A worker at a Georgia Waffle House tested positive for COVID-19, prompting co-workers to quarantine themselves in their homes, company officials said Tuesday.
None of the co-workers from the restaurant in the Canton area northwest of Atlanta have shown any signs of illness, the company said in a statement.
Meanwhile, five more people in Georgia have tested positive for the new coronavirus, as disease fears spread to school districts and the Georgia Capitol.
A total of 17 people in the state have now tested positive, according to figures released late Monday, although some tests have yet to be confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The 17 cases are from eight Georgia counties: Cherokee, Cobb, DeKalb, Gwinnett, Fayette, Floyd, Fulton, and Polk, according to a statement from Gov. Brian Kemp.
For most people, the virus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. The vast majority of people recover from the new virus.
The Waffle House northwest of Atlanta was temporarily closed and sanitized, the Norcross, Georgia-based company said in the statement. It did not say whether the store has reopened.
The infected employee worked only one day — on March 1 — during the past two weeks and hasn’t worked at any of the company’s restaurants since then, officials said. The co-workers are self-quarantining at their homes through Saturday, the company said.
Fulton County Schools Closed Wednesday
All Fulton County Schools will be closed again on Wednesday after a traveling teacher tested positive for coronavirus on Monday.
The closures will give crews the chance to keep cleaning and sanitizing schools.
The school system says all schools, except Bear Creek Middle and Woodland Middle Schools, will reopen on Thursday. Bear Creek Middle School will reopen on Monday, while Woodland Middle School will reopen on Tuesday.
State House Cuts Down On Visitors
The Georgia State House is making some changes to help alleviate risks associated with the coronavirus.
House Speaker David Ralston announced the House page program will be suspended starting Wednesday, and special guest groups will be canceled, too. This is all in an effort to limit the number of people in the Capitol as the legislature races towards its last day.
No word yet whether there will be changes over at the state Senate too.
Cruise Ship Passengers Arriving
Several of the Grand Princess cruise ship east coast passengers will soon be heading a little closer to home.
They’ll land at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta.
For up to two weeks, they’ll be quarantined and tested for coronavirus.
Officials say Georgia Princess cruise residents who show no symptoms of the virus, will be able to quarantine in their homes.
But as Lieutenant Allen Abernathy, the Public Affairs Officers for Dobbins Air Reserve Base says they’re expecting a cluster of out-of-state passengers.
“Residents of other states will likely complete their mandatory quarantine at Joint Base San Antonio Lackland in Texas or Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Georgia,” he said.
Abernathy added, “the final list of Department of Defense [D-O-D] locations and the numbers of passengers at each base are still being finalized.”
Delta Is Cutting Flights
Delta Airlines is cutting capacity by 15% worldwide and has instituted a hiring freeze to weather the drop in travel due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The airline said it has to take immediate steps to limit the financial impact of the coronavirus outbreak.
To save money, the carrier has begun parking some planes, offering early retirement to employees and delaying a $500 million capital investment.
Red Cross Makes Suggestions About Giving Blood
Georgia’s region of the American Red Cross said it is worried about blood shortages and lower donor participation as cases of the new coronavirus rise in the U.S.. Still, the organization is also implementing new blood donation deferrals out of caution.
Officials are asking for people to postpone their blood and platelet donations for 28 days if they’ve traveled to China, Iran, Italy and South Korea, or if they’ve been diagnosed with COVID-19, or been in contact with anyone suspected to have the virus.
The Red Cross is urging healthy, eligible people to keep donating in the Atlanta area.
State Officials: Stay Home If You’re Sick
Georgia officials are asking anyone who is sick not to go to work or to large events.
Gov. Brian Kemp said elderly people and people with chronic health conditions should stay away from large events, avoid people who are sick and not go on cruises.
Kemp says he’s been in touch with Vice President Mike Pence — and those are the current recommendations on Covid-19.
“We are not yet advising the cancellation of large public events, but we are calling on Georgians to follow these revised guidelines to mitigate risk and keep people as safe as possible,” he said.
WHO: Don’t Stress Yourself Out
It’s OK to turn off the TV or log off Twitter if all the news about coronavirus has you stressed out. That’s the advice of the World Health Organization.
“If its something that distresses you, minimize the amount of times that you’re exposing yourself to news or media,” Ayesha Malik, who is with the international public health agency, said. “You could even consider limiting yourself, for example, one to two times a day only.”
The WHO says public health emergencies, such as the COVID-19 outbreak, can easily affect people’s mental health.
The World Health Organization also says parents should be honest with their kids about the coronavirus outbreak.
“Giving children clear messages about the situation, in a way that’s adapted for their age, can help them understand what’s going on,” Malik said.
- Public health expert warns virus not going away – KSAT San Antonio
- Tesla asks employees to resume production at Fremont car plant despite coronavirus health orders – CNBC
- Major health groups and charities urge Trump to reverse World Health Organization funding decision – CNN
- Public health officials push back on May opening | TheHill – The Hill
- Analysis | The Health 202: Los Angeles is racing to discover the true coronavirus infection rate – The Washington Post
- Some Public Health Officials Not Releasing Coronavirus Hospitalizations : Shots – Health News – NPR
- Covid-19 health-care crisis could drive new developments in robotics, editorial says – The Washington Post
- Lost Your Health Insurance During the COVID-19 Crisis? Here Are Your Options – The Motley Fool
- El Paso virus cases jump to 35 as health leaders warn of increased risk of ‘community spread’ – KVIA El Paso