Many more health systems are joining the national #MaskUp campaign encouraging Americans to stop the spread of COVID-19 by following safety guidelines. Over just a few days, another 19 health systems with hundreds of hospitals united with 100 health systems nationwide with hospitals numbering in the thousands.
The public service campaign is critical to the health and well-being of all Americans. It is a plea from healthcare professionals everywhere: wear a mask and follow other precautions to save lives and help get our country back on its feet.
One of the public service video messages showing healthcare heroes makes the voices of those caring for our patients clear:
“You’ve called us heroes. But heroes don’t deserve this. We’ve fought hard to protect our communities. Month after month. Our shields are worn. Our resolve is being tested.
Yet we press on. Because we truly want to see this pandemic end. We put our lives on the line daily to keep you safe. So, do something for us. Wear. A. Mask.”
With the holidays upon us, it is crucial that everyone take precautions to slow the surging pandemic, including wearing masks and limiting contact with people who do not live in your home.
As some of the most trusted hospitals in the nation we know that continuing to take precautionary measures is tough. Here’s what we also know: The science has not changed. Masks slow the spread of COVID-19. Diligently washing our hands stops its transmission. And staying 6 feet apart from those we don’t live with makes it harder for the disease to spread too.
The number of positive cases, hospitalizations and deaths is increasing rapidly. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 12.3 million people have tested positive for COVID-19 – including 1.2 million in just the past week – leading to 75,000 hospitalizations and 257,000 deaths, as of Nov. 24.
If current trends continue, hospital leaders are increasingly concerned healthcare facilities will be overwhelmed as shortages of healthy caregivers make it difficult to handle a rapidly increasing number of patients. Unfortunately, this is already happening in parts of our country.
The CDC points to recent studies that have shown facemasks successfully limit spread of the COVID-19 virus, protecting those who wear them as well as those nearby. In addition to masking, the CDC suggests that everyone minimize the number of non-household contacts, maintain a physical distance of at least six feet, and limit the amount of time around others, especially while indoors and in poorly ventilated areas.
The next several months will be critical. Though there’s been positive news about vaccine development, widespread distribution is months away. Everyone must remain vigilant, take precautions, and follow public health orders. The country has reached a tipping point. The power to do what is right is in the hands of everyone everywhere.
To reach a broader audience, the campaign also includes messages on television, digital platforms, social media, online information, links to vital health resources and more. Regional health systems and hospitals in many communities across the nation are combining resources, demonstrating they are working together to get through this together.
Visit everymaskup.com to learn more about the campaign.
www.everymaskup.com is a collaboration of 116 leading health systems representing thousands of hospitals across the U.S. joining together to create messages for the betterment of communities they serve. The impetus for this, and other public service campaigns to follow, came from a group of health care marketing and communications executives meeting for a decade and reengaged weekly since the COVID-19 pandemic began. The goal is to share knowledge and experience, best practices, strategies and resources- knowing they can accomplish more together. Founded and led by Rhoda Weiss, Ph.D., Los Angeles-based national health care leader and consultant, the expanded coalition is partnering with Cleveland Clinic Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Paul Matsen and his team for this effort. Additionally, hospitals and health systems on a regional basis continue to come together to send messages like these of prevention and safety, hope and healing, care and caring.