This Easy-to-Remember Trick Can Help Keep You Safe from Coronavirus
Keep the "three C's" in mind to protect yourself from COVID-19, according to a CDC study.
As states continue to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic, many of us are slowly emerging from our stay-at-home routines and trying to integrate back into normal life. But what can we safely do right now, and what risky activities should be avoided? There aren't always clear answers to these questions, and our decisions may ultimately come down to our personal assessments of risk, both for our own health and for the public at large. That doesn't mean we can't make educated choices, however. In fact, a new CDC study suggests one easy-to-remember trick that could keep us a lot safer from coronavirus.
Just remember the "three C's." An early release of a new study of coronavirus clusters in Japan—scheduled for publication in the CDC's journal Emerging Infectious Diseases in September—introduces a simple way of assessing the risk of infection in any situation. All you have to do is keep in mind and then avoid the "three C's": closed spaces with poor ventilation, crowded places, and close-contact settings.
If you've been paying attention to other recent studies on how coronavirus spreads, this may not be new information for you. We know the risks of poorly ventilated spaces that are full of other people. We also know the importance of social distancing, which can be impossible in certain "close-contact settings." At the same time, the "three C's" trick is one of the most straightforward and easy-to-remember ways to weigh the potential danger of any outing amid the pandemic.
You can apply the trick to various activities, and you'll find that it rules out the same risky activities experts say you should avoid. Bars and concerts, for example, are closed, crowded, and close-contact. On the other hand, taking a socially distanced walk with friends or having a picnic in the park don't match the criteria of the "three C's": These activities have open air, fewer people in your immediate vicinity, and the ability to maintain social distancing.
And remember: Just because the "three C's" don't apply to a specific situation, that doesn't mean that it's entirely risk-free. Unfortunately, without effective treatment or a coronavirus vaccine, there is some level of danger to anything you do outside of your house. But if it's a choice between playing tennis and going to an amusement park, you can use the CDC's guidelines to make the safer choice—and greatly reduce your risk overall. And for another easy-to-remember trick to keep in mind, The CDC Has a Simple "Rule of Thumb" to Help You Avoid Coronavirus.