Editor’s note: The following partial resource guide was made available to the Standard Journal courtesy of the Polk County Chamber of Commerce. We thank Executive Director Blair Elrod for compiling this useful information. Find the full online version of this resource guide at or the Chamber’s Facebook page.

Georgia DPH Recommendations and Guidelines

There are some common-sense measures everyone can take to protect themselves and others from the spread of respiratory illnesses including coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

♦ Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds at a time.

♦ Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

♦ Avoid close contact with people who are ill.

♦ Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.

♦ Do not reuse tissue after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose.

♦ Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched.

It is also good practice to start being more aware of the number of times a day your hands touch an object or hard surface and then touch your face without being washed. Limiting the exposure of your nose, mouth, and eyes to unwashed hands can help to protect from the spread of all germs and illnesses.

Using a face mask

♦ You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.

♦ Everyone should wear a cloth face cover♦ when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities.

♦ Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

♦ The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected.

♦ Do NOT use a face mask meant for a healthcare worker.

♦ Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing.

DPH has also provided guidance on considerations of people with disabilities and other access and functional needs for COVID-19.

People at higher risk for severe illness

Older adults and people who have severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease and those with weakened immune systems seem to be at higher risk for more serious COVID-19 illness. Early data suggest older people are twice as likely to have serious COVID-19 illness. Learn more.

Pregnant women and children

Some pregnant women may be more susceptible to viral respiratory infections, including COVID-19. There is no evidence that children are more susceptible to COVID-19. The CDC has information specifically for pregnant women and children.

People who have recently traveled outside the US

If you have recently traveled to any country with a Level 2 or Level 3 Travel Health Notice for COVID-19 and are experiencing fever and respiratory symptoms, you should call your doctor or health department and describe your symptoms and where you traveled.

People who think they’ve been exposed to COVID-19

If you think you may have been exposed to the COVID-19 and develop symptoms, you may need to seek medical attention. Learn more about exposure and symptoms.

Household preparedness

The CDC recommends households have a plan of action to prepare for a COVID-19 outbreak. People should think about having daily necessities and medications to last about two weeks, in case they need to isolate. Massive stock piling of supplies is not necessary.

Individuals and families should have a plan in case they need to miss work due to illness or need to care for a sick family member. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has also released a list of cleaning products to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Watch for symptoms

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases.

These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure (based on the incubation period of MERS-CoV viruses).

♦ Fever

♦ Cough

♦ Shortness of breath

♦ Chills

♦ Repeated shaking with chills

♦ muscle pain

♦ headache

♦ sore throat

♦ new loss of taste or smell

When to Seek Medical Attention

♦ If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include:

♦ Trouble breathing

♦ Persistent pain or pressure in the chest

♦ New confusion or inability to arouse

♦ Bluish lips or face

♦ This list is not all inclusive. Please consult your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.

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