With the help of physicians and infectious disease experts, we built a tip sheet to make sure you don’t bring the virus back with you.

Note: Recommendations for Covid-19 may change as officials learn more, so monitor your local health department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for updates.

Make a game plan

  • Designate one person to be your errand-runner to limit your outside exposures
  • Set up a disinfecting station — an area outside your home or in a room with low foot traffic where you can disinfect packaged food

When you’re out

  • Avoid coming within less than six feet of others
  • Wipe handles on carts or baskets while shopping
  • Some states mandate you wear a mask when you go into a business. Also, wash your hands frequently while you’re out and avoid touching your face

When you get back

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds [Click here to learn how to do so properly]
  • Disinfect takeout boxes and packaged foods at your disinfecting station
  • Thoroughly wash produce before putting it in your kitchen

Disinfect

  • Disinfect everything you touch — doorknobs, light switches, keys, phone, keyboards, remotes, etc.
  • Use EPA-approved disinfectants (these include Clorox Disinfecting Wipes and certain Lysol sprays) and leave surfaces wet for 3-5 minutes

Delivery

  • Ask workers to drop deliveries off on your doorstep or in an area of your complex
  • If they need you to come to the door, keep six feet of distance
  • Pay and tip online when possible
  • After you pick up mail from your mailbox, wash your hands

Laundry

  • Wash clothes, towels and linens regularly on the warmest setting
  • Disinfect your laundry hamper, too, or place a removable liner inside it
  • Don’t shake dirty laundry to avoid dispersing the virus in the air

Guests

  • You shouldn’t allow guests over right now
  • If you need to house a family member or friend, avoid shared living spaces as much as you can
  • If they need to enter shared living spaces, ask them to keep six feet of distance

If someone in your house gets sick

  • First, consult your doctor
  • Isolate them in another room and ask them to use a separate restroom
  • Disinfect frequently touched surfaces every day
  • Avoid sharing items with them
  • Wear gloves when washing their laundry
  • Continue to wash your hands frequently
  • Ask them to wear a face mask if they have one

Supplies you’ll need

  • EPA-approved disinfectants
  • If you don’t have disinfectants, make a bleach solution: Mix four teaspoons bleach per quart of water
  • Or Use a 70% alcohol solution
  • Laundry detergent
  • Trash bags
  • Prescription medicines (you can mail order these)
  • Canned foods — fruits, veggies, beans
  • Dry goods — breads, pastas, nut butters
  • Frozen foods — meats, veggies, fruits

Pets

  • Supervise your pet in your backyard
  • It’s OK to play with them outside — just keep your distance from other humans
  • If you’re sick, ask someone you live with to take care of them while you recover
  • If you must care for them while you’re sick, wash your hands frequently

Our sources

  • Dr. Leana Wen, former Baltimore City Health Commissioner, an emergency physician and public health professor at George Washington University
  • Dr. Koushik Kasanagottu, an internal medicine resident physician at John Hopkins Bayview Medical Center in Baltimore, Maryland, and who is among the thousands of health care professionals treating patients with coronavirus
  • Dr. Richard Kuhn, a virologist, director of the Purdue Institute of Inflammation, Immunology and Infectious Disease and editor-in-chief of the journal “Virology”
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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