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Montgomery Place encourages responsible behaviors during this time of COVID-19 

Dear Friends and Family, 

Travel restrictions. Isolation orders. Required testing. Do they help? 

Travel restrictions, in place right now Chicago, do not tell you that you cannot travel, but rather that if you do travel to certain locations you are asked to self-quarantine upon your return. Some countries around the world are saying they don’t want Americans visiting due to our high COVID-19 counts.  Remember, the United States government took that same approach to visitors from China this past March.   

Travel restrictions do help in containment. Using my background growing up and working on a farm (but by no means suggesting that humans are cattle), consider this: Putting a fence around a herd of cattle doesn’t change the number of cattle in the pen, it only limits how far they can wander. 

Isolation orders ask us to self-quarantine under certain circumstances such as travel, having symptoms, knowing that we have been around others infected—or as we do at Montgomery Place, moving into highly compromised populations.   

Some view these recommendations as violations of their rights. I prefer to view them as a person’s responsibility to our broader society. Is it too much to ask us to show our fellow neighbors we are concerned about them? Using that same example of cattle, if a new cow or steer is brought into the pen, it brings a new germ pool from its prior pen, exposing all others in the new pen. Over the years, ranchers have learned to separate new cattle for a few days to observe, test and inoculate prior to mixing new arrivals into an existing herd. What can we learn from this practice?

Required testing is counter to our desire to control our own lives. We don’t like being told what to do, especially when it comes to medical procedures. Watching reactions to testing is interesting. Some individuals are afraid of the physical discomfort and will never get tested. Others want to know their results right away and would test every day. But the majority seem to procrastinate or respond with the attitude “‘if I must” I will comply. 

Regardless of the group, if an individual has no symptoms there is an assumption he or she will test negative. When asymptomatic people receive positive test results, their reactions can be very defensive. They demand an immediate second test. 

Testing helps us identify asymptomatic carriers. I’m a firm believer in testing and testing frequently. Let’s find the carriers, especially those who do not know they are, and isolate them to reduce the spread of this virus. 

Don’t hesitate to reach out if I can answer any questions or be of further assistance. Call my mobile phone number, 773-617-1317, at any time. 

Respecting others, creates a safer environment for all.  

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