By Bev Meade DNP/HSL, RN, MHA, CEN, CCRN, CFRN, CTRN, TCRN, EMT-P. Flight Nurse, MedFlight 3
“Be home before dark.” “Stay together!” “I want to know where you are.”
These were among the safety mantras that Mom always said before we left the house to play. As a child, I certainly never gave safety them much thought. As an adult, it is a different story as we become more aware of either the real, perceived, or potential threats to our home, health, and workplace safety.
Because of COVID-19, words like social distancing, isolation, and maintaining personal separation have become our new safety mantra. We are and will continue to feel the effects of this virus for some time to come and must learn to adapt to the “new normal” both at home and at work. We find ourselves practicing safety measures such as mask usage, frequent hand washing, and using hand sanitizer now more than ever before. You may now find yourself in conversations discussing the advantages of material face masks versus surgical masks. You may even head straight to the disinfectant aisle in your favorite grocery store to snag the last container of the coveted brand or store brand disinfectant wipes.
This added stress of change in our daily lives has potential to inhibit or deter our focused attention on safety in our surroundings, health (physical and mental), as well as our work. I suggest that we use this challenge of COVID-19 to direct us toward reflecting on how each of us can improve our safety outcomes one day at a time.
Perhaps Mom would have said “Come home safely, work together, wash your hands, and don’t forget to wear your gloves, mask, and eye protection!” Some things will never change. Be well, stay healthy, and be home before dark!