Knowing how impactful each of our actions is should be at the forefront of all our thoughts right now. As the Government of Quebec states, "every individual has their part to play to reduce the risk of spreading viruses." We are in a critical time, which means each individual action is important. This is why health officials have decided to make a list of guidelines for us to follow in order to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in Quebec.

In Montreal, a variety of measures are being put in place at a communal level in hopes of reducing the spread of COVID-19. These include public spaces for at least the next two weeks, requesting that citizens avoid using the STM at peak hours, and banning all indoor events with over 250 people, which is a province-wide ban.

But, the Government of Quebec is also reminding people that while measures can be taken on a macro level, micro ones, like individual's actions, are also of utmost importance.

As Premier François Legault stated in a press conference on March 14, "this is a race against the clock."

It was this idea that led official guidelines on how to decrease the spread of coronavirus in Quebec to be released, which you can find below.


An important piece of information that every individual should keep in mind is that the three main symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, difficulty breathing, and a cough.

Beyond that, knowing how to slow down the spread of the virus on an individual level is also extremely crucial.

This tweet from Santé Montréal summarizes behaviour we should all follow in hopes of reducing the potential spread of the virus from one person to the next.

The following points are from the guidelines released by health officials of the Government of Quebec, which is where all the quotations in this article come from unless otherwise stated.


Self-Isolate If You Have Been Travelling Or Feel Sick

This point is crucial in stopping the spread of the virus.

On the official website of the Government of Québec, it reads "self-isolation for 14 days is recommended for anyone returning from abroad as of March 12, 2020. Returning travellers must be vigilant and monitor themselves for symptoms."

"Anyone who, as of March 12, 2020, develops flu- or cold-like symptoms must self-isolate until the symptoms have resolved. Home isolation is not required for other household members who do not have symptoms."

Remember that self-isolation may seem tedious to you, but could save the lives of others.


Wash Your Hands

Specifically, "Wash your hands often with soap under warm running water for at least 20 seconds." 

The importance of handwashing is due to how COVID-19 actually spreads, which is by "touching infected surfaces with your hands and then touching your mouth, nose or eyes."


Cough & Sneeze Into Your Elbow

"Practice proper cough and sneeze etiquette: Cover your mouth and nose with your arm to reduce the spread of germs. If you use a tissue, dispose of it as soon as possible and wash your hands afterwards."

This is especially important in public spaces, such as the STM, where germs can easily be spread.


READ ALSO: The STM Is Asking People To Try To Avoid Peak Metro Hours During COVID-19 Outbreak (Video)



Avoid Vulnerable People

"If you are sick, avoid contact with more vulnerable people, including older adults and people who have a chronic disease. For example, avoid visiting people in hospital, people living in residential and long-term care centres or in private residences."

As of March 14, the Government of Quebec banned all visits to senior homes and hospitals for this exact reason.

You can read all about this new protective measure here.


Practice Social Distancing & Cancel Non-Essential Gatherings

"Avoid direct contact when you greet someone, such as shaking hands, and use alternative ways to greet people."

With the inevitable spread of germs at large gatherings in mind, the Government of Quebec banned all events with over 250 people for the upcoming weeks.


READ ALSO: Quebec Is Banning Indoor Events With More Than 250 People Due To Coronavirus



Do Not Panic

When Mayor Valérie Plante spoke out about how the City of Montreal is preparing for COVID-19, she stressed that "it’s important that we follow the health recommendations and to respond to the situation without falling into panic," she said.

It is important that we trust that the health officials of our province have our best interests in mind.

She also informed the population that "masks are not an effective means of protection for the general public," which is a measure many have seemed to be adopting in our city.

On this similar note, Plante made sure to remind the public that COVID-19 is "no excuse for discrimination."


Contact Health Officials If You Display Symptoms

If any fears or doubts about your own well-being or another's in the face of the spread of coronavirus cross your mind, the Government of Québec has provided a number for you to call to discuss your concerns.

"If you are worried about COVID-19, you can call the toll-free number 1 877 644-4545." 


Following these guidelines will help keep both you and everyone you pass by in the near future safe.

You can read the Government of Canada's "Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19): Being Prepared" document here for additional information as well.

NOW WATCH Mayor Tells Montrealers Not To Panic & Says COVID-19 Is 'No Excuse For Discrimination' (Video)

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