Since no vaccine exists to protect against COVID-19, public health experts at the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends the following personal preventive measures:
Wash hands frequently
Wash hands thoroughly and often, either with soap and water for 20 seconds or with a 60% alcohol based rub, to kill any viruses on your hands. Hand dryers alone are not effective at killing COVID-19.
Avoid touching your face
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands, as any virus on hands from a touched surface can enter the body through the eyes, nose or mouth, according to current information.
Maintain social distance
Keep a distance of at least 3 feet between you and apparently healthy persons and stay 6 feet away if a person is coughing or sneezing (WHO 2020). Limit contact. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. If you’re sick with respiratory symptoms like a fever, runny nose and/or cough, stay home. Seek medical advice if your condition worsens with a high fever and/or difficulty breathing.
Cough into an elbow or a tissue
Cover coughs with a tissue or cough into an elbow. Dispose of tissues immediately in a covered bin and wash hands with warm, soapy water. Wash clothing into which you cough. It is unknown how long the virus can live on hard and soft surfaces. According to the WHO, coronaviruses may survive on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days. The best way to ensure that surfaces you touch are germ-free is to clean them with a disinfectant. If you’re wondering about wearing a face mask, public health experts advise that it’s not currently recommended for the general public in the United States.