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August 19, 2020: Coronavirus Community Call

• Coronavirus
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August 19, 2020: Coronavirus Community Call

To download notes, click here.

To donate, click here.

National and/or State News Updates-Ben Moser

Ben gave the following updates concerning the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 from national, state, and local news sources:

New York Times: 
  • At least 1,349 new coronavirus deaths and 43,226 new cases were reported in the United States on August 18. Over the past week, there have been an average of 49,102 cases per day, a decrease of 17 percent from the average two weeks earlier.
  • As of Wednesday morning, more than 5,498,300 people in the United States have been infected with the coronavirus and at least 171,800 have died, according to a New York Times database.
  • 10 states and territories showed an increase in cases.
  • 22 states and territories remained mostly the same.
  • 22 states and territories, including Georgia and Alabama, are seeing a decrease in cases.
Elevated Issue of Local Concern or Awareness-Ben Moser
  • The World Health Organization warned Tuesday that younger adults are becoming the primary drivers of the spread of the novel coronavirus in many countries — a worrisome trend experts fear may grow in the United States as many colleges and schools begin to reopen.
  • Many nations in Asia, which had previously pushed infections to enviably low rates, have experienced surges in recent weeks at the same time that the age of those infected skewed younger.
  • “People in their 20s, 30s and 40s are increasingly driving the spread,” Takeshi Kasai, the WHO’s Western Pacific regional director, said at a news briefing on Tuesday. “The epidemic is changing.”
  • More than half of confirmed infections in Australia and the Philippines in recent weeks have been in people younger than 40, WHO officials said, a stark contrast to predominantly older patients from the previous months. In Japan, 65 percent of recent infections occurred in people below age 40.
  • Because symptoms are often milder in the young, many are unaware they are infected.
  • “This increases the risk of spillovers to the most vulnerable: the elderly, the sick, people in long-term care, people who live in densely populated urban areas and underserved rural areas.”

Economic Sector and Impact Area Updates 

Muscogee County School District Update-Dr. David Lewis

Dr. Lewis gave the following updates:

  • The school year began virtually on Monday.
  • The school year had a smooth start with the exception of a few isolated technical glitches.
  • Reminder to students that have not done so to enroll in school. They can register online or at their assigned school. Attendance is being taken.
  • Schools are serving meals on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Two days of meals will be provided on Monday and Wednesday.
  • Teachers and students have embraced the virtual learning format and he is pleased and proud.
  • They will access health conditions after September 9th to determine if they will resume the choice model.
  • Appreciates United Way and community partners that are helping students with online learning while parents are working.
  • Thanked the community for all their support in ensuring that the educational system moves forward in a safe and positive way.
Feeding the Valley Update-Frank Sheppard

Frank gave the following updates:

  • Since March 15, 2020, Feeding the Valley and community partners have distributed more than 8 million pounds of food.
  • Thankful to all the community partners that have helped to distribute food to families and children.
  • Food distribution tomorrow in Randolph County (city of Cuthbert, GA) at the Enrichment Services building.
  • Food distribution on Saturday in Russell County (Phenix City, AL) at the Central Activity Center. Alabama residents only.
  • Reminder that if individuals need food, they can go to the Feeding the Valley website, click on “Need Food”, enter their zip code and they will receive a list of food pantries in their area.  https://feedingthevalley.org/
St. Francis Emory Healthcare Update-Melody Trimble

Melody gave the following updates:

  • At present they have 30 COVID-19 patients at St. Francis and the numbers are trending down.
  • Cautioned everyone not to let their guards down as we are still living with COVID-19, there is still no vaccine or further treatment options.
  • Reminder to continue to maintain social distancing and wear a mask.
  • Reminder that the flu season is around the corner.
  • Important that we continue to focus on mental health as well as physical health.
Piedmont Columbus Regional Update-John Dale Hester

John gave the following updates:

  • They have been seeing a steady downward trend over the past couple of weeks.
  • Going back in history: After Memorial Day there was a very steady and significant increase up until mid-July in the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations that they had. In mid-July they plateaued and in the past couple of weeks the numbers have been going down to levels that they have not seen since late May.
  • What has changed over the past few weeks?
  • No other major holiday since Memorial Day and July 4th.
  • Everyone has been more diligent by wearing masks and taking the proper precautions.
  • Urged everyone to continue to be diligent as we learn how to live with COVID-19.
  • Labor Day is coming up in a few weeks. Urged everyone to be cautious and to continue to do the right things.
Home for Good/United Way Update-Pat Frey

Pat gave the following updates:

  • Last Thursday, Home for Good virtually hosted the Continuum of Care Annual Meeting. There were 50 plus people in attendance. The meeting agenda, slides and recording can be found in the attached link.
Continuum of Care
  • The Housing Authority of Columbus, Moving to Work Rapid Re-Housing Voucher Program Handbook


Grants/Projects Update-Betsy Covington

Betsy gave the following updates:

  • This week grants total $13,000 to the Salvation Army and an administrative transfer to the Community Foundation of the Chattahoochee Valley of a special grant from a private foundation to support the administrative cost of hosting the Coronavirus Community Call.
  • Total grants to date are $1,083,962. See cfcv.com/coronavirus for grant details.
  • Thanked everyone for their continued support.

Making Connections (Open Forum) Updates

Piedmont Columbus Regional Update-Joel Ames

Joel gave the following updates:

  • Piedmont Columbus Regional is revising their visitation restrictions.
  • One essential visitor per hospital stay per inpatient will be allowed at their facilities. Does not apply to COVID-19 patients, for obvious reasons.
  • Strongly suggesting that children 12 and younger and those over 70 not visit the hospital.
  • They are still screening at entry points.
  • This change is effective beginning 8:00am tomorrow.

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