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Published on July 14, 2020

Avera Joins National Health Associations in Promoting Pandemic Safety

Avera is joining the efforts of the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association and the American Nurses Association to remind people how important steps such as wearing masks can reduce infection risk from COVID-19.

Wearing face masks, maintaining physical distancing and washing hands all are proven to help slow the spread and keep people safe.

“By joining these leading health care organizations, Avera is urging residents of our region to take the simple steps we know will help slow the spread of the virus,” said Kevin Post, DO, Avera Medical Group Chief Medical Officer. “We are not powerless in this public health crisis, and we can defeat it in the same way we defeated previous threats to public health — by allowing science and evidence to shape our decisions and inform our actions.”

Avera will place ongoing reminders in its advertising, along with a communications campaign across its five-state health system to reiterate the facts on wearing masks. “We Wear Because We Care” is the campaign’s tagline.

“Please consider encouraging your friends, family, and community members to wear a mask because they care about those around them. Wearing a mask is an act of compassion that protects those around you and helps us all move closer to the new normal,” Post said.

Other safety measures remain important in the face of the coronavirus.

“Avera is encouraging everyone to continue using good hand hygiene and following social distancing guidelines,” said Post. “We will continue to screen people who come into our facilities, as well as employees. At all facilities, we continue to clean high-traffic areas thoroughly and regularly.”

These measures are in the interest of public safety, similar to wearing a seatbelt or motorcycle helmet.

“We commend the people in our region for their efforts to date which have kept case numbers relatively low,” Post said. Symptoms to watch for include cough, shortness of breath, nausea or diarrhea, loss of sense of taste or smell, and sore throat. If you develop these symptoms, call your local clinic to inquire about testing.

You can learn more about pandemic protection at Avera.org/covid-19

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