Message from Mary Nordtvedt, RN, BSN
Faith Community Nurse


Mary Nordtvedt


From Your Faith Community Nurse ...

Protecting Yourself from Respiratory Illness   

We are being encouraged to take care of ourselves and our families from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and other respiratory illnesses such as influenza. The recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are:

· There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus and other respiratory illnesses. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory illness, including:

· Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

· Avoid crowds

· Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

· Stay home when you are sick.

· Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you do not have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your sleeve. Wash or sanitize with hands after you cough or sneeze.

· Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

· 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 are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

· Stay in touch with others by phone or email. You may need to ask for help from friends, family, neighbors, community health workers, etc. if you become sick.

· Determine who can provide you with care if your caregiver gets sick.

· Clean and disinfect your home to remove germs: practice routine cleaning of frequently-touched surfaces (for example: tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks & cell phones).

· Make sure keep enough medications on hand in case you get sick.

Should you use a face mask?  CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask are:


· CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19. Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease.

What should I do if I think I might have the virus?

Pay attention for potential COVID-19 symptoms including, fever, cough, and shortness of breath. If you feel like you are developing symptoms, call your doctor.  Before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about your symptoms.

Emergency warning signs for COVID-19:

Get medical attention immediately. In adults, emergency warning signs*:

· Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

· Persistent pain or pressure in the chest

· New confusion or inability to arouse

· Bluish lips or face

mary - virus

Prevention Guidelines

As your faith community nurse, I recommend that we endorse and communicate these prevention guidelines in our faith community and community. Consider using these practices:

¨ When greeting people, touch elbows or nod rather than shaking hands.

¨ Stay home if you are sick. Stay home if you are high risk. Choose to only go out when necessary.

¨ Wash hands frequently and refrain from touching above the chest.

¨ Carry tissues with you to use. There are boxes of tissues located in many places at DPPC, including restrooms, narthex, fellowship hall and other public spaces.

¨ Disinfect kitchen counters before and after use. Our custodians disinfect surfaces in our building and will continue to do so.

¨ Disinfect the computer keyboard.

¨ Disinfect the phone after use.


--Mary, Faith Community Nurse



Nurse corner

Last Published: March 26, 2020 3:30 PM
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