The best way you can protect yourself, your family and our community against COVID-19 is to:

It's important to note, cloth face coverings are not a replacement for these evidence-based measures; they are an additional tool that may be used to protect us from exposure to COVID-19 when used properly.  

Physical Distancing:

The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services COVID-19 Hospital Demand Modeling Projections shows that physical distancing is slowing the rate of COVID-19 transmission in the county. The projections indicate that if current levels of physical distancing are not maintained, there will be an exponential rapid increase in the rate of infection, severely hampering the ability of the hospital system to meet that demand. 

Without a specific vaccine or treatment for this disease, physical distancing is an effective and readily available tool we have to slow the spread of COVID-19. Everyone should be aware and practice physical distancing. Physical distancing measures include: 

  • Staying home as much as possible
  • Staying at least 6 ft apart from others who are not part of your household
  • Avoiding nonessential travel
  • Avoiding public gatherings, places where large groups congregate and event venues
  • Avoiding crowds, especially in poorly ventilated spaces
  • Using verbal salutations in place of handshakes or hugs

Cloth Face Coverings:

Recent data indicates that covering your nose and mouth can slow the spread of COVID-19 because:

  • Individuals can be contagious before the onset of symptoms. You may be contagious and not know it. If you have covered your nose and mouth, it can limit the spread of COVID-19.
  • We touch our face less when our face is covered. Touching your face after touching something contaminated with COVID-19 increases your chances of getting sick with COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that the general public wear non-medical cloth face coverings when interacting with others. In an editorial published on July 14 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), CDC reviewed the latest science and affirms that cloth face coverings are a critical tool in the fight against COVID-19 that could reduce the spread of the disease, particularly when used universally within communities. There is increasing evidence that cloth face coverings help prevent people who have COVID-19 from spreading the virus to others. Learn more here. 

Under the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health's Safer at Work and in the Community Health Officer Order, residents are required to wear cloth face coverings when around others who are not part of their household. View the guidance from the county for cloth face coverings here. Starting June 18, Gov. Gavin Newsom is requiring Californians to wear face coverings in public. View the full guidance from the state to learn when residents should wear a cloth face covering and who is exempt.

The best community and individual defense against COVID-19 is washing our hands frequently, avoiding touching our eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands, self-isolating if you are sick, practice physical distancing especially by staying home and wearing a clean cloth face covering. Cloth face coverings are not a replacement for these evidence-based measures; they are an additional tool that may be used to protect us from exposure to COVID-19 when used properly. 

Acceptable, reusable face covering options for the general public include:

N95 and surgical masks are in short supply and should only be used by healthcare workers, first responders, essential workers providing care for people who are ill, and people who are ill.

Videos on Cloth Face Coverings:

Along with physical distancing and wearing cloth face coverings, practice these preventive tips to protect yourself and others.

When you’re sick, stay home and limit contact with others, even for mild illnesses
  • If you are mildly sick:
    • Self-isolate at home for at least seven days and until you are fever-and-symptom-free for 72 hours 
    • Call your doctor if you are concerned and/or your symptoms worsen 
    • Individuals who are elderly, have underlying health conditions or are pregnant should contact their provider as soon as they are sick
  • If you have questions, please call the clinic or your doctor before going in. If you do not have a healthcare provider, call 2-1-1 for assistance finding support near you.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • If soap and water is not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol

Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands

Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Sick people can spread viruses through close contact with others such as hugging, kissing, shaking hands or sharing utensils.

Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw it in the trash. If you do not have a tissue, use your sleeve or elbow (not your hands).

Get your flu vaccine to protect yourself and your family, and reduce the strain on the healthcare system, which may be impacted by COVID-19 concerns.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects. Germs can build up on frequently touched objects such as phones, keyboards, doorknobs, light switches and children's toys. 

Have an ample supply of essentials at home including water, food, hygiene, medications and pet food
  • Plan for the possibility of business disruptions, school closures, and modifications/cancellations of select public events

Stay updated on Travel Health Notices from the CDC to avoid nonessential travel.

Beware of scammers. There are no specific treatments or vaccinations for the coronavirus at this time. Learn more here.