IDATB COVID-19 Patient/Visitor Safety Statement:
If in the last 10 days, you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, have signs or symptoms related to COVID-19 or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, please notify our office before coming in for your appointment.
Symptoms of COVID-19 Include:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
IDATB Masking Policy
Standards for the Appropriate Use of Facial Covering for Infection Control.
To incorporate Florida Rule that establishes state standards for appropriate use of facial coverings in Florida healthcare settings. IDATB’s masking guidelines meet the intent of the Rules and protect the health and safety of patients, visitors, and healthcare workers by minimizing the transmission of respiratory droplets that may care infectious pathogens.
- IDATB may require patients to wear a facial covering only when the patient is in a common area and is exhibiting signs or symptoms of an infectious disease that can be spread through droplet or airborne transmission or has been diagnosed with such a disease.
- If patients are required to wear a facial covering under the circumstances above, there must be a provision in the health care provider/practitioner’s policy allowing the patient to opt out of wearing the facial covering.
Visitors with current illness or recent exposures to infectious diseases (i.e., COVID, Influenza, etc.) are asked to refrain from visiting unless absolutely necessary.
Visitors to IDATB may be required to wear a facial covering only when the visitor is:
- Exhibiting signs or symptoms or has a diagnosed infectious disease that can be spread through droplet or airborne transmission.
- In sterile areas or an area where sterile procedures are being performed.
- In a clinical room with a patient who is exhibiting signs or symptoms of or has a diagnosed infectious disease that can be spread through droplet or airborne transmission.
- Visiting a patient with a confirmed condition of the immune system that increases the risk of transmission of an infection from asymptomatic visitors when the patient’s treating physician determines the use of facial coverings are necessary for the patient’s safety.
- Visitors must be allowed to opt out of wearing a facial covering “if an alternative method of infection control or infectious disease prevention is available.”
There are no set criteria for when a facial covering can be required. Presumably, health care providers/practitioners may require employees to wear facial coverings in any setting at any time. If facial coverings are required, employees must be allowed to opt out unless the employee is:
- Conducting sterile procedures.
- Working in a sterile area.
- Working with a patient with a confirmed condition of the immune system that increases the risk of transmission of an infection from asymptomatic employees when the patient’s treating physician determines the use of facial coverings are necessary for the patient’s safety.
- Working with a patient on droplet or airborne isolation.
- Engaging in non-clinical potentially hazardous activities that require facial coverings to prevent physical injury or harm in accordance with industry standards (OSHA, for example).
For patients, the opt-out policy must be in accordance with Florida’s Patient Bill of Rights and Responsibilities.3 The DOH rule, however, does not provide any guidance on how, or which specific provision of the Patient Bill or Rights the policy must conform to. The Patient Bill of Rights does not contain any provision that specifically mentions the wearing of facial coverings, and a full reading of the statute fails to reveal any provision that would clearly apply to the use of facial coverings. The FMA will ask DOH for clarification and will share any information we receive.
For visitors, the opt-out requirements allow health care providers/practitioners to insist on the wearing of facial coverings if an alternative method of infection control or disease prevention is not available. As DOH does not define or list the acceptable alternative methods of infection control or disease prevention, that determination is up to the health care provider/practitioner.
For employees, may opt-out except as outlined above.