What to do if someone in your home has the coronavirus, from leaving meals outside their door to finding a dog-sitter

Advertisement
What to do if someone in your home has the coronavirus, from leaving meals outside their door to finding a dog-sitter

quarantine coronavirus

Getty

Clean first, disinfect after.

  • The CDC has issued guidelines on what to do if someone in your home has the novel coronavirus.
  • Most people can't afford to kick their roommates out, but you can stay in your room. If you're infected, use a face mask.
  • As the coronavirus spreads around the world, a growing number of people are being told to self-quarantine.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The CDC has issued guidelines on what to do if someone in your home has the coronavirus, and some of the guidelines are more reasonable than others. While most people can't afford to just kick out their roommates and send their pets to daycare, they can stay in their rooms and cover their coughs and sneezes.

As coronavirus spreads around the world, an increasing number of people everywhere are being told to self-quarantine. In New York City, 2,773 residents are quarantined at home, according to the New York Times. More than 100,000 people have been infected around the world, and many of them have been told to quarantine themselves.

Advertisement

In fact, in most states, "breaking a quarantine order is a criminal misdemeanor," according to the CDC.

A typical self-quarantine involves being at home for two weeks and avoiding with contact with other people so that COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, is not spread further. Many people in quarantine may not have the disease but may have been exposed to it. The CDC recommends a 14-day incubation period to see if people develop symptoms of coronavirus.

Here's how the CDC recommends you do it.

Advertisement

Stay home, and stay in your room

The CDC recommends home isolation for people who are even mildly ill. Don't order Seamless, and don't go to school, work, or public parks. Don't use ride-shares, public transportation, or taxis. Just try and catch up on Netflix.

Family members can drop off food and essentials, but they should be left on a doorstep. Family members should not come into contact with an infected person.

Try to stock up on two weeks worth of food, preferable non-perishables like canned goods and pasts, and any prescription medication you'll need in advance of the quarantine. Make sure you have enough shampoo, soap, and toilet paper to last the two weeks.

Advertisement

Stay away from roommates and pets

cat

Shutterstock

You shouldn't quarantine your cat or your dog with you. All contact with pets and other animals should be restricted while people are sick with coronavirus. That means no petting, cuddling, snuggling, kissing, licking, or sharing food.

While researchers still don't know exactly how the coronavirus affects pets, they're recommending people stay away from animals until they know more about how the virus affects people. Try to get a relative or someone in your house to care for your pets if you can't.

And if you have to be around animals while you're sick, wash your hands before and after, and wear a facemask.

Advertisement

The CDC also recommends people use a separate bathroom from others in their home, which isn't possible for most. But what you can do is stay in your room, away from other people in your home.

If you contract the coronavirus, wear a facemask when you're around other people

If you have to be in a room or vehicle with other people, wear a facemask. You can also encourage other people to wear a facemask before entering your room. And don't forget to cover your mouth and nose with a tissue while you cough and sneeze.

Be as clean as possible

Throw your tissues away in a lined trash can, and immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after sneezing or coughing. If water isn't available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Don't share dishes, forks, spoons, towels, or bedding with anyone else in your house. Wash all items you touch thoroughly with soap and water.

Advertisement

Also clean all your high-touch surfaces every day. That includes countertops, doorknobs, toilets, phones, and tablets.

Home quarantine end when the "risk of secondary transmission to others is thought to be low," according to the CDC. The decision to end a quarantine will usually be made by a healthcare provider along with a state health department.

Read more:

Advertisement

Photos capture how the US is reacting to the coronavirus outbreak, from stocking up on supplies to deep cleaning mass transit and schools

Coronavirus live updates: Nearly 97,000 people have been infected and more than 3,300 have died. The US has reported 11 deaths. Here's everything we know.

Experts urge anyone who thinks they're sick with the coronavirus to call before going to a US hospital. Here's the process for potential patients.

{{}}