Although we have taken a break from the COVID 19 discussion over the last several weeks to discuss other important safety topics, the Coronavirus is as active as ever. Cases continue to be on the rise as society attempts to reopen and reconnect. This week we will revisit some basic COVID 19 topics to refresh ourselves on ways to keep each other as safe as possible during these challenging times.
Monday – COVID 19 Symptoms
Although symptoms seem to vary widely and manifest differently for each individual, today we will discuss the symptoms that seem to be the most common. Recognizing these symptoms is the first step in protection yourself and others.
Patients with COVID-19 have experienced mild to severe respiratory illness. Symptoms* can include:
- Shortness of breath
- There is some suggestion that an early warning sign is losing your sense of smell and taste.
*symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure
*Seek medical advice if you develop symptoms and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or if you live in or have recently been in an area with an ongoing spread of COVID-19.
Tuesday – How COVID-19 Spreads
The Coronavirus is particularly effective at transmission. Today we will discuss the transmission methods. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
- These drplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
- Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
Wednesday- Prevention of Transmission
Yesterday we discussed the methods of transmission, today we will discuss the most effective ways to prevent or slow the transmission of the virus.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
- Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Thursday – What To Do If You Are Sick
So far this week, we discussed the methods of transmission and ways to prevent or slow the spread. Despite even the best prevention efforts, the virus’s ability to transfer is highly effective. If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have COVID-19, follow the steps below to care for yourself and to help protect other people in your home and community.
- Stay home
- Stay in touch with your doctor
- Avoid public transportation
- Stay away from others
- Stay in a specific “sick room,” away from other people in your home, using a separate bathroom if available.
- Call your doctor’s office before going to visit their office
- Wear a facemask if available when you are around other people. If you are caring for someone and they are unable to wear a facemask, then you should wear a facemask when in the same room as them.
- Cover your coughs and sneeze.
- Wash your hands often (with soap)
- Avoid sharing personal household items
- Monitor your symptoms
- Follow care instructions from your healthcare provider and local health department
Friday – Open Discussion
This week we covered the symptoms to watch out for, methods of transmission, best practices to prevent or slow transmission and what to do if you become ill. Now let’s discuss what changes have taken place in your workplace over the last several weeks.
DOWNLOAD SAFETY TOPICS HANDOUT (PDF)
- Is your workplace implementing safety procedures regarding COVID19 safety?
- Do you have suggestions for how your workplace could improve these safety efforts? If so, share with the group.
- How has COVID19 changed the way your work? Does it make your job more difficult? Have you adjusted to the changes?
- What could be done better?
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