Important update: Healthcare facilities
CDC has updated select ways to operate healthcare systems effectively in response to COVID-19 vaccination. Learn more
To maximize protection from the Delta variant and prevent possibly spreading it to others, get vaccinated as soon as you can and wear a mask indoors in public if you are in an area of substantial or high transmission.
UPDATE
Given new evidence on the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant, CDC has updated the guidance for fully vaccinated people. CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. Children should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with layered prevention strategies in place.
UPDATE
The White House announced that vaccines will be required for international travelers coming into the United States, with an effective date of November 8, 2021. For purposes of entry into the United States, vaccines accepted will include FDA approved or authorized and WHO Emergency Use Listing vaccines. More information is available here.

Rodent Control

Rodent Control
Updated May 21, 2020

Jurisdictions have closed or limited service at restaurants and other commercial establishments to help limit the spread of COVID-19. Rodents rely on the food and waste generated by these establishments. Community-wide closures have led to a decrease in food available to rodents, especially in dense commercial areas. Some jurisdictions have reported an increase in rodent activity as rodents search for new sources of food. Environmental health and rodent control programs may see an increase in service requests related to rodents and reports of unusual or aggressive rodent behavior.

Eliminate Conditions That Attract Rodents

A brown rat sniffs at the opening of a burlap bag.

Follow established guidelines when cleaning up after rodent infestations to prevent exposure to rodent-borne diseases.

During rodent-related service calls and inspections, environmental health practitioners should advise residents and business owners to eliminate conditions that may attract and support rodent presence. Preventive actions include sealing up access into homes and businesses, removing debris and heavy vegetation, keeping garbage in tightly covered bins, and removing pet and bird food from their yards.

Monitor Rodent Populations

After natural disasters like hurricanes, communities often experience a decline in rodent populations, followed by an increase in rodent populations as commercial activity returns to normal. Environmental health programs should continue rodent monitoring and control activities after these events.

Rodent bait stations may become a more attractive food source for rodents, so stations may need to be serviced more often. It is important to monitor rodent activity during this time and develop indicators to help inform rodent control strategies. Integrated Pest Management: Conducting Urban Rodent Surveyspdf icon and Rodent Control After a Disaster provide useful information on monitoring rodents.

Clean Up after Rodents

Follow established guidelines when cleaning up after rodent infestations to prevent exposure to rodent-borne diseases. Fleas are common on rodents. In areas of heavy rodent infestations, workers should consider using a repellant registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as effective against fleas to prevent flea bites and minimize exposure to fleaborne disease.

Learn more about clean-up methods and personal protective equipment for protecting health and safety during clean-up operations.

Additional information on controlling rodents from EPA: https://www.epa.gov/rodenticidesexternal icon