The value of masks
Napa County reopens golf courses with new rules in place
There are encouraging signs that California’s mandatory shelter-in-place rules are easing, but businesses won’t reopen all at once and when they do open people will need to continue taking safety precautions.
Gov. Gavin Newsom has lifted restrictions on life-saving medical procedures, such as surgeries to remove tumors or implant heart valves, but non-essential procedures like plastic surgery are still prohibited.
Another example of “return to normal” comes from Napa County, which is allowing golf courses to reopen albeit with new rules. For example, golfers can only play as a two-some instead of the usual four-some. And golfers practicing at driving ranges must stay 10 feet apart.
Despite the small steps, don’t expect things to go back the way they were anytime soon, Newsom warned.
That sentiment is echoed by Santa Clara County health director Sara Cody, who said on April 23 that “this pandemic is going to be with us for a very, very, very long time. We know that we do not have immunity in the population nor do we have a vaccine. So, any time that we let up on our mitigation measures we are going to expect to see a spike in cases, hospitalizations and deaths. That is certain.”
It’s a dicey situation, with political leaders and health officials trying to balance the need to save lives and save the economy.
That’s why Good Samaritan Hospital’s Dr. Noor Sachdev says people returning to work must adhere to strict rules.
“It’s really important to maintain social distancing at work,” he said. “Keep at least six feet apart, minimize your conversations and still wear masks. And if you become symptomatic in any way you have to leave work right away; you cannot stay on the job.”
Sanitation must also be top-of-mind.
“Wash your hands at work because you’ll all be touching the same doorknobs. Those things will need to be cleaned and make sure your workstation is thoroughly cleaned. Just pay extra attention to those things,” Dr. Sachdev said.
The same technology that has allowed many Silicon Valley workers to remain on-the-job can be utilized in large work situations, too, the doctor said.
“Even if you’re at work it would be good to work remotely using the technologies we have for meetings and such,” he said. “I would not recommend meetings in a big room — I think those days are over, to be honest with you, because the risk is too high. Those are considered super-spreaders.”
When businesses do reopen, shaking hands would still be a no-no and sharing papers should be discouraged, Dr. Sachdev said.
“As an employer you have to really educate your people. Each employee has to take this very seriously. It’s kind of a privilege for them to go back to work,” he said. “If they don’t (follow the rules) they need to be sent home. Employers need to be very rigorous in terms of how they monitor because if one person has COVID and they get the rest of your workers sick then your work is done. It’s over. If you can phase workers in, I think that will be the best way of doing it rather than bringing back everybody at one time.”
Dr. Sachdev went on to say, “We cannot afford a rebound. That would be so costly and would hurt the economy much more. It would mean we’d have a much longer shelter-in-place.”
He urged people to be patient and said, “Remember this is community over self right now.”
Precautions that employers can take
Back to work safety tips
Stay Informed. Join Us.
San Jose Dr. Nivedita Lakhera points out that the “economy cannot thrive on dead bodies. We need human beings to create the economy, to sustain the economy.
Dr. Lakhera argues that “we should save lives because that’s what makes an economy. You need people to buy the stuff corporations sell.”Read More
While there are many negatives resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, there are also countless good impacts that people are seeing every day.
Perhaps the most noticeable thing is clear skies: from China to Italy and across the United States, reduced traffic has resulted in reduced air pollution.Read More
COVID-19: the rationing of healthcare should not be a concern if we continue to abide by stay at home orders
California healthcare providers are reminded that healthcare discrimination is prohibited in the U.S. There’s also a good set of guidelines that physicians follow. Santa Clara County is working hard to ensure that such decisions will be unnecessary, but there won’t be a need for such a decision if we all abide by stay at home orders.Read More
The COVID-19 financial impacts are already well-documented, but now the mental health impacts are being scrutinized. Dr. Nivedita Lakhera described the mental health impacts she’s seeing as an “emerging epidemic.”Read More
In response to news reports, the COVID-19 Community Coalition is urging Governor Newsom to deny nursing homes and assisted living facilities immunity to COVID-19 legal action. The New York Times is reporting that at least 7,000 people living in or connected with nursing homes have died of the coronavirus and more than 36,500 residents and employees across the nation have contracted it.Read More
The San Jose-based COVID-19 Community Coalition urges all Americans to join in paying tribute to the courage and bravery of those serving on the Coronavirus front line battle.Read More