• BIMA

Coronavirus Home Isolation Precautions

Isolation separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.

If you have traveled to EUROPE or have been in close contact (within 6 feet) of someone who has been confirmed or investigated in the last 14 days and are exhibiting Coronavirus symptoms (fever, lower respiratory illness, cough, shortness of breath), isolate yourself. We recommend using our virtual office visit option. Do not attempt to be seen in an outpatient office.

Those who are in a high-risk group for complications from influenza or who are experiencing severe illness should seek medical care as soon as possible for evaluation. If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms (fever, cough) stay home and monitor your symptoms. If your symptoms worsen and/or you develop shortness of breath, worsening of fever and/or cough, seek medical attention immediately at the hospital.

If you are diagnosed with Coronavirus, and it is determined you can be isolated at home, you should follow the prevention steps below until your doctor says you can return to your normal activities:

Call ahead before visiting your doctor or Emergency room

If you have a medical appointment, call your doctor and tell them that may have or have been exposed to someone with the Coronavirus infection and cancel your appointment. If you are planning an emergency room visit call ahead.

Stay home except to get medical care

Do NOT travel. You should restrict activities outside your home, except for getting medical care. Do not go to work, school, or public areas. Do not use public transportation, ride sharing, or taxis.

Separate yourself from other people in your home

Remain in a specific room as far away from others as possible (at least 6 feet), and either wear face masks or cover your mouth and nose with a tissue. Use a separate bathroom, if available.

Cover your coughs and sneezes and clean your hands

Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw used tissues in a lined trash can and wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, immediately clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Wear a facemask

You should wear a facemask when you are around other people (e.g., sharing a room or vehicle) and before you enter your doctor’s office. If you are not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then people should wear a facemask if they enter your room or come around you.

Avoid sharing personal household items

Do not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people in your home. After using these items, they should be washed thoroughly with soap and hot water.

Discontinuing home isolation

Patients with confirmed Coronavirus infection should remain under home isolation precautions until the risk of secondary transmission to others is thought to be low. The decision to discontinue home isolation precautions should be made with your doctor. Please consider BIMA’s VOV- Virtual Office Visits.

Monitor your symptoms! Remain isolated in your room until at least 24 hours after resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications.

Clean commonly touched surfaces such as phones. Computers, handrails, countertops, and doorknobs. Surfaces contaminated by the respiratory secretions of a sick person (e.g., in the sick person’s living quarters or work area, and in isolation rooms) should also be disinfected.

Continue to practice respiratory hygiene, cough etiquette, and hand hygiene after returning to work, because respiratory viruses can continue to be shed for several days after fever resolves.

Page last reviewed: February 1, 2020

Content source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD), Division of Viral Diseases