Covid-19 Q&A

Answers to your questions

  1. What are the main symptoms associated with COVID-19?

The main symptoms of COVID ‑ 19 are:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Symptoms can be mild (similar to a cold) or more severe (such as those associated with pneumonia and lung or kidney failure).


  1. How is COVID ‑ 19 transmitted?

COVID ‑ 19 usually infects the nose, throat and lungs. It is most often spread by: close contact with an infected person when that person coughs or sneezes; hand contact with infected surfaces and then mouth, nose or eyes.


  1. How long does COVID ‑ 19 survive on objects?

In general, COVID ‑ 19 does not survive long on objects:

  • About 3 hours on objects with dry surfaces;
  • 6 days on objects with wet surfaces.


  1. Is wearing a mask effective in protecting me from COVID ‑ 19?

Masks are not an effective protection tool for the general population in Quebec. Their use is rather indicated for patients in whom an infection is suspected as well as for the health professionals who treat them


  1. Is there treatment for COVID ‑ 19?

There is no specific treatment or vaccine for COVID-19 at this time. Most people with the virus recover on their own.


  1. Which countries are most at risk?

For this information, it is advisable to consult the Government of Canada’s Travel Reports and Warnings.


  1. I have travel plans, should I cancel them?

The Quebec government recommends canceling trips that are not essential. If a person nevertheless sets out on a trip, it is first advised to consult the Government of Canada’s Travel Reports and Warnings Also, this person must be placed in voluntary isolation for a period of 14 days upon return.


  1. I have just returned from my trip, what should I do?

Voluntary isolation for 14 days is recommended for all returnees from March 12, 2020. These individuals should be alert and watch their symptoms.

This isolation is compulsory for all public service employees and for all health, education and childcare personnel, private and public, who return from abroad. For the public sector, employees will keep their salary during the isolation period.


  1. I’m not coming back from a trip, but I have symptoms similar to the flu or colds, what should I do

Residents of Quebec who develop symptoms of fever, cough or breathing difficulties upon returning from travel outside of Canada should call toll-free 1 877 644-4545.

Anyone who has symptoms from the flu or cold from March 12, 2020 should be placed in voluntary isolation for as long as they have symptoms. Isolation at home is not required for other household members who have no symptoms.


  1. I work in the private sector and I have to place myself in voluntary isolation. Can my employer fire me?

The Government of Quebec invites employers to show understanding and flexibility towards an employee who returns from a trip or who has symptoms.


  1. Should I be concerned about the situation surrounding COVID-19?

For the moment, the spread of COVID-19 is under control in Quebec, but the situation must be closely monitored. The Quebec government is taking all necessary measures to curb the contagion as much as possible.


  1. What is voluntary isolation?

Voluntary isolation involves asking an infected or potentially infected person to isolate themselves at home and monitor their symptoms during the incubation period of the virus. More information on recommended practices during voluntary isolation can be found on the Instructions for voluntary isolation in home or cohabitation page on the Government of Canada website.