As June approached, more than 900 people in Arizona had died from complications due to coronavirus. The number of deaths caused by the COVID-19 pandemic had topped 100,000 in the United States (ncovid2019.live).
As Arizona and other states relax shelter-in-place orders and businesses reopen, it’s important to remain diligent about simple safety precautions. Families need to continue practicing frequent handwashing, disinfecting surfaces, staying home when sick and observing social distancing.
COVID-19 spreads through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person (even one not showing symptoms) coughs, sneezes or talks. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to recommend these guidelines for preventing the spread of the coronavirus — common symptoms for which are fever, cough and shortness of breath — while there continues to be no cure and development of a widely available vaccine is many months away:
- Wash your hands often, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds — especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Practice social distancing by staying at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ lengths) away from other people and avoiding crowds.
- Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash and wash hands thoroughly or use hand sanitizer.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others. Everyone should wear a non-medical cloth face mask in public, such as at the grocery store. Cloth face coverings should not be placed on children under age 2 or anyone who has trouble breathing or is unable to remove a mask without assistance.
Learn more at the CDC website, the Arizona Department of Health Services and the Johns Hopkins University & Medicine’s Coronavirus Resource Center.