As states throughout the U.S. begin to reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic, they are doing so with new safety guidelines in place. There is no doubt it can be challenging to navigate this new way of life. However, it is most important to keep your health and the health of others top of mind.
Here are five questions the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has posed to help individuals navigate going out and being social during COVID-19.
Am I following the current orders of my state, city and county?
Your local health department should be providing community updates on COVID-19 during this time. There should also be local orders in place providing updates on school, business and public area re-openings. Before heading out, make sure your activity is in line with the current orders in place.
Will I be in close contact with others during the activity?
COVID-19 is still spreading, mainly when people are close to one another. Because of this, it is important to practicing social distancing during any activities you do right now.
Social distancing steps for activities include:
- Wearing a cloth face covering when in public
- Staying six feet away from others as much as possible
- Meeting with others outdoors or in open-air areas
- Washing your hands or using hand sanitizer often
- Using visual reminders like a chair arrangement or markings on the floor to help everyone keep their distance
If you are feeling sick or have been around someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, you should be staying home and quarantining.
When out, will I be forced to touch items used by others?
This question is regarding any type of public space you may decide to visit. Before heading to the location, be sure to research and review the COVID-19 precautions they have in place. For example, with a restaurant, are they cleaning and disinfecting shared spaces enough? What about shared items, like chairs? Make sure you are comfortable with their policies.
All public spaces – including workplaces, businesses and schools – should be following the CDC’s reopening guidelines at this time.
Is my activity located in a different area or community?
If you are traveling out of your city or state for an activity, you’ll want to consider if you are going to an area with a spike in COVID-19 cases. You’ll also want to think twice about going if you are coming from an area with a lot of cases.
The bottom line is that travel increases your chances of getting infected and spreading COVID-19. The best way to protect yourself and others from getting sick right now is to stay home.
If I get sick, do I know the action steps I need to take?
The more activities you attend and people you closely interact with, the more at risk you become for contracting COVID-19. Most people should be able to recover from the virus at home by isolating and monitoring their symptoms.
However, there are high-risk individuals who are more likely to become seriously ill. These people include older adults, as well as anyone at any age with an underlying medical condition. While you might not fall into these categories, someone you closely and regularly interact with might. Be sure to consider them when making decisions about your activities.
During this time, do not head to any activity without the following items:
- A cloth face covering
- Hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol
There are more questions the CDC would like everyone to consider before going out. Read the full list on their website.
Stay updated on what Bon Secours is doing related to COVID-19.