Information on COVID-19


On March 4, 2020 the City of Pasadena Health Officer, Dr. Ying-Ying Goh, declared a Local Public Health Emergency to empower the City to more effectively respond to COVID-19. Read the official news release.

Since that date, Pasadena Public Health Department and the City of Pasadena have diligently worked with regional, state, and federal health officials to conduct surveillance of and coordinate response to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

While the COVID-19 public health emergency in Pasadena has ended (read the official news release), COVID-19 is not gone and remains a threat to community health. To learn more about COVID-19, please review the FAQs below. For specific information or questions about COVID-19, please consult with your healthcare professional.

What is COVID-19?

Coronavirus Disease 2019, or COVID-19, is a viral disease caused by a virus in the Coronavirus family. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, some causing respiratory illness in people and others that circulate mostly among animals. Common symptoms in an infected person include fever, cough and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. Like other respiratory diseases, COVID-19 can be spread person-to-person through droplets in the air from an infected person coughing, sneezing, or talking.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that people with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms. To view some possible symptoms of COVID-19, please look at the CDC’s COVID-19 webpage.

How can I protect myself against COVID-19?

There are several things that can be to protect someone against COVID-19. Firstly, get vaccinated and boosted! Review the CDC’s vaccines for COVID-19 page to learn more about COVID-19 vaccines. COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective, and the CDC recommends everyone ages 6 months and older stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines for their age group. More information about staying up to date with COVID-19 vaccines, review the CDC latest guidance on their Stay Up to Date with COVID-19 Vaccines page.

In addition to staying up to date with COVID-19 vaccines, other ways to protect against COVID-19 include:

  • Wear a well-fitted, high quality mask (i.e., KN95 or N95) in indoor public spaces and crowded settings;
  • Practice good hygiene, including washing hand regularly and coughing or sneezing into a tissue or you elbow;
  • Test for COVID-19 if you experience symptoms;
  • Stay home when sick and avoiding close contact with others; and
  • Seek treatment if you test positive for COVID-19.

For additional information and resources on how to protect against COVID-19, please visit the California Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Resources webpage.

Where can I get a COVID-19 vaccine?

Visit to view a list of Pasadena and other nearby locations offering COVID-19 vaccinations and schedule an appoint. The Pasadena Public Health Department (1845 N. Fair Oaks Ave.) continues to administer free COVID-19 vaccinations, for all eligible ages, on Mondays and Wednesdays from 8:30 – 11:30 a.m, and 1 – 4:30 p.m. Appointments can be scheduled at, and walk-ins are accepted.

How do I test for COVID-19 and what happens if I test positive?

Visit the Pasadena Public Health Department COVID-19 Testing Information page for in-person and at-home COVID-19 testing options.  Many local pharmacies and drugstores also have at-home COVID-19 test kits available for purchase.

If you test for COVID-19 and receive a positive result, you should follow the latest CDC Respiratory Virus Guidance.

What emergencies were there and why did they end?

Pasadena Health Officer, Dr. Ying-Ying Goh, declared a Local Public Health Emergency on March 4, 2020, to empower the City to more effectively respond to COVID-19. This mobilized City resources, accelerated emergency planning, streamlined staffing, coordinated agencies across Pasadena, facilitated seeking and utilizing mutual aid, and allowed for future reimbursement by the state and federal governments. With high vaccination rates and declining cases in Pasadena, COVID-19 no longer requires an emergency response and the Pasadena Health Department is able to continue providing COVID-19 services within the current infrastructure. The Pasadena City Council voted to terminate the local public health emergency on March 6, 2023.

The California State of Emergency for COVID-19 ended on February 28, 2023. Additionally, the federal government ended the federal public health emergency on May 11, 2023. For more information, please visit the California Health and Human Services’ guide on the end of California’s COVID-19 state of emergency and the federal public health emergency for COVID-19.

Coping with Stress

The City of Pasadena and partners throughout the county take measures to keep the community healthy and safe, and that include your mental well-being. When you hear, read, or watch news about a new disease, such as COVID-19, you may feel anxious and show signs of stress—even when the illness affects people far from where you live. These signs of stress are normal and may be more likely in people with loved ones affected by the disease. It is always important to care for your own physical and mental health and reach out in kindness to those affected by the situation.

You are encouraged to read the following coping strategies and share them with friends and family who may also be experiencing stress.

More helpful information:

Photo: Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM