Q. I saw your story yesterday about Comcast stopping their new installations for new customers. It’s very sad about their service guy dying from the Coronavirus. My question is whether DIRECTV and Dish are still doing home visits for both putting up a dish or fixing service if you already have one. — Tommy, Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Tommy, you’re right. I reported yesterday that Comcast has suspended all in-home installations for new customers due to the Coronavirus outbreak. Instead, the cable operator will perform the work required outside the home, and then issue a self-activation kit to new customers
However, Comcast will continue doing in-home service calls so long as the customer answers no to several health-related questions such as whether he or she recently visited a country outside the U.S.
But what about DIRECTV and Dish, you ask. Are they still sending their technicians into customer homes for new installations, or service work on existing systems?
AT&T, which owns DIRECTV, says yes. However, the company adds that it’s taking extra precautionary measures to ensure a safe visit.
“AT&T cares about the health of our customers and employees, and we’re being cautious,” AT&T states at its web site. “Therefore, we’d like to let you know that our technicians may not enter your home if anyone there is: sick or quarantined; has traveled to a high-risk Level 3 country in the last 14 days; (including changing planes or trains there); or has been in close contact with anyone with coronavirus or who has traveled to or through a high-risk country in the last 14 days.”
AT&T does not explain what extra measures the technician might be taking to protect the customer in case the technician is sick.
However, Dish, which is also still doing at-home work, does. This is from the Dish web site:
“As always, if technicians have a known illness, they will not visit a customer’s home,” Dish states. “For your health and safety, technicians have been advised to not shake hands. Our technicians will wear gloves as much as possible, and may need to clean or sanitize surfaces they touch during their visit. Technicians will also wear shoe covers inside your home.”
The satcaster adds: “If you or someone in your household is showing signs of illness, including fever or flu-like symptoms, we ask that you reschedule any upcoming technician visits to your home. If you are unable to reschedule before the technician arrives, we ask that you notify him or her before they enter your home. We empower our technicians to make decisions regarding their personal health and safety, including ending appointments early if anyone in the household is showing symptoms of flu or other contagious illnesses.”
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— Phillip Swann