There has been much confusion in the massage community lately about the Governor’s proclamation in May about hospital surge capacity. We’ve gotten clarification from the Dept of Health (which oversees massage licensing) that the hospital surge capacity was a guideline for only massage therapists working in hospitals and medical facilities. It is the option of the facility to restrict those services to conserve space and PPE for urgent cases. Private massage practices still have the same requirements as before, which we are practicing extremely diligently, and we are tightening our screening requirements for the time being.
Since we reopened in July, we’ve added a covid intake form to our online booking site and are booking all new appointments there, at our “Book Now” button. We may do a tele-screening call within 24 hours of your appointment if it’s booked out a ways to make sure you’re still feeling good, and possibly at the time of booking if we have questions. I will of course be happy to talk with you at any time about any concerns, risk factors, or requirements.
We are adhering to recommendations as well as requirements set forth by the Governor, the WA State Massage Therapy Association, and the Dept. of L&I, which are mainly based on the CDC, and we have a private consultant to keep us up to date on new information and protocol recommendations who is an expert in safety and compliance and is also a medical first responder.
In addition to the above mentioned protocols, we are also diligently practicing the following:
- Wearing masks. N95s are not obtainable unless you are a hospital, and the market is currently flooded with counterfeit and recalled KN95 masks, which is worse than nothing. We are doing the next highest recommendation which is surgical masks, either tied to fit closely to the face on the sides, or with a cloth mask over it for the same reason.
- We require all clients to wear a mask over both their nose and mouth during the entirety of their visit, including the whole duration of their massage, no exceptions.
- We are wearing eye protection as advised. I have given employees the choice of face shields or approved safety glasses.
- I have removed fabric furniture from the office and between each client we are sanitizing massage tables and face cradles, chairs, tables, door knobs, lotion/oil bottles and their contact surfaces.
- Clients are required to use sanitizer on the bottom of shoes upon arrival instead of just before entering the treatment room since our new location has carpet instead of flooring.
- We take vital stats upon arrival and sanitize the equipment after each use.
- As always, we use sterilized linens provided by hospital linen service.
- We are adhering to protocol on sequence of massage, beginning with working on what are considered “clean” areas and moving to “dirty” areas last (neck, hands, arms, feet) and are having clients use hand sanitizer on hands, arms, and feet before we work on those areas.
- Entering our office is restricted to clients with appointments only, no accompanying visitors unless the person with the appointment needs physical help.
- Our new location has a much better air filtration system than the old one. The hepa filers are changed every two and a half weeks.
Thank you again, we hope to see you soon!
Patti Abbott, LMT/owner