CHICAGO — People across Illinois are being ordered to close businesses and stay home to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
The order, which was announced by Gov. JB Pritzker on Friday, starts at 5 p.m. Saturday. It will last until at least April 7.
While the stay-at-home order is in place, people are told to stay home as much as possible and avoid “non-essential” travel and trips for services and items that are “unnecessary.”
That means businesses deemed “non-essential” are shut and employees must work at home as much as possible.
Here’s a list of what is and isn’t open, according to the order:
So far, here’s what we know can remain open:
- Grocery stores
- Liquor stores
- Gas stations and convenience stores
- Police and fire departments
- Hospitals and doctors’ offices
- Restaurants (but for delivery, pickup and drive-thru only)
- Post office and shipping services
- Newspapers and radio stations
- Highways, expressways, etc.
- Taxis, Uber and Lyft
- Child care providers
- Weed dispensaries (curbside pickup only)
- Farmers markets
- Hardware stores
- Auto and bike repair shops
- Plumbers, electricians and other trade services
- Food banks
- Homeless shelters
- Nonprofits that help people in need
- Pet stores, veterinarian offices and animal hospitals
- Animal shelters
- Funeral parlors
Here’s what we know must close:
- Restaurants and bars for dine-in service
- Parks (the field houses and programming. You can still go outside)
- Public libraries
- Retail stores
- Chicago City Hall (to the public)
- Movie and other theaters
- Concert halls
- Amusement parks
- Bowling Alleys
- Country clubs and social clubs
Coronavirus can be deadly, but the vast majority of cases have been mild. Those most at risk from the virus are people who are elderly or who have underlying health conditions.
Symptoms of coronavirus can appear two to 14 days after a person has been exposed to the virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control. People with no symptoms may have the virus and spread it to others.
The virus spreads between people through coughing and sneezing, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
The most common symptoms:
- Shortness of breath
People have also experienced body aches, nasal congestion, runny nose and sore throat, according to Harvard Medical School.
If you or someone else has difficulty breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, become confused, cannot be roused or develop a bluish face or lips, get immediate medical attention, according to the CDC.
How To Protect Yourself
The CDC only recommends those are already sick wear facemasks because they help you avoid spreading the virus.
Here’s what you can actually do to prevent getting ill:
- The CDC and other officials have said people should wash their hands often, including before, during and after eating; after using the bathroom; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
The CDC has a guide here for how to properly wash your hands. Remember: Wash with soap and water, scrubbing your hands for at least 20 seconds.
- If you can’t wash your hands with soap and water, you can use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
- Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose and mouth, with unwashed hands.
- Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces you touch frequently, like cellphones and light switches. Here are tips from the CDC.
- Stay home when you’re sick and avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- If you have to sneeze with a tissue, throw it out immediately after using it, according to the CDC.
What To Do If You Think You’re Sick
Even if you’re not showing symptoms, the Chicago Department of Public Health recommends people coming from high-risk countries (here’s a CDC list) self-quarantine for 14 days after returning home.
If you do have symptoms of coronavirus, contact your primary doctor or a health care facility before going in. Explain your symptoms and tell them if you’ve come into close contact with anyone with coronavirus or traveled to an area where corona is widespread (here’s a CDC list) within the last 14 days, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
From there, the experts will work with your local health department to determine what to do and if you need to be tested for coronavirus, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
And, of course, if you think you’re sick with coronavirus, don’t risk exposing other people to the virus. Anyone who feels unwell has been advised to stay home.
Those with questions and concerns about coronavirus can call the Illinois Department of Public Health at 800-889-3931.
Block Club Chicago’s coronavirus coverage is free for all readers. Block Club is an independent, 501(c)(3), journalist-run newsroom.
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