COVID-19 Response Sheets

What to consider when talking about Covid-19 (Coronavirus).

News about COVID-19 is unavoidable right now.

For the last two weeks, our team has been fielding questions about how offices should respond to the outbreak. It’s difficult for us to know exactly what you should (or should not) say. Our clients are all over the country and are dealing with entirely different situations based on the local news, local infections, local health officials – or even how they personally feel about current events.

We completely understand that your response is personal, and how your office responds is entirely up to you. Of course, we can’t tell you exactly how to respond but we can help in a few other ways.

We’ve taken dozens of news releases, parsed out the fluff, and rewritten the content to be helpful for you. Additionally, we’ve written helpful guidelines to use as you consider talking about COVID-19.

We hope your office will find this helpful.

General Communication Guidelines

  • Most people just want to know, specifically, what you’re doing to keep them safe — not general recommendations.
  • If you’re telling your staff to stay home, and you’re paying them to stay home, it’s important to mention.
  • Don’t make promises you can’t keep. If you’re not actually doing anything differently, don’t say you are.
  • Be as clear as possible about sterilization. For example, we’ve seen messages saying “…we use all the same sterilization policies that hospitals use for open heart surgery” — while it’s true that you’re sterilizing your equipment to the same degree, it’s misleading because a surgical theater is going to be much more sterile than any doctor’s office.
  • If you talk about the CDC guidelines, link to them (here). There’s no need to spell those out individually.
  • It doesn’t matter if you’re calling it coronavirus or COVID-19 – just pick one and stick with it.
  • Keep your messaging short and to the point. The longer the message, the less likely your clients and patients are to read it and less likely they are to believe you.

Additional Resources

There are some great resources out there that we have seen for how to address Covid-19. If you’re interested, check out the following links. They include graphics, shareable information, and also the updated information that our team won’t be able to cover overtime.

Where should we talk about this?

This message works best in an email to existing patients — it’s not something you’d necessarily want share on social media. Frankly, everything your patients are seeing on social media right now is fear-based and exhausting. Our goal is NOT to tell people what to do, but to ensure them that you are doing everything YOU can for the safety of their families.

Additionally, this information should live offline. It’s a good idea to train your team on how to respond if someone asks what your business is doing to protect them. Having a good, consistent answer is always reassuring.

What should we say?

It’s difficult for us to know exactly what you should say. As we said earlier, each office will be experiencing something different and will have different opinions about what they are comfortable communicating.

However, we have taken the dozens of press releases we’ve gotten, analyzed and rewritten them to make as much sense as possible for our clients.

There’s no way to miss COVID-19 in the news, and if it were me, I’d want to know what health care providers in the area were doing in their offices.  It’s something that we are keeping a close eye on — and something we want you to feel assured that we are going above and beyond to address in our office.While there have been no reported cases of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in our area, this virus has been rapidly spreading in other parts of the country.

We have taken appropriate and necessary precautions for the safety and well-being of our patients and families. Specifically, we are following Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and checklists for patients who may have coronavirus.

There’s no way to miss COVID-19 in the news, and if it were me, I’d want to know what health care providers in the area were doing in their offices. Because there have been a few reported cases of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in our area, we want you to feel assured that we are going above and beyond to address in our office.

We have taken appropriate and necessary precautions for the safety and well-being of our patients and families. Specifically, we are following Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and checklists for patients who may have coronavirus.

Taking these guidelines a step further, we have also instructed any team member who feels ill, in any way, to stay home during this time (with pay, of course). What we’ve always done in our office is to practice similar sterilization policies that hospitals use for surgery. All of our tools and utensils are thoroughly sterilized to the highest standards.  Additionally, we disinfect our working surfaces after every patient.

In addition to clinical sterilization, we take the environment you are in seriously. We already had a robust disinfectant regiment for all our nonclinical areas. However, due to COVID-19, we have doubled our efforts to disinfect all doors, bathrooms, and the waiting areas.

Here’s what you can do to help us prevent the spread of this virus:

If you think your child may have coronavirus (fever over 100.0 degrees AND cough AND recent travel to an area with known coronavirus activity OR exposure to someone known to have coronavirus), please call to reschedule your appointment.

Please try to limit the visitors inside our clinic to only the patient and a parent or guardian. Grandparents, healthy siblings, and other family members should remain at home or in the family vehicle (with appropriate supervision) whenever possible.

NO DELAY:

Even with all these extra precautions, we’re proud to say we expect no extra wait time for your appointment.

MINOR DELAY:

Because of these precautions we are taking, you may experience a longer wait to be seen. Please understand that we are committed to keeping your children and family members as healthy as possible! Thank you for your patience.

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