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COVID-19: Ohio Businesses Can Use This Playbook As They Reopen

May 12, 2020

As we continue to navigate living with COVID-19, Ohio Medical Group and North Ohio Heart want to help reopen businesses and reassure customers. We’re proud to be part of University Hospitals and the experts there have put together a “Healthy Restart Playbook.” It’s a resource that workplaces in Ohio can reference as they restart their businesses. The restart of our economy comes as good news; but also with caution. 

Ever since Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine issued the first “stay at home” order in March, non-essential businesses were forced to close. As hard as it was to close the doors, it’s going to be a challenging task for Ohio business owners to reopen and ensure their employees and customers are safe. Ease in restrictions carries a risk that the number of COVID-19 cases could grow.

Here are a few tips from the University Hospitals playbook. It’s good advice on COVID-19 that Ohio Medical Group and North Ohio Heart wants you to have, in addition to the steps we are already taking. 

Follow Guidelines From Ohio Health Officials

As you reopen, following the recommendations from Gov. DeWine and The Ohio Department of Health is a good place to start. Director of the Ohio Department of Health Dr. Amy Acton is urging businesses to stay vigilant as they reopen, and consider it as a “loosening” of the strict stay-at-home restrictions that were in place. Some of the recommendations include: 

  • Establish a core team to focus on your company’s revival plan ƒ
  • Determine the appropriate and required protective gear for employees ƒ 
  • Consider adopting a detailed screening protocol ƒ 
  • Communicate company policy for return-to-work criteria ƒ 
  • Work with experts to implement recommended physical distancing in your business and reconfigure common areas, as needed ƒ 

The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. These steps, and others that you’ll find in the playbook, are designed to limit exposure among employees and customers.

Keeping Customers Safe

The playbook also offers many tips to keep your customers safe as they return to your businesses. They include:

  • Providing customers screening criteria for your business via your website so they can do self-assessment before they come to your business (e.g. reminder to bring/wear a mask) ‡ 
  • Placing clear signage at the entrance about mask recommendations and social distancing requirements‡
  • Adopting safe food and product handling protocols ‡
  • Implementing cashless transactions where possible

There are other recommendations in the playbook you can use, but following these guidelines gives you a good plan of attack. 

Reactivating Different Types of Businesses

The playbook also contains information and recommendations on how to reopen specific types of businesses. They include:

  • Retail
  • Office
  • Manufacturers

Each business will face its own unique set of challenges as it tries to reopen amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The advice includes tips on proper screening, hand-washing and mask-wearing in different settings.

The State of Ohio has been a leader in the battle against coronavirus. A plan to combat the virus was put in place long before the number of confirmed cases in Ohio started to grow. There will be more cases of COVID-19 and additional deaths as businesses start to reopen, but all of the information in the playbook is designed to help keep those numbers down. 

It’s important to point out that this playbook is intended as an informational resource for employers. As you seek to responsibly reopen, you should use the playbook for informational and educational purposes only. This playbook should not be used as a replacement for medical or legal advice, but we’re happy to share it with you. 

If you’re interested in seeing the University Hospitals “Healthy Restart Playbook,” please click on the link.