Stopping the spread of COVID-19
COVID- 19 (coronavirus) is spread in sneeze or cough droplets.
To infect you, the virus has to get from an infected person's nose or mouth into your eyes, nose or mouth. This can happen if someone who has the virus coughs or sneezes near you. Or if you touch something they have been in contact with, such as an object or a surface.
It is important that you:
wash your hands properly and often
practice social distancing
cover coughs and sneezes
Follow the advice on this page as strictly as possible and encourage others to do this too.
All advice on this page are featured on our array of Covid 19 safety signs, to protect yourself, your clients, and the public from the spread of coronavirus.
People at higher risk from COVID-19
COVID-19 can make anyone seriously ill. But for some people, the risk is higher. People at higher risk from COVID-19 should take extra care to protect themselves.
Read advice for people at very high risk of COVID-19.
Wash your hands
Washing your hands properly and often will help to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Use soap and water or alcohol hand sanitiser to clean your hands:
after coughing or sneezing
if you were in contact with someone who has a fever or respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing)
before and after being on public transport, if you must use it
before and after being in a crowd (especially an indoor crowd)
when you arrive and leave buildings including your home or anyone else's home
before having a cigarette or vaping
even if your hands are not visibly dirty
after toilet use
Keep your hands in good condition. Moisturise them often. Any basic product that is not perfumed or coloured is OK.
Read about how to wash your hand properly.
Wear a face covering on public transport, in shops and other indoor settings. This is the law. You may be fined or refused entry if you do not wear one.
Read more about face coverings, medical masks and disposable gloves.
Sneezing and coughs
When you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve. Put used tissues into a bin and wash your hands.
Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.
Do not share objects that touch your mouth, for example, bottles or cups. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Social distancing is important to help slow the spread of coronavirus. It does this by minimising contact between people.
keep a space of 2 metres (6.5 feet) between you and other people
avoid communal sleeping areas
avoid any crowded places
not shake hands or make close contact with other people, if possible
There is very little risk if you are just passing someone. But try to keep a distance of 2 metres as much as possible.
When you can't keep 2 metres apart
Try to avoid places where you cannot keep 2 metres apart from other people. If you are in a public place where it is difficult to keep 2 metres away from others, wear a face covering.
Meeting other people
There are restrictions on the number of people you can meet in your home and outside your home.
Read about the current restrictions on gov.ie.
To help people who live on their own, a 'support bubble' will apply during level 5 restrictions. This means that people who are living alone or parenting alone can pair with one other household.
You can visit the home of those in your support bubble and they can visit your home. You can also meet outdoors and in places other than the home.
Read more about support bubbles on gov.ie.
Staying safe if you meet people
Your risk of getting coronavirus increases as you meet with more people.
In both indoor and outdoor settings, keep 2 metres apart from people you do not live with.
It’s always safer to meet fewer people, less often, for less time. If we do this, we have a better chance of stopping the spread of coronavirus.
If you can have visitors to your home
If the current restrictions allow you to have visitors, ask them to clean their hands when they arrive. After they leave, clean surfaces they have been in contact with. Use your usual household cleaning agents and detergents.
Do not wear disposable gloves instead of washing your hands. The virus gets on them in the same way it gets on your hands. Also, your hands can get contaminated when you take them off.