COVID-19 and the pandemic

BHA offering reliable, accurate information here about the COVID-19 epidemic. We would also appreciate your suggestions about what information we can provide here that will best help you. Send an email to:

For additional information, visit this World Health Organization page.

Right: Illustration of the COVID-19 virus from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Reduce your risk of acquiring or spreading the COVID-19 viral infection by following these steps.

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand rub. This can kill the virus.
  • Maintain at 2 metres (6 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing. Coughing or sneezing sends small droplets that may contain virus into the air. If you are too close to a person who has the disease, you can breathe in the droplets that contain the COVID-19 virus.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth to prevent the virus from entering your body. Your hands can pick up the virus from contaminated surfaces. Touching your eyes, nose or mouth can enable the virus to enter your body and make you sick.
  • Cough or sneeze into your bent elbow or a tissue. Dispose of the tissue immediately and safely in the trash.
  • If you have a cough, fever or difficulty breathing, seek medical help early. These may be signs may be due to a respiratory infection or other serious condition. Avoid contact with others.
  • Wipe down tables, counters and surfaces with a disinfectant. (See directions below for making a disinfectant solution using household bleach.)
  • Avoid non-essential travel.

Also important: Do not spread rumors. If you hear something in the community, do not repeat it until you verify that it is true.

Make a disinfectant solution by diluting household bleach

Warning: Make sure the bleach you use is not past its expiration date and do not mix bleach with anything other than water.

  • Mix 4 teaspoons of bleach per litre of water OR
  • Mix 5 tablespoons of bleach per gallon (3.8 L) of water​

You can use this solution to wipe down tables, counters and other surfaces to kill the COVID-19 virus.