Switzerland issues handshake and hanky rules

Used tissues belong in waste bins with lids, say Swiss health authorities. Keystone / Miguel Villagran

The Swiss federal authorities have issued three new rules to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. Currently there are 42 confirmed cases in Switzerland.

This content was published on March 2, 2020 minutes

The measures – effective immediately – include avoiding handshakes, disposing of used tissues in a sealed waste bin, and phoning the doctor’s office first rather than showing up in person. This doubles the number of official Swiss health rules to six:


Last week, the Federal Office of Public HealthExternal link issued the first three: wash your hands thoroughly, stay home if you have a fever and a cough, and cough and sneeze into a paper tissue or the crook of your arm, as demonstrated in this video: 

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The Swiss government took an unprecedented measure last Friday to take over powers from the cantonal authorities to ban large gatherings in order to contain the spread of the virus.

The health office has also opened a coronavirus hotline that is answered 24 hours a day: +41 58 463 00 00. Its website offers detailed information and videos on how people can protect themselves and others from illness.

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