Seven months on, medical experts and researchers are still learning about the damage Covid-19 can do to people, short of killing them.
The initial emphasis by authorities on the dangers of the coronavirus focused on the fact that it was new and deadly.
It was a respiratory virus not the flu, there was no vaccine, and it was particularly a threat to older people and those with health vulnerabilities.
Perhaps that messaging contributed to the idea that younger people were somewhat invulnerable. They were less likely to die from it or show serious symptoms or any at all.
But we know more about it now and more attention needs to be paid to the many people who get the coronavirus and have to live with its effects. In many cases, Covid-19 has serious symptoms and health impacts that may be ongoing.
Worldwide there have been 565,000 deaths from Covid-19 but 12.6 million confirmed cases.
People do not know which card they will be dealt. They may survive but be left with a permanent medical disability. Previous viruses have done that to many.
And, as the pandemic has unfolded, plenty of people aged under 40 have died or had serious brushes with the virus. ABC reports that the final words of a 30-year-old Texas patient who had attended a "Covid party" hosted by an infected person were: "I think I made a mistake. I thought this was a hoax, but it's not".
It has also become clear that the coronavirus is a Hydra that can attack multiple organs in the body. They include the lungs, brain, heart, and kidneys. Some patients are still showing chronic symptoms weeks after "recovery".
A University College London study last week was the latest to report that Covid-19 patients could suffer neurological harm including strokes, brain inflammation and nerve damage. These could occur even in cases where respiratory symptoms were not severe. Brain fog and hallucinations have been reported.
The virus is known to cause incidents of blood clotting in large blood vessels. New York University Langone autopsy director Dr Amy Rapkiewicz told CNN that dead patients had clotting in small vessels as well. "This was dramatic because although we might have just expected it in the lungs, we found it in almost every organ that we looked at in our autopsy study."
An outpatient study in Rome, Italy, found that even two months after becoming infected, 87 per cent of people still had symptoms, with 55 per cent having more than three. Many still had fatigue, shortness of breath, joint pain, and chest pain.
The top US government expert on infectious diseases, Dr Anthony Fauci, said last week that there may be a "post-viral syndrome" in which fatigue "can incapacitate them for weeks and weeks following so-called recovery and clearing of the virus" and people "really do not get back to normal".
Such issues need to be kept in mind as we go about life in our protective cocoon.
The risk of dying or getting infected with Covid-19 seem remote at the moment. But should the risk increase at some stage, the coronavirus is something no one would want to live with.