With the state poised to slowly emerge from a COVID-19 shutdown, the Southeast Kansas Multi-County Health Department has released a series of guidelines for various businesses to follow as they reopen their doors to the public.
The guidelines were derived from the federal “Opening Up America Again” plan, Allen County Public Health Officer Rebecca Johnson said Tuesday. She presented copies to county commissioners at their regular weekly meeting, and has since posted them on the SEKMHD website.
The recommendations provide specific measures for each business category to facilitate a safe reopening, Johnson said.
The plan includes specific entries for:
— Retail and jewelry stores.
— Restaurants and convenience stores.
— Close contact services, such as barber shops and hair, nail or tanning salons.
— Childcare services.
— Medical and health services, such as doctors, dentists, physical therapy providers and optometrists.
— Entertainment venues (gaming, exercise, museums and planetariums.)
— Youth athletic activities.
— Real estate and commercial businesses.
— Manufacturing and industry.
To access the guidelines, go to sekmhd.com/frequently-asked-questions. Links send readers to each of the above business categories.
Businesses and organizations not covered in the guidelines, such as senior living facilities, home health, hospice, public health, hospital, fire departments, EMS, law enforcement and correctional centers must follow protocols already established by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, Centers For Disease Control or Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Johnson said.
Gov. Laura Kelly’s stay-at-home order expires Sunday night. Johnson said she expects the governor to spell out a phased roll-out for Kansans to follow.
JOHNSON encouraged residents with questions about the guidelines to call her offices at 365-2191 in Iola, (785) 448-6559 in Garnett, (620) 223-4464 in Fort Scott and (620) 625-2484 in Yates Center.
The press release also lists places in the area at which residents can obtain protective gear such as cloth or other protective masks, gloves and sanitation products.