To help stop the spread of viruses like the flu or coronavirus, good hygiene is essential. You are encouraged to stay away from others if you are sick – that is the most important thing you can do. You should also practise good hand and sneeze/cough hygiene:
wash your hands frequently with soap and water, before and after eating, and after going to the toilet
cover your cough and sneeze, dispose of tissues, and use alcohol-based hand sanitiser, and
if unwell, avoid contact with others (stay more than 1.5 metres from people).
As well as these, you can start a range of social distancing and low cost hygiene actions now. These simple, common sense actions help reduce risk to you and to others. They will help to slow the spread of disease in the community – and you can use them every day – in your home, workplace, school and while out in public.
What is social distancing and why is it important?
Social distancing includes ways to stop or slow the spread of infectious diseases. It means less contact between you and other people. Social distancing is important because COVID-19 is most likely to spread from person-to-person through:
direct close contact with a person while they are infectious or in the 24 hours before their symptoms appeared
close contact with a person with a confirmed infection who coughs or sneezes, or
touching objects or surfaces (such as door handles or tables) contaminated from a cough or sneeze from a person with a confirmed infection, and then touching your mouth or face.
So, the more space between you and others, the harder it is for the virus to spread.