‘Thank you, health care hero! Now stay away’ : Discrimination against healthcare workers during COVID-19

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Special to the Las Vegas Spectrum

Today I tried to get an eye exam at a local EyeGlass World location in Las Vegas and was denied entry because I had taken care of a patient with COVID.

I could have lied and said No, and been easily allowed in.

Nothing had changed except my answer to a question. I was still wearing a face covering as requested, I didn’t bring anyone with me. If I had said ‘no,’ nobody would have known and I would have received the eye exam I went there for. I wasn’t coughing, I haven’t had a fever. I had a negative antibody test recently.

For the past 3 months its been “Thank you Healthcare Hero” for all you’ve done in the fight against COVID. Thanks for taking care of people in their time of need regardless of their illness.

Now that we’re opening back up it seems like the tide has turned and it’s “No thank you, healthcare hero” because you took care of someone with COVID.

Over the past 3 months we’ve worked hard at taking care of people affected by COVID. Now that we’re experiencing our new normal, we’re creating a discriminatory practice against any healthcare worker.

Essentially, by working in a healthcare environment you are most likely caring for someone with COVID, either diagnosed positive or not tested/diagnosed.

When you honestly answer the question about being around someone with COVID in the past 14 days, how do you answer that question? When you answer honestly, you’ll be denied. When you say “no” which may or may not be true, you could risk the safety of others? How do we fix this policy?

One solution is to develop and practice safe COVID practices. Business should develop policies and practices around safely providing services to people exposed to COVID or who are COVID positive.
In Las Vegas Steinberg Diagnostics stepped up to that responsibility and created a “COVID Friendly” space at one of their locations.

COVID isn’t going away anytime soon, despite what the Orangutang in the oval office and the Trumpanzee’s think or do.

We need to continue to care for each other, protect ourselves our families and others, while practicing safer COVID measures. Wearing face coverings, monitoring for symptoms, washing our hands, cleaning surfaces, and providing mechanisms for everyone to access services.

Otherwise, over time as more people test COVID positive, less people will receive services, there will be less care providers or service providers.

We are all in this together. We have to be smart and safe, and not panic and live in fear. Look to the advice of the medical experts such as Dr. Faucci, Dr. Birix and Dr. Adams or local public health officials. Listen to the scientific evidence.

Visit reliable, validated sources when searching for information online.

Stray away from the orangutang in chief, his nonsense and his outrageous and mostly unsubstantiated claims.

Lastly, be kind.

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