Iowa Specialty Hospital

Protecting Yourself in Public

While government mandates have relaxed a bit to allow some entities to return to business either in part or full, precautions still need to be observed to prevent the further spread of COVID-19.  We have begun to see community spread of asymptomatic COVID-19 in our area. This occurs when individuals do not have any symptoms but are infected with COVID-19. As they feel fine they are active within the community and are inadvertently spreading it to others. This makes contracting the COVID-19 virus more likely if you are not following the recommended safety precautions.

It is important that everyone continue to:

Wash your hands often:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.


Avoid close contact:

  • Put distance between yourself and other people outside of your home.
    • Remember that some people without symptoms may be able to spread virus.
    • Stay at least 6 feet from other people.
    • When possible leave the family at home; now is not the time for social outings.
    • Do not gather in groups.
    • Try to shop during off-peak hours and use delivery or pickup options when possible.
    • Limit your time at the store and use non-contact payment options when possible.
    • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.
    • Keeping distance from others is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.  

Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others:

  • 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.
  • The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected.
  • Do NOT use a facemask 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.

Cover coughs and sneezes:

  • If you are in a private setting and do not have on your cloth face covering, remember to always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
  • Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Clean and disinfect:

  • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
  • Use disposable wipes when possible to wipe down objects such as shopping cart handles, ATMs and gas pump handles.

Stay up-to-date about counties with the highest COVID-19 rates and avoid travel to those areas if possible. This information can be easily accessed at the Iowa Department of Public Health Website:

It is essential that you continue to follow these guidelines to keep you and your loved ones safe. Please continue to do your part for the wellbeing of our community.

As a partner in your healthcare we are here to help with any concerns or questions. If at any time you believe you may have COVID-19 or are concerned about symptoms you are experiencing, call 844-474-4321 to reach your Iowa Specialty Hospital healthcare provider.  In an emergency, please call 911.

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