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Nurses concerned over lack of facial coverings, social distancing in public

Posted at 5:19 PM, Jun 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-16 20:19:56-04

SAN DIEGO, CA (KGTV)- As San Diego County continues to loosen restrictions and reopen, many nurses are concerned that some people aren’t taking safety precautions seriously enough.

Samantha Gambles Farr is a nurse practitioner and the president of the San Diego Black Nurses Association (SDBNA). SDBNA is a nonprofit organization that has been providing healthcare to underserved communities for 40 years.

While Gambles Farr commends Californians for flattening the curve, she worries things could backfire if people do not follow requirements for social distancing and facial coverings.

“Anybody who is involved with the community on a day-to-day basis, I think everyone is really concerned with the reopening and the staging,” she explained. “The county of San Diego, our officials, are doing the best job that they can to make sure that we reopen very safely. If we’re not careful, we’re going to see a surge, and that’s going to force officials to reconsider the staged opening.”

Despite cases of COVID-19 continuing to rise across California, and more than 5,000 people dying from the virus, California Gov. Gavin Newsom defended his decision to allow counties to reopen.

Many casinos, gyms, and bars have reopened their doors to patrons. Gambles Farr hopes people won’t let their guard down and will keep their facial coverings on and stay away from others while in those public settings.

“People need to be responsible with their health and the health of people around them,” she said. “Most people don’t really consider public health issues until it affects somebody that they know and they care about, but that can’t be the answer right now. We have to care about one another on all aspects and all levels.”

Another topic of concern has been the recent protests after the death of George Floyd.

Thousands of people have been marching closely together through the streets of San Diego for two weeks, many without wearing facial coverings.

“We have to practice social distancing, we have to wear our masks, we have to wash our hands, we have to use hand sanitizer, we have to do all those things and continue to be vigilant,” said Gambles Farr.

“As people continue to organize those things, they need to be cognizant of those issues as well.”