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Staying healthy as you head back to the workplace during COVID-19

Posted at 12:16 PM, Jun 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-05 11:35:53-04

As Utah continues toward reopening our economy, the number of COVID-19 cases are showing a steady increase. That has many Utahns uneasy about returning to the workplace.

In fact, a recent survey of 1,400 workers from O.C. tanner and other companies showed that nearly 67 percent of employees in the U.S., Canada, and the UK are worried about returning to work too soon. Others are anxious to get back to their livelihoods so they can keep food on the table.

Dr. Amy Khan Executive Medical Director for Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah reminds us that knowledge is power, and understanding how the virus spreads and how we prevent its transmission is key.

She suggests before heading back to work it might be worthwhile to ask your employer about flex schedules, possibly relocating your workspace, or whether it is possible to continue to work from home.

If your job does require that you return to work, it is important to maintain more than 6 feet of distance from your coworkers and customers.
Disinfecting high touch areas in your workspace, washing your hands frequently, and wearing a face mask properly can all help prevent the spread of COVID-19 at work.

Dr. Khan says addressing the psychological side of returning to the office is also important.

"It's understandable that people are feeling apprehensive, or a bit afraid of going back to work during this time of uncertainty," said Khan.

Khan recommends being open and sharing your concerns with a loved one, close friends or your employer. Now is a good time to also take advantage of your health plan and online mental health resources.

"I think it’s important to maybe check out a behavioral health resource, either online, or make an appointment with a specialist, someone who can maybe help you through this time, particularly if you’re having anxiety or depression," said Khan.

Visit regence.com for details and resources available from Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah.

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