During a disease outbreak, you may need to quarantine your family to keep disease from entering into your home. The CDC now calls this “containment” instead of quarantine. Whatever term used, the idea is to isolate sick people or isolate yourself from the sick.
You may also encounter a situation where you have a sick family member that needs to be quarantined from the rest of the household.
If you don’t come in close contact with a virus, you can’t get sick from it. The purpose of quarantine, then, is to prevent the possibility of coming into contact with a virus that can be deadly and spread quickly – just as the common cold is easily spread.
Keep Disease Out of Your Home
If the purpose of quarantine is to keep healthy family members well, you’ll need to be prepared ahead of time with all of the supplies you need for food, sanitation, and hygiene. It’s difficult to quarantine your family if you don’t have supplies on-hand to survive during a long period of time.
You’ll want to seal off the outside entrances of your home using duct tape and plastic sheeting to cover doors and windows. Most people find it helpful to cut out plastic sheeting ahead of time that will fit these entrances so that in times of stress, all you have to do is tape them up.
It’s important to have a designated area outdoors where you’ll place items such as used bags for personal waste. It’s not a good idea to store these in your home because they increase the risk of developing a host of diseases.
Once you’re sheltered in place, you’ll want to keep communication lines open with radio communication so that you’ll know when it’s safe to leave your home.
What to Do When a Family Member Is Ill
A more likely scenario when it comes to illness is that you’ll have one or more members of your family who has become ill. Those people will need to be quarantined in a room of your home or in another nearby place.
For example, if you have a motor home, cabin, or detached garage you can use these as quarantine areas. These rooms need to be sealed off with duct tape and plastic sheeting.
You’ll also need to place a sign on the entrance stating that it is a quarantined area. This warns people to stay out unless they’re wearing protective clothing. Right outside the entrance you’ll need to set up a sanitation area that contains soap, water, latex gloves, masks, and other protective equipment as needed.
Before people enter the room, they need to put on the proper protective gear. Before returning to the rest of the household, they need to properly dispose of gloves, masks, and other disposable items and make sure they wash their hands thoroughly.