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March 27, 2020: Coronavirus Community Call

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National and States Updates-Ben Moser

Ben gave the following updates for Day 15 of the National Emergency from national state and local news sources:

  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has tested positive for the coronavirus; two days after Prince Charles tested positive
  • The United States House is set to vote on the two trillion-dollar relief package today; likely to send the bill to the President for signature
  • United States overtook Italy and China, as the country with the highest number of confirmed cases
  • Worst week for the economy in decades and the pain is just beginning; deep recession echoes the deep depression in the way that it has devastated businesses and consumers
  • Los Angeles County coronavirus cases spike to more than 1,200 with nine new deaths
  • Testing data suggests that we still don’t know how many are infected and the virus is hitting younger people more than originally thought. Forty percent of those hospitalized are between the ages of 20 to 54
  • Illinois sees a daily increase in cases. Chicago Mayor bands contact sports and closes popular city parks, beaches and trails
  • President Trump has hit his highest approval rate since becoming President
  • Georgia Governor Brian Kemp issued an executive order closing schools for in person instruction through April 24, 2020
  • Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed a supplement to the state emergency order allowing students to continue instruction at home beginning April 6, 2020. Students will finish the academic year online

Columbus Area Updates

Columbus Consolidated Government Updates-Mayor Skip Henderson

Mayor Henderson gave the following updates:

  • The numbers are up in Muscogee County. There are six confirmed cases
  • Anticipate that numbers will rise as we gain access to more test kits
  • Hospital numbers and Department of Public Health numbers may differ in the fact that a person may be treated in a Muscogee County hospital but not a resident of the county
  • Help people help themselves stay safe; Grateful for the businesses that have complied with last week’s order; some businesses are still unaware or are defying the order
  •  From an enforcement standpoint unable to police the entire business community Sending officers out when a complaint is received urging business owner to comply; Noncompliance is a misdemeanor. Could be fined or jailed. However, just want them to help by complying
  • First amendment to last week order will be released today; Parks will remain open, but structures will be off limits. i.e. basketball goals, tennis courts, volleyball courts, pavilions, exercise stations along running trails and playground equipment.  The amendment expires April 6, 2020 along with last week’s order; both orders may be reevaluated
  •  Temporarily suspending pick up of yard waste and recycling until further notice
Department of Public Health (Columbus Health Department)-Natalie Mann

Natalie gave the following updates:

  • Still doing drive thru testing
  • There are 24 positive cases in the 16 counties covered by the Columbus Health Department
  • Muscogee County has a total of seven positive case
Muscogee County School District Updates-Dr. David Lewis

Dr. Lewis gave the following updates:

  • The executive order was issued yesterday by Governor Kemp closing all Georgia public schools through April 24, 2020. Anticipate opening on April 27, 2020. This date may be revaluated as well
  • Muscogee County School District is prepared for continuation of distance learning; parents can pick up packets on April 7 and April 8 and drop off completed packets
  • No distance learning instruction or feeding program during Spring Break
  • Publicly thanked MCSD employees
Alabama State Representative Chris Blackshear

Representative Blackshear gave the following updates:

  • 538 confirmed cases in Alabama; 47 in Lee County; one in Russell County
  • Total of three deaths in Alabama
  • Council meetings will be held virtually
  • Mobile and Birmingham have enacted shelter in place; individual municipalities have permission to enact a shelter in place with permission from the Alabama Public Health Department
Piedmont Columbus Regional and Piedmont Healthcare System Updates-Board Member, Warren Steele

Warren gave the following updates:

  • Piedmont 11 hospital system (largest in Georgia); two in Columbus (Midtown and Northside)
  • Midtown is the Region I Command Center for 16 counties for disaster response; Midtown is also one of four Tier 1 hospitals for infectious diseases in Georgia; they are equipped and trained to deal with infectious diseases
  • Local CEO Scott Hill has been named the systems COO during this crisis to coordinate the activities in all 11 hospitals
  • 130 cases total in Piedmont hospitals; most in Peachtree City; three cases in Columbus Piedmont as of yesterday
  • First death yesterday in Columbus hospital was transfer from another hospital outside of the city
  • People under investigation (PUI) numbers coming down as testing is clearing up the backlog
  • Twenty percent of PUI test positive for COVID 19; others are some other type of respiratory infection
  • Fifty percent positive end up in ICU; 80% on ventilators
  • Piedmont has 2000 total beds system wide; 518 ventilators currently in use;97 ventilators (10-day supply) available
  • 284 ICU’s in use and 58 available
  • Midtown has one floor dedicated for COVID 19 patients
  • Plans to use Doctors Hospital if needed; can convert beds to ICU beds if necessary
  • Piedmont plans to not have any COVID 19 patients at Northside; moving non COVID 19 patients from Midtown to Northside to free up space for COVID patients; stopped all elective surgeries
  • Virus could peak in five to six weeks if there is good compliance with social distancing; will take 11-12 weeks with poor compliance
  • Piedmont is asking retired nurses and doctors to come back and work; they will be retrained
  • Modeling recovery of backlog cases for rescheduling of surgeries
  • Jessica Roberts media contact for Piedmont Columbus Regional
Columbus Area Vulnerable Population Update
Home for Good-Pat Frey

Pat gave the following updates:

  • Service providers and the community are helping to meet the needs of our vulnerable population
  • Nationwide call for all Continuum of Care this afternoon at 2:30pm to discuss best practices
  • Locally all Department of Housing and Urban Development and Centers for Disease guidelines are being implemented daily as changes occur
  • On Monday, she will not be giving an update on this call. She will be on another call giving a virtual presentation concerning our local COC
Crisis Fund Update-Betsy Covington

Betsy gave the following updates:

  • Fund lives at the Community Foundation but is in full partnership with United Way
  • The fund will provide support for organizations servicing the most vulnerable
  • Global Payment/ TSYS has made a $100,000 matching gift to the fund; they will match individual gifts to the fund up to $2,000 for a total of $100,000; more information can be found at CFCV.com/coronavirus
  • The fund is feeding Muscogee County children during Spring Break

No Open Forum Updates Today

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