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What Would An Infectious Disease Expert Do? Doctors Discuss Their Comfort Level During Reopening

BOSTON (CBS) -- As Massachusetts starts reopening, WBZ-TV asked two infectious disease experts to weigh in on what they would feel comfortable doing and under what conditions.

Both experts said they would be willing to go to a hair salon or barbershop that followed state guidelines on social distancing and limiting customers.

"You want to see that the person who gives you your haircut, or fixes your hair, has a mask on as well," said Dr. Helen Boucher, the Chief of Infectious Diseases at Tufts Medical Center.

Boucher and UMass Dartmouth professor Dr. Erin Bromage agree that a haircut and a longer appointment, such as a color, would be safe if there are precautions taken.

"It would want to be at the beginning of the day, sitting off in a corner somewhere so you're not putting yourself at risk," Bromage said of having a longer appointment.

Again, both experts agree that a beach trip would be fine if social distancing guidelines are followed.

"The virus will survive in the water but the dilution is just so low that it's not going to get to a situation where it's going to be a problem," Bromage added.

Restaurants will not open until Phase 2 of Massachusetts' reopening. Both Boucher and Bromage say that outdoor restaurants are the safest bet.

"Give me an outdoor patio with a nice breeze with a view and I'm sitting there any day of the week, having a meal, having a beer," Bromage said.

What about increasing interactions between family and friends? Again, both experts agree that outside gatherings with social distancing are safest. They also say that we should continue to protect the elderly and the vulnerable.

"Having a few groups on the opposite sides of a fire, bring your own drinks, bring your own snacks, try not to use friends bathrooms," said Bromage.

"If there are grandparents or other people at risk, I think it's wise to think twice before inviting more people in or widening that circle," Boucher said.

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