WHO’s Advice to Protect Yourself from Coronavirus

    03 March 2020

    The World Health Organization, or WHO, has the following advice to protect yourself from being infected with the coronavirus or other flu-like diseases.

    Wash your hands frequently

    Clean your hands often and carefully with an alcohol-based hand cleaner or wash them with soap and water. Washing your hands kills viruses that may be on your hands.

    Maintain social distancing

    Stay at least one meter away from anyone who is coughing or sneezing. When someone coughs or sneezes, they release small drops of liquid from their nose or mouth which may contain the virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the liquid, including the COVID-19 virus if the person coughing has the disease.

    Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth

    Your hands touch many surfaces where viruses can survive up to nine days. Once contaminated, hands can carry the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.

    Practice respiratory hygiene

    Make sure that you, and the people around you, cover your mouth and nose with your elbow or facial tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then throw away the used tissue immediately.

    If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early

    Stay home if you feel unwell, even with mild signs of infection such as headache and slight runny nose, until you recover.

    If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention, and follow the directions of your local health official. Calling ahead will permit the health official to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will also help to prevent possible spread of the new coronavirus and other viruses.

    I'm Jill Robbins.

    Hai Do adapted this story for VOA Learning English from World Health Organization materials. Mario Ritter, Jr. was the editor.

    Write to us in the Comments Section or on 51VOA.COM.


    Words in This Story

    soap –n. a product used to clean hands or the body

    cough –v. to force air through you throat because you are sick or choking

    sneeze –v. suddenly forcing air through your nose or mouth because of an irritation in the body or the environment

    contaminated –adj. to have something dangerous or infections in a place where it is not normally

    facial tissue –n. a paper product used to wipe the nose, eyes or mouth