On November 17, Governor Pritzker announced new COVID Tier 3 restrictions for the state that take effect tomorrow, Friday, November 20. I am writing to let you know how these restrictions will affect your upcoming appointments and my massage business.
Tier 3 Restrictions, as applied to personal services, under which massage therapy is included, are as follows (emphasis mine):
- operate at lesser than 25 clients, or 25% capacity
- face coverings must be worn at all times by clients and service providers
- suspend any services where a face covering cannot be worn, i.e facials
- physical, occupational and massage therapy allowed as deemed by a medical provider, but appointments must be spaced by a minimum of 15 minutes and facilities should take steps to sanitize and circulate clean air through service rooms before and after each service
To alleviate any concerns you may have regarding these restrictions, I will address each with Holistic Healing and Wellness’s plan and procedures as follows:
- I am the only therapist working in the office Thursday-Saturday. Only one client at a time is permitted in the studio
- Face coverings have and will continue to be worn at all times by the clients and therapist
- It has been my policy for as long as I have practiced massage to keep detailed notes (called SOAP notes, Subjective, Objective, Action and Plan documentation) on each client regardless of medical necessity. Therefore these notes can be easily given to any medical professional
- I space my appointments out with an hour between each client to allow for disinfecting, cleaning and air purification
Over the last 24 hours, I have worked to gain more concise guidance as far as the medical necessity restriction that has now been put in place. I have been in contact with other medical professionals, other licensed massage therapists and have studied the state guidelines.
I will be able to continue to practice, however, now a doctor’s note prescribing massage therapy will be required for me to safely practice without liability as long as these restrictions are in place.
I am temporarily suspending appointments until December to allow enough time for you to contact your PCP or chiropractor for a note. All appointments are tentative now pending receipt of the note. If you cannot secure a doctor’s note, please contact me ASAP and I can facilitate getting one for you.
At this time, it is not clear when these restrictions will be lifted. All the information regarding the Tier 3 Mitigation Plans can be found on the state’s COVID plan website here. I will continue to monitor the data and the restrictions and keep you updated.
I want to express my thanks and appreciation to all of you for the support and patience you have had as we navigate this pandemic. The support you have given me personally and to my practice has been amazing. Thank you all for hanging in there with me!
Again, please reach out to me ASAP if you need assistance in obtaining a doctor’s note. We all need the stress reduction that massage can provide and I am here to help in any way I can.
Thank you once again!