ANNISTON ARMY DEPOT, Ala. -- There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19 infection, so the best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed. A person can spread COVID-19 to others even if they do not feel sick.Use the tips listed below to stay healthy during this season.Avoid close contact:Practice social distancing; put a distance of at least six feet between yourself and other people.Avoid public places as much as possible, avoid close contact with people who are sick and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.Wear cloth face coverings:Wear a cloth face cover when going out in public.Cloth face coverings should fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face, be secured with ties or ear loops, include multiple layers of fabric, allow for breathing without restriction and be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape.For a cloth face covering pattern, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.htmlCover coughs and sneezes:Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash and immediately wash your hands with soap and water.If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer containing at least 60 percent alcohol.Clean hands often:Rub soaped hands together to make a lather and scrub all surfaces on your hands. Continue rubbing hands for 20 seconds, then rinse well under running water. Dry hands using a paper towel or air dryer. If possible, use the paper towel to turn off the faucet and open the door when exiting to avoid re-contamination.In addition to hand washing, routinely sanitize hands as needed using a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.Clean and disinfect:Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets and sinks.Wear gloves:High risk individuals, as defined by the CDC, may choose to wear gloves in public areas. In order to achieve maximum protection from the gloves, do the following:• After touching anything, consider the gloves contaminated and do not touch your face or adjust your face covering.• Remove (doff) gloves properly to avoid contaminating skin: pinch up at the wrist of one glove and peel back the glove to the middle of the palm; rotate wrist and use gloved thumb and index finger from the pinched hand to pinch up the wrist of the other glove; then, carefully, peel back the gloves, turning the gloves inside out until they are removed.Practice this procedure with uncontaminated gloves a few times to be sure the procedure can be performed properly.For more information on glove doffing, contact Industrial Hygiene at Ext. 4139.Throw used gloves in the trash and wash or sanitize hands.If you use a phone while wearing gloves, decontaminate the phone using hand sanitizer or a spray disinfectant before touching it with clean hands.Caring for sick friends and relatives:The person who is sick should stay separated from other people in the home. Only clean the area around the person who is sick when needed, such as when the area is soiled. This will limit contact with the sick person.Caregivers can also provide personal cleaning supplies to the person who is sick, if appropriate. If they feel up to it, the person who is sick can clean their own space.If the bathroom must be shared, the person who is sick should clean and disinfect it after each use.If this is not possible, the caregiver should wait as long as possible before cleaning and disinfecting.The person who is sick should eat (or be fed) in their room, if possible.Wash dishes and utensils using gloves and hot water or use a dishwasher. Handle any used dishes, cups/glasses or silverware with gloves.Use proper glove doffing procedures.Wash your hands after taking off gloves or handling used items.Use a dedicated, lined trash can for the sick person. Remove the trash bag carefully to avoid creation of aerosols and point the bag away from the face while tying.Use gloves when removing garbage bags and handling or disposing of trash.Wash your hands after properly doffing gloves.Contact Industrial Hygiene at Ext. 4139 or visit www.absa.org or www.cdc.gov for more information.Sources:The Association for Biosafety and Biosecurity: www.absa.orgThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: www.cdc.gov