Nervous someone in your house has COVID-19? Here’s how to safely separate that person

Gloves, cleaner and disinfectant are key

Woman sitting, blowing her nose. (Andrea Piacquadio)

Whether someone in your house has been diagnosed with COVID-19, or if you suspect they might have it and haven’t gotten tested, there are certain ways of separating that person and keeping areas clean, in order to limit the exposure of everyone else who lives in the home.

First of all, try to give the person who is sick a separate bedroom and bathroom, if possible, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends.

The person who is sick should stay separated from other people in the home as much as possible.

So, how exactly will you do it?

Bedroom and bathroom

Separate bedroom and bathroom

If that person is well enough to clean their own space, provide them with personal cleaning supplies to do so. Supplies include tissues, paper towels, cleaners and EPA-registered disinfectants.

If someone besides the person who is sick must clean up after them, only clean the area when needed, such as when the area is soiled. It’s important to limit contact with the person who is sick as much as possible.

Shared bathroom

It’s important that the person who is sick cleans and disinfects after themselves after each use. If they are too sick to do so, the caregiver should wait as long as they can before cleaning and disinfecting — unless a member of the household needs to use the bathroom soon after, in which case the bathroom should be cleaned immediately.

Click or tap here to learn more precautions household members and caregivers can take.


The person who is sick should be fed or eat in their designated room, if possible.

When washing dishes after someone who is sick has used them, the caregiver should be sure to handle all of it with gloves. Those dishes should also be washed in soap and hot water or in a dishwasher. Be sure to clean your hands after handling used items and after taking off the gloves.

Click here to learn more about best ways to wash your hands.


The person who is sick should have a dedicated, lined trash can. Whoever removes the garbage bag should use gloves while handling and disposing of the trash, and wash hands immediately after.

Click or tap here to learn more about cleaning and disinfecting your home.

About the Author:

Dawn Jorgenson, Graham Media Group Branded Content Managing Editor, began working with the group in April 2013. She graduated from Texas State University with a degree in electronic media.