on Friday, August 21, 2020
Bringing you a "behind the scenes" look at how it's going with each COVID-19 precaution we are taking. Today we'd like to talk about face masks - how to properly wear one, when to wear one, and why is it so important?
How do you properly wear a face mask? A face mask should cover your face from the bridge of your nose to under your chin. It should fit securely with no gaps and should not irritate you to limit the temptation of touching or pulling on it.
When do I need to wear a mask? According to the CDC, masks should be worn at all times when around other people, except when you are alone in your office with the door shut, driving alone in your car, or at home with your own family. The need to wear a mask increases when you cannot maintain the social distance of six-feet that we discussed in our last email.
Why is it so important? It's important to note, people infected with COVID-19 without symptoms (either asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic) can transmit the virus to others. If worn properly, a face mask can prevent the spread of the virus by containing small droplets released from the mouth from breathing, talking, sneezing, or coughing.
How it's been going for us. With your help, and the help of our community, we have received over 3,000 face mask donations! This amazing opportunity you have helped provide, has made it possible for us to distribute all staff and people we serve with at least two face masks of their own.
We are highly impressed with how well our staff and the people we serve have done wearing these masks, including the little ones 2 and up at the Hawkeye Child Development Center - ALC (HCDC-ALC).
For the child care teachers at the HCDC-ALC, they share getting 2-5 year-olds to wear their masks all day long can be a bit of a challenge. So, our staff had to get creative! Through reading many social stories and keeping conversations open to help reassure the little ones about their worries, staff have been able to successfully implement this precaution. Something we find imperative to being able to keep the child care center open.
Our day habilitation, employment services, and residential programs have been wearing masks whenever they are around others and cannot maintain a good social distance. When in the office, our staff are asked to wear face masks whenever they leave their office, or if their office door is open.
Many of the persons we serve are at a higher risk of complications if they contract COVID-19. Seeing our fellow community members consistently wearing masks, makes it safer for us take part in activities we enjoy in our community.
We recognize risk factors and/or comfort levels will vary person to person. At the same time, one person's decision effects the whole. Wearing a mask is just one of the ways we can look out for each other.
Let's keep working together and we thank you for helping us keep everyone we care about safe.
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You can also visit our COVID-19 Response on our website for the most up-to-date information.