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Caring for Someone Who Is Ill

Family Caregiver Resources

Elderly married couple playing chess.The signs of COVID-19:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

Call the doctor before you go. The doctor’s office will guide you concerning the need for an office visit. Ask about suggestions for relieving symptoms and guidelines for calling 911.

Do not leave home except for medical care. The entire household is now contagious.

Care at Home

  • Follow viral prevention strategies. Read viral prevention strategies here.
  • Employ the doctor’s recommendations to improve breathing, reduce fevers, and ease discomfort.
  • Monitor your loved one’s symptoms. If you need to call 911, tell them your concerns about COVID-19.
  • Isolate the patient from others in the house. He or she should stay in a separate room, ideally with a separate bathroom.
  • Wear face masks—both you and the patient—when in the same room. Throw disposable face masks away. Do not reuse.
  • Use disposable face masks and gloves when you touch or have contact with the patient’s blood, stool, or body fluids such as saliva, sputum, nasal mucus, vomit, urine. Throw out the disposables after using them. Do not reuse.
  • Avoid sharing household items with the patient, such as dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, bedding, or other items. Wash these items thoroughly after use.
  • Clean laundry thoroughly
    • Immediately remove and wash clothes or bedding that have blood, stool, or body fluids on them.
    • Wear disposable gloves while handling soiled items and keep soiled items away from your body.
    • Use normal detergent and set the dryer to the highest appropriate temperature.
  • Place all used tissues, disposable gloves, and face masks in a lined container. Tie off before placing in the trash.
  • Turn away visitors who do not have an essential need to be in the home.
  • Monitor your own symptoms. Have a Plan B for who will care for you and your loved one if you become sick.

For more information on the corona virus visit spectrumhealthlakeland.og/COVID-19

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