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April 14, 2020: Coronavirus Community Call

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To download notes, click here.

National and State Update-Ben Moser

Ben gave the following updates for Day 33 of the National Emergency over the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 from national, state and local news sources:

  • The number of new deaths and the rate of hospitalizations is falling in New York.   Governor Cuomo said on Monday that the worst is over. He has formed an alliance with six other northeastern governors to explore how to eventually lift restrictions
  • In India, the government extended the world’s largest lockdown on 1.3 billion people for more than two weeks as the case load crossed 10,000
  • In China, they are facing a new flair up along their remote northern border with Russia
  • Experts agree that there is no aggregate shortage of food or other retail items offered at the grocery store, but many factors are causing product deficits in some areas and stores. The biggest being that typically half of Americans expenditures for food are usually at restaurants
  • Global stocks edge higher Tuesday after President Trump announced that his administration is nearing completion of a plan to resume business activity in the United States
  • In Georgia, Governor Kemp said that it is too early to tell when we will start to lift coronavirus restrictions on economic activity as we need to focus on the mission at hand
  • In Alabama, as a reminder, for COVID-19 resources for individuals and businesses, go to altoghtheralabama.org

Columbus Area Updates      

Department of Public Health (Columbus Health Department) Update-Natalie Mann

Natalie gave the following updates:

  • As of this morning, there are 167 cases in Muscogee County, 51 in Dooley, 122 in Randolph and 251 in Sumter
  • There is a total of 800 cases in our 16-county health district
  • For most updated information go to the Georgia Department of Public Health website
Muscogee County School District Update-Dr. David Lewis

Dr. Lewis gave the following updates:

  • Distribution of printed instructional packets are scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday, April 15 and April 16 at the school’s sites from 7:00am-9:00am, 11:00am-1:00pm, 5:00pm-7:00pm. The distribution will be drive-thru; this information is also on the school district’s website
  • Starting next Monday, the feeding program will go from five days a week to three days a week. Same sites. Same times. Packages with four meals will be distributed on Mondays, packages with four meals will be distributed on Wednesdays and packages with two meals will be distributed on Fridays. Same number of meals per week but trying to limit the exposure for volunteers (some who are elderly) and students 
Alabama State House Representative Update-Chris Blackshear

Representative Blackshear gave the following updates:

  • There are 3803 confirmed cases in Alabama; 250 in Lee County; 212 in Chambers County; 28 in Russell County
  • There have been 30,000 Alabamians tested for the virus
  • There are 457 hospitalized in Alabama
  • There are 103 reported deaths in the state and 62 of those have been confirmed
  • Reminder today that the Alabama Department of Public Health will conduct drive-thru testing at the Russell County Health Department from 10:00am-2:00pm EST; client must have an appointment and meet certain criteria; Call 334-297-0251 for more information
Columbus Area Vulnerable Population Update
Home for Good Update-Pat Frey

Pat gave the following updates:

  • Continue to review webinars and information from across the country concerning best practices
  • Happy to report that locally we are in line with Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recommendations for best practices; we are ahead of the curve
  • Today at 1:30pm, there is a mega-waiver conference call with HUD for service providers and how they can access funds to meet the needs of the vulnerable population
  • Also brainstorming and talking today about how to reach our hard to reach population for the 2020 Census
Crisis Fund Update-Betsy Covington

Betsy gave the following updates:

  • The grant committee will announce the 2nd round of grants tomorrow from the Coronavirus Response Fund
  • Proud of the partnership with the Community Foundation and United Way; staffs are working closely together to make sure that the grants being made from this fund are meeting the needs in the community
  • Pleased at the response from donors to this fund; people are responding generously to support front line needs
  • The Coronavirus Impact Non-Profit Assessment Tool is getting a great response; more organizations have been added today
  • Go to CFCV.com/coronavirus to get a firsthand look at the impact that the coronavirus is having on our local non-profits; a report can also be download
  • Thanked everyone for their support

Open Forum Updates

MercyMed Update: Billy Holbrook

Billy gave the following updates:

  • There were 1,243 people tested during the Community Wide testing
  • Testing results were 186 or 15% came back positive for COVID-19
  • MercyMed is treating just over 80 people in their clinic that are positive and identified as high risk; they have developed a treatment plan for each patient; they also have an isolated area in the clinic for COVID-19 patients
  • COVID-19 patients who need it are being treated with hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin and baby aspirin based on a protocol used by a clinic in Birmingham; their care is also being coordinated with their primary care physician if the have one
  • Non symptomatic and low risk patients who are home in quarantine are being monitored by medical students from Mercer who call them daily
  • The goal is to keep everyone out of the hospital
  • Tomorrow at 3:00pm, MercyMed will host a Community Wide Zoom call to present findings from the Community Wide testing and answer any questions that the community may have

They are also seeing a lot of new patients, those who have become uninsured and unemployed; they are using more telehealth services as well

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