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How to Prepare for Coronavirus

How to Prepare for Coronavirus

Remember to have a coronavirus plan, stay informed about COVID-19, and stay in touch with your community to know about local outbreaks.

Have a Prevention Plan for Coronavirus Outbreaks

Create a household plan of action for COVID-19 prevention. 
Meet with household members, other relatives, and friends to discuss needs and how each member can help. Choose a room in the house for anyone who may become sick, including a dedicated bathroom if possible.

Plan ways to care for those who might be at greater risk for serious complications. 
The CDC has defined vulnerable populations as older adults and those with serious chronic medical conditions, meaning they’re at higher risk of health complications or a poor outcome if they contract COVID-19. If you or your household members are at increased risk for COVID-19 complications, please consult with your health care provider for more information about monitoring your health for symptoms suggestive of COVID-19. 

Get to know your neighbors.
Create an emergency contact list and identify local organizations that could provide information and resources, healthcare services, and support in the event of an outbreak.

What You Can Do to Help Prevent the Spread of Coronavirus

Practice Good Hygiene

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Follow your region’s “shelter in place” or “stay at home” orders and practice social distancing. If you are an essential worker, stay home if you’re sick.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects daily (e.g., tables, countertops, light switches, doorknobs, and cabinet handles) using a product with an EPA-registered product approved for use against the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the label for all cleaning and disinfecting products.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds – especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.

Plan for Workplace Changes and School/Daycare Closures 

What to Do If a COVID-19 Outbreak Happens in Your Community

Protect Yourself and Others

  • Stay home from work, school and all activities.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Practice social distancing, which is defined as deliberately increasing the physical space between yourself and others as much as possible. About 6 feet of distance is recommended to avoid close contact and the spread of illness. 
  • If anyone in the household is sick, or has COVID-19 symptoms, make sure everyone stays home. Only leave the house if you need to get medical care.
  • Stay home when you’re sick, except to get medical care
  • Continue to practice good hygiene measures – wash hands, clean and disinfect surfaces, cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue.

Pick a Quarantine Room in Your House
Choose a room in your home that can be used to separate sick household members from those who are healthy. Identify a separate bathroom for the sick person to use, if possible. Plan to clean these rooms, as needed, when someone is sick.

Stay Informed About the Local COVID-19 Situation
Get up-to-date information about local COVID-19 activity from public health officials.

Take Care of the Emotional Health of your Household Members
Outbreaks can be stressful for adults and children. Children respond differently to stressful situations than adults. Talk with your children about the outbreak, try to stay calm and reassure them that they are safe1.

1. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/get-your-household-ready-for-COVID-19.html