Here We Go Again: Massage in a Time of COVID-19

HAPPY NOVEMBER!?

November newsletter

This is a little bit more discouraging of a November newsletter than I was hoping to write, as the recent surge of COVID-19 cases definitely has me worried and on guard. I’ve talked to a few of you about what the future might hold, and I think that I will be able to stay open, but I will be changing a few things and reinstating some others. I’m outlining the plan below and as always, I appreciate your continued patience and support.

Before Your Appointment

  • I will send out one or two pre-appointment check-in emails or texts within the week before your appointment. Mainly, reminding people of protocols, doing a wellness check, and making sure I have the best contact information for you.
  • You need to fill out the online intake form before each appointment. It often goes into your spam/promotions folder. If I don’t see that you’ve filled it out, I will try to remind you. If you haven’t filled it out (particularly if it’s been a while), you may need to take the time to fill it out before your session can start.

The Day of Your Appointment

  • Please let me know the best way to contact you on the day of your appointment. If I need to cancel for any reason, I will try to contact you by 9 am and it’s important I can reach you.
  • If possible, try to avoid extra errands or stops on the way to your appointment.
  • If you arrive more than 10 minutes early for your appointment, please wait in your car (unless you took a bus or something, then please come in and stay warm).
  • DO NOT bring anyone extra to your appointment, they won’t be able to wait in the office.
  • Properly worn face masks are required in the whole building, as well as in my office.
  • Please use the hand sanitizer just inside my office door when you arrive.
  • I may require a massage & COVID-19 risk waiver prior to your appointment.
  • You can still take your mask off while you’re face down since I put a pillowcase in the face cradle. If you feel safer leaving it on, feel free. The blue box for your mask will now be next to the table so you can wear it until you’re ready to put your face in the cradle.
  • Please sanitize your hands before you leave the massage room at the end of your session.

A Slight Reduction in Hours

november massage COVID-19
sunday appointments

For a number of reasons, I’m going to indefinitely suspend my Sunday afternoon appointments. I know this is difficult for some, but I feel that it’s safer for the most part. This will make my hours Monday & Tuesday 11-7 and Thursday & Friday 10-6.

  • My control of the HVAC system on Sunday is limited, which makes airflow in the room limited
  • It gives the office an extra day to “air out”
  • It’ll decrease my own stress levels and exposure risks

If you have a Sunday appointment scheduled through the end of the year, you still have that appointment, but I will not be adding new ones.

Recommendations

  • If you’re managing chronic pain, anxiety, or depression (or all of the above) with massage, I recommend that you contact your doctor about a note or prescription for massage. This may help you be able to continue to come in if we have to roll back the state’s reopening stages.
  • It’s really important to not wear cologne, scented lotions, or perfume to your appointments. Every time my allergies flare up, I panic “Is this it?? Should I close and go get tested??” And pretty much every scented product affects either my respiratory system or my skin. I don’t want to have to close or panic, or start rescheduling people wearing strong scents.

In Closing

I feel pretty good at least that I have more protections in place than I did this spring. I have a decent supply of good disinfectant, plus backups. I’ve got a face shield, masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer. I have plenty of time between appointments to manage the linens, getting everything cleaned and disinfected, and allowing the disinfectant to air dry for the best effect.

november massage COVID-19
Happy 4th Birthday, Birch Tree Wellness!

As I keep saying… I am doing my best to keep us all safe, but nothing is guaranteed. Review my High-Risk Client Policies before you schedule, be honest with me about your risks, and do what you can to keep yourself and each other safe and healthy. I’m starting my fifth year of business in the middle of a pandemic, and it’s with your help that we’ll be able to cross the five-year milestone in (mostly) one piece. Thank you for being awesome clients!

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