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If you can stay home and isolated from others – do so.
If you must go out to public spaces – for supplies, for work – wear a mask and gloves:  try to stay at least 6 feet away from others:  try to limit your overall exposure time as much as possible.  (Don’t knead all of the tomatoes – pick a couple that look good and move on.)

ANY mask is better than no mask;  any gloves are better than no gloves.  (Let us clarify:  a mask that filters the air going into the mouth and nose to some degree is better than nothing.  The better the filtration, the more effective the mask is.  A mask that protects the eyes as well is even more effective.)

Masks of varying effectiveness are still available online:  Alibaba has a variety;  Etsy has hand crafted ones;  dental supply, veterinary supply & etc. may be other sources.  Amazon has numerous listings for disposable surgical masks – but check delivery dates before ordering.

Masks of varying effectiveness can be made at home:  The CDC offers these instructions;  the NYTimes has an overview
Gloves are likewise available if one searches:  Nitrile are best, disposable vinyl works.

Hand-sanitizer can be made at home (instructions available all over) and remember – a good hand wash with regular soap is just as effective:  if you can’t find hand-sanitizer, maybe stick a bar of soap in your pocket.

Some things to keep in mind:  Distance is the key.  Enclosed spaces are potentially more risky than open spaces.  No class of people is “safe” or “exempt”.  There is no effective difference between “I only touched my face a little” and “I rubbed my hands all over my face.”

We do not have a good handle on:  identifying infectious, asymptomatic people; we do not know how long someone is infectious before showing symptoms;  we do not have a good handle on how long the virus persists in the air or on various surfaces;  we do not have a good handle on whether or not those deemed “cleared” are actually virus free.

Summed up:  there is NO WAY to determine by looking at someone whether they are capable of spreading the virus;  there is NO WAY to assess a location and gage its risk factor.  That means that the only effective strategy is to assume that anyone may be a carrier and any location (and surfaces in that location) are “potentially unsafe”, so it is necessary for YOU to take personal responsibility and protect YOURSELF.


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