COVID 19 Prevention

There are many ways your actions can help protect you, your household, and your community from severe illness from COVID-19. These tips from the CDC will help keep you and your family healthy.


In addition to basic health and hygiene practices, like handwashing, CDC recommends some prevention actions at all COVID-19 Community Levels, which include:


Staying Up to Date with COVID-19 Vaccines

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COVID-19 vaccines help your body develop protection from the virus that causes COVID-19. Although vaccinated people sometimes get infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, staying up to date on COVID-19 vaccines significantly lowers the risk of getting very sick, being hospitalized, or dying from COVID-19. CDC recommends that everyone who is eligible get a booster and stay up to date on their COVID-19 vaccines, especially people with weakened immune systems.

Improving Ventilation and Spending Time Outdoors

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Improving ventilation (moving air into, out of, or within a room) and filtration (trapping particles on a filter to remove them from the air) can help prevent virus particles from accumulating in indoor air. Improving ventilation and filtration can help protect you from getting infected with and spreading the virus that causes COVID-19. Spending time outside when possible instead of inside can also help: Viral particles spread between people more readily indoors than outdoors.

Actions that can improve ventilation and filtration include:

  • Bringing in as much outdoor air as possible—for example, opening windows.
  • Increasing air filtration in your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system, such as by changing filters frequently and using filters that are properly fitted and provide higher filtration.
  • Using portable high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) cleaners.
  • Turning on exhaust fans and using other fans to improve air flow.
  • Turning your thermostat to the “ON” position instead of “AUTO” to ensure your HVAC system provides continuous airflow and filtration.

CDC’s interactive ventilation tools can help you see how much you can improve ventilation in your home or school.

Getting Tested for COVID-19 If Needed

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Get tested if you have COVID-19 symptoms. A viral test tells you if you are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19. There are two types of viral tests: rapid tests and laboratory tests. These tests might use samples from your nose or throat, or saliva. Knowing if you are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 allows you to take care of yourself and take actions to reduce the chance that you will infect others.

CDC’s Viral Testing Tool is an online, mobile-friendly tool that asks a series of questions and recommends actions and resources based on your responses. It can help you interpret what your test result means.

You can also access tests the following ways:

  • -Order free self-tests at COVIDtests.gov. Free tests are also available at the Wellesley Health Department. 
  • -12/20/22-The Federal Government is again offering 4 free tests to every household. Visit their website to order: https://www.covid.gov/testsNeed help placing an order for your at-⁠home tests? Call 1-800-232-0233 (TTY 1-888-720-7489).
  • -12/20/22-The Health Department has a limited supply of free tests inside the rear entrance to the Warren Building. Address: , 90 Main St, Wellesley.  Hours are M-F, 8:00am-4:00pm.  Closed 12/16 and 1/2. 
  • -If you have Medicare Part B, including those enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, Medicare will cover up to 8 free self-tests each calendar month from participating pharmacies and providers. Private health insurance may also reimburse the cost of purchasing self-tests. Visit FDA’s website for a list of authorized tests.
  • -Call your healthcare provider, visit a community testing site, or call your local health department for more options.

Staying Home When You Have Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19

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If you have COVID-19, you can spread it to others, even if you do not have symptoms. If you have symptoms, get tested and stay home until you have your results. If you have tested positive (even without symptoms), follow CDC’s isolation recommendations. These recommendations include staying home and away from others for at least 5 days (possibly more, depending on how the virus affects you) and wearing a high-quality mask when indoors around others for a period of time.

Avoiding Contact with People Who Have Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19

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Avoiding contact with people who have COVID-19, whether or not they feel sick, can reduce your risk of catching the virus from them. If possible, avoid being around a person who has COVID-19 until they can safely end home isolation. Sometimes it may not be practical for you to stay away from a person who has COVID-19 or you may want to help take care of them. In those situations, use as many prevention strategies as you can, such as practicing hand hygiene, consistently and correctly wearing a high-quality mask, improving ventilation, and keeping your distance, when possible, from the person who is sick or who tested positive.