Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Gov. Stitt announces 3-phase "Open Up and Recover Safely" plan


OKLAHOMA CITY (April 22, 2020) – Governor Kevin Stitt today held a press conference to provide an update on the State’s response to COVID-19 and introduce the State's Open Up and Recover Safely (OURS) plan.

“From the beginning it has been my intent to protect the health and lives of Oklahomans, especially our vulnerable populations, and mitigate the impact to Oklahoma’s economy and get Oklahomans safely back to work,” said Gov. Stitt. “We have put together a group of industry professionals from across our state, and they have been working with my Governor’s Solution Task Force and our health advisors to develop a way to get back open safely. As we begin to responsibly implement this measured response, we will continue to prioritize the safety of Oklahomans and base all decisions on the data in our state.”

Under current White House guidelines Oklahoma has met all necessary criteria to begin proceeding to a phased opening, including a downward trajectory of documented cases and the ability to treat all patients without crisis care.

Similar to the White House guidelines, the OURS plan is a three-phased approach to open Oklahoma’s economy back up starting April 24, 2020. This statewide plan is:

  • Based on scientific modeling from public health experts
  • Intended to mitigate risk of resurgence
  • Intended to protect Oklahoma’s most vulnerable citizens from the threat of COVID-19
  • Intended for businesses and individuals to utilize in conjunction with guidance from the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, the Oklahoma State Health Department, and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)

Phase 1 guidance includes:

  • Elderly and vulnerable Oklahomans should continue to follow the safer-at-home guidelines.
  • Oklahomans should continue to maximize their physical distance from others when in public, avoid socializing in groups or facilities that do not allow for appropriate physical distancing, and minimize non-essential travel.
  • Employers should create plans to allow employees to return to work in phases, close common areas or enforce social distancing protocols, minimize non-essential travel and honor requests of employees who are part of a vulnerable population for special accommodations.
  • Starting on April 24, personal care businesses can reopen for appointments only if they adhere to strict sanitation protocols and are in communities that do not have more restrictions in place. This includes: hair salons, barber shops, spas, nail salons, and pet groomers. These businesses must maintain distance between customers and encourage customers to wait in their car until it is time for their appointment to avoid congestion in the lobbies or entrances.
  • Starting on April 24, State parks and outdoor recreation areas can be reopened.
  • Grocery stores should continue to maintain special hours for vulnerable populations.
  • Starting on May 1, restaurant dining rooms, movie theaters, gyms and sporting venues can re-open statewide if they adhere to strict social distancing and sanitation protocols.
  • Starting on May 1, Places of worship can reopen for in-person meetings or worship, if they leave every other row or pew open and adhere to CDC-recommended social distancing and sanitation protocols, plus the recommended guidelines from the Oklahoma Department of Commerce.
  • Starting on May 1, Tattoo Parlors can reopen for appointments only and must adhere to sanitation protocols and social distancing protocols for distancing between customers and visitors.
  • During Phase 1, visits to senior living facilities and hospitals are prohibited and bars, schools, organized sporting events and camps should remain closed until further notice.

If Oklahoma’s hospital and incident rates remain manageable for 14 days, the State will move to Phase 2.

Phase 2 guidance includes:

  • Elderly and vulnerable Oklahomans should continue to follow the safer-at-home guidelines.
  • Oklahomans should continue to maintain physical distancing measures when in public.
  • Non-essential travel can begin to resume.
  • Employers should still close common areas or enforce social distancing and sanitation protocols.
  • Organized sports activities can reopen and operate under proper social distancing and sanitation protocols.
  • Bars can operate with diminished standing-room occupancy, where applicable and appropriate, and under social distancing and sanitation protocols.
  • Funerals and weddings can resume under social distancing protocols.
  • Children’s nursery areas in places of worship can reopen.

To read more about the three phases of Oklahoma’s OURS plan, click here.


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