Dear Big Bend Residents,
As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise across our region, we need you to take the pandemic seriously in order to slow its spread.
Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare (TMH) has utilized a predictive model for COVID-19 case projections developed by the University of Pennsylvania Medical School called CHIME (COVID-19 Hospital Impact Model of Epidemics). After inputting information specific to our hospital, population and current social distancing practices, our projections show the potential for a significant surge of up to several hundred hospital admissions each day. These numbers are concerning, and we recognize the possibility that just one large gathering where COVID-19 is present has the potential to overload our ability to care for our community.
So, how are we planning to handle this projected surge? We need your help. While our medical professionals continue to care for patients, the power to control the virus’s spread is in your hands.
We stand in support of the rules and recommendations for slowing the spread of COVID-19 put forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and our state and local governments, but, in the face of harsh projections and as one of our community’s healthcare leaders, we are taking these recommendations a step further.
As such, TMH , with full support from the City of Tallahassee and Leon County, recommends that you follow the below guidelines, based on clinical guidance from our leading medical experts.
- All residents should stay home at all times, except for when engaging in essential activities as outlined in the Florida stay-at-home order. We would like to take these guidelines a step further by offering additional recommendations that have been clinically clarified as best practices for our community and beyond.
- While religious congregations are not legally prevented from meeting, we strongly recommend those wishing to worship find alternative forums that do not involve meeting physically.
- Whenever possible, restrict access to your home only to members of your immediate household.
- While outdoor recreation is not an essential activity, it can be permissible if you restrict the activity to only members of your household and maintain a strict 6-foot distance from any other individuals you may encounter while outside of your home.
- Even when adhering to these guidelines, each essential outing presents an exposure risk. Be mindful to limit essential outings as much as possible.
- Any individual who has symptoms of respiratory illness should immediately self-quarantine and call their healthcare provider to discuss appropriate testing.
- Not all individuals are candidates to be tested for COVID-19. Employers concerned about an employee’s health should rely on the recommendation of the employee’s healthcare provider regarding their ability to work.
- All residents should continue to adhere to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendations on infection prevention, including washing your hands for a full 20 seconds after touching any non-sterile surface and maintaining a strict 6-foot distance between individuals at all times.
- Per the CDC’s recommendation, wear a cloth face covering while engaging in essential activities outside of your home. Please note, you should still maintain a strict 6-foot distance between individuals at all times, even when wearing face coverings.
We appreciate your help as we all play our roles in combatting the spread of COVID-19 in our community. The actions of just one individual can have a tremendous impact, for better or for worse.
Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare