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Doctor gives advice on best ways to limit the spread of the coronavirus

CDC guidelines have changed when it comes to mask safety.

ATLANTA — Monday morning, an Emory University infectious disease expert provided clarity on how best to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The virtual briefing with Dr. Marybeth Sexton included three actions the public can take right now.

The CDC recently issued new guidance to encourage people to wear masks, but Sexton says the public should be making their own, not buying medical-grade ones, which hospitals desperately need.

“This is a really important distinction. These are not medical masks, like surgical masks, procedure masks or the N95,“ said Sexton. “If everyone wears these cloth masks out in public, then nobody's inhaling these infected respiratory droplets and everybody is protected.”

Sexton says wearing gloves outside of a healthcare setting is over-reacting. COVID-19 is a respiratory virus. It’s not something you can catch through your skin.

Credit: Thinkstock / WXIA

“Gloves seem to give people a false sense of security because their hands are protected. So, they then don’t realize they’ve touched everything around them with those same gloves. So, people end up contaminating sometimes a lot more surfaces by wearing gloves than without them,” said Sexton.

RELATED: Coronavirus in Georgia: Confirmed cases climb to 7,314 with 229 deaths

The Emory doctor said social distancing is also important outside. To do that, avoid busy trails like the Beltline. 

“When you’re outside, you’re very much helped by all of the airflow," said Sexton. “But, it’s still really important to maintain that distance from people.”

Sexton’s final piece of advice - if you have food delivered, it’s unnecessary to wipe down all of your groceries. Just unpack the food, and then wash your hands after and before eating.

11Alive is focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the virus.  We want to keep you informed about the latest developments while ensuring that we deliver confirmed, factual information.

We will track the most important coronavirus elements relating to Georgia on this page. Refresh often for new information.

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