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COVID-19 Media Releases

Posted on: October 26, 2020

Media Release COVID-19 - October 26, 2020

For Immediate Release

10/26/2020                        

Phone: 980-432-1800
Website: www.rowancountync.gov/covid-19
Email: covid-19@rowancountync.gov

Rowan County Case Information: https://bit.ly/rowan-covid19-hub

Four key mitigation practices for individuals and households

Physical distancing, hand hygiene, cleaning and disinfection, and respiratory etiquette are four of the main things people can do to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This section describes the main principles to follow for each one.

Physical distancing

Maintain at least a 6 feet distance from individuals from outside the household and practice greetings without touching, such as waving, placing a hand over the heart, bowing, or nodding your head.

Hand hygiene

Clean hands frequently. People should clean their hands after being in a public place, after blowing their nose, sneezing, or coughing, after using the toilet, and other key times.

Types of hand hygiene:

Handwashing with soap and water. Soap and water are effective at removing germs from hands, including the virus that causes COVID-19. The cleanest water available (ideally from an improved source)1 should be used for handwashing, and all types of soap (bar soap, liquid soap, and powder soap) are effective at removing coronaviruses from hands. Scrub hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and dry them completely by air or by using single-use hand towels or paper towels.

Soapy water (a mix of water and either powdered or liquid soap) can be used. To prepare, mix enough soap with water in a bottle or handwashing station so that you can create a foam when rubbing hands together. You will also need a separate handwashing station of rinse water next to the soapy water station. As detailed above, use the cleanest water available for soapy water and rinse water. Detailed instructions for making soapy water can be found on page 25 of the Handwashing Compendium for Low Resource Settings (PDF).

All handwashing stations should: 1) Allow users to wet and rinse their hands under a stream of running water; 2) Have soap or soapy water available; 3) Have a place to catch or adequately drain used water; 4) provide single-use hand towels or paper towels, whenever possible; and 5) provide a waste bin to collect paper towels, when applicable. Additionally, handwashing stations should be durable, easy to use for all users, including children, elderly, and people with disabilities. Make use of locally available products to ensure sustainability of supplies, where possible. Further recommendations are highlighted in How to Design Handwashing Facilities that Change Behavior (PDF), including low-cost visual cues, such as mirrors or painted footprints that lead to handwashing facilities, which may be used to encourage or nudge2 their use. More information on different handwashing station designs is outlined in the Handwashing Compendium for Low Resource Settings (PDF), including tippy taps.

Cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub. If hands are not visibly dirty, you can use hand rub containing at least 60% alcohol as an alternative to washing hands when soap and water are not available. To use, apply enough product to cover all surfaces of both hands and rub together until they feel dry, or for approximately 20 seconds. Young children may need supervision when using hand rub to prevent accidental drinking.

Cleaning and disinfection

Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at least once a day, and more often based on level of use. This includes door handles, toilet/latrine surfaces, tables, and chairs.

Cleaning refers to the removing germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces with soap or detergent. It does not kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers the risk of spreading infection. Some surfaces only need to be cleaned with soap and water, for example surfaces and objects that are not frequently touched should be cleaned and do not require additional disinfection. Additionally, disinfectants should typically not be applied on items used by children, especially any items that children might put in their mouths.

Disinfecting uses chemicals, such as bleach (sodium hypochlorite), to kill germs on surfaces. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection.

Use a 0.1% solution made from liquid bleach and water for disinfection. To mix, use the percentage found on the bleach bottle (for example, 5%) and follow these instructions:

Additional instructions can be found in the CDC’s guide (PDF). 

Cleaning and disinfection procedures:

  1. Put on personal protective equipment (thick aprons and closed shoes) and wear reusable or disposable gloves to protect yourself against the disinfection or cleaning agents.
  2. Clean with detergent or soap and water to remove dirt.
  3. Mix 0.1% bleach solution using the procedures described above in a well-ventilated area.
  4. Apply the 0.1% solution to the surface with a cloth. The surface should stay wet for at least 1 minute (contact time for the bleach to be effective). You may apply additional disinfectant to ensure it remains wet for 1 minute. After 1 minute has passed, rinse residue with clean water (this will also protect the surface or item from damage).
  5. After cleaning and disinfection, remove personal protective equipment (PPE) to dispose of or launder. Single use gloves should be discarded after each cleaning. If reusable gloves are used, they should be dedicated for cleaning and disinfection of surfaces for COVID-19 and should not be used for other purposes. Consult the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and disinfection products. Clean hands immediately after gloves are removed using above instructions.

Cleaning and disinfecting should not take place near children or people with asthma. Additionally, store cleaning/disinfecting supplies in a locked, secured location, out of the reach of children and away from fire/flames. Procedures for various surfaces (hard surfaces, soft surfaces, electronics, and laundry) can be found in the CDC’s Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Facilities guide.

Respiratory etiquette

Individuals should cover coughs and sneezes with their elbow or a disposable tissue and clean hands immediately. Non-medical masks should be worn when in public settings where other physical distancing measures are difficult to maintain. In areas where there is any level of known community transmission, all individuals, including those who lack symptoms, should wear masks, except for some individuals with physical, mental, emotional or behavioral issues, children under 2 years or for anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious or incapacitated.

###

Contact:
TJ Brown
704-216-8918
tj.brown@rowancountync.gov

Download Media Release COVID-19 - October 26, 2020 (PDF)

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