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Coronavirus prep

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  • AnnPT77AnnPT77 Member, Premium Posts: 16,700 Member Member, Premium Posts: 16,700 Member
    Here in Illinois, the governor's mandate has been overturned - the law only allows for a 30 day public health mandate, and it's been in effect for 3x that long - and after that, my workplace has finally requested that employees wear masks. Not that they're doing a particularly good job of enforcing it, though. Supervisors have been required to wear masks for at least a month, and they've been wearing them mostly on their chins, not covering any of their breathing holes. That seems to be about the level of compliance they're seeking with employees, too. There are 3 theories: 1) The employee that caught Covid19 (just one!) died... 2) It's to shut up the employees that are asking for hazard pay... 3) It's tied to some of our coworkers vacationing in states that a new mandate requires a 2 week quarantine when returning from (but there are exemptions for essential workers, anyway, and UPS is not giving an extra 2 weeks off work just to quarantine.)

    After the mask requirement at work (Wednesday) a union representative had a table set up by the door with a petition for hazard pay. So, that seems to point to theory #2. That doesn't mean we're not all curious whatever happened to the driver that got sick... If it's a breach of HIPAA to tell us if he's died, I guess passing a card and collecting donations for the widow would be, too. I don't socialize with the drivers, so I don't even know which one has been absent for the past 6 weeks.

    With coworkers vacationing in Florida and New Jersey and returning to work with their naked faces and lack of social distancing, it's a wonder that more of us haven't gotten sick. I stopped wearing my masks at the beginning of June, when it started being 90 degrees inside, and volume picked up so that we were working twice the hours. After all, my mask protects all those other jerks and their lack of mask doesn't protect me... The extra discomfort isn't worthwhile in those circumstances. I've taken to spending my breaks in place so that nobody comes within 6 feet to socialize with me. My antisocial tendencies are serving me well.

    Back in March, I asked not to work at the bay I had previously worked at, because there's no room to social distance, and my supervisors have mostly honored my request. But due to the nature of the work, we change bays as the trucks arrive, and at least once a week I spend at least half an hour less than 2 feet from the next guy. I still figure I'm more likely to bring it to work than catch it there - my husband still works at the hospital, after all - but they're no longer having daily briefings, and they've stopped telling him to expect to catch it.

    I have not used hand sanitizer a single time since this madness started. I do my best not to touch my face, but since I'm taking the mask off to drink water every 15 minutes or so, so I don't dehydrate, I don't think I'm doing a great job of that. There's a single large container of hand sanitizer next to the bathroom that it is not feasible to visit every time I have to unmask to drink - besides, if I'm Right There, I'll just go in and wash with soap. The best part of this whole mess is that we've had paper towels and soap regularly since March. That's where they keep the wipes, too. Guess how often the equipment gets wiped, then? The SHARED equipment. Yeah.

    Anyway, I guess think about that when you collect your packages from the front porch. We're choosing between keeping the PPE on, or keeping hydrated. The masks are definitely interfering with my hydration strategy.

    In my understanding (from HIPAA compliance education received a long time ago, when I was part of our university's implementation effort), HIPAA would not prevent a non-health-care employer from telling other employees that a co-worker had died. Employers are not a covered entity under HIPAA.
  • kimny72kimny72 Member Posts: 15,475 Member Member Posts: 15,475 Member
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    Here in Illinois, the governor's mandate has been overturned - the law only allows for a 30 day public health mandate, and it's been in effect for 3x that long - and after that, my workplace has finally requested that employees wear masks. Not that they're doing a particularly good job of enforcing it, though. Supervisors have been required to wear masks for at least a month, and they've been wearing them mostly on their chins, not covering any of their breathing holes. That seems to be about the level of compliance they're seeking with employees, too. There are 3 theories: 1) The employee that caught Covid19 (just one!) died... 2) It's to shut up the employees that are asking for hazard pay... 3) It's tied to some of our coworkers vacationing in states that a new mandate requires a 2 week quarantine when returning from (but there are exemptions for essential workers, anyway, and UPS is not giving an extra 2 weeks off work just to quarantine.)

    After the mask requirement at work (Wednesday) a union representative had a table set up by the door with a petition for hazard pay. So, that seems to point to theory #2. That doesn't mean we're not all curious whatever happened to the driver that got sick... If it's a breach of HIPAA to tell us if he's died, I guess passing a card and collecting donations for the widow would be, too. I don't socialize with the drivers, so I don't even know which one has been absent for the past 6 weeks.

    With coworkers vacationing in Florida and New Jersey and returning to work with their naked faces and lack of social distancing, it's a wonder that more of us haven't gotten sick. I stopped wearing my masks at the beginning of June, when it started being 90 degrees inside, and volume picked up so that we were working twice the hours. After all, my mask protects all those other jerks and their lack of mask doesn't protect me... The extra discomfort isn't worthwhile in those circumstances. I've taken to spending my breaks in place so that nobody comes within 6 feet to socialize with me. My antisocial tendencies are serving me well.

    Back in March, I asked not to work at the bay I had previously worked at, because there's no room to social distance, and my supervisors have mostly honored my request. But due to the nature of the work, we change bays as the trucks arrive, and at least once a week I spend at least half an hour less than 2 feet from the next guy. I still figure I'm more likely to bring it to work than catch it there - my husband still works at the hospital, after all - but they're no longer having daily briefings, and they've stopped telling him to expect to catch it.

    I have not used hand sanitizer a single time since this madness started. I do my best not to touch my face, but since I'm taking the mask off to drink water every 15 minutes or so, so I don't dehydrate, I don't think I'm doing a great job of that. There's a single large container of hand sanitizer next to the bathroom that it is not feasible to visit every time I have to unmask to drink - besides, if I'm Right There, I'll just go in and wash with soap. The best part of this whole mess is that we've had paper towels and soap regularly since March. That's where they keep the wipes, too. Guess how often the equipment gets wiped, then? The SHARED equipment. Yeah.

    Anyway, I guess think about that when you collect your packages from the front porch. We're choosing between keeping the PPE on, or keeping hydrated. The masks are definitely interfering with my hydration strategy.

    In my understanding (from HIPAA compliance education received a long time ago, when I was part of our university's implementation effort), HIPAA would not prevent a non-health-care employer from telling other employees that a co-worker had died. Employers are not a covered entity under HIPAA.

    My employer has told us they legally cannot tell us if a specific employee has tested positive because of medical privacy issues unless the employee in question authorized it. Whether or not that's HIPAA or some other legal requirement, I don't know. They can tell us someone anonymous tested positive, to explain why we have to quarantine for instance. If course as a small company it would be pretty easy to deduce!

    That someone died, and what they died of, is a matter of public record, isn't it? Or am I just used to people ignoring privacy requirements lol?
  • lokihenlokihen Member Posts: 234 Member Member Posts: 234 Member
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    Here in Illinois, the governor's mandate has been overturned - the law only allows for a 30 day public health mandate, and it's been in effect for 3x that long - and after that, my workplace has finally requested that employees wear masks. Not that they're doing a particularly good job of enforcing it, though. Supervisors have been required to wear masks for at least a month, and they've been wearing them mostly on their chins, not covering any of their breathing holes. That seems to be about the level of compliance they're seeking with employees, too. There are 3 theories: 1) The employee that caught Covid19 (just one!) died... 2) It's to shut up the employees that are asking for hazard pay... 3) It's tied to some of our coworkers vacationing in states that a new mandate requires a 2 week quarantine when returning from (but there are exemptions for essential workers, anyway, and UPS is not giving an extra 2 weeks off work just to quarantine.)

    After the mask requirement at work (Wednesday) a union representative had a table set up by the door with a petition for hazard pay. So, that seems to point to theory #2. That doesn't mean we're not all curious whatever happened to the driver that got sick... If it's a breach of HIPAA to tell us if he's died, I guess passing a card and collecting donations for the widow would be, too. I don't socialize with the drivers, so I don't even know which one has been absent for the past 6 weeks.

    With coworkers vacationing in Florida and New Jersey and returning to work with their naked faces and lack of social distancing, it's a wonder that more of us haven't gotten sick. I stopped wearing my masks at the beginning of June, when it started being 90 degrees inside, and volume picked up so that we were working twice the hours. After all, my mask protects all those other jerks and their lack of mask doesn't protect me... The extra discomfort isn't worthwhile in those circumstances. I've taken to spending my breaks in place so that nobody comes within 6 feet to socialize with me. My antisocial tendencies are serving me well.

    Back in March, I asked not to work at the bay I had previously worked at, because there's no room to social distance, and my supervisors have mostly honored my request. But due to the nature of the work, we change bays as the trucks arrive, and at least once a week I spend at least half an hour less than 2 feet from the next guy. I still figure I'm more likely to bring it to work than catch it there - my husband still works at the hospital, after all - but they're no longer having daily briefings, and they've stopped telling him to expect to catch it.

    I have not used hand sanitizer a single time since this madness started. I do my best not to touch my face, but since I'm taking the mask off to drink water every 15 minutes or so, so I don't dehydrate, I don't think I'm doing a great job of that. There's a single large container of hand sanitizer next to the bathroom that it is not feasible to visit every time I have to unmask to drink - besides, if I'm Right There, I'll just go in and wash with soap. The best part of this whole mess is that we've had paper towels and soap regularly since March. That's where they keep the wipes, too. Guess how often the equipment gets wiped, then? The SHARED equipment. Yeah.

    Anyway, I guess think about that when you collect your packages from the front porch. We're choosing between keeping the PPE on, or keeping hydrated. The masks are definitely interfering with my hydration strategy.

    So, here’s the thing about hand sanitizer. According to CDC guidelines, we are supposed to clean our hands when donning masks, and again before doffing them, and again after taking them off. Now, when I’m in my car, about to go into a grocery store, I don’t have soap and water, so hand sanitizer, it is. Put on the mask, sanitize. Do the shopping, sanitize. Check out? Sanitize. Get the groceries loaded? Sanitize and take the blasted mask off.

    People laugh at folks wearing their masks in their car on the highway and all I can think is that maybe they didn’t have sanitizer on them. 🤷‍♀️

    I wear mine in the car (on the highway or wherever) routinely, if I'm going from one place where I'll needed it to another place where I'll need it. Even as a glasses-wearing (easily-fogged) li'l ol' lady with early-stage COPD, it's not annoying or difficult enough wearing it that I want to fuss with touching my face or the mask to take it off and put it on. And I keep a bottle of hand sanitizer in the car, plus one of those tiny clip-on ones on my belt loop besides, and sanitize like it was a religious ritual. :lol:

    For anyone one even remotely healthy, I don't see how wearing a mask is any kind of big deal. 🤷‍♀️

    This is exactly the right reason to leave the mask on until you finish all the errands.
  • kimny72kimny72 Member Posts: 15,475 Member Member Posts: 15,475 Member
    kimny72 wrote: »
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    Here in Illinois, the governor's mandate has been overturned - the law only allows for a 30 day public health mandate, and it's been in effect for 3x that long - and after that, my workplace has finally requested that employees wear masks. Not that they're doing a particularly good job of enforcing it, though. Supervisors have been required to wear masks for at least a month, and they've been wearing them mostly on their chins, not covering any of their breathing holes. That seems to be about the level of compliance they're seeking with employees, too. There are 3 theories: 1) The employee that caught Covid19 (just one!) died... 2) It's to shut up the employees that are asking for hazard pay... 3) It's tied to some of our coworkers vacationing in states that a new mandate requires a 2 week quarantine when returning from (but there are exemptions for essential workers, anyway, and UPS is not giving an extra 2 weeks off work just to quarantine.)

    After the mask requirement at work (Wednesday) a union representative had a table set up by the door with a petition for hazard pay. So, that seems to point to theory #2. That doesn't mean we're not all curious whatever happened to the driver that got sick... If it's a breach of HIPAA to tell us if he's died, I guess passing a card and collecting donations for the widow would be, too. I don't socialize with the drivers, so I don't even know which one has been absent for the past 6 weeks.

    With coworkers vacationing in Florida and New Jersey and returning to work with their naked faces and lack of social distancing, it's a wonder that more of us haven't gotten sick. I stopped wearing my masks at the beginning of June, when it started being 90 degrees inside, and volume picked up so that we were working twice the hours. After all, my mask protects all those other jerks and their lack of mask doesn't protect me... The extra discomfort isn't worthwhile in those circumstances. I've taken to spending my breaks in place so that nobody comes within 6 feet to socialize with me. My antisocial tendencies are serving me well.

    Back in March, I asked not to work at the bay I had previously worked at, because there's no room to social distance, and my supervisors have mostly honored my request. But due to the nature of the work, we change bays as the trucks arrive, and at least once a week I spend at least half an hour less than 2 feet from the next guy. I still figure I'm more likely to bring it to work than catch it there - my husband still works at the hospital, after all - but they're no longer having daily briefings, and they've stopped telling him to expect to catch it.

    I have not used hand sanitizer a single time since this madness started. I do my best not to touch my face, but since I'm taking the mask off to drink water every 15 minutes or so, so I don't dehydrate, I don't think I'm doing a great job of that. There's a single large container of hand sanitizer next to the bathroom that it is not feasible to visit every time I have to unmask to drink - besides, if I'm Right There, I'll just go in and wash with soap. The best part of this whole mess is that we've had paper towels and soap regularly since March. That's where they keep the wipes, too. Guess how often the equipment gets wiped, then? The SHARED equipment. Yeah.

    Anyway, I guess think about that when you collect your packages from the front porch. We're choosing between keeping the PPE on, or keeping hydrated. The masks are definitely interfering with my hydration strategy.

    In my understanding (from HIPAA compliance education received a long time ago, when I was part of our university's implementation effort), HIPAA would not prevent a non-health-care employer from telling other employees that a co-worker had died. Employers are not a covered entity under HIPAA.

    My employer has told us they legally cannot tell us if a specific employee has tested positive because of medical privacy issues unless the employee in question authorized it. Whether or not that's HIPAA or some other legal requirement, I don't know. They can tell us someone anonymous tested positive, to explain why we have to quarantine for instance. If course as a small company it would be pretty easy to deduce!

    That someone died, and what they died of, is a matter of public record, isn't it? Or am I just used to people ignoring privacy requirements lol?

    As I understand it death certificates aren’t public until a certain number of years have passed. Will have to look that up.

    Edit: looked it up, and it varies by state, but it’s usually 25 years before a death certificate becomes a matter of public record. In the case of Alaska, 50 years. Tennessee, they are usually closed, period - although I have relatives from Tennessee whose death certificates I have in their Ancestry files, so it just seems to be patchy.

    In practice a death certificate can tell you a lot. I have a great uncle Felix who died before I was born, and I never knew anything about him or what kind of person he was. His death certificate revealed that he died of cirrhosis of the liver subsequent to alcoholism.

    Interesting!
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