Coronavirus death toll rose sharply over the weekend, causing the government to announce its most drastic self-isolation measure yet: every Briton over the age of 70 will be told “within the coming weeks” to stay at home for an extended period to protect themselves from coronavirus. The drastic escalation raises the possibility that everyone in the UK will soon be instructed to stay at home.
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With self-isolation becoming an everyday reality for broad swathes of the UK population, Dr Hilary went on the Lorraine show this morning to offer eight key tips you should follow while hunkering down at home.
The first tip is to use your own cutlery, mugs, glasses, and wash up your kitchen utensils using warm, soapy water or a dishwasher, said Dr Hilary.
Then you must wipe down any hard surfaces you touched with cleaning products containing bleach.
Towels and bedding should also be regularly washed on a hot wash of 60 degrees to kill the virus, said Dr Hilary.
To stem the spread of germs, it is also imperative to use your own towels or toiletries, and wash the toilet after use, he urged.
Dr Hilary’s fifth tip was to double bag bin wastage as a precautionary measure.
If you test positive for the coronavirus, he also said to keep bagged within your own premises.
Another important measure is to make sure any deliveries are left on your doorstep to avoid face to face interactions.
A final measure that is also important for both physical and mental wellbeing is to restrict all forms of contact to online and mobile communication.
As Dr Hilary explains, conversing with people via these means will mitigate the harm posed by face to face interactions, while combating loneliness.
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What constitutes mild symptoms?
Public England says anyone that experiences mild symptoms must self-isolate for seven days.
Mild symptoms include:
- A high temperature
- A new continuous cough
The NHS reiterates the importance of avoiding a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital if you have mild symptoms.
You also do not need to contact the NHS’s online help service 111 to tell them you’re staying at home.
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You should only use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
- You feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
- Your condition gets worse
- Your symptoms do not get better after seven days
The self-isolation measured are based on what is currently understood about how the virus spreads.
Although it is not known exactly how coronavirus spreads from person to person, similar viruses are spread in cough droplets.
According to the NHS, it’s very unlikely it can be spread through things like packages or food.
Coronavirus – UK latest
As of 9am on 15 March 2020, 40,279 people have been tested in the UK, of which 38,907 were confirmed negative and 1,372 were confirmed as positive.
35 patients who tested positive for COVID-19 have died.
The UK Chief Medical Officer has put the current risk level in the UK as high.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, alongside the Chief Medical Officer and senior ministers, will be holding a press conference daily to update the public on guidance measures.
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