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Social Distancing in Public Environments

Social distancing has been implemented in the U.S as well, to reduce the spread of COVID-19. In many states, following social distancing has slowly controlled the spread of coronavirus. In crowded public places like grocery stores, buses, train stations and prisons, distancing each other about 3 feet is necessary.

A huge number of essential service workers like grocery store employees, delivery services, first responders and health care workers are dependent on public transportation to get to work during this acute health crisis. The demanding need for transportation during this pandemic is higher, and several companies have adapted new changes for communities. Companies and organizations partnered with Via in several cities have started delivering essential goods, helping front line workers get to work. Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) Ohio is using it’s vehicles and drivers to reach out to critical locations like hospitals, grocery stores, food banks and other transportation using the newly launched COTA Plus app.

In Los Angeles, California, LA Metro has responded to the change by expanding it’s three existing zones to medical centers, grocery stores and pharmacies. It shifted its services to accommodate social distancing measures by offering private rides and also providing riders with the safe movement of the essential goods.

(https://ridewithvia.com/2020/04/9-cities-that-have-redefined-public-transportation-during-covid-19/)

Supermarkets are in the front lines of emergency response for both preparing for a disaster and are one of the primary needs that must be working for the community to recover from a disaster. The state and local government entities will get in contact with retailers and wholesalers to help the local communities with basic necessities. The supermarkets have imposed few guidelines for safety and to avoid the spread of coronavirus. Customers have to implement social distancing(6 feet) while standing in checkout lines, educating the customers on social distancing is necessary, increasing sanitizing stations around the store etc. are a few practices done by the supermarkets. 

(https://www.nationalgrocers.org/news/national-grocers-association-coronavirus/)

Prisons are also one of the most crowded sites where the spread in coronavirus can be increased. The Bureau of Prisons(BOP) had a response plan for the pandemic but the delayed actions increased the COVID spread rapidly. As of April 23, the BOP has reported that 620 inmates and 357 staff members were infected with the virus. There were 24 inmate deaths. The infection spread has increased to double or triple the number. There were 302 inmates and 53 staff that recovered. There are limited testing and limited medical resources available in prisons. Elkton (Ohio) prison has 2,400 inmates but they have received only 50 COVID testing kits and one Abbott Rapid testing machine with 25 rapids tests. Patients only with severe symptoms are being tested. Social distancing tool has not been available in prisons due to insufficient testing supplies and “presumed positive” inmates not being recorded.

(https://www.forbes.com/sites/walterpavlo/2020/04/23/bureau-of-prisons-had-a-response-plan-for-a-pandemic-but-delayed-action/#78c924bc3d97)

Following important precautions and implementing social distancing in crowded places is necessary to prevent and slow down the rate of spread of coronavirus. A person should get themselves tested if symptoms like fever, cold and shortness in breath occur. Locate COVID-19 testing centers available near you with https://www.carenearby.com/

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