Virginia health officials say to practice proper hygiene on top of wearing masks, gloves

VDH: Practice proper hygiene on top of wearing masks, gloves

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The Virginia Department of Health recommends that people still follow CDC guidelines, even while wearing personal protective equipment such as masks and gloves.

The two PPE items are becoming the everyday norm in public, with many people making essential trips to grocery stores all covered up.

And it’s not just customers; at the Market @ 25th in Church Hill, much of the staff wore masks and gloves. Cashiers, deli workers, even security guards took that extra step.

Not every store is following suit, but that’s not a reason to panic.

“We do recommend wearing a face cover. That’s not to say that everyone in every retail store has to wear one because some of them may be able to maintain social distancing," said Dr. Melissa Viray with the VDH.

Dr. Viray says really good hygiene goes a long way, which almost eliminates the need for the gloves:

“That glove is just like your hands. If you don’t wash it, and you touch your face, or your hand, or your eyes, it doesn’t really protect you,” Viray said.

She adds that people tend to actually touch more things when they’re wearing gloves, which could lead to cross-contamination.

The doctor cites a study from the New England Journal of Medicine that says the virus can linger on certain surfaces, for about 72 hours at the most, but that you don’t have to necessarily disinfect everything you bring into your home.

“The virus can survive, but that’s why its important that we just make those habits about what we do - both in our homes and outside - to make sure that we’re not introducing it into our own bodies," she added.

NBC12 did reach to some of the major grocery chains and was told by Kroger, Food Lion, and Publix that they have given their workers the option to wear protection such as masks, if they chose to.

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