Canada Coronavirus: Experts say don't be afraid to touch your groceries

01:10  27 march  2020
01:10  27 march  2020 Source:   montrealgazette.com

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We talked to infectious disease experts about how to shop for groceries during the coronavirus crisis. Just try not to touch your face while shopping, and wash your hands or “Absolutely don ’ t touch your face," said Dr. Amler. “ Don ’ t touch your mouth, don ’ t touch your eyes, don ’ t rub your

a person standing in front of a store: A shopper looks for groceries at Akhavan store as Montrealers deal with the coronavirus pandemic on March 26, 2020. © Allen McInnis A shopper looks for groceries at Akhavan store as Montrealers deal with the coronavirus pandemic on March 26, 2020.

Should you be afraid to go to the grocery store and pick up a carton of milk?

Experts say as long as you practice good hygiene, you can reduce the risk of contracting the virus when out buying essential goods.

Ketra Schmitt, an associate professor at Concordia University’s Gina Cody Centre for Engineering in Society, explained the reason to limit trips to the store is to limit person-to-person interaction, which is still believed to be the main way the virus is transmitted. There is little chance to get the virus from an inanimate object, especially if you clean your hands thoroughly after touching it.

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Schmitt, who studies how communicable diseases are spread, said there is never a way to reduce the risk entirely, but just because the virus can live on inanimate objects it doesn’t mean there is a high risk of catching it, especially if you wash your hands after making contact.

“Something being detectable on a surface isn’t the same thing as catching it,” Scmitt said. “If people practice six-foot distance, wear a mask if they’re sick, avoid groups and wash their hands a lot we can reduce the risk.”

The Health Canada website recommends frequently wiping down commonly used surfaces like tables, handrails, doorknobs, electronics, countertops, light switches, faucet handles, cabinet handles and elevator buttons.

Health Canada says all fruits and vegetables should be cleaned with water — but not soap — and a vegetable brush for products with firm skin, like carrots or melons. There are no new hygiene methods for food recommended to ward off the coronavirus since the risk of getting it from food appears to be low.

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Experts say the bug, which has killed around one in 50 patients since the outbreak began in December, is a 'sister' of the SARS illness which hit China in 2002, so has been named after it. The disease that the virus causes has been named COVID-19, which stands for coronavirus disease 2019.

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Schmitt said in addition to protecting themselves, people should be concerned about those who make deliveries to their homes. That’s why she recommends wiping down doorbells, outside door handles and mailboxes.

As for products that come from grocery stores, Schmitt said she washes her hands after coming into contact with the plastic bags and cardboard boxes, but she doesn’t wipe down or clean products inside those bags or boxes.

“I have decided not to wash all my groceries,” she said. “I know people who do that on a regular basis, but that’s not something I do. I’m not saying that there is no risk, but I think the risk is certainly (low).”


Several local stores have stepped up hygiene measures in hopes of limiting the risk of transmission. At Supermarché Akhavan, in Notre-dame-de-Grâce and Pierrefonds, the store has reduced its hours in order to dedicate more time to cleaning surfaces. Staff also provide customers with plastic gloves to wear. At many chain supermarkets, shopping carts are wiped down as customers enter and hand sanitizer is provided.

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"They are afraid that it comes [to them] and they’ll die. Don ’ t be in a rush, you’ll die anyway. As with pretty much every other serious illness, “those who are in sound health will overcome it [ coronavirus ], those who are not, won’t manage to,” Kadyrov said , while recommending that all those anxious about

The Post spoke to financial experts on how to budget during coronavirus , stretch any savings you might “ Don ’ t touch your face and don ’ t touch your stocks,” says Sacks, adding, “If you are taking money out Don ’ t be afraid to haggle. Negotiating with lenders can cut your monthly bills even more.

At Croissant Monkland bakery on Sherbrooke St. W in Notre-dame-de-Grâce, a hand-cleaning station is set up for customers and only five people are permitted to be inside the store at any given time. There is tape on the floor of the bakery showing customers the proper distance they should have between them. Only contactless payments are permitted.

“We’re counting on customers to be careful because there are still a few who don’t understand that they have to keep their distance,” owner Éric Combes said. “If you hold a door open for someone, well, that’s contact.

“It’s a lot of stress to put these protocols in place,” Combes added. “But we have an incredible team; they’re taking great care. They’re cleaning everything every five minutes. We’re going through a lot of soap.”




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Data suggests there could be up to 4K undiagnosed coronavirus cases in Ottawa: public health .
"Our efforts are needed as a community. The actions you take will affect not only you, but your loved ones and our most vulnerable."Dr. Vera Etches issued a statement on Sunday and said there is evidence of community spread of COVID-19.

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