If your state is one of the 35 slated to reopen after lockdown due to the coronavirus, you still need to play it safe. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that key factors in reopening businesses, schools and other facilities are cleanliness and consideration for others in the community.
“Reducing the risk of exposure to COVID-19 by cleaning and disinfecting is an important part of reopening public places that will require careful planning,” the CDC guidance directives emphasize, adding that Americans should refer to the list of approved disinfectants published by the Environmental Protection Agency to find products that are effective in killing SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
According to Today, public health experts offer the following tips to help ensure a safe reopening:
At the office:
- Avoid using public transportation during peak hours. Use your own vehicle, if possible.
- Disinfect your work area before you begin and when you leave.
- Use the stairs instead of taking the elevator.
- Wear a face mask when in a communal area.
- Continue to hold virtual meetings and maintain social distancing.
- While wearing a mask isn’t optimal when you are eating at a restaurant, try to choose an outside table.
- Make sure that servers are wearing face masks and that the tables are spread far enough apart, Dr. David Aronoff, director of Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Division of Infectious Diseases told CNN.
- Wipe down menus and utensils with disinfectant wipes you bring from home. You may want to bring your own utensils just to be safe.
At hairdressers and salons:
- It’s impossible to observe the six-foot distancing rule when you are having your hair or nails done in a salon, says CNN, so make sure that the stations well-spaced apart and that employees are wearing masks and gloves.
- Confirm that equipment is disinfected between clients.
- Ask your stylist to wear a face mask and make sure that you wear one too.
- Wait outside until your stylist is ready to serve you.
- Continue wearing face masks and shop during off-hours, says Today.
- Use curbside pickup and pay online in advance.
- Shop at stores that have instituted good hygienic practices and always use a list so that you know exactly what you are going to buy.
- Gyms are risky business when it comes to following social distancing rules. Experts advise using treadmills or other cardio equipment spaced six feet apart.
- According to Consumer Reports, it’s wise to visit the gym during off-peak hours when there are fewer members.
- Wipe down equipment before and after each use with a disinfectant wipe or spray. As always, wash your hands thoroughly when you are done with a machine or weight, and keep your hands away from your face.
- Skip the gym entirely if you’re at high risk, says Today.
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