Massage & Bodywork

COVID 2020

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Eventually, most of our population will have been exposed to the virus in one way or another. For the best chances of survival and recovery, we want that spread to happen as slowly as possible. As of now, a typical person with SARS-Co-2 virus will pass the infection to about three other people. Those people pass it along to three others, and then three more for each person, and so forth. Numbers of new COVID-19 infections will begin to drop only when that pass-along rate is less than one. We can achieve that goal in a few ways: by strict physical distancing; with a vaccine; and by limiting who goes out in public according to their infection status. But we can't know about infection status without appropriate testing, and lots of it. Staging Your Practice When business restrictions related to COVID-19 are lifted, massage therapists will have to make some important decisions about their work. Without extensive testing and/or an effective vaccine, they will not know their immune status. This would make working with potentially vulnerable clients both unsafe and unethical. Our elected officials may not make this judgment, however, and they may prematurely invite massage practices back into business. But as I mentioned your government doesn't understand your work. It is vital that people who are unfamiliar with massage do not make the final decisions about our safety—for us or for our clients. That's our job. No one is going to tell us how to do it, and we need to take it seriously. It's impossible to predict what it will look like for massage therapists to get a green light on going back into practice—and whether that green light should actually mean "go." I have heard some colleagues discuss a phase-in opening process, and I think this is an excellent idea. The first phase of reopening could happen when new infection rates are falling, and viral testing is fast, accurate, and accessible. At this point, I recommend that massage therapists open their practices only

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