No, you don't need toilet paper: Here's what health leaders say you do need if you're quarantining

Posted at 6:06 PM, Mar 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-13 18:29:06-04

SUFFOLK, Va. - People are piling up their grocery carts, preparing for what could be next as the number of positive cases of coronavirus in the state continues to increase.

"If we had to self-quarantine for a month or so, then we are pretty much ready,” said Hillard Frie.

A woman who works next to the Food Lion on S. Church Street in Suffolk tells News 3 she’s seen it all.

“There was a lady this morning walking past the window, and she had several cases of toilet paper and tissue stacked trying to make it to her car,” says Lee Gearitty.

Leaders with the Virginia Department of Health said you don’t need toilet paper.

“I can’t really understand why people are buying toilet paper off the shelves like crazy. For this virus and this disease, there is no specific reason why you would be buying toilet paper in mass quantity,” said William Drewery.

Drewery is the Emergency Planner with the Western Tidewater Health District.

According to Drewery, here are some things you do need if you are preparing to self-quarantine or stay indoors:

· Non-perishable items like canned goods.
· Fresh fruits and vegetables
· Pick up prescriptions at your local pharmacy or request a mail-in order
· Pick up a first aid kit
· Games and activities to keep children occupied

Drewery says preparing to quarantine is like preparing for a natural disaster.

“You should always maintain a state of preparedness, but especially when some kind of hazard comes along, whether it be a hurricane or some unknown virus we are dealing with. Now you should always maintain that constant state of preparedness; it’s a great idea,” he adds.