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: COVID-19

How to Make Your Own Cloth Face masks in 3 Different Sizes!

2013 study by the Disaster Medicine and Public Health Department entitled Testing the Efficacy of Homemade Masks: Would They Protect in an Influenza Pandemic? revealed that homemade face masks, constructed out of household materials were still effective in reducing aerosol transmission of droplet-spread communicable diseases. The study involved 21 healthy volunteers; 12 men and 9 women aged between 20 and 44 years of age. The results indicated that all of the materials used, which included a cotton t-shirt, scarf, tea-towel, vacuum cleaner bag and pillowcase showed some capability to block the microbial aerosol challenges. The most significant factor was not the material the homemade face mask was constructed out of, instead, it was the fit of the mask itself and the underlying actions of the wearer.

Masks are not recommended for children 2 and under!

Free Downloadable Face Mask Pattern (from craft passion) in various options. Please click to download and print separately.

  • Type A: Normal face mask ( No POCKET)
  • Type B: Face mask with a POCKET for filter insert or as a surgical mask cover.
  • Type C: Add on a removable NOSE WIRE to Type A and Type B

This article is intended for both those with have little to no skills with sewing as well as our more experienced readers. It is also readily made to to complete with or without the use of a sewing machine.


Woman/Teen Man
“Jesse Mask (Best Fit)Template
W/Pocket (3/8″ seam allowance)TemplateTemplateTemplateTemplate
W/out Pocket (1/4″ seam allowance)TemplateTemplateTemplateTemplate
W/out seam allowance
(4 sizes)
Make sure printer is set to Print to Scale



  • Main Fabric (cotton), 13″ x 7″, prewash
  • Lining Fabric (cotton or flannel), 12″ x 7″, prewash
  • Bias Tape, 2″ wide 6″ long (5″ for young kids, 4″ for small kids), prewash. (Optional, as nose wire sleeve)
  • Wire, 6″ (5″ for young kids, 4″ for small kids). (Optional, as nose wire), bent the ends inward so the won’t poke through the fabric.
  • Elastic cord: for ear loops, 8″ x 2, or, for head tie, 18″ x 1, (this is an approximate length, please measure with your own elastic band to judge; as everyone’s head and sizes are different) or, shoelace/ribbon/cord/t-shirt yarn with at least 44″ length for the head tie
  • Sewing Pattern


  • Sewing essential
  • Sewing Machine or hand sew
  • Iron
  • Seamstress tracing wheel and paper
  • Pencil or soluble fabric marker


  1. Decide which type and size you want to sew, choose the correct pattern from the list, download and print out the template of the face masks separately. (https://media.rainpos.com/220/jessemask.pdf)
  2. Base on the choice of face mask you want to sew, follow the sewing instructions accordingly. Watch the sewing video attach within the instruction for Type C face mask, or as reference for other types.
  3. Add ties to the face mask, either an elastic band or head tie.
  4. Wash the face mask with warm water of at least 60 °C or 140 °F, dry it properly before wearing. Add filter insert if required.

Decide which type and size you want to sew, choose the correct pattern from the list, download and print out the template of Face Mask Pattern separately.

Don’t scale the printing and DON’T print to fit the paper either, it is in letter size paper (8.5″ x 11″) so you should have no problem printing it in 100% size. There is a 2″ scale marking for you to check if you are printing it in the right size.

Cut out the pattern of your size.

[IMPORTANT: Don’t print the pattern from the browser, the size might not correct. Please open the pdf pattern in Adobe Reader or Adobe Pro and print the actual size (100% scale) from there, DO NOT set to “print to fit paper”.]

[Without Printer]

You may trace the pattern out from your monitor. Download the templates and open them in Adobe Reader. Zoom the template till the 2″ guide measures 2″ on your ruler, set the screen to the highest brightness. Place a piece of white paper on the monitor and trace the outline with a pen or a marker.

Fold the main fabric into halve with the wrong side facing each other, pin the paper pattern onto the double-layered fabric. Cut the fabric with 1/4″ allowance, except the ear side. Cut the fabric at the ear side with 1″ seam allowance (1.5″ if you are using t-shirt yarn as the head tie).

Insert the tracing paper between the layer, trace sewing lines with tracing wheel.

Remove pins and paper pattern, get set to sew.

NOTE: If you are using templates that already have seam allowances included, you do not need to add any more seam allowance. The same applies to the lining in the next step.

Fabric Patch Video Instructions (with sewing machine)

(Tutorial starts at about 12:00)

Additional Tips for “Jesse mask”

Video 2

  • 2:29 – Elastic
  • 4:22 – Ties
  • 11:01 – Nose Pieces
  • 17:32 – Center seam questions
  • 19:45 – Template Info & Alternative Templates
  • 21:40 – How to take Measurements
  • 23:49 – Washability
  • 25:35 -Materials

Video 3

Option B Instructions (can use with one of the mask templates above)


5 Vegetables That Are Easy To Grow For A Kid-Friendly Garden

Some Tips Before You Get Started:

  • Buy some garden tools designed for children that are smaller in size and most of the time offer additional safety.
  • Allow children to decorate and personalize their pots!
  • When sowing seeds or transplanting your starter plants, space them out with a little extra room in between. This will help to prevent plants from being trampled on by your children)!

Tips for Grocery Shopping and Handling During a Pandemic

With the ever increasing requirement for ‘social distancing’, there are essentials such as food, cleaning supplies, personal care and medicine, to name a few.  We know that to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus or COVID-19, we should limit our exposure to people, cover our coughs/sneezes, and avoid touching our face.  If you are feeling well and certain that you have not been exposed to or tested negative for the COVID-19 virus.  Here are some strategies to consider before you leave home, while shopping, and when you return home.

Before You Leave Home

  1. Determine your budget, how many in your household, and duration or how long you need your groceries, supplies, etc.  
  1. Make a very specific list of your groceries, supplies, etc. 
  • Some high demand items might not yet be available, out of stock or sold out. 
  • Make a column for possible substitutions. 
  • Minimize exposure to others, set a time limit in the store.
  1. Stay within budget and stick to the List.
  • Helpful to have an online or mental map of product locations.
  • Know and go at times when fewer people shop at your store.
  1. Only one person from household should go to the store.
  • Minimize numbers within store and practice Social Distancing.
  • Lower exposure risks to other family members.
  • Vulnerable individuals may have assistance from one person if needed.
  1. Prepare a “Disinfection area” and “Clean area” for when you get back home.
  • See “When you return Home” for set-up ideas.
  • Designate who will help with unloading
  1. Take your mask and hand sanitizer. Extra sanitizing wipes and gloves are optional.

While Shopping 

  1. Wear a mask. Cloth face masks now strongly recommended by the CDC.  
  • A clean bandana folded around 2-3 layers of paper towels.
  • Use a tightly woven cloth that doesn’t allow light to pass through.
  1. Gloves are optional because they become contaminated the same way your hands do.        
  1. Sanitize your hands often, especially before and after shopping.
  1. Most stores are wiping down and sanitizing carts and common ‘high’ touch” areas.
  • Your extra wipes will be best if your store isn’t providing sanitizing nor wipes.
  • Wipes are like used tissues, use once and toss.
  1. Don’t touch your face.
  1. Touch only what you buy.
  • Try not to touch things unnecessarily.  That means don’t pick up multiple produce items to try to find the ripest one.
  • If you must, put your hands in a produce bag.
  1. Practice Social Distancing, some stores mark it with tapes.
  • Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet (1.8 meters).
  • Weird trick at check-out, ‘accidentally’ drop a dried-out sanitizing wipe, clean crumbled tissue or napkin behind you.  People will give you space.
  • Not sure or no tiles at store? Bring your own tape measure, be selfish or stingy and don’t let anyone borrow it or pick up one in the hardware section to “try out” in store.  
  1. Checkout:
  • Self- Checkout before you start, ask attendant to sanitize conveyor belt or tray, touch screen, scanner and handheld, card reader. Or use your wipes. 
  1. Sanitize your hands/gloves or remove gloves before reaching for purse/wallet.
  1. Using cash?
  • Carry it in an envelope or zip-lock sandwich bag.
  • Use sanitizer or wipes AFTER handling the cash. 
  1. Using Card?
  • Sanitize hands and card After using card reader.
  • Still cover keypad when entering PIN 
  1. Before getting in the car, sanitize your hands.  Remove and discard gloves.
  • Throw away gloves when you reach home, if you are on foot or take public transportation.

When you return home

  1. Continue to wear face mask and practice social distancing as much as possible.
  • Have family member(s) wear mask(s) and sanitize hands if assisting with unloading.
  1. Sanitize hands: you and any family member that is helping you with unloading vehicle or carrying in packages. 
  1. Place bags in pre-designated “disinfection area” or holding area for cleaning/disinfecting.
  • Do not leave the groceries outside your door, on porch, in garage for days. Store properly to avoid spoilage and pests.
  • Clean reusable bags: Wash cloth ones in laundry. Sanitize plastic ones with soap or disinfectants.
  1. Rinse produce Don’t use soap.
    • Use lukewarm or cold water.
    • Rinsing, ‘spray and sit” or soaking produce for 2 to 10 minutes is sufficient.
    • Buy or make homemade produce wash to remove pesticides, dirt, bacteria, etc.
  1. Use paper towel and disinfecting spray on non-porous packages such as cereal boxes, plastic bags/pouches, zip locked packages.
  • Spray all sides, let sit 20-30 seconds,
  • Wipe with paper towel.
  1. If available, transfer staples or frequently opened foods into clean dry canisters or sealed plastic storage containers.
  • Empty sliced bread from bag into large enough bowl or bread dispenser.
  • Use canister for dried items like Oatmeal, flour, coffee, cookies, etc.
  • Look around and set these up or order before your next shopping trip.

Home-care Guide of Do’s and Don’ts for COVID-19 Infections

A Layperson’s Guide in Plain Talk

  • This is a compilation based on information from World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control and other sources in an easy-to-read format with the survival of African and all people in mind.
  • Many of the recommendations are based on what worked during the MERS and SARS pandemics, but others have been specially adapted to the challenges faced with the novel or new coronavirus COVID- 19.
  • Most people who get sick with COVID-19 will have only mild illness and should recover at home.
  • Care at home either from a family member(s), friend or home health care-worker can help stop the spread of COVID-19 and help protect people who are at risk for getting seriously ill from COVID-19.


  1. Make sure you understand and follow instructions given to the person in your care by a healthcare professional: doctor/nurse/nurse practitioner/medical assistant.
  2. Monitor Symptoms. Know what could be COVID-19 or something else:

Know Your Symptoms:

SymptomCOVID-19InfluenzaColdSeasonal Allergies
CoughCommon (Dry)Common (Dry)CommonCommon
FatigueCommonCommonSome CasesUncommon / None
FeverCommonCommonSome CasesUncommon / None
Shortness of BreathCommonUncommon / NoneUncommon / NoneUncommon / None
Aches and PainsSome CasesCommonSome CasesUncommon / None
DiarrheaSome CasesSome CasesUncommon / NoneUncommon / None
Sore ThroatSome CasesCommonCommonUncommon / None
Stuffy or Runny NoseSome CasesCommonCommonCommon
HeadacheUncommon / NoneCommonSome CasesUncommon / None
Itchy or Watery EyesUncommon / NoneUncommon / NoneCommonCommon
SneezingUncommon / NoneCommonCommonCommon
Stomach PainUncommon / NoneSome CasesUncommon / NoneUncommon / None
VomitingUncommon / NoneSome CasesUncommon / NoneUncommon / None
  • Keep all other household members as separate as possible.
  • That means in whatever space you have available do the very best you can to avoid being too close the patient.   Separate bathroom, etc. if possible.
  • NO VISITORS -unless absolutely needed!
  • Others in home care for pets.
  • Make sure shared spaces have good ventilation:  open window or air conditioner (weather permitting).  
  • Wash hands often!!
  • World Health Organization recommends: 
  • Perform hand washing after any type of contact with patients or their immediate environment.
  • Hand hygiene should be performed before and after preparing food, before eating, after using the toilet, and whenever hands look dirty. If hands are not visibly dirty, an alcohol-based hand rub can be used. For visibly dirty hands, use soap and water. 
  • Use disposable paper towels to dry hands. If these are not available, use clean cloth towels and replace them frequently.
  • Patient should always wear a face mask when around others
  • Clean All Highly Touched Surfaces Often. Including: toilets, countertops, keyboards, phones, table tops, doorknobs, bedroom furniture, countertops
    • Wear gloves
    • Use cleaning spray or wipes
    • Open a window if possible- ventilate
  1. Always wear disposable face-masks & gloves when touching any of the patient’s body fluids: blood, urine, snot, saliva, etc. MAKE SURE TO DISPOSE OF THEM IMMEDIATELY AFTER USE- IN A LINED CONTAINER.  DO NOT REUSE the lining.
    1. Remove gloves first and throw away
    2. Wash hands thoroughly
    3. Next dispose of mask
    4. Clean hands again
  1. Don’t Share Household Items with the Patient
    • If Possible: provide patient with disposable cups, plates, forks & spoons
    • IF NOT Possible: wash all utensils thoroughly in hot soapy water, SEPARATELY from all other household members
  1. Laundry and Sanitation
    1. Always Wear Disposable Gloves
    2. Remove & wash clothes or bedding with blood, stool or other fluids on them
    3. KEEP SOILED ITEMS AWAY FROM YOUR BODY with the gloves still on
    4. Load & Wash on the hottest setting clothes can take
    5. Regular detergent is OK

Additional Links

Fever Reducers

Caution About Ibuprofen and Other Over The Counter Meds With Covid-19

  • No solid evidence that ibuprofen can make coronavirus symptoms and/or outcomes worse but there are conflicting views on use.
  • Some infectious disease experts say use Tylenol as a first-line agent
  • Ibuprofen and other NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) can be considered if there are no other conditions such as kidney disease  or stomach ulcers.
  • Not recommended in infants younger than 6 months.
  • The more cautious approach would be to stick with acetaminophen (Tylenol) for fever in COVID-19 infection
  • These suggestions may change with the pandemic’s evolution and as more information becomes available about drug interactions and COVID-19.


If you or the person you’re caring for develops these emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New confusion or inability to arouse
  • Bluish lips or face

This list is not all-inclusive. Please consult your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.

How to tell when someone is no longer infectious

  1. Incubation period” means the time between catching the virus and beginning to have symptoms of the disease. Most estimates of the incubation period for COVID-19 range from 1-14 days, most commonly around five days
  2. People with COVID-19 who have stayed home (are home isolated) can stop home isolation when:

If NoTest to determine if they are still contagious, they can leave home after these three things have happened:

  • no fever for at least 72 hours (that is three full days of no fever without the use medicine that reduces fevers)
  • other symptoms have improved (for example, when their cough or shortness of breath have improved)
  • AND
  • at least 7 days have passed since their symptoms first appeared 

If Tested to determine if still contagious, they can leave home after these three things have happened:

  • They no longer have a fever (without the use medicine that reduces fevers)
  • AND
  • Other symptoms have improved (for example, when their cough or shortness of breath have improved)
  • AND
  • They received two negative tests in a row, 24 hours apart.

COVID-19 Tips: 11 Foods That You Can Buy and Re-Grow

At a time where people everywhere are encouraged to stay indoors to avoid the growing pandemic of COVID-19, it is imperative that we develop creative solutions to problems like the ability to clothe, shelter and feed ourselves. One of the most self sufficient things you can do is grow your own food. We have made it easier than ever by compiling a list of 11 foods that you can regrow from leftover “cuttings” in your kitchen!

1. Green Onions

You just place the stem that is leftover in a glass bowl or jar with enough water to cover it and leave it in the sunlight. After about a two days, you will notice new growth and when this happens you can transplant your green onion into a pot or herb garden. Leeks can be grown similarly.

2. Lemongrass

Lemongrass will grow just like regular grass. You just place the root that is leftover in a glass bowl or jar with enough water to cover it and leave it in the sunlight. After about a week, you will notice new growth and when this happens you can transplant your lemongrass in a pot or herb garden.

3. Lettuce, Cabbage, and Bok Choy

Lettuce, cabbage, and Bok Choy are relatively easy to grow from cuttings. Instead of throwing out the leftover leaves, place them in a bowl with just a small amount of water in the bottom. Keep the bowl somewhere that gets good sunlight and mist the leaves with water a couple of times each week. After 3 or 4 days, you will notice roots beginning to appear along with new leaves. When this happens you can transplant your lettuce, cabbage or wok chop in soil.

4. Celery

Celery is one of the easiest foods to grow from leftover cuttings. Just cut off the bottom or base of your celery and lay it in a bowl with just a bit of warm water in the bottom. Keep the bowl in direct sunlight as long as possible each day and after about a week, you will begin to see the leaves thickening and growing along the base. When this happens, you can transplant your celery in soil and wait for it to grow to full length.

5. Bean Sprouts

Simply soak a tablespoon of the beans that you want to grow in a jar with shallow water. Leave this overnight and in the morning, drain the water off and put the beans back in the container. Cover the container with a towel overnight and rinse them the next morning. Keep doing this until you notice the sprouts begin to appear and then until they reach the size that you want. This works well with mung beans and wheat berries. You can also grow using a coca cola bottle or milk carton! Here is an example below.

6. Peppers

You can grow a number of hot peppers from the seeds that are leftover. Just collect the seeds from your habaneros, jalapenos or any other peppers that you have on hand. Plant them in potting soil and keep in direct sunlight unless it is warm outside and then you can just plant them in your garden area. Peppers grow relatively fast and don’t require a lot of care. Once you get a new crop, just save some of the seeds for replanting again.

Peppers like to have warm roots and do well in black containers or concrete blocks.

7. Ginger Root

Ginger root is very easy to grow and once you get started, you can keep your supply of ginger full. You will need to plant a spare piece of your ginger root in potting soil, making sure that the buds are facing up. Expect new shoots and new roots in about a week or so and once this happens you can pull it up and use it again.

8. Fennel

To growing fennel, it requires that the roots are kept intact. You need about an inch of the base of the fennel to get it to regrow. Just place this base in a container with about a cup of water and leave it in direct sunlight. The windowsill is a great place to grow fennel. When the roots grow strong and you notice new green shoots coming up from the center of the base, you can transplant into soil.

9. Garlic Sprouts

Garlic is really easy to grow and can be done from just one clove. When you buy garlic, you get several cloves so just pull one off and plant it with the roots facing down in potting soil. Garlic likes plenty of direct sunlight so in warmer weather, keep it outdoors in the sun during the day. Once you notice that new shoots have established, cut the shoots back and your plant will produce a bulb. You can take part of this new bulb and plant again.

 Make sure you are not submerging the cloves or they will rot. Change the water when it looks dirty, every 2 or 3 days, and your little sprouts can reach a height of ten inches! You can cut the sprouts with scissors when ready to harvest them. Garlic sprouts have a lighter flavor than garlic and are best raw.

10. Basil and Cilantro

Basil is relatively easy to regrow. You will need a stem about four inches high. Place stem in a glass of water with the leaves well above the water line. Leave the glass sitting in a bright area but not in direct sunlight. Roots should begin to form in a few days and when those roots reach a couple of inches long, you can transplant them in soil.

Cilantro can be grown from scraps as well. Just place the bottom of the stem in a glass of water and leave in a bright area, near a windowsill perhaps. When the roots grow a couple of inches long, you can transplant the cilantro into a pot and you will notice new sprigs in just a few weeks.

11. Turnip Greens

You can reserve the tops of turnips and regrow greens from them. Just chop off the tops of the turnips, leaving about a half-inch to an inch of the top. Place in a shallow container, add water, and put in a sunny spot. After a week, you should see some strong turnip greens. And really, all members of the turnip family (beets, carrots, parsnips) can regrow their greens this way, not just turnips.

You can cut the sprouts with scissors when ready to harvest them. Turnip leaves can be prepared exactly like spinach or its close mustard, kale, cabbage, and collards relatives, including in salads, soups, and stewed with pork and served with vinegar. The somewhat fuzzy leaves are extremely high in vitamins A, B, C, and K, folate, iron, calcium, and thiamine.  

General Guidelines to Regrow Food In Water


  • You don’t need a lot of water – just enough to cover the roots. About 1/2″ of water seems to be sufficient otherwise the food can get moldy and slimy.
  • Be sure to check the water every 2-3 days to ensure that A) there’s enough water, and B) no rogue pieces fall off and slime up your bowl.
  • The size of container should be relative to the size of the food you’re growing. Lettuce and celery grows best in shallow bowls like these. Green onion and lemongrass can be in taller, skinny glasses like these.
  • You can regrow multiples of the same plant as long as you’re not overcrowding the area.

Other Foods You Can Regrow

This list is not all inclusive. There are lots of other fruits and vegetables that you can regrow such as:

  • Avocado
  • Cherries
  • Apples
  • Mango
  • Lemon
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Onions (white/yellow/red)
  • Pineapple

These items require significantly more time to grow. Trees like avocado take a minimum of five years to produce fruit! Long term they may be great investments and it is encouraged that you research how to grow and care for these as well.

COVID-19 Tips:How To Prepare for Self-Quarantine or Lockdown

How long should I prepare for?

At least 14 days are recommended for a self-quarantine, while the duration of a lockdown depends on the decision of a local government.

Given the likelihood that more and more people around the world will be stuck at home, preparing your home for that eventuality is an increasing concern.

Among the things being stocked are:

Non-perishable foods, including shelf-stable beverages, sauces, pasta, pulses, rice, cereal, crackers, and dry goods, including tea, sugar, and coffee.

Basic medical supplies, including over-the-counter medications to alleviate possible symptoms – which, in mild cases, have a lot in common with the symptoms of the common cold. Medicines for fever, congestion, and cough are recommended. It is also important to keep a one-month supply of prescription medication on hand as well in case getting to a pharmacy for a refill becomes difficult.

Cleaning and hygiene supplies needed would include soaps for handwashing, bathing, laundry, and cleaning, as well as disinfectants to keep surfaces clean.

**Medical professionals have suggested that ibuprofen is not recommended for managing coronavirus symptoms. Those already taking ibuprofen for other conditions should not stop without consulting a doctor**

What else should I prepare?

Also important is preparing some activities that can be undertaken within the home, whether a list of books to read or an entertainment or exercise subscription that can be used without going out.

Create a plan for meals to limit trips to the grocery store. This plan should include your household size the amount of meals per day and what will be served daily. Limiting children to eating times will help to ration snacks an limit your exposure to COVID-19

COVID-19 Tips: What To Do If You Get Sick

What to Do if You Get Sick

Patients with confirmed COVID-19 infection have reported symptoms ranging from mild to severe respiratory illness. Symptoms generally include fever, cough and shortness of breath/difficulty breathing

At this time, the CDC believes that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as two days, or as long as 14 days, after exposure.

If you may have had contact with a person with COVID-19 or recently traveled to countries with community spread and start to experience symptoms, call your medical provider so that they can take appropriate precautions.

If you have a cough, a fever or difficulty breathing, and you are worried that you may have COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, here are recommendations from Lisa Maragakis, M.D., M.P.H., senior director of infection prevention at Johns Hopkins, on what to do, step by step.

Coronavirus: What do I do if I Feel Sick? 

1. Stay Home and Call a Health Care Provider

Unless it is an emergency, to reduce your risk of catching or spreading illness, stay home if you feel sick, even if your symptoms are mild. Do not go to work, school or public places, and avoid public transportation.

If your symptoms are severe or you feel like you need medical care, call before you go to a doctor’s office, urgent care center or emergency room. Describe your symptoms over the phone.

If you have a medical emergency, call 911 and tell the dispatcher about your symptoms and recent travel history.

2. Answer Questions to Determine Your Risk

When you call a health care facility, you will be asked about your risks for COVID-19. Risk factors include recent travel to certain countries or areas of the U.S., or exposure to an infected person.

For instance, people calling Johns Hopkins Health System hospitals or clinics are asked:

  • Have you had close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus? (Close contact means having been within 6 feet of that person for an extended time, or being exposed to their cough or sneeze.)
  • Do you have a fever, a cough or difficulty breathing?
  • Has a public health officer said you were potentially exposed to COVID-19?

3. Follow Your Health Care Provider’s Instructions

Based on your answers to these questions, the care provider will provide instructions over the phone. You will be told if you need to be evaluated, and if so, what to do next. Based on your risk for COVID-19, your health care provider may recommend that you:

  • Continue to monitor your health and call back if you develop a fever or respiratory symptoms.
  • Stay home and await further instructions.
  • Report to a designated medical care facility for evaluation and treatment. It’s best to go alone to your appointment. Do not bring children or other family members unless you need assistance.
  • Go to a clinic or emergency department if you have more severe symptoms, such as higher fever and severe shortness of breath.

4. Practice Hand Hygiene and Respiratory Etiquette

  • If you do leave your home to go to a care facility, wear a mask so your coughs and sneezes are less likely to infect others. (Masks are NOT recommended for healthy people in the general population.)
  • Wash your hands thoroughly (for at least 20 seconds) after sneezing, blowing your nose, coughing or using the bathroom, and before preparing or eating food.
  • If you cough or sneeze, do so into the bend of your elbow, not your hand. Or use a tissue, and then throw it away immediately afterward.
  • At home, clean often-touched surfaces such as doors and doorknobs, cabinet handles, bathroom hardware, tabletops, phones, tablets and keyboards regularly with disinfectant.

5. Stay Calm

The possibility of having a contagious illness is scary, but doctors, nurses and other caregivers are learning more about COVID-19 every day. They are working together with national and international agencies to identify and provide care to patients while avoiding spread of the illness in the community.

Avoid anti-inflammatory drugs

France’s Health Minister Olivier Veran said on Twitter on Saturday for pain relief it was better to take paracetamol because over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs may worsen the coronavirus.

“The taking of anti-inflammatories [ibuprofen, cortisone] could be a factor in aggravating the infection. In case of fever, take paracetamol. If you are already taking anti-inflammatory drugs, ask your doctor’s advice,” said Veran.

Patients should choose paracetamol, also known known in the United States by the generic name acetaminophen and commonly by the brand name Tylenol, because “it will reduce the fever without counter-attacking the inflammation”, the health ministry added.

Anti-inflammatory drugs are known to be a risk for those with infectious illnesses because they tend to diminish the response of the body’s immune system.

What Residents Can Do to Prepare for COVID-19

It’s important for the public to be prepared should a COVID-19 outbreak occur in your community. To limit the spread of infection, you should:

  • Wash your hands often to help protect you from germs.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, if soap and water are not available. It should contain at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • If you are sick, stay home and keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing, then wash your hands.
  • Practice other good health habits. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat nutritious food.

Follow these important tips to help prepare to respond to this public health threat.

  • Store a two-week supply of food, beverages and water, including food for family pets.
  • Ensure an adequate supply of prescribed and routine medications are on hand.
  • Plan ways to care for those who are at greater risk for serious complications and who will take care of sick family members.
  • If you have family members with increased risk of getting seriously sick, check with your medical providers about symptoms and treatment.
  • Create an emergency contact list of family and friends, teachers and employers.
  • Have a plan in case your school, childcare, or employer closes temporarily.
  • Talk with your children, family, and friends about what to do if an outbreak occurs and what each person would need.

COVID-19 Tips: Social Distancing

What is social distancing?

Social distancing is an infection control action that public health officials take to stop or slow down the spread of a contagious disease. The goal is for people to avoid close contact with each other and stay six feet apart.

Simply put, avoiding close contact with others. This means no mass gatherings or unnecessary travel to places where people may congregate. If you absolutely must be out in public, maintain a six-foot radius of space.

Why do I need to practice social distancing?

In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, one important thing we can all do is practice social distancing. 

Social distancing can slow down the spread of COVID-19 by giving it fewer opportunities to jump from person to person.

Is social distancing effective?

Scientists estimate that one person infected with the coronavirus will infect another 3.3 people, on average. The higher that number (known as the reproductive number), the faster a virus spreads. 

Several factors influence the reproductive number, including how contagious the virus is, how susceptible people are, how many times people interact with each other, and how long those interactions last. Social distancing aims to reduce the last two items on that list, which would in turn reduce the reproductive number and slow a disease’s spread, said Dr. Jeffrey Martin, an infectious diseases epidemiologist at UC San Francisco.

How is social distancing different from self-quarantine and self-isolation?

Self-quarantine and self-isolation are specific forms of social distancing. 

Self-quarantine is when you don’t necessarily feel ill, but as a precaution, separate yourself from others. This is usually because there’s a good chance you’ve been exposed to a disease. Self-isolation is when you actually have symptoms and don’t want to get other people sick. In the case of COVID-19, both should last about 14 days, enough time for any potential symptoms to manifest in an environment where the virus can’t infect other people.

SCIENCECoronavirus self-quarantine: When and how to do it March 13, 2020

How to practice social distancing

If you can work from home, you should. Don’t gather in shared public spaces or at public events, like gyms, restaurants, festivals or concerts. Avoid cruises and nonessential travel, particularly if you’re at higher risk of getting very sick from the disease, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

If you absolutely have to get prepared food, don’t eat in —use the takeout window or have it delivered. Pay using your debit or credit card over the phone when possible for delivery.

If you have to go to the store for groceries or other essentials, try to go during “off-peak hours.” While you’re there, maintain a six-foot distance between yourself and other people. That will lessen the chance that you’ll catch the virus from droplets spread through the air by coughing or sneezing. Also, be sure to clean shared surfaces before and after you come into contact with them.

I still need to go to work. Is it OK to take my child to day care?

Try to find a day care setting with a small number of kids, don’t send them to day care if they’re sick. Make sure the day care provider will be using best practices and wiping down all of the toys often, with disinfecting cleaners such as Clorox wipes or a bleach solution.  Evidence suggests that the coronavirus can live on surfaces like plastic for up to 72 hours.

Are play dates OK?

It is best to put off playdates for now. Just because someone looks well, doesn’t mean they can’t transmit the COVID-19.

What’s more, symptoms of COVID-19 on average take five days to show up from the time of infection — but a person can still pass it on to other people during that time. So while it might be tempting to have one or two kids over, don’t do it, says Dr. Asaf Bitton, a primary care physician and public health researcher affiliated with Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Dr. Jenny Radesky, a developmental behavioral pediatrician at the University of Michigan, says the goal is for parents to limit exposure, period. “My guidance right now to families is, as much as possible, do not have your kids in other people’s houses. Do not have other people’s kids in your house. There are times where for child care arrangements or for absolute necessity, you need to have one or two or more kids together. But if at all possible, really just keep kids at home.”

What about playing outside with other kids or going to the park?

If you allow your children outside to play with other children, make sure the children keep at least 6 feet of distance from other children (which can be very hard for younger children).

And for adults, what about having close friends over to visit?

The new CDC guidance is to avoid social visits for now.

Can I travel? I’m seeing really cheap airfares now.

The CDC is telling people to avoid discretionary travel. You should be minimizing contact with others outside your immediate household.

I had a doctor’s visit scheduled months ago. Should I still go?

If it’s a nonessential visit to a doctor or dentist, reschedule it, Birx said Tuesday during a White House press conference. “Things that don’t need to be done over the next two weeks, don’t get it done. If you’re a person with an elective surgery, you don’t want to go into a hospital right now.” She urged people to “be responsible” to free up hospital beds and space.

I need to go to the grocery store. How do I do that in a way that’s safest for me and others?

This counts as an essential trip, of course. But try going to the grocery store during off-peak hours, when it’s less likely to be crowded, says Dr. Sean O’Leary, an assistant professor of pediatrics and infectious diseases at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

So I can’t leave my house at all?

You can leave your house, just minimize your interactions with other people. Use this time for activities such as: going for walks, gardening or exercise.

What do I do if I still have to go to work ?

There are social-distancing measures that organizations can take in places where community spread of a virus is minimal to moderate, the CDC says.

At work:

  • Increase the physical space between workers.
  • Stagger work schedules.
  • Reduce workplace social contacts. Limit in-person meetings, lunch meet-ups, staff meetings and after-work hangouts.

Utilize technology! Video and phone chat with friends and loved ones.

Offer support by sharing contact information or dropping food or goods off to neighbors who might not be able to go out themselves.

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