EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – As the City of El Paso reported over 18,000 active COVID-19 cases Monday, the surge is causing businesses to go back to teleworking, while some never stopped.

Jose Munoz, owner of Farmers Insurance franchise in El Paso, said he’s been having some of his employees work from home and some of them from the office ever since he opened the business in April of last year.

“It’s about protecting your employees and protecting your customers,” Munoz said.

Even though working from home is not really a new adjustment at this point in the pandemic, it’s looking like a more permanent solution for many businesses. Including Munoz.

He said he doesn’t see switching back to complete in person any time soon.

“We’ve been using a lot of technology, but you always want to make sure you don’t lose the human side [of the business].We all hate when people call and you get the ‘press one, press two,” he explained.

Who gets to work from home is often affected by their needs. Munoz said he takes child care into consideration especially when it comes to schools going back to virtual as well.

Dr. Ed Michelson, chairman of Department of Emergency Medicine at Texas Tech University, explained that COVID-19 is most likely here to stay for good.

“If possible, work from home, by all means, I think that would be the safest thing…”

Dr. Ed Michelson, chairman of Department of Emergency Medicine at Texas Tech University

However, he acknowledges that not all employees have the ability to do so.

He suggested, if you cannot work from home to wear your mask at all times and try to isolate from your coworkers in case you are waiting for your test results and are unable to do so at home.

In that case, he advised not socializing with your co-workers at our outside work, even if it means taking your lunch break separately.

Munoz pointed out that he would get confused at times with the changing CDC guidelines and those coming from the city or county authorities.

“So much information is coming out and you’re just trying to make the right decision and that’s the hardest part,” he said.

As a solution he suggested coherency between the CDC and local authorities as well as better clarification for businesses.

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