Do you have a Family Plan for COVID-19?

Categories:: Newsflash Covid Resources

Hey All,

I’ve begun hearing from more of my friends, and friends of friends that folks are fighting COVID-19. I’ve heard that some people have fought and are coming out the other side, doing well, and not infecting other family members which is very reassuring.

This seems like a good time to send a message about making a FAMILY PLAN.  While the overwhelming majority of families with young kids will be okay, we all do need to plan. You may never need this information at all, but having a plan in place should help you feel better prepared so you can sleep better.



 WHO's guide to taking care of someone with COVID 19 in your home. 

The CDC Get Your Home Ready  (Good but it doesn’t give many specifics for families.)

The CDC page of precautions for household members and partners. It includes things beyond washing hands giving more detailed information about wearing facemasks, discarding gloves, washing laundry and more. 

Creating a Plan. Things to consider: 

Think through caregiving and household responsibilities. Who’s cooking and caregiving for well/sick folks, and who’s walking the dog? Is there a backup person in case things get really crazy?

Think through food and medicine. Do I have enough supplies so I don’t have to go out? (See list below)  Are there folks who can deliver? 

Think through ways your kids can be of assistance. Can I teach my kids how to make a sandwich? Feed pets? Can kids help clean? Wipe down surfaces?  (Obviously only if they can do a good job.)

Think through space arrangements. How can you divide up your living space? Where will the healing space be set up? If you bedshare, or if kids share a room, how will it work if someone gets sick? Who will get the couch/basement/floor?  Is there a chair in the room that is six feet away from a healing bed?

Think through entertainment. Do you have enough screens for people to be entertained and work if folks can’t share? Is there good wi-fi in the healing space? Do you have the chargers ready to go?

Think through staying connected. If one parent isn’t getting time with a child, how can you increase some bonding? FaceTime, Zoom? 

Think through work issues. What things need to be done in order for people to rest?  Are there point people to take over work that you can set up in advance?

Medical and health supplies

Try to stock at least a 30-day supply of any needed prescriptions. If your insurance permits 90-day refills, that's even better. Make sure you also have over-the-counter medications and other health supplies on hand.

·               prescription medications

·               prescribed medical supplies such as glucose and blood-pressure monitoring equipment

·               fever and pain medicine, such as acetaminophen

·               cough drops

·               cold medicines

·               vitamin C or Emergen-C

·               antidiarrheal medication

·               thermometer

·               fluids with electrolytes (e.g., Pedialyte)

·               soap and alcohol-based hand sanitizer

·               masks or bandanas so that anyone who's sick or potentially infected can keep their face covered

·               tissues, toilet paper, disposable diapers, tampons, sanitary napkins

·               garbage bags.


Food. Consider keeping a two-week to 30-day supply of nonperishable food at home. These items can also come in handy in other types of emergencies, such as power outages or snowstorms.

·               canned meats, fruits, vegetables, and soups

·               frozen fruits, vegetables, and meat

·               protein or fruit bars

·               dry cereal, oatmeal, or granola

·               peanut butter or nuts

·               pasta, bread, rice, and other grains

·               canned beans

·               chicken broth, canned tomatoes, jarred pasta sauce

·               oil for cooking

·               flour, sugar

·               crackers

·               coffee, tea (plus lemon and ginger), shelf-stable milk, canned juices

·               bottled water

·               canned or jarred baby food and formula

·               pet food

·               household supplies like laundry detergent, dish soap, and household cleaner.


Let us know what we’re forgetting, especially if you’ve been there, done that. We’ll make this a page on the website and keep that updated with other things you might need.


From a PSP member who has been through it:

A few things I would add:

  • A neighbor willing to take out our trash (which we double bagged masked and gloved, and he took out gloved) was immensely helpful. Having your trash pile up in an BK apt for weeks on end is not realistic.
  • Also a close by neighbor or relative who can pick up grocery essentials and produce when they go to the store themselves. I have two mom friends within a block and any time either goes to the store they text and pick up odds and ends, and it’s such a relief.
  • And a friend who dropped off a lasagne was life changing. A step further than having the non perishable food in stock, would be having prepped actual home cooked meals (even if you pre freeze). It will be a game changer if you go through it. It’s like the mania and helplessness of newborn days but without outside help... plus the stress and anxiety of having a sick partner in the hospital and a toddler at home you have to care for and all while being isolated and worrying about getting sick yourself, or having gotten someone you love sick unknowingly. It’s a real mind fuck.
  • Also one thing I didn’t realize would be so incredibly taxing was calling everyone we possibly could have come into contact with and explaining all of the particulars over and over. (Including attempting to answer detailed medical questions I am by no means equipped to answer). As well as updating friends and family nonstop. The support is essential, but constant calls and texts are super draining. I ended up just setting up two or three group texts so I could update all at once.


Another member recommends:

[W]e should all have a go bag in case you need to go to the hospital — the bag is to hold your cell phone AND an external charger so that when your phone dies there’s a way to charge it enough to be in touch. This matters enormously as doctors and nurses do not have the time to look for a way to charge phones. ER docs she’s been working with  told my colleague this has been a really big help and has made patients able to talk with their families. Also important to include in the go bag is a sheet with your name and the contact information for anyone you want contacted and insurance information if you have that as well.


Hope some of this can be helpful for others. 



Knowledge is power on this one. Again, you may not need any of this, ever. If it’s in your back pocket, though, you’ll be able to react quickly and flatten the curve in implementing your plan. 






Susan Fox

Park Slope Parents