Contra Costa Health Services announced interim social distancing guidelines Tuesday in an effort to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus in the county.
The health department said the guidelines will be in effect for an initial period of two weeks, at which point the county will consider whether to extend them any further. The guidelines are aimed, in particular, at higher-risk demographics like people ages 50 or older and people with chronic health conditions like heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
The guidelines include avoiding large gatherings of 50 or more people, canceling large community events like concerts and sporting events, enhancing sanitation efforts for public transit, suspending nonessential business traveling, telecommuting to work and staying home from work or school when sick.
“We understand that these recommendations will substantially impact our lives and may be difficult to implement," the department said in a statement. "We considered them carefully in consultation with the state and other counties who have taken similar actions. Given that we now know coronavirus is spreading in our county, this is a critical time for each of us to do our part to protect our community."
The guidelines also include general risk-reduction practices such as washing the hands with soap for at least 20 seconds, covering the mouth when coughing or sneezing, avoiding handshakes and touching of the face and getting a flu vaccine.
Public health and safety information regarding the coronavirus can be found here.