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Just as meeting certain health metrics allowed Illinois to move to Phase 4, health metrics may also trigger a return to a prior phase if we are not careful.
Keep in mind that COVID-19 is NOT the same thing as the flu. The only thing COVID-19 and flu patients have in common are some of the symptoms. COVID-19 is far deadlier and more contagious. And there is no vaccine or effective treatment for COVID-19...yet.
So as scientists around the world work on developing a vaccine and viable treatment for this insidious disease, it is critical for businesses and individuals to follow current CDC and OSHA guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19. For instance, during Phase 4 Masks and physical distancing are still the norm.
Government officials through public health care agencies have promised to closely monitor key metrics to immediately identify trends in cases and hospitalizations to determine whether a return to a prior phase may become necessary. The last thing we want to do is squander the sacrifices that we have all made over the past five months. Follow these simple precautions to stay safe:
Chicago Athletic Clubs are using these engineering controls, administrative controls, cleaning and disinfecting routines and personal protective equipment (PPE) necessary to keep employees and members safe:
Engineering controls –
Administrative controls –
Cleaning and disinfecting –
Per the CDC, COVID-19 spreads mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises their voice (e.g., while shouting, chanting, or singing). These droplets can possibly be inhaled into the lungs and infect persons nearby. Recent studies show that a significant portion of individuals with COVID-19 are pre-symptomatic and can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms or even “asymptomatic” (people who may have the virus and do not know it).
Masks provide protection against larger respiratory droplets - this will slow the spread of the virus and help those who are pre-symptomatic or asymptomatic from transmitting it to others. However, masks may also give employees and members a false sense of security and lead them to think they are “safe” or cannot catch the virus if wearing one of these masks.
Masks are most likely to reduce the spread of COVID-19 when they are used by everyone. An important note is that masks ARE NOT a substitute for physical distancing. To use a mask properly:
The spread of COVID-19 can be reduced when masks are used along with other preventive measures, including:
Information from the CDC web site updated June 28, 2020: Use of Masks to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19
COVID-19 affects different people in different ways. Infected people have had a wide range of symptoms reported – from mild symptoms to severe illness.
Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
Look for emergency warning signs for COVID-19. If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately:
Stay home if you are sick! Self-isolate and contact primary care provider (PCP) as soon as possible.
The CDC is learning more about COVID-19 every day, and, as new information becomes available, the CDC updates its guidelines. Previously the CDC recommended that persons who tested positive for COVID-19 or those who were presumed COVID-19+ by their healthcare provider should self-quarantine for 14 days. Updated guidelines now allow persons to end self-quarantine and return to work well before the previously recommended 14-day period.
Updated CDC recommendations for discontinuing isolation for persons known to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 may appear to conflict with CDC recommendations on when to discontinue quarantine for persons who have only been exposed to the virus. However, recommends for how long to quarantine after exposure are based on the time it takes to develop COVID-19 if infected. Therefore, it is possible that a person who is infected could leave isolation earlier than a person who may be infected after exposure.
Persons with COVID-19 who have mild to moderate symptoms may discontinue isolation if all of the following conditions are met:
Note the previous recommendation was to remain at home at least 72 hours after no fever and respiratory symptoms improved.
A limited number of persons with severe illness may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days, which may warrant extending duration of isolation and precautions for up to 20 days after symptom onset. Infection control experts should make this determination.)
Persons infected with SARS-CoV-2 who never develop COVID-19 symptoms may discontinue isolation and other precautions 10 days after the date of their first positive COVID-19 test.
A test-based strategy could be considered in consultation with infectious diseases experts for persons who are severely immunocompromised. A test-based strategy is no longer recommended except to discontinue isolation or other precautions earlier than would occur under the symptom-based strategy for all others.
Information from the following CDC sites updated July 20, 2020: Duration of Isolation and Precautions for Adults with COVID-19 or Discontinuation of Isolation for Persons with COVID-19 Not in Healthcare Settings