Sandusky Co. Public Health urges residents to wear face masks

By: 
Press Staff Writer

        Sandusky County Public Health is urging residents to wear facial coverings in certain settings to help curb the spread of COVID-19.
        “We strongly recommend residents wear a face covering when they are interacting with others who are not members of their household in public and private spaces,” says Health Commissioner Bethany Brown. This includes the following areas:
        • Inside public spaces or waiting in line to enter public spaces, such as stores or pharmacies;
        • Picking up food from a drive-thru or curbside pickup;
        • Visiting health care providers;
        • In common areas of buildings, such as hallways, stairways and elevators;
        • Working in any space where food is being prepared and/or packaged for sale.
        Brown is strongly recommending retail and grocery stores continue to have employees wear cloth face coverings and encourage customers to wear masks or face coverings too. Employers retain the right to refuse admission or service to any customer or visitor who refuses to wear a facial covering and are encouraged to post signs at entrances to remind customers of the requirement to wear face covering.
        “COVID-19 is spreading throughout the community and everyone needs to do their part to help prevent its spread,” Brown said. “We must continue to protect the high-risk individuals who are most vulnerable to this highly contagious virus – the elderly, immunocompromised and chronically ill. We are responsible for protecting our families, friends, and neighbors.”
        As of July 8, 2020, there have been 138 coronavirus cases, and 40 hospitalizations and 14 deaths related to COVID-19 in Sandusky County.
        “Many people continue to go about their business and not know they have the virus, since many may have only mild or slight symptoms. It is our most vulnerable population that is being most affected; our continued goal is to protect those friends and family members,” Brown said.
        “Wearing a cloth face covering is done to protect those around you if you are infected, but do not yet show symptoms of COVID-19,” she said. “When you wear a cloth face covering, make sure you can easily breathe through it, that it covers your nose and mouth, and wash it after each use.”
        “These are difficult times for all, and we want to encourage families to spend time outdoors such as walking, hiking, running, or bicycling. None of us want to be locked indoors all summer.” says Brown. “And while facial coverings are not required during physical activities, we do ask individuals to carry one with them and to practice physical distancing when on sidewalks and the bike trail.”
        She also reminded area families that, as they engage in summer activities, to continue to do their part to keep the community healthy with continued social distancing and handwashing, as well as wearing face coverings.
        Sandusky County Public Health is reminding everyone that cloth face coverings are not a substitute for social distancing and should not encourage a false sense of security. Social distancing, staying at least 6 feet away, is still needed. Face coverings are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water. “We all need to assume that every person you encounter is potentially spreading this virus,” Brown said.

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