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General guidance

The most effective way you can help prevent the spread of infection is by following our six steps and incorporating them into everything you do, both at home, in public, at school and in the workplace. Adults should help children follow the guidance.

Top six recommendations

1. Self-isolate if you have symptoms of COVID-19, have tested positive or are a close contact of someone who is infected with novel coronavirus

You should self-isolate at home if you either test positive for novel coronavirus, experience symptoms of COVID-19, or are the close contact of someone who is infected. 

To self-isolate means:

  • To stay at home and not have contact with anyone else other than the people you live with.
  • To avoid close physical contact with other members of your household.
  • To pay particular attention to hygiene and cleaning.

If you are unable to self-isolate at home, for example if your home is very small or if you live with someone who is at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19, your local municipality might offer you an out-of-home stay at a suitable facility. 

If you have tested positive or are a close contact of an infected person, please call your municipality to learn more about your options.

Further information

What to do if you have symptoms of COVID-19

What to do if you test positive for novel coronavirus

What to do if you are a close contact of a person who has tested positive for novel coronavirus


2. Wash your hands often or use hand sanitiser

Proper hand hygiene is the most effective way to prevent contact spread. 

Washing your hands or using and hand sanitiser is equally effective. However, hand sanitisers only work properly when your hands are dry and not visibly dirty, so you should always wash your hands if they are visibly dirty or wet, after toilet visits or changing nappies, and before you handle food. Please remember to help chldren maintain good hand hygiene.

Further information

Good hand hygiene (film)

Hand sanitiser (film)

Hand hygiene (pamphlet) 

Hand hygiene (poster)

3. Cough or sneeze into your sleeve

Proper cough etiquette prevents both droplet and contact spread.

We recommend that you:

  • Cough into your sleeve or a disposable tissue. Wash or sanitise your hands afterwards. 
  • If you cough into the palm of your hands, you must wash or sanitise your hands afterwards.

Download the poster 

Prevent infection


4. Limit physical contact

Contact spread is probably the main source of infection from people who are infected even though they have no symptoms. Therefore, we recommend that you limit physical contact and do not shake hands, hug or kiss as a greeting.

Learn more about socialising in

Socialising during the COVID-19 epidemic


5. Clean thoroughly

The risk of contact spread increases dramatically when you touch contact point and surfaces that are touched by many people, for example as door handles, hand rails, light switches, keyboards, computer mice, armrests, the edges of tables, toys, tools, utensils, taps, toilets, etc.

Clean contact point frequently and thoroughly using ordinary cleaning products and disinfectants.

Film - How to clean

6. Keep your distance and ask others to be considerate

The virus can spread if you are close to an infected person who coughs, sneezes, shouts, sings, etc. By keeping your distance and limiting physical contact you can avoid both droblet and contact spread.

Therefore, we recommend that you keep a distance of at least 2 metres to others in public areas.

Updated 18 MAR 2021