The coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 causes the disease COVID-19. The symptoms often resemble the common cold at first. The course of illness varies. Some people do not become ill at all, or are only mildly ill from the virus. Others may become seriously ill and sometimes die from the effects of the disease. COVID-19 vaccination protects you from severe illness caused by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. It also makes it less likely that you will transmit the virus to someone else.

COVID-19 symptoms

Common symptoms of COVID-19 are:

  • Cold symptoms such as a nasal cold, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat
  • Coughing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Elevated temperature or a fever
  • Sudden loss of taste and smell (without nasal congestion)

Read more about the coronavirus disease COVID-19

When to call a GP

Call your GP if your symptoms grow worse:

  • Do you have a fever (above 38 degrees Celsius) and shortness of breath ?
  • Are you over 70-years old, and have an underlying health condition or are more susceptible, AND have a fever

Important: If you are experiencing severe symptoms, immediately contact your GP or the out-of-hours medical centre (huisartsenpost in Dutch).

For more information about how the virus spreads, see the page on the spread of COVID-19.

View all measures to combat COVID-19 on