The best way to protect yourself is to avoid situations in which you may be exposed to respiratory viruses. Everyday actions can help protect you and prevent the spread of respiratory diseases.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Restrict any activities outside your home and maintain a safe distance (around 6 feet) between yourself and other people if COVID-19 or other respiratory viruses are spreading in your community. This includes avoiding crowded areas, shopping malls, religious gatherings, public transportation, etc.
- Wear simple cloth face coverings in public settings (like grocery stores and pharmacies) where social distancing is difficult, especially in areas where COVID-19 is spreading.
- Stay home when you are sick, unless you are seeking medical care.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (including tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks).
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water aren’t available. Always wash hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Additionally, getting a flu vaccine during 2020-2021 will be more important than ever in order to protect yourself and those around you and to reduce flu illnesses in healthcare systems responding to COVID-19. Flu vaccines are the most important step in preventing the flu and have been shown to reduce flu-related illnesses and the risk of serious flu complications.