While there are currently no approved treatments specifically for coronavirus (COVID-19), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that many people who get the novel coronavirus will experience mild symptoms and are able to fully recover at home. Scientists and clinicians are testing whether existing medications for other conditions can be repurposed for COVID-19, and exploring options for new therapies that may prevent or treat the disease in the future.

Below, you'll learn more about treating the symptoms of COVID-19 at home, and about developing treatments. 

Treating COVID-19 Symptoms at Home

If someone in your home is experiencing coronavirus symptoms*, you should take the following recommended steps:

  • Isolate them as best you can, including not sharing household items and using a separate bathroom, if possible
  • Monitor for emergency signs or signs of serious symptoms, such as trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to arouse, and/or bluish lips or face
  • Sanitize and prevent the spread of germs by providing the person with a cloth face covering for their nose and mouth when they are around people, washing your hands often, cleaning surfaces and avoiding touching your face
  • Treat the person's symptoms by providing them with plenty of fluids, encouraging them to rest and providing them with approved over-the-counter medicines 
  • Carefully consider when it makes the most sense to end home isolation
*Please note: Older adults, and those with serious pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, lung disease and heart disease, are at higher risk for developing more serious symptoms, and should reach out for medical care right when initial symptoms start.

Visit CDC website for more detailed recommendations

Clinical Trials and Treatments in Development 

Massachusetts General Hospital is the first center in New England to enroll patients in an international study of Remdesivir, an antiviral drug which aims to treat people with COVID-19. We are actively participating in a number of local, regional and national clinical trials testing new therapies for COVID-19.

Learn more about the latest COVID-19 research