Precautions to Take
Precautions for everyone to take
- Wash your hands throughout the day with soap and water for at least 20 seconds – the time it takes to sing “Happy Birthday” twice (goal of approximately 5 hand washes throughout the day in addition to normal handwashing). If soap and water is not available, then use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol; this can reduce the likelihood of acquiring a respiratory illness by 16-21%.
- Clean commonly touched surfaces (doorknobs, light switches, cabinet handles) with regular household detergent and water, or surface sanitizing wipes.
- Stay home when you have symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) if you do not require hospitalization.
- Cover your mouth and nose with your elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze.
- Stay away from others who are sick.
- Limit close contact with others as much as possible (about 6 feet).
- Stay home from work, school, public areas and gatherings of people if you are sick.
- At this point, the CDC does not recommend the use of facemasks as a preventive measure for the general public. You should wear a mask only if a health care provider requests you to.
Additional precautions for those at risk
If you are at risk for severe symptoms, consider avoiding crowded places. For example, consider worshiping at home instead of attending worship services at church, dine in instead of dining out, and refill your prescriptions for several weeks in advance to reduce unnecessary future public outings when this infection is circulating.