The UCSF-John Muir Health Jean and Ken Hofmann Cancer Center at the Behring Pavilion is now open.  LEARN MORE >

COVID-19 Resources

Updated February 28, 2022


What if I have a specific health condition?

We understand that those with specific health conditions may have questions and concerns about COVID-19. Here are some resources you may find useful:

For questions about your health, please contact your doctor.

Learn from our providers about  all the precautions we have in place to help keep you safe should you need care for any condition.

Dr. Andrew Dublin, Cardiologist, discusses the importance of not delaying cardiac services and surgeries during COVID-19.

Dr. Piyush Aggarwal, Colon and Rectal Surgeon, discusses how to identify and treat hemorrhoids. 

Dr. Drew Schembre, Medical Director for John Muir Health Digestive Health Services, discusses digestive health symptoms to watch and care for now. 

Shellie Campos, NP discusses how early detection of breast cancer saves lives and facilitates treatment options.

Jennifer Cave-Brown, NP and stroke coordinator, discusses signs and symptoms of stroke, including the importance of seeking care without delay.

What if I'm having a hard time mentally and emotionally?

The global COVID-19 pandemic can be stressful. Whether you are personally dealing with illness, managing a new work environment, working in an essential job, caring for kids at home while facilitating distance learning, or managing job and financial insecurity – we’re living in a time, full of unknowns, uncertainty, and fear.

What you may be feeling and experiencing is a stress response, which is a natural reaction to everything that’s going on. And, there are tools and resources that can help you.

Stress reactions during an infectious disease outbreak can include:

  • Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones
  • Changes in sleep or eating patterns
  • Difficulty sleeping or concentrating
  • Worsening of chronic health problems
  • Worsening of mental health conditions
  • Increased use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs

Some people may react more strongly to stressful experiences.

People who may respond more strongly to a crisis like COVID-19 include:

  • People with mental health and substance use issues
  • Those at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19 – including people who are older or have chronic conditions
  • Children and teens
  • People helping with the COVID-19 response, like health care providers, first responders and other essential workers.

For people at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 or other vulnerable populations, there may be added distress, including:

  • Concern about protecting oneself from the virus.
  • Concern that regular medical care or community services may be disrupted due to facility closures or reductions in services and public transport closure.
  • Feeling socially isolated, especially if they live alone or are in a community setting that does not allow visitors because of the outbreak.
  • Guilt if loved ones or the community help them with activities of daily living.
  • Concern about economic security – employment, food, housing and safety.
  • Fear of stigma because of age, race or ethnicity, disability, or perceived likelihood of spreading COVID-19.

Tools for coping with stress

  • Take breaks from watching, reading or listening to the news, including on social media. Try limiting the news to once a day, and see if that helps decrease your stress.
  • Take care of your body.
    • Take deep breaths, stretch or meditate
    • Try to eat healthy, well balanced meals
    • Exercise regularly
    • Get plenty of sleep
    • Avoid alcohol and drugs
  • Connect with others. Talk to friends, family or other people you trust. Tell them how you’re feeling and find out how they’re doing as well. Remembering that we’re all in this together can be helpful.
  • Make time to relax and do things you enjoy, that can be done at home.

Understanding what your stress response is, and learning tools for coping with stress, can help you handle the uncertain times we are currently living in. If the coping tools you’re using aren’t helping and your ability to handle stress is decreasing, please call our Behavioral Health Admissions team. We can assess your situation over the phone and either schedule an intake appointment or assist you in finding other helpful resources. Call (925) 674-4265 for information.

Helping children with stress

Children and teens look to the trusted adults in their lives to understand how to handle new and unfamiliar situations. When parents and caregivers deal with the stress of COVID-19 calmly and confidently, children learn how they too can manage.

Stress response in children

Children and teens may respond to stress in varying ways. Some stress responses may include:

  • Excessive crying or irritation in younger children
  • Returning to behaviors they have outgrown (for example, toileting accidents or bedwetting)
  • Excessive worry or sadness
  • Unhealthy eating or sleeping habits
  • Irritability and “acting out” behaviors in teens
  • Poor school performance or avoiding school work
  • Difficulty with attention and concentration
  • Avoidance of activities enjoyed in the past
  • Unexplained headaches or body pain
  • Use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs


View a webinar on Coping with Stress, Anxiety and Depression in Times of Crisis presented by the John Muir Health Behavioral Health Center. You can also download the presentation (PDF).

View a webinar on Helping Teens Cope with Grief and Loss During COVID-19 presented by the John Muir Health Behavioral Health Center. You can also download the presentation (PDF).

parenting challenges during covid-19

View a webinar on Parenting Challenges During COVID-19 presented by the John Muir Health Behavioral Health Center. You can also download the presentation (PDF).

How to support your children

  • Take time to talk with your child or teen about the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Answer questions and share facts about COVID-19 in a way that your child or teen can understand.
  • Reassure your child or teen that they are safe. Let them know it is ok if they feel upset. Share with them how you deal with your own stress so that they can learn how to cope from you.
  • Limit your family’s exposure to news coverage of COVID-19, including social media. Children may misinterpret what they hear and can be frightened about something they do not understand.
  • Try to keep up with regular routines. If schools are closed, create a schedule for learning activities and relaxing or fun activities.
  • Be a role model. Take breaks, get plenty of sleep, exercise, and eat well. Connect with your friends and family members.

Mental and Emotional Health Resources

Sometimes practicing coping tools on your own isn’t enough, and you need the help of mental health experts. Our Behavioral Health Admissions team can assess your or your child’s situation over the phone and either schedule an intake appointment or assist you in finding other helpful resources. Call (925) 674-4245 for information.

Additionally, while in-person visits are limited during the COVID-19 crisis, many emotional support agencies are providing free or low-cost mental health services virtually.




California Peer Run Warmline

A free, non-emergency resource for anyone in California seeking emotional support. Assistance is provided via phone and webchat on a nondiscriminatory basis to anyone in need.

Some concerns callers share are challenges with interpersonal relationships, anxiety, panic, depression, finance, and alcohol and drug use.

(855) 845-7415

NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) HelpLine

Free, nationwide peer-support service providing information, resource referrals and support to people living with a mental health conditions, their family members and caregivers, mental health providers and the public.

1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or text “NAMI” to 741741


Free emotional support line for anyone feeling anxious about the coronavirus. It’s available to anyone 24/7 and will connect you with a counselor who is standing by for help.

(866) 342-6892

Contra Costa Crisis Center

Free support, counseling, and for people in emotional or psychological distress

211 or 800-833-2900 or text ‘HOPE’ to 20121

211 Alameda County

Provides information on community resources including mental health

211 or text 898211

211 Solano County

Provides information on community resources including mental health


Mental Health Crises

For a mental health crisis involving someone who is suicidal, please call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.

There are additional resources available for people who are in a mental health crisis: