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COVID-19 Updates, Testing and Vaccines

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Covid-19 General Preparedness

These simple steps can help you prepare your home, minimize your risk of exposure, and protect others from the Coronavirus (COVID-19):

  • Medications: make sure you have enough medication, like blood pressure pills, to last for two weeks. Aside from prescriptions, make sure you have pain reliever (ibuprofen), stomach remedies, and cold and cough medicines.
  • Face Covering: We strongly recommend that all residents wear a face covering when in public.
  • Cleaning Supplies:Clean frequently touched surfaces in your house – such as kitchen counters and bathroom faucets – several times a day. Keep “high touch surfaces” in your house clean with household cleaning sprays or wipes.
  • Wash Hands:Before touching common household surfaces, petting your animal, or hugging your loved ones, it is important to wash your hand with warm, soapy water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Hand Sanitizer: carry and use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Flu Shot: if you haven’t already gotten your flu shot yet, it’s still a good idea to get one.
  • Other:Keep your pantry stocked with a 2 weeks supply of non perishable foods and drinks.

It is important that everyone take steps to reduce the spread of novel coronavirus, especially to protect those who are most vulnerable. Steps you can take to prevent spread of flu and the common cold will also help prevent coronavirus:


  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Use a facemask if you are showing symptoms.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s travel guidance.


Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms or combinations of symptoms may have COVID-19:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Or at least two of these symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Confusion or dizziness
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Those at high risk for severe COVID-19 related health consequences include:

  • People ages 65 and older
  • People with weak immune systems
  • People with preexisting conditions like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, hypertension, and cancer.
  • Healthcare workers caring for patients with COVID-19
  • Travelers returning from affected locations where community spread is occurring.

Covid-19 Questions & Concerns

Notice: BCHHS Public Health Preparedness is here as a resource. If you have additional non-medical questions about COVID-19 preparedness planning, please email us with the form below.


Public Health
P:(828) 250-5000
40 Coxe Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801

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