General Infection Prevention Measures
Here are some simple everyday things you can do to protect yourself and others from the getting or transmitting COVID-19:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Wear a mask when around anyone who is not a member of your household.
- Maintain 2 meters distance from anyone outside of your household.
- Stay home when you are ill.
- Get tested if you have symptoms, even if mild.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then immediately throw the tissue in the garbage and wash your hands.
- If you don’t have a tissue, sneeze or cough into your sleeve or arm.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces like door knobs, toilet seats, light switches, etc.
- Wipe down phones, computers and other devices regularly with alcohol wipes.
- Stay home as much as possible.
- Avoid crowded places.
- Follow self-isolation instructions.
Face coverings and masks
COVID-19 mainly spreads mainly from person-to-person through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. Droplets can travel up to 2 metres (6 feet) so wearing a face covering that covers your mouth, nose, and chin will help prevent respiratory droplets from reaching others or landing on surfaces.
Wearing a face covering when around anyone outside of your immediate household protects others from your respiratory droplets and the evidence shows it also protects you.
See our Face Coverings page for more information.
Physical distancing means making changes in your everyday routines in order to minimize close physical contact with others to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Limiting physical interactions with others by practising physical distancing is an effective solution to protect against the spread of COVID-19. Physical distancing includes:
- Avoid non-essential trips into the community.
- Avoid gathering with those outside of your household (those who live alone can spend time with one other household).
- Work from home where possible.
- Conduct meetings and keep in touch with friends and family virtually.
- Host virtual playdates for kids.
- Take transportation or shop during off-peak hours, or use a delivery or curbside pickup service option.
- Exercise at home or outside.
- Read our blog post “What is social distancing and why is it so important?” and PHAC Social Distancing Information Sheet for more.
Hand hygiene refers to removing or killing germs on the hands. When done correctly, hand hygiene is one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of diseases and infections like COVID-19. You can wash your hands either using soap and running water, or with alcohol-based hand rubs.
- How to wash hands with soap and water (IPAC Canada)
- How to apply hand sanitizer and how to wash your hands (Videos by PHO)
- Hand-washing Heroes Video (for younger children)
- Hand Hygiene How-To (for older children)