Your Health & COVID-19
Information and guidelines to protect your health, safety and access to health care resources. Your actions not only protect you and your family, but can help slow the virus and protect other artists, audiences, workers and everyone in our community.
The statewide coronavirus.wa.gov site also provides up-to-date information across many issues and questions.
Personal Practices to Prevent Infection
Coronavirus, also known as COVID-19 spreads primarily person-to-person from respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, talks or breathes. There currently is no vaccine and the best way to prevent illness is to avoid exposure.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued international guidelines for staying healthy during COVID. Go to read their Prevention Tips and Info on Staying Healthy, which in include the following:
- Wash your hands often.
Use soap and water for at least 20 seconds after being in public, blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. If no soap, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact.
Maintain a distance of 6 feet (2 arm lengths) from other people outside the household, and especially avoid contact with those who are ill (even at home).
- Cover your mouth and nose.
Wear a cloth face covering that covers the mouth and nose whenever you go out in public and especially to stores or other indoor places. Check out this helpful article in the Wall Street Journal for guidelines on face coverings, and this one in the Seattle Times regarding masks while exercising.
- Cover coughs and sneezes.
Help limit spread by covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, throwing tissues in the trash and immediately washing your hands.
- Clean and disinfect regularly.
Use detergent or soap and water, followed by household disinfectant on dirty or frequently touched surfaces.
- Monitor your health.
Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath of other symptoms, especially after being in public settings or otherwise close proximity with others outside the home.
Staying Home and Going Out Safely
As of June 19, King County has officially entered Phase Two of the Statewide Safe Start reopening plan, as announced by Governor Inslee on May 29. The full statewide guide for Safe Start is available on the Coronavirus Guide.
Generally, it is still safest to stay at home and limit contact with others, however with Phase Two, the state and county recommendations allow for limited social gatherings with five or fewer people outside of your household. They also allow people to go back to restaurants, retailers and other businesses, at reduced capacity.
It is still required that all people and businesses follow social distancing, regular handwashing, wearing cloth face coverings and otherwise following prevention practices.
Symptoms & Testing
If you have symptoms like fever, cough or shortness of breath, the best thing to do is to stay at home and contact your doctor or local health care provider.
Who should get tested?
Anyone who has had close contact for more than 15 minutes with someone who has the virus should stay away from others and get tested. Also, anyone with these symptoms should contact a healthcare provider or a testing site to discuss the need for testing:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath, difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches, headache
- Loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
You can also use the online Coronavirus Assessment Tool developed by Providence and Microsoft, and visit a virtual clinic such as the following:
Health Insurance Coverage
Free or low-cost Apple Health enrollment is available year-round. See if you qualify.
The Washington Health Benefit Exchange announced a special enrollment period extension through May 8, 2020 for qualified uninsured individuals who have experienced life changes as a result of COVID-19.
Washington has required insurers to offer no co-pays or deductibles for testing for COVID-19.
The City of Seattle has a resource guide on healthcare access and hygiene support.
Emotional or Mental Health Support
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
For mental health support or treatment resources for substance use, call the Washington Recovery Help Line at 1-866-789-1511 or (206) 461-3219] for TTY.
Reports of domestic violence are on the rise during this stay at home order. For any victims and survivors who need support, the National Domestic Violence Hotline is here for you, 24/7. Call 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224 for TTY, or if you’re unable to speak safely, you can log onto thehotline.org or text LOVEIS to 22522.
Help track the virus: sign up for at home testing to help officials understand the pandemic.
Health care support for specific industries: We’ve complied a resource list by sector, including some health care funds for musicians, artists and other creatives.
Wash your hands: Tired of “happy birthday?” Make your own 20 second hand washing routine https://washyourlyrics.com/
Know of other resources?
We know there are gaps and resources we haven’t discovered yet, and we’re working fast to add more. If you have a resource to add, please let us know about it in this form.