If COVID-19 becomes common in your community, you should plan on ways to reduce the risk of infection.
Your plan should include how you can change your regular habits to reduce your exposure to crowded places. For example, you may:
- do your grocery shopping at off-peak hours
- commute by public transit outside of the busy rush hour
- spend time outdoors or on the land if possible
Your plan should also include what you will do if you become sick. If you are a caregiver of children or other dependents, you will want to have backup caregivers.
You should also think about what you will do if a member of your family becomes sick and needs care. Talk to your employer about working from home if you are needed to care for a family member at home. If you, yourself, become ill, stay home until you are no longer showing symptoms.
Your plan should include shopping for supplies that you should have on hand at all times. This will ensure you do not need to leave your home while you are sick or busy caring for an ill family member.
Your plan should build on the kits you have prepared for other potential emergencies. For more information on how to prepare yourself and your family in the event of an emergency, please visit getprepared.ca.
2. Fill your prescriptions
Refill your prescriptions now so that you do not have to go to a busy pharmacy if you do become sick. Consider seeing your health care provider to renew your prescriptions ahead of time.
3. Stock up on essentials but avoid panic buying
At this time, it makes sense to fill your cupboards with non-perishable food items, so that you do not need to go shopping if you become sick.
It is easier on the supply chain if people gradually build up their household stores instead of making large-scale purchases all at once. To do this, you can add a few extra items to your grocery cart every time you shop. Good options are easy-to-prepare foods like:
- dried pasta and sauce
- prepared canned soups
- canned vegetables and beans
It is also a good idea to have extra stores of:
- pet food
- toilet paper
- facial tissue
- feminine hygiene products
- diapers (if you have children who use them)
The reason for storing extra items is not necessarily because you will need to self-isolate. Having these supplies on hand will ensure you do not need to leave your home at the peak of the outbreak or if you become ill.
For more information on being prepared, see:
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Being prepared (Government of Canada)
- List of disinfectants (including wipes) for use against COVID-19 (Government of Canada)