Respiratory infections including Coronavirus (COVID-19): staying well and protecting others

How to reduce the risk of respiratory infections including coronavirus (COVID-19) to keep ourselves and each other well.

This document is part of a collection

How to assess the risk

Everyone can play a part in reducing the risk of spreading respiratory infections including COVID-19 by assessing the transmission risk as part of your normal routine, thinking about each time you move into a different setting and mix with a different social group.

To help keep each other well, we strongly recommend you consider your own risk and the risk to others and consider what steps you can take to reduce risk and protect those around you wherever you are.

This is particularly important if you, or those you are in close contact with, are at higher risk from respiratory infections including  COVID-19. It is also important to remember that it is not always obvious who is more vulnerable to the effects of respiratory infections including COVID-19 , taking sensible precautions on a consistent basis helps protect everyone.

Your risk assessment may change over the course of the day, depending on where you are, what you are doing and who you are with,and that will inform which measures you take in each circumstance.

When you think about how best to protect yourself and others, remember that respiratory infections including COVID-19 are more likely to transmit indoors and in particular in:

  • crowded spaces
  • poorly ventilated spaces
  • places where you are sitting next to someone from another household for an extended period of time
  • when you mix with lots of people not in your household

In taking responsibility for enhancing our own and other peoples’ safety, we can:

  • practice some simple positive behaviours and start to include these within our daily routines
  • help to care and protect others - some groups of people are at higher risk of severe illness if they catch respiratory infections including COVID-19
  • respond to situations by taking proportionate measures
  • help build a society able to balance the various risks associated with respiratory infections including COVID-19
Back to top