Symptoms of Covid-19 include:
- a high temperature (37.8 or above)
- a new, continuous cough which means coughing a lot for more than an hour or at least three coughing fits in 24 hours
- a loss or a change in your normal sense of smell or taste
If you have any of these symptoms, you and everyone in your house must self-isolate for 10 days starting from when the symptoms started and you should book at test. If your test is positive you should continue to self-isolate for 10 days from when the symptoms first started. Tests should not be booked for anyone who does not have symptoms. Everyone else in your household must also self-isolate for 10 days from the date when the infected person started showing symptoms even if they test negative. If you do not test positive then everyone can stop self-isolating so long as they do not have symptoms and have not received notification that they have tested positive.
You can book a test at the NHS website
The Covid-19 disease is caused by a coronavirus. There are many different kinds of coronavirus and Covid-19 is caused by one type called SARS-CoV-2, which causes respiratory illness.
Steps to reduce the risk of infection
There are simple steps that everyone can take to reduce the risk of catching or spreading coronavirus.
- Wash your hands with soap and water often for at least 20 seconds
- Use hand sanitiser gel with 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze and dispose of the tissue immediately then wash your hands or cough and sneeze into your elbow
- Keep two metres distance between yourself and others
- Wear a face covering. This has been mandatory in shops and enclosed spaces since 10th August and on public transport since 10th July.
The Public Health Agency have guidance on how to shop safely during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and there are a number of things you can do to help make your shopping trips safer. These include:
- Wearing a face covering
- Maintaining social distancing from other customers
- Using contactless payment
- Reducing the number of shopping trips to once a week
- Avoiding taking children or other family members into the shop with you
- Shopping at off-peak times
- Arranging collection or deliveries
- Shopping for someone you know in a vulnerable group and leave the items at their door
- Before and after you shop, washing your hands for 20 seconds or using hand sanitiser
Use the StopCovid NI app
Another way to reduce the spread of the virus is to use the StopCovid NI app. This is a mobile phone app available only for residents of Northern Ireland over the age of 11 that alerts users when they have been in close contact with a person who has tested positive for Covid-19. The app works by Bluetooth and it does not collect or store personal information. There is a separate app for 11 to 17 year olds.
The app can be downloaded for:
iphones from the App Store
android phones from the Google Play Store