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How To Safely Get Takeout In The Coronavirus Era

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Whether to order takeout used to be an easy question to answer. Not enough food in the fridge? Get takeout.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Don't feel like cooking? Get takeout.

CHANG: Running short on time? Takeout.

KELLY: But now the question has become complicated. In most states, restaurants have been ordered to shut their doors to dine-in customers to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

CHANG: Which leaves takeout - but is ordering it safe?

KELLY: So according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the answer is generally yes. There is currently no evidence that the virus can be transmitted by food.

CHANG: It's spread by respiratory droplets, so the biggest risk of getting takeout is the contact you might have with other people. So many restaurants are taking extra precautions, such as no-contact pickup and delivery, which protects both you and the delivery worker.

KELLY: Now, once you have your food, you will want to throw away any packaging that it comes in. According to the CDC, it is possible you can get sick from touching a surface that has the virus on it.

CHANG: Once you're done, wash your hands thoroughly - and bon appetit.

(SOUNDBITE OF STACEY KENT SONG, "NEVER LET ME GO") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.