to Public Health Ontario, physical distancing, when combined with proper hand hygiene and cough etiquette, has been shown to limit the spread of COVID-19. 

Physical distancing means keeping our distance from one another and limiting activities outside the home. 

When outside your home, it means staying at least 2 metres (or 6 feet) away from other people whenever possible. 

SLC COVID-19 Safety Plan

View the SLC COVID-19 Safety Plan.