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How do I safely interact with cashiers or store clerks when I must purchase essentials?

Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.

If you are not sick and must leave your home to purchase essentials -- like food, water, or medication -- maintain social distancing practices whenever possible by staying at least six feet from others.

If this is not possible, for instance when purchasing an item from a cashier, you should limit contact, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow, and avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and face. Wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based sanitizer thoroughly as soon as possible after the interaction.

It is not certain how long the virus that causes COVID-19 survives on surfaces, but it seems to behave like other coronaviruses. Studies suggest that coronaviruses may persist on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days. If you think a surface, such as an item you purchased at a store, may be contaminated, clean it with simple disinfectant to kill the virus and protect yourself and others. Clean your hands with an alcohol-based sanitizer or wash them with soap and water. Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose.

Posted/Updated: 3/25/20