To prevent infection and to slow transmission of COVID-19, do the following:
- Wash your hands regularly with soap and water, or clean them with alcohol-based hand rub.
Washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rub kills viruses that may be on your hands.
- Maintain at least 1 metre distance between you and people coughing or sneezing.
When someone coughs, sneezes, or speaks they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person has the disease.
- Avoid touching your face.
Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and infect you.
- Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.
Droplets spread virus. By following good respiratory hygiene, you protect the people around you from viruses such as cold, flu and COVID-19.
- Stay home if you feel unwell.
Avoiding contact with others will protect them from possible COVID-19 and other viruses.
- Practice physical distancing by avoiding unnecessary travel and staying away from large groups of people.
Where people come together in crowds, you are more likely to come into close contact with someone that has COIVD-19 and it is more difficult to maintain physical distance of 1 metre (3 feet).
- Refrain from smoking and other activities that weaken the lungs.
Smokers are likely to be more vulnerable to COVID-19 as the act of smoking means that fingers (and possibly contaminated cigarettes) are in contact with lips which increases the possibility of transmission of virus from hand to mouth. Smokers may also already have lung disease or reduced lung capacity which would greatly increase risk of serious illness. Smoking products such as water pipes often involve the sharing of mouth pieces and hoses, which could facilitate the transmission of COVID-19 in communal and social settings.