Health and Wellness

Coronavirus Disease 2019

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)?

A coronavirus is a type of virus that causes diseases with a wide range of severity, from the common cold to a more serious respiratory disease. COVID-19 is a new strain of respiratory coronavirus that has not been found in humans before. COVID-19 was first found in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. There is now evidence that COVID-19 is spreading in the community in the United States.

How can I get evaluated for COVID-19?

If you think you may have COVID-19 or have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you should:

  • Contact your primary care provider. It is important that you call the provider’s office before you go. Tell them about your symptoms, recent travel history, and contacts with people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.
  • Use this online tool from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to see if you should get tested.
  • Avoid contact with others.
  • Stay home when you are sick. Do not travel.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing. Throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Who can I call for health advice?

If you need health advice, first call your doctor or your health network. If you cannot reach your doctor, you can talk to a nurse by phone to answer your COVID-19 questions. Call the CalOptima Nurse Advice Phone Line toll-free at 1-844-447-8441 to help you. TTY users can call toll-free at 1-844-514-3774. The Nurse Advice Phone Line is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at no cost to CalOptima members. Click here for more details.

Can I talk to my provider by phone or telehealth visit?

If you are sick, please call your provider to see if they offer phone or telehealth visits. Instead of going to your provider’s office, a telehealth visit is through audio and video over the internet. Your privacy and confidentiality are secure when your provider uses Apple FaceTime, Facebook Messenger video chat, Google Hangouts video or Skype.

I’m feeling down and alone during this time. Are mental health services available?

Yes! For information on depression or to access mental health services, call the CalOptima Behavioral Health at 1-855-877-3885. This number is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. TDD/TTY users can call 1-800-735-2929. Mental health resources are also available online from Be Well OC here.  

How can I contact CalOptima?

CalOptima Customer Service remains ready to respond to member needs. Please call us from the safety of your home at these phone numbers:

  • Medi-Cal: 1-888-587-8088
  • OneCare Connect: 1-855-705-8823
  • OneCare: 1-877-412-2734
  • PACE: 1-855-785-2584
  • TDD/TTY for Medi-Cal, OneCare Connect and OneCare: 1-800-735-2929
  • TDD/TTY for PACE: 1-714-468-1063

Can I go to CalOptima’s office?

We are continuing to serve our members through our Customer Service phone lines, as we adhere to guidelines to reduce the possibility of transmission. Therefore, our buildings are closed to visitors:

505 City Parkway West
Orange, CA 92610

13300 Garden Grove Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92843

County Community Service Center
15496 Magnolia Street, Suite 111
Westminster, CA 92683

What is the best way to protect myself from COVID-19?

Right now, there is no vaccine to prevent a COVID-19 infection. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to this virus. There is now evidence of community transmission in Orange County, indicating that COVID-19 is spreading in the community. All residents should follow California’s Stay at Home Order to minimize risk. It is also important to practice social distancing and good health hygiene. Remember to:

  • Stay home. Avoid gatherings of any size.
  • If you must go out for an essential reason, stay six feet apart from other people.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick. Do not travel.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing. Throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect objects or surfaces that are touched often.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Symptoms range from little to no symptoms to severe illness and death. It is thought symptoms may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure and can include:

  • Symptoms similar to the common cold, like a cough.
  • More severe symptoms similar to the flu, like a fever.
  • Shortness of breath.

How much do CalOptima members pay for screening and testing related to COVID-19?

CalOptima has waived all costs associated with screening, testing and medically necessary treatment for COVID-19. If you are asked to pay for screening, testing or medically necessary treatment related to COVID-19, please call CalOptima Customer Service.

Should I wear a face mask?

The CDC recommends that the general public wear cloth face coverings in public settings where social distancing is difficult to maintain, such as grocery stores or pharmacies. This is based on new information that people who have coronavirus but lack symptoms or later develop symptoms can transmit the virus to others. The U.S. Surgeon General shares a simple way to make a cloth face covering here.   

What are the treatments for COVID-19?

There is no specific antiviral treatment recommended for COVID-19.

How can I make sure I have enough of the medications I need for my other conditions?

CalOptima changed our rule so you can more easily get medication for your chronic conditions. You can now request an early refill and a 90-day supply of medication. Contact your provider to get a new prescription.

Where can I get more information about COVID-19?

More information can be found at the CDC website at and at the Orange County Health Care Agency website at

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Local Information Orange County Health Care Agency webpage with local news

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National Resources Centers for Disease Control and Prevention webpage for the public and health care providers

Updated 4/6/2020

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