OOA Guidance to Doctors of Optometry on the CDC March 17th Announcement on Coronavirus/COVID-19 Crisis:
The OOA strongly supports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) patient care guidance issued on March 17, 2020 to combat further community spread and a wider COVID-19 outbreak. Of critical importance are immediate efforts to assure continued access to essential health care which includes urgent and emergent care. Provisions for emergency care, prescription refills, and prevention of patient abandonment should be made to reduce current and expected burdens on emergency departments.
OHIO STAY AT HOME ORDER March 23, 2020:
The order permits Ohio residents to leave their residence to “work for or obtain services through Healthcare and Public Health Operations,” among other essential businesses. Further, the order defines HealthCare and Public Health Operations to include, “eye care centers, including those that sell glasses and contact lenses,” and mentions that the definition should be construed broadly to avoid any impacts to the delivery of healthcare. Essentially, the order follows and clarifies recommendations put forward by the Department and Governor over the last week.
CDC recommendations for patients and providers to postpone routine care remain in effect and the OOA strongly encourages all optometrists to adhere by these recommendations. While the CDC recommendations are not law or an executive order, failure to abide by this guidance could expose practitioners to liability risks if not followed. Providers must make their own decision with regards to providing care during this time. Most offices are making provisions to provide emergency and other necessary care as to not overburden emergency rooms or urgent care centers and the Governor’s office has encouraged this activity among providers of essential services, which includes vision care.
For essential businesses that remain open, it is important to follow the Order's COVID-19 checklist #18 on page 8 to ensure employee safety.
The state of Ohio is asking residents and businesses who can donate PPE, or any other essential service or resource, to email email@example.com.
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