You and your family have taken steps to stay safe, like staying at home and practicing social distancing. When stay-at-home orders are lifted in your state, you may have questions about your safety and what to do next.
To empower you to keep yourself and your loved ones healthy and well, we’re offering guidance on important health considerations as your state — and the nation — reopens.
1. Rest Assured You Can Get In-Person Health Care
We want to assure you that it’s safe to get back on track with your in-person health care appointments, especially if you’ve delayed a procedure. For all your health care needs, we’re here to care for you in person, and we’ve taken extra measures to keep you safe at every appointment.
Nothing is more important to us than you. To make sure you can get in-person health care safely, we are:
- Caring for patients who are sick in separate areas
- Performing temperature screening at facility entrances
- Regularly checking employees for fever
- Requiring everyone (including patients) to wear face masks
- Practicing social distancing in waiting rooms (look for floor markings, seat covers and clear protective shields near the receptionist)
2. Follow Guidance From Local Authorities
Not all states are reopening at once. Your local health authorities at state and county levels will advise you whether you need to continue to shelter at home or whether your community is beginning to reopen. It’s important to heed your city authority’s guidance about going out in the community to keep yourself and your family healthy and well. Your local and state health authorities will advise you when stay-at-home orders no longer apply.
3. Continue to Practice Social Distancing
Unfortunately, the environment won’t automatically be free from coronavirus once stay-at-home orders are lifted. Because the virus won’t simply go away when states reopen, it’s important to continue practicing all the measures that have kept you safe thus far.
- To stay safe as you venture out into the community, continue to practice social distancing. This means:
- Avoiding visiting or having close contact with people who are sick
- Avoiding in-person gatherings or events for now
- Primarily see friends and family virtually, instead of in-person
- Staying 6 feet away from other people
- Wearing your cloth face covering in public
4. COVID-19 Immunity Is Still Unknown
Right now, health experts don’t have enough information to say for sure whether people who have COVID-19 and recover are immune to the virus or are still at risk of becoming sick again in the future. To learn more, read what we know so far about antibodies and immunity to COVID-19.
The Middle East respiratory syndrome-coronavirus (MERS-CoV), another disease from the coronavirus family of viruses, showed up in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and spread to several other countries, including the United States. According to the CDC, people who were infected with MERS-CoV were not likely to become reinfected shortly after they recovered.
MERS-CoV is from the same family of viruses as the current strain of coronavirus, so immunity may work in the same way. But there is not yet enough information to know for sure, the CDC says.
Some health authorities are hopeful about the potential for people to become immune to repeated COVID-19 infections after contracting and recovering from it. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), said during his recent testimony to Congress, “We haven’t formally proved it, but it’s strongly likely that if this acts like any other virus — once you recover, you won’t get reinfected.”
5. Do Your Part to Prevent a Resurgence
Currently, it’s unclear whether there will be a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the near future. However, slowing the spread of coronavirus is everyone’s responsibility. As your state reopens, please continue to do your part to slow the spread of the virus, flatten the curve and prevent a resurgence by:
- Continuing social distancing practices
- Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces
- Covering coughs and sneezes
- Staying home if you’re sick
- Washing your hands often or using hand sanitizer
- Wearing your cloth face covering often
Nothing Is More Important to Us Than You
As states reopen, we encourage you to continue practicing social distancing and know that we’re here to care for all your health needs, safely. When you need care, we’re ready to meet your needs. Find a doctor near you today.