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BREAKING: Americans want their sense of normalcy back - but not at the cost of people’s lives. Today 20 bipartisan health care leaders and I joined forces to outline how our government can #OpenSafely amid COVID-19. 1/…
Experts Mark McClellan, @EricTopol, @juliettekayyem, @cmyeatom, @DrLeanaWen, @T_Inglesby, @Bill_George, @bfrist, @DavidBrailer and others (tagged in pic) built this plan because Americans don’t need to choose between a good economy and the public’s health. They go together. 2/
Despite efforts by some to turn COVID-19 into a partisan political football, Americans have sacrificed with great unity to reduce the infection rate, support our front line health care workers, and save lives and are equally unified in wanting to #OpenSafely. 3/
#OpenSafely means following the plan laid out by Dr. Birx to begin opening communities after two weeks of declining #COVID19 cases. For states that have opened, it also means states must develop containment plans should infection rates increase. 4/
#OpenSafely means ensuring diagnostic testing is available for every single American who needs a test - particularly people with symptoms and high-risk professions like nurses and corrections officers. 5/…
#OpenSafely means new safety standards to avoid outbreaks & reduce spreading in potential hot spots. It means protecting others & yourself by wearing masks - and ensuring first responders have enough #PPE to meet the demands of nationwide testing. 6/…
#OpenSafely means contact tracing and voluntary isolation to contain the virus when it is detected. This @USofCare report card looks at the state of contact tracing nationwide, and what we can do to improve critical testing infrastructure. 7/…
#OpenSafely means protecting vulnerable and high-risk populations and hard-hit communities and not putting essential workers or people required to work at greater risk than anyone else. 8/
#OpenSafely means states must monitor hospitalizations and hospital capacity and be prepared to immediately pause or dial back reopening efforts. The lag between infection and hospitalization can be 8 days or more, so there is no time to waste if hospitalizations increase. 9/
#OpenSafely means making progress in ways that reduce transmission, like widespread use of masks, surge hospital capacity, screenings in offices and public spaces, continuous monitoring using syndromic surveillance tools, coordinating with neighboring states, & telemedicine. 10/
Following our #OpenSafely guidelines means we can begin opening up critical services like doctors’ offices and surgery centers, outdoor spaces, and retail spaces where people don’t congregate in large numbers or for extended periods. 11/
Our #OpenSafely guidelines also mean we can end one of the most painful aspects of #COVID19: the inability to attend small weddings and funerals for our loved ones, as long as they are in outdoor settings and people respect distancing guidelines. 12/
Our #OpenSafely guidelines mean some activities should only open up under modified conditions, depending on local factors: day care centers, summer camps and youth sports, restaurants, schools, movie theaters, and colleges and universities. 13/
Large gatherings like concerts are still not suggested. We should still #StayHome as much as possible. You can monitor how your state is doing on a variety of measures here:
Americans want to remain united in the fight against COVID-19, just as we were after 9/11. We can do this with smart policies and committed actions. The #OpenSafely plan is our path for bringing Americans together to save the most lives while returning to normal. 15/
Read the full op-ed in the @usatoday here: 16/16
And of course thanks to @cmyeaton who was and is a big driver to #OpenSafely. (Despite my bad keystroke!)
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