Advice for people who share the same home with someonehas or may have COVID-19
25th March 2020
Advice for people who share the same home with someonehas or may haveCOVID-19 v2.0, 24.03.2020
The information in this leaflet is for people sharing a home with someone who: ? iswaiting to be tested for COVID-19 infection ? is waiting for the test results for COVID-19 infection ? was waiting to be tested for COVID-19 but is not in a priority group for testing ? has symptoms of COVID-19 but is not in a priority group for testing ? has beendiagnosed with COVID-19 infection and is well enough to stay at home to recover.
What are the priority groups for testing? With increasing numbers of people being referred for testing,our health service must now focus on testing those at greater likelihood of having COVID-19 infection, those who will benefit most from public health management, those most at risk of severe infection and essential healthcare workers. This is to make sure we protect the most vulnerable people in our community and achieve the greatest good. Therefore priority will be given to people with symptoms of COVID-19 in the following groups: a) Close contacts of a confirmed case b) Health care workers c) Groups most at risk of severe infection such aspersons with diabetes, immunosuppressed, chronic lung disease, chronic heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, chronic renal disease, chronic liver disease and smokers. d) Household contacts of at-risk groupsabove e) Staff or residents in a long-term care facility f) Prison staff and inmates where it may be difficult to implement self-isolation advice g) Pregnant women to ensurethey can be managed safely in hospital, minimising the risk of spread in the maternity hospital.
What does‘restricted movements’mean? Restricted movements means avoiding contact with other people and social situations as much as possible.It is sometimes called ‘self-quarantine’. This is to stop other people from getting COVID-19 infection because even though you do not have symptoms, you share a home with someone who has symptoms ofCOVID-19 infection.
Restricted movements means:
? Stay at home. ? Do not go to school, college or work. ? Do not use public transport. ? Do not go to meetings, social gatherings, group events or crowded places. ? Do not have visitors at your home. ? Do not go shopping-where possible, order your groceries online or have some family or friends drop them off. ? Keep away from older people, anyone with long-term medical conditions and pregnant women.
Advice for people who share the same home with someone has or may have COVID-19, v2.0, 24/03/2020
HSE Health Protection Surveillance Centrewww.hpsc.ie Page2of5
? Do not travel outside or within Ireland ? You can go outside for walks, runs or cycles but stay 2 meters away from others around you
When can I return to normal if the person who is sick at home is in one of the priority groups for testing above? You should continue to restrict your movements while the person who is sick in your home awaits the test and the test results.Then:
? If the person in your home is diagnosed with COVID-19 infection and you remain well, you should restrict your movements for 14 days from the time they started self-isolating at home. In some instances self-isolation of the person with COVID-19 infection at home is not possible. In that case your doctor will you give you specific advice.
? If the person in your home is not diagnosed with COVID-19,you can go backto normal activity and work immediately. Itis possible thattheyhave another infectious illness, such as fluand you should still avoid contact with them as much as possible for 48 hours after their symptoms have gone away.
When can I return to normal ifthe person who is sick at home is not in one of the priority groups for testing above? If you remain well, you should restrict your movements for 14 days from the time they started selfisolating at home. In some instances self-isolation ofthe sick personat home is not possible. In that case your doctor will you give you specific advice.
Keeping yourself safe and well ? It is very easy to become anxious and lonely when you have to spend time on your own but remember, you can always pick up the phone and call a friend-the virus does not travel through phones lines.For more information on minding your mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak go towww.hse.ie.
? Although you have been asked to stay at home it is important you keep yourself mobile by getting up and moving around as much as possible.You can go out for walks, runs or cycles but try to avoid contact with others and keep a distance of at least1 meter (3ft) but where possible 2 meters (6.5 feet) from others.
1. Clean your hands often (wash with soap or gel) ? Clean your hands regularly-This is one of the most important things you can do.
? Use moisturizer on your hands after washing
? Be careful to do this anytime you have touched the person with COVID-19 or touched anything they have used.