Helpful Resources for Patients
Southwestern Health Resources (SWHR) is committed to providing valuable, up-to-date information to patients concerned about the coronavirus and how it may affect you and those you care about. This page offers resources and tools for you to use and share with others, including printable handouts and web links.
If you have questions or think you may have been exposed to the coronavirus, call the Texas Health Coronavirus Hotline at 682-236-7601 to speak to a nurse at any time, 24/7.
Visit only trusted, credible sites for news and information. Below are some agency and government resources that provide the latest guidance and education.
These helpful PDF guides can be printed or shared.
Prevention and Care
- Coronavirus Prevention Tips
- 5 Steps to Wash Your Hands
- Keeping Your Home Safe
- What to Do When You've Been Exposed
- Care Instructions at Home
- Taking Care of Yourself When You Have COVID-19
Information and Guidelines
Coronavirus Questions? Call 682-236-7601
The Texas Health Coronavirus Hotline is staffed by nurses and available 24/7 to help answer your questions about the coronavirus and COVID-19.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
A new study shows that the virus that causes COVID-19 can survive in an aerosol form for at least three hours. An aerosol is something under pressure that can be released as a spray, like a sneeze or a cough. The virus can survive on some surfaces for up to three days, according to the study in the New England Journal of Medicine. How well it survives may depend on the surface it’s on. In the study, the virus lasted longest on plastic and stainless steel. It didn’t live as long on cardboard.
Because the virus can live for hours to days, it’s especially important to keep items around you clean. Experts advise cleaning surfaces and objects you touch a lot, such as tables, door handles, faucets, toilets, handrails and remote controls. You can use household disinfectants, a bleach solution or alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol.
The virus is new, so it’s not known how warmer weather will affect it. Some illnesses (like the flu and colds) are more common in colder weather than warmer weather. But it’s not known if that will be true of this virus.
There’s no evidence that the virus can be spread through water or food. The virus is believed to be spread from person to person. This happens through close contact (being within 6 feet) and droplets when a person who has the virus coughs or sneezes. Experts also think it may be possible to get the virus by touching something that has the virus on it and then touching your mouth, nose or eyes.
City water treatment disinfects water. While food doesn’t spread the virus, it’s important to wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds before you prepare food. It’s also important to disinfect surfaces like kitchen counters, tables and objects that you touch.
Experts say it may be possible to get the virus by touching something that has the virus on it. This includes surfaces like tables and countertops and objects such as doorknobs, faucets, toilets, remote controls and handles on the fridge and microwave.
To clean and disinfect surfaces and objects:
- Wear disposable gloves. Throw them away after you clean and disinfect. Wash your hands after you take off the gloves.
- Use a detergent or soap and water to clean any dirt from surfaces and objects.
- To kill the virus, use a household disinfectant cleaner, a household bleach solution, or alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol. Make sure the product is right for the type of surface you are cleaning. Follow the directions on the product. You can make your own bleach solution by mixing 5 tablespoons (1/3 cup) of bleach with a gallon of water or 4 teaspoons of bleach with a quart of water.
You can wash an ill person’s items along with other people’s clothing. Just take care when handling the person’s dirty laundry.
- Wear disposable gloves. If you don’t have disposable gloves, wash your hands after handling the laundry of a person infected with the virus.
- Don’t shake out the laundry before you wash it. This can prevent releasing the virus into the air.
- Wash the clothes in the warmest temperature that is allowed for the type of fabric.
- Make sure the clothes are completely dry.
- Use a separate basket to hold the person’s dirty laundry. Line it with a disposable or washable liner to keep the basket clean.
There haven’t been any reports so far of household pets getting the virus. If you have to care for your pets yourself, wash your hands before and after any contact.
FAQ Source: Healthwise