On July 1, Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed an order requiring universal face coverings. This order has implications for service provision, especially for individuals with deaf-blindness.
Some of the restrictions create barriers to communication and would impede effective supports for deaf-blind individuals. It is essential to remember that the needs of each individual must be considered separately. There will be no one-size-fits-all plan to support someone who is deaf-blind. Guidance can be found on ODP’s Deaf and Hard of Hearing Dashboard.
Ultimately, we need to assure that an individual’s communication, choices, preferences, needs, and understanding of personal risk are balanced with concerns for safety.