Note: If you're concerned about COVID-19, I'd encourage you to check out Disclaimer - I'm one of the authors of it.

I've now personally seen the impact of COVID-19 – a good friend – who was in my house less than 10 days ago has been diagnosed with the following:

  • May have COVID-19 but a test wasn't available
  • Need to self quarantine for 2 weeks following the onset of symptoms

This raises the question:

How do you help a person in quarantine?

Here are some thoughts:

  1. You don't want to be in that person's physical presence. It is QUARANTINE.
  2. But all of us are a community. You can't NOT help people; that isn't an option.
  3. You can online order things for them.
  4. You deliver to their front porch or front door the things that they need. And then you leave – be in your car before they come out.
  5. Given that theft may be a concern, it is likely good to leave things somewhat protected like between outer and inner doors.
  6. If you don't have hand sanitizer to use after touching their door then bring a plastic grocery sack to touch the door handle and such And then throw it away.
  7. You call them to tell them that what they need is waiting for them.

How Do You Keep People Company?

For a lot of people, particularly extroverted social folk, being in quarantine is almost physically painful. Keep in mind that people need company but that phone calls may be hard due to sore throats. So think a lot about:

  • text messaging
  • instant messaging
  • perhaps even doing a shared activity like "virtual presence" like watching something together on Netflix or Youtube

What Does a Quarantined Person Need?

Here's what I would recommend:

  • Liquids that they like to drink; for this person it was tea and honey
  • Gatorade or another sports drink for dehydration
  • Easy to prepare food
  • Cold / Cough medicine
  • Help getting their prescriptions picked up
  • Painkillers but not Ibuoprofen
  • Humidifier
  • Thermometer
  • Soap
  • Crackers or something to help with nausea

Other Thoughts

I'd like to tell you that all of this can be done online (and, yes, CVS will do online ordering and delivery) but I don't think that's necessarily correct given the size of this crisis. I think we are going to need to do a lot of physical visits to help our friends and neighbors.