In addition to getting your flu vaccine each year, there are everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses like influenza:
You'll see that these steps are the same as ones we are already taking to protect ourselves from COVID-19.
If I have a family member at home who is sick with seasonal flu, should I go to work? If you are well but have an ill family member at home with a confirmed case of the influenza, but not tested for COVID-19, you should check with your employer's policy about exposures to respiratory diseases. Some employers would allow you to return to work, but there are rare cases where you may have two respiratory infections, including COVID-19.
Monitor your health every day, and take everyday precautions, including washing your hands often with soap and water, especially after they cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective. If you become ill, stay home. If you have an underlying medical condition or are pregnant, you should call your health care provider for advice, because you might need to receive influenza antiviral drugs to prevent illness.
If your family member has flu-like symptoms, but has not been diagnosed with the flu by a health care provider, it is possible that they are sick with a different respiratory virus, like COVID-19. Call your health care provider for their recommendations.
What is the best technique for washing my hands to avoid getting the flu?
Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs, including the flu and COVID-19. Wash with soap and water or clean with alcohol-based hand cleaner.
Wash your hands — with soap and warm water — for 20 seconds. When soap and water are not available, alcohol-based hand sanitizers that contain at least 60 percent alcohol may be used. You can find them in most supermarkets and drug stores. If using gel, rub your hands until the gel is dry. The gel doesn't need water to work; the alcohol in it kills the germs on your hands.