Voluntary or involuntary home quarantine may become more common as Florida declared a public health emergency Sunday after two patients tested positive for coronavirus in Hillsborough and Manatee counties. More positive tests are expected in the coming days.
Hundreds of Americans are already under voluntary self-quarantine for 14 days after to see whether they develop symptoms. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is recommending that people who are sick with respiratory disease symptoms stay home, even though they acknowledge these symptoms are more likely to be from the flu than coronavirus.
“Self-quarantine occurs when people are asymptomatic and monitoring themselves for the development of symptoms,” says Ellsworth Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s largest independent homeowners insurance agency.
If you find yourself among those who need to stay home, being prepared a head of time is ideal. You can purchase a ready-made preparedness kit or build your own. Here is what your home emergency kit should contain in the case of possible quarantine due to the coronavirus outbreak according to The American Red Cross and Homeland Security.
- Water-rule of thumb is one gallon per person and pet per day for 14 days
- Food-a supply of easy to make food for at least 14 days for each person
- First aid kit
- Multi-purpose tool, such as Swiss Army knife
- Personal hygiene items-soap, hand sanitizer, toilet paper, diapers (if needed) and feminine care products
- Plastic bags for trash
- Medications-try to get a 30-day supply of prescriptions
- Medical supplies-over-the-counter medication such as pain relievers, thermometer, contact lenses and fluids with electrolytes
- Entertainment items such as books, cards and games
- Electronic versions of health records
- Emergency contact information- family, friends, neighbors, carpool drivers, health care providers, teachers, employers, the local health department and other community resources
“This list is simply to help people feel more prepared for the unknown, not incite panic,” says Ellsworth Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s top independent homeowners insurance agency.
Also, it is important to talk with family members about how they would be cared for if they got sick or what will be needed to care for them in your home.
What about face masks? The Surgeon General, Jerome M. Adams advised Americans to skip the face masks, declaring they are for sick patients and are not effective in preventing the coronavirus.