Curious about other respiratory viruses?

Aside from influenza, there are other respiratory viruses that circulate throughout the year. See our Respiratory Viruses fact sheet for the similarities and differences between influenza, parainfluenza, adenovirus, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), human metapneumovirus, rhinovirus, enterovirus, and coronavirus. If you have respiratory symptoms, talk to your health care provider about testing.


Learn about COVID-19. For the latest information about the outbreak, visit Outbreaks in Wisconsin.


Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that can cause illness in people and animals.

Human coronaviruses are common throughout the world. Some human coronaviruses were identified many years ago and some have been identified recently. Human coronaviruses commonly cause mild to moderate illness in people worldwide. Several human coronaviruses, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV, have been known to frequently cause severe illness.

For more information on seasonal coronaviruses, see the CDC's webpage on Common Human Coronaviruses.

Adult in a laboratory adjusting a microscope

For weekly case count updates of all respiratory viruses in Wisconsin, see the Weekly Respiratory Virus Surveillance Report, P-02346.

What are the symptoms?

Common human coronaviruses usually cause mild to moderate upper-respiratory tract illnesses, like the common cold. Most people get infected with these viruses at some point in their lives. These illnesses usually only last for a short amount of time. Symptoms may include:

  • Runny nose
  • Headache
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • A general feeling of being unwell

What you can do

To avoid getting sick and spreading this or any other respiratory diseases, wash your hands with soap and water, cover your cough, and stay home if you are sick. Also be sure to get a flu shot. The flu, another type of respiratory virus, can be very dangerous to children, older adults, and those with compromised immune systems.

Information for providers

COVID-19 was declared a Category I reportable disease by the State Epidemiologist per a memo issued on Feb. 4, 2020. Recommendations for providers can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Questions about the coronavirus? Contact us!
Phone: 608-267-9003 | Fax: 608-261-4976

Last Revised: August 31, 2021