These are unprecedented times for America and the world. Together we are confronting the COVID-19 pandemic and it is more important than ever to take care of one another and be diligent and wise in our daily activities. A critically important part of that means adhering, unequivocally, to the behavioral and infection prevention guidelines that have been strongly recommended by the nation’s health care experts.

I wanted to take this opportunity to reassure you that, at Hoag, we take our role as your trusted health care partner to heart. It is certain that our nation – Orange County included – will experience more cases of infection in the days and weeks ahead. Hoag has exceptional physicians and nurses, including an outstanding Infection Prevention team leading our comprehensive efforts.

Over the past few days, many of our physicians and nurses have been asked for advice and counsel in this challenging time. And as I noted at the beginning of this letter, the advice and counsel we have provided are more than mere suggestions. Handwashing. Social Distancing and Isolation. Community Thinking. These are extremely important, actionable instructions that we all must follow in order to prevent the continued spread of this disease. They are especially important for the most vulnerable in our communities – our seniors and those who have chronic medical conditions.

While much of the information that follows may already be familiar to you, I encourage you to review and apply it with great care and diligence. Even if you don’t fall within the specific parameters of what is considered the high-risk population with this virus, the guidelines and tips it contains can play a critical role in keeping you – and your loved ones, friends and neighbors – healthy during this challenging time.