What to do if you suspect you have symptoms
In the current situation and in line with changes to the criteria by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the Senate Department for Health recommends that you be evaluated if you have even mild symptoms such as a cough, sneezing, or a sore throat and…
- … you had contact within the last 14 days with someone who has a confirmed case of COVID-19, or…
- … you have an underlying medical condition and your respiratory symptoms get worse (shortness of breath, high fever, etc.), or…
- … you work or volunteer in a place that has many people who are at higher risk (e.g., the elderly, people with underlying medical conditions).
Even before you have any test results, you should self-isolate at home, maintain a distance of two meters to other people, follow the rules for handwashing, and (if you have one) wear a mask covering your mouth and nose when in contact with others.
People who meet these criteria should contact the relevant health office so their case can be evaluated. Based on the criteria of the RKI and the patient’s individual situation, the public health officer (Amtsarzt) will make a decision on how to proceed and on whether the patient should be quarantined at home or needs to be treated in the hospital. If a test is done and you are waiting for the results, please self-isolate at home – initially, for 14 days – and follow the general rules on hygiene.
In the case of those who have acute symptoms and/or clinical signs of a respiratory illness caused by a virus, but who have had no contact with someone with confirmed coronavirus, the patient’s doctor will make a decision on how to proceed.
If your doctor decides that a test is necessary, the costs for the test will be assumed by the patient’s health insurance. People who do not have German health insurance will have to clarify with their own health insurance company whether that company will assume the costs.
All contacts should be established by telephone first. Direct contact with other people should be avoided.
The Senate Department for Health has set up a hotline that you can reach at (030) 9028-2828. In addition, you may call the association of statutory health insurance physicians at 116117.