From the Chenango County Department of Health
A COVID-19 outbreak in our community could last for a long time. Take time now to plan for your family's needs.
BEFORE AN OUTBREAK OCCURS
Create a household or family plan of action:
- Decide who will be included in your plans and what each person's needs would be. Keep in mind those family members who have health conditions; their health condition may worsen and the services that they routinely rely on might not be available if they become ill. Those at higher risk of getting very sick from this illness include: older adults (ages 60 and over) and people who have serious chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease.
- Identify community resources that might be needed for services or support. Consider organizations that provide mental health or counseling services, food, and other supplies.
- Create an Emergency Contact List: a list of family, friends, neighbors, health care providers, school, employers, health department, and other community resources .
Choose a room in your home that can be used to separate a sick family member from those who are healthy. If possible there should be a separate bathroom for the person to use. Plan how these rooms will be cleaned as needed.
Practice good personal health habits:
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Stay at home while you are sick
- Cover your cough and sneezes with a tissue
- Clean and disinfect surfaces that are often touched (tables, doorknobs, countertops, and light switches) with household detergent and water
- Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap is not available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol
Prepare for extended school closures and possible changes at your workplace.
Talk to your employer about options for workers who are sick or who have to stay home to care for sick family.
DURING AN OUTBREAK
Protect yourself and put your household plan into action:
- Stay home when you are sick with COVID-19 symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty breathing)
- Keep away from other people who are sick, limiting contact with others as much as possible (about 6 feet)
- Stay informed about the local COVID-19 situation from Chenango County Public Health or the New York State Department of Health
- Continue practicing everyday preventive actions: Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap is not available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover your cough and sneezes with a tissue. Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects daily with regular detergent and water.
- Use the separate room and bathroom you prepared for sick household members (if possible)
- Notify your workplace if your schedule changes
If you or a family member are sick with COVID-19:
- Stay home except to get medical care; be sure to call ahead before visiting the doctor
- Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home
- Wear a facemask if you are sick and being transported to a medical facility; wear a facemask if you are caring for a person who is ill with COVID-19
- Cover your coughs and sneezes
- Clean your hands often
- Avoid sharing personal household items, clean all "high-touch" surfaces daily
- Monitor your symptoms
- Call 911 if you have a medical emergency: if you have a medical emergency and need to call 911, notify the dispatch personnel that you have, or are being evaluated for, COVID-19. If possible, put on a face mask before emergency medical services arrive
- Stay at home until instructed to leave
AFTER THE OUTBREAK
Review how effectively your plan worked:
- Did your plans for home, school, and work have you prepared?
- Talk about any problems or issues you had and possible ways to improve your plan
- Were there any additional resources that you could have used?
- Join in on communty discussions. Let others know what worked for you and your family and learn from others what may work better next time.
- Continue to practice everyday health habits and preventative actions. Stay home when you are sick, use good sneezing and coughing protocol, good hand washing, and frequently cleaning surfaces and objects.
- Take care of the emotional health of your family. Share how you are feeling with others. Connect with family and friends. Help children cope after an outbreak by encouraging them to share their concerns and ask questions.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION FROM THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH:
OR CALL TOLL FREE: 1-888-364-3065
Click here to see this information in a downloadable flier: