Coronavirus has spread rapidly around the world since the first cases were identified in China in December.
The virus, which originated in the city of Wuhan, has been responsible for thousands of deaths in the country. The illness has begun to threaten lives in other countries as well, including the U.S., where cases have been confirmed in states including New York and Florida.
To help you protect against the the illness, here is a list of essential items to include in your coronavirus emergency kit.
The American Red Cross advises that you have enough food to last you for two weeks in an emergency preparedness kit. In the case of a quarantine, individuals should stock up on non-perishable, easy-to-prepare dry and canned goods such as:
—Canned foods (vegetables, soups, fruits)
—Snacks (nuts, chips, crackers)
—Other nonperishables (rice, pastas, grains)
Water and hydrating beverages
The American Red Cross also recommends having a two-week supply of water on hand. If you’re drinking tap water, use a water filtration system to help remove any bacteria. If possible, it is advisable to also keep other beverages that will help you stay hydrated, such as Pedialyte and Gatorade.
The CDC does not recommend wearing masks as a preventative measure from the respiratory illness for individuals who are well. However, experts say if you are already sick, using a mask can help prevent people around you from getting the virus.
But it is advised to keep other hygienic supplies on hand. The CDC recommends frequency hand washing, so hand soap and sanitizer are good items to keep in your kit. Additionally, you will want to have other standard items for everyday hygiene available, including toilet paper, tissues, feminine-care products, and diapers if you have small children in the household.
Having the proper medical supplies is beneficial. Thermometers and over-the-counter medications will be helpful in helping you monitor your symptoms. If your doctor is prescribing medications, make sure to have at least a 30-day supply to avoid having to leave to go to the pharmacy.
Copies of your health records
Coronavirus has not officially been called a pandemic, reports Business Insider. But per the Department of Homeland Security's general pandemic guidelines, it is a prudent precaution before a pandemic to prepare and maintain copies and electronic versions of health records from doctors, hospitals, pharmacies and other sources, and store them for personal reference.