- wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the washroom and when preparing food
- use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available,
- avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- for hand sanitizing, Health Canada recommends using a product with an NPN and containing between 60 and 80% alcohol.
To stop the spread of germs that can make others sick, you should always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and put your used tissue in a waste basket. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hand.
The WHO estimates that the COVID-19 virus can live on environmental surfaces for up to 9 days. Clean high-touch surfaces frequently with an approved disinfectant. Health Canada recommends a disinfectant with a general virucidal claim. High touch surfaces include:
- Door handles and knobs
- Light switches
- Hand rails
- Elevator buttons
- Sinks and faucets
- Restroom stalls and dispensers
- Vending machines
- Food preparation surfaces
- Breakroom, restaurant and cafe tables and chairs
- Microwave, refrigerator and kitchen appliance
- Coffee machines
- Copier, printer and fax control buttons
- Cabinet and file drawer handles
- Hand rails
- Chair arms
- Front desk and lobby surfaces
- Equipment controls
- Wheelchairs and walkers
- Computer keyboards and mouse
- Remote controls
- Recreation equipment
Avoid handshakes and greetings that require close contact.
Avoid contact with people who are sick and keep a 2-metre distance from anyone you suspect of being sick.
Avoid visiting people in hospitals or long-term care centres if you are sick.
Stay Home If You Are Sick
Stay home from work or school when you are sick. Staying home helps prevent spreading your illness to others. In particular, young children, people over 65 years of age, and those with compromised immune systems are at greater risk of severe illness and even death from common viruses, such as influenza (“the flu”).