• Sally B. Philips

Everyone Needs Everyone's Care-full Actions

More than ever, our interdependence is a present reality. This COVID-19 crisis has gone viral, and each of us has become responsible for the other's health. It has become crucial - life or death for some - for us to take care, to take precautions, to take recommendations seriously.

There are cities which are mandating that residents stay in their homes, except for trips to pick up food, groceries and medications. Some cities have enacted curfews. The police in those cities are enforcing the mandate.

At this time, as a government entity, South Miami has not gone to those lengths. However, I hear from our Police Department that "we have put six additional officers on the street for visibility. We also will be assigning two officers to ride bicycles around the city as a less intimidating method of public contact. All officers are being instructed to strongly encourage people to comply with the CDC directives for social distancing. Officers are instructed to be non-threatening and to protect their own personal health."

People who are at higher risk for severe illness:

Based upon available information to date, those at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 include: •People aged 65 years and older •People who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility

Other high-risk conditions could include: •People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma People who have serious heart conditions People who are immunocompromised including cancer treatment •People of any age with severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] >40) •People certain underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, such as those with diabetes, renal failure, or liver disease might also be at risk

People who are pregnant should be monitored since they are known to be at risk with severe viral illness, however, to date data on COVID-19 has not shown increased risk.

source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory

Diseases (NCIRD), Division of Viral Diseases

Many of the Miami-Dade cities are saying it is Safer at Home. It is! Yet, a family or group who has been at home all day, may want to take a walk in the evening, or a bike ride, together. Keep your distance - especially from those you have not spent the day with. The most recent recommendations are:

1. Stay home when you are sick.

2. Avoid contact with people who are sick.

3. Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals. [That is, keep yourself healthy.]

4. Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds or longer.

5. Dry hands with a clean towel or air dry your hands.

6. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands or after touching


7. Cover your mouth with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing. [Throw the

tissue away.]

8. Clean and disinfect "high touch" surfaces often. [Soap and water, dilute bleach, or

isopropyl alcohol.]

9. Call before visiting your doctor.

Many of the restaurants in South Miami are open and cooking food. They will package meals for pick-up and some will deliver. Several are delivering for free if the order is more than $20.

"Many grocery stores are dedicating an hour of the morning to those who are the most vulnerable to coronavirus, including seniors." For a list of which stores and the hours, go to:

You must be 65 or more years old, and you may be required to show your ID.

I found it interesting and comforting to see that a Winn-Dixie I was in had marked their cashier lanes with tape to indicated 6-foot spaces. This practice is one that has been recently ordered by the County Mayor of Miami-Dade County:

"1. All establishments which are defined as essential commercial or retail establishment in ... shall use reasonable efforts to ensure that customers and employees on site maintain appropriate social distancing, as recommended by the current CDC guidance, particularly in checkout, pick-up, or take-out areas ... and common use areas. Reasonable efforts may include,... marking floors at appropriate intervals or providing other visible systems to allow persons to maintain proper social distancing."

Miami-Dade Schools will be launching Grab-and-Go meals on March 30th. The hours are from 4 pm - 7 pm. The nearest one to South Miami is South Miami Senior High School, 6859 SW 53 Street, Miami, FL 33155. You will need to be in a car, and staff may be checking to see that you have a child with you.

From Donna Shalala's web site: "Testing for Homebound Local Seniors

Miami Fire-Rescue is offering free, in-home COVID-19 testing for homebound local seniors, age 65 and above, who are experiencing symptoms and don’t have access to transportation. If you know someone who fits this criteria, please direct them to call 305-960-5050 for assistance."

There are live connections from that site to information about the three current test sites in Miami-Dade County, and about the criteria that each site requires. More sites are expected soon.

For a musical experience that seems light-hearted, but has a very real and serious message go to Randy rainbow on Social distancing.

If you are interested in the statistics about the COVID-19 the Florida Department of Health web site is a good source. I believe these are the numbers as of noon on March 27.

More information is available on the web. To find the most up-to-date information and guidance on COVID-19, please visit the Department of Health’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage. For information and advisories from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), please visit the CDC COVID-19 website. For more information about current travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State, please visit the travel advisory website.

The City of South Miami employees have been notified about expanded Family and Medical leave due to the COVID-19 crisis:

I will be sending more of these informational notices. I do not use social media. I am grateful to all of you who post these notices for others to read.

I am hoping that this crisis will end sooner rather than later. The time frame is dependent on our taking our connected-ness very seriously. Thank you for being full of care for yourselves and for everyone around you. - Sally

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