New presumptive COVID-19 cases in NC announced Thursday
NC presumptive cases stand at 12
Thank you, Dr Cohen. Um, and I d’oh very appreciative of folks being willing. Thio come together and and serve on this incredibly challenging and rapidly evolving situation, not just in our statement in our country and in our world. So thank you. And we’re so appreciative of the ready partnership of all of our key stakeholders. We’re very appreciative it. As Dr Cohen said, I will do a little bit of a level set of where we all are so that we know as of today where we are, as Secretary Cohen mentioned, we’ve been having some work being done in some of our planning sectors. So we’ll be doing a very high level brief report out of some of the work in our planning sectors. But we have a lot of new people at the table as well today. And so we also want to be sure that then we the folks who have not been involved in some of our planning sectors, to be able to report out for the rest of the group what we’re doing, what you are doing. Um and then we can think through moving forward. How else we wantto be short our communication is a cz strongest possible on that we are all planning together. So you want to hear a lot from you all. But I will give that brief update of where we are for now. And while the doctors briefing those of you sitting over there, you can just swivel your chairs and you can see it on the screen. And so you’ll be able to follow right alone. Okay. And with the caveat that when the governor arrives, we will pause. Of course for that, and then continue on with our with our meeting. Okay, so very brief status report. Um, as of, um, this morning, as we said, we expected we are have started to see more cases as we are testing more in this again is not, um ah, surprised to us. But we are seeing more more cases on. This number is changing very rapidly. Actually, we have now 12 cases, um, in the state, Still no deaths, which we are very, uh, grateful for, But we are starting to see the numbers of our of our case is coming up. Um, today, Ah. Of those cases, all of them have had a known contact except for one of our most newest ones, which were still investigation. Um, just understand the source of that of that potential exposure. We are, um, having some increased capacity and our testing in our lab, um, and doctor shown here, who has done incredible amount of work and really thinking about creative ways to be able to get more testing capability in our in our labs. So we are able to approve a lot more tests, which is what we’ve always been wanting to do to be able to increase the testing. So we’ve been able to open that that door, which we are grateful for for lots of reasons. One, we want to be sure that people were testing people. Also, this the number of people testing isn’t really gonna be a very important thing for us to know. As we start moving through some of our mitigation strategies what we which we will Oh, Okay. I was just told to speak up, even though I’m Oh, okay. I will project. I will project more. So So. One of the biggest challenges I think of people than hearing is our limitation in testing. It has been our biggest barrier and challenge. And we have been working around the clock and thinking about, um, creative ways with public private partnerships to increase our taste testing capability. And so we’ve been able to significantly increase the capacity in the state lab. And also, we’re been partnering with our private, um, um organizations to be able to expand testing statewide. So we’re feeling in a better position today than we were yesterday in terms of our testing capability. Um, in addition, on the bottom, you’ll see expanding cases in the country and that, um, the bottom right. As you know, on Tuesday, the governor declared a state of emergency. As part of that, we are working through some of the medications strategies. I will go through those that were announced on Tuesday. Um, And then, as we said, the situation is changing rapidly. So on the bottom, right. You will see what was accurate as of yesterday, but some of you may have seen last night at the federal government is also working on it in having travel restrictions. Ah, for non us citizens coming from European countries and at his new as of last night. Okay. OK, moving on. Um as we said, uh, the deputy Geral, actually last night declared this as, ah, pandemic. That was new as of last night as well. Im and so we are responding to that as well. On the next line again, where we are thinking through the intervals with a pandemic that we still think we are in that ah, acceleration phase. We still think we’re at the early part of this epidemic on. And so we are gearing up not only in our containment strategies that you use at the beginning of her of an epidemic, but that we are also then thinking through what are our community mitigation strategy. We need to put in a place a CZ. We move through the acceleration of this, um, epidemic. Excellent. I briefly had covered that already. These are the travel record nations, and then there was changed last night. As those of you may be aware on the next line. Um, uh uh. So, uh, briefly mentioned this as well as we said, the state of emergency was declared on Tuesday. We are now activating Emergency Operations Center. Having our public health and human service is an emergency management team called Located here we are still in our aggressive containment strategies where we are rapidly identifying and testing in contact, tracing all but they are preparing and moving in, taking tiered steps towards on mitigation strategy and for the community. And we also making sure that we are keeping people has informed as possible at least activated our Joint Information Command Center because this has been an incredibly communication heavy event. Um, and we are maintaining our upstate website on and then we also have our hotline through the poison control center is another way that people can access up to date information next line. All right, Thank you, Dr Tilson. And so is she said earlier the governor did sign a unexamined border that created a state of emergency on March the 10th. And on that date, we actually breached the state emergency response team. The full all the membership. And so they’re watching. They’re participating. We’re going to be briefing them each week to let them know where we are. Is the event unfolds? The joint information center is activated seven days a week because we want to make sure that accurate information is getting pushed out daily were activated at a level four. We have emergency management staff as well as DHHS staff here with 72 hour operational periods. They’re embedded with us and we’re working together. I will note that in mid January, DHHS and public Health stood up their Public Health Coordination center on DWI, embedded it with them and said There’s been a lot of planning and a lot of good work that’s been ongoing since mid January. We’re currently under the guidance of our technical lead doctors, Cohen and Dr Tilson. We’re establishing that operational tempo for planning and tactics meetings. We’ve been having to tactics meetings every day so that we can make sure that we are looking forward into the future and not missing anything. We’re developing new products for reporting so that we can keep everybody situationally aware of actually what’s happening. We’re doing some purchasing of some additional equipment. Was such a CZ personal protective equipment on, But also, as I mentioned, conducting future operations planning were the things that we’ve been able to do is, you know, this pandemic is not foreign to us. We experienced one in 2009 so we do have plans and we’ve been able to leverage some information and those plans to help us with this event. Thank you, ma’am. Back to you. Okay. As I alluded to some of the big efforts as I loaded Thio, some of our major efforts are thinking what we call non pharmaceutical interventions or community mitigation strategies. I think these people are where we do not have pharmaceutical interventions at present for this infection. So no vaccines and no medicine. So therefore, we are relying on a lot of our non pharmaceutical interventions for our community, our community mitigation strategies. On the goal of those community mitigation strategies, R thio blunt the peak of the spread of the disease to that, we’re ensuring that we have the resource is in order to respond Next slide thehe Mount Smith that we had made on Tuesday as our first tier of our community mitigation strategies. And again a lot of these were focusing on the people that we know are at higher risk for more clinical severity if they were to get the UNF action and high risk people were defining is those over 65 and that have underlying chronic medical condition or a compromised immune system and so a lot of our recommendations are around, um, protecting our highest risk people on. And so our recommendations that were gonna came out on Tuesday as our first year of mitigation strategies on these are aligning with our CDC guidelines, but that high risk people should avoid large crowds and also avoid mass travel. That facilities of residential establishments where highways people should restrict visitors for mass gatherers. Mass gatherings. We are recommending that event organizers urge anyone who’s not sick who is set to not attend to encourage those who are at high risk, not attends to be sure that they’re adopting refund policies to accommodate people. High risk categories are not coming to be ableto find. Adopt ways to have people have more space at the mass gatherings. To be sure, people are washing hands and having hand sanitizer available and then cleaning, washing down surfaces. We are, as mentioned, the traveler guidance. Following CDC and state government recommendations are State Department recommendations and then people who are returning from high risk countries to be self monitoring. At this time, we are not recommending preemptive school closures Next slide. We have had some statewide recommend Uh, these are mitigation strategy, those mitigation strategies before our statewide recommendations and then for affected areas. We also had additional mitigation strategies and that addressed our work settings that people work settings in affected areas should adopt Tele tele working technologies to the greatest extent possible. Urge their employees were sick not to come home and have flexible, sickly benefits to accommodate um, folks, thank you. Okay, he was finished. Okay, okay, I have I’m almost almost done. So then I will pause, um, and then, um, and to consider staggering as starting in times of our workplaces so that we are limiting the amount of people who are in contact with each other. And then finally, I already mentioned this over that mass gatherings in affected areas specifically, as we mentioned, people who are at higher risk for having clinical severity that we are recommending that mass gatherings in the affected areas that specifically target high risk people. So of mass gathering that specifically is targeting Anel Julie, population or ah, set of popular people with underlying chronic diseases to consider, um, canceling that mass event that specifically is targeting high risk people. These were the recommendation that we met on Tuesday. As we mentioned, this is a rapidly evolving situation on. Then we will be changing recommendations as we see appropriate going forward Next line that ends this part of it. Um and so I will pause. And, um thank you, Dr Tilson. And at this time, I’d like to recognize a governor Roy Cooper of the great State of North Carolina, sir. Thank you. Direct library. Uh, thank you, Dr Tilson. Thank you, Dr Cho. And all of you seated around this table have been working diligently to deal with this issue here, facing our state, our country and our world, in fact, and the key here, I think, is coordination. I’ve been on the phone and communication with governors and other states. One of the advantages that North Carolina has right now is that we have seen other states that have seen rapid spread of this virus, and we’re learning things minute by minute of steps we should take. We have a team involved here who knows about public Hell knows about how this virus has spread, and we need to do everything that we can to work to prevent the spread of the virus and also to mitigate another that lives are at stake. We also know that all of our lives will change in some way over the next few weeks and months. We know that, uh, there will be disappointment. We know that there will be a loss of income for people. We know that there will be inconvenience. But I think it’s critical for us to realize that we are all in this together, that we will find a way forward for our state, that the number one objective here is to protect the health, safety and welfare of North Carolinians. And we are committed to that, and we’re gonna have to make some tough decisions. Some of them will be unpopular. But I think it’s critical that we take steps now. One thing. It’s important to note that this group has been working since January. We’ve had people working on this since January. I believe that we’re in a good position. We’ve been recognized across the country, is one of the desks, coordinated emergency management operations in the country. Part of the reason for going ahead and declaring the state of emergency was to bring this coordination about Kobe Loaded Co locating public help here has been critical to that. This this afternoon, I will be holding a press conference to talk about additional measures. Dr. Tilson doctor took Owen and Mike. I know I’ve told you that this is a constantly evolving situation here, and we have been working through the night looking at steps that other states have taken. And also we were looking at the how this has spread. Looking at other countries, looking at the data from other countries, it is important to make our decisions based on science data, in fact, and to Theo air on the side of making sure that we protect the public. So this afternoon we will be announcing some evolving specific recommendations. We know that this morning we learned of three new positive cases in our state to and Foresight County and one in Johnson County that may have already been reported in here. And I know that there are other results coming from other parts of the state that we still need to confirm. So there will be additional cases, and, uh, this epidemic is going to get worse before it gets better. We all know that, uh, the public Health and other leaders in this room have been working around the clock to make sure that our state is prepared and protected. We’ve had a good working relationship with businesses with athletic team sports leagues, and some of them was, we know have begun changing their approach to this virus is they see things evolved. And when we convene this afternoon, we will be updating you on our revised guidance in recommendations. And we will be sharing that with you very soon. Uh, I hope that we can get some good ideas from you and to tell us what you are seeing in your particular area on the ground. We appreciate and value your work on this critical issue. I know that this is a difficult situation. Uh, but like North Carolinians, no, we’re better when we work together. I am going to be in and out because I’m on the phone with people about this issue as we speak. But I want to turn it back over to our co chairs and to continue this, I will, I won’t mention, and I know that they’re talking about it. Specifically, the lack of testing supplies from the CDC has been a concern now for a couple of weeks. Know that we’re doing everything we possibly can to get more supplies to get new methods for testing approved to co opt our friends in private industry with lap core and others. And this does remain a top priority right now to get a CZ many people tested as possible. We’ve been working with the CDC, and obviously, we have now expanded our criteria for people being able to get tests, which is, ah, positive thing. And we’re going to continue to work to make sure that we do that. So I’m gonna be here for a little while longer, but I want to turn it back over to the co chairs. Thank you, governor. And we’re gonna go ahead and start doing are planning sector brief out and the 1st 1 up his medical surge. And Kimberly Clement from the Office of Emergency Medical Service is gonna talk to us about that. Good morning. Thank you. First, I just want to say we have been working since January to coordinate, collaborate and communicate with our healthcare partners. It’s on. I’ll be louder. I promise. Um, and our coordination has included our healthcare association, partners, healthcare, professional association, partners, our healthcare coalitions and emergency management. We’ve also done coordination with payers and with many of our different hospital systems, including our public and private sectors, as well as we are working to look at strategies to ensure that we will be able to meet the medical surge requirements. As of right now, we don’t have any concerns related to that. But we we are looking forward to the items that need to be adjusted or changed so that we can make sure we meet all of those needs. Thank you, Kimberly. And so you covered scarce medical resource is along with that force. Certainly. So with the scarce medical resource is, we’re asking that our healthcare partners with scarce medical resource is work through their county emergency managers. We’re coordinating with state emergency management and with our health care coalitions to fill those resource requests as they come in. We have been filling resource requests for about two weeks and we’re working and have been sourcing. Additional resource is over the last couple of days to make sure we maintain those resource is as needed. And while we have you, um I’m gonna drop down to a fatality. Management. Can you speak to that force? Certainly. So I know that there has been a lot of preplanning related to fatality. Management’s public health has been working on that. And there has been good coordination, new guidance that has been coming out so again, just working with various partners to make sure that’s being coordinated and communicated. Thanks, Kimberly. And next up is a non pharmaceutical interventions, which we call in P. I’m starting to learn the lingo little bit. And Dr Tilson addressed that during her briefing. But you weren’t just hitting the high points there, man. E cover the main ones. I’m just gonna look to my EPI team Thio, Dr Davies, Dr Moore, Evelyn 1000 or anything else that you would add beyond my briefing. Okay, Got that one covered. Thank you, ma’am. And so next up, his support service is And what else say here is that North Carolina emergency management and the State Emergency Response team I think that we’re uniquely positioned to provide support service is to the strong leadership that we have in our DHHS. And so what? We’re good. That is providing interagency coordination logistic support, planning, support, transportation, support, the things that are non medical in nature. That’s what we can do. And so we’ve been working with him. We haven’t a natural relationship with you with him, I can tell you that we work and meet routinely with public health and know you miss during Blue Sky days is what we call non event days where we get briefed up on communicable diseases and things like that. So that we’re always try to be is ready as we can be. And so we’re proud of our partnership. We continue to work it regarding incident management. Of course, we have organized over the Public Health Coordinating Center and I say we include public health. We amass emergency management. We’ve organized into the incident management structure under the National Incident Management System. And so we have a unified command here. We’re working together with plans, logistics, operations, et cetera, the medical folks. And so we have a nor chart we brief on a regular battle rhythm on DSO is that if it continues to unfold, the incident command system is flexible enough so that we can expand it and have more staff, more state emergency response team partners as needed. So this time I’m gonna turn it over to Tracy Zimmerman from DHHS for an update on communications. Tracy, you have the floor, man. Thank you. Thank you so much. So we have been working hard on communications Well before, Uh uh, we set up the joint information center, um, earlier last week. So that is now up and in place. We have a very robust team that’s looking to push out information as quickly as possible, but also keeping in mind as accurately as possible. So sometimes that takes a little bit of time. But our goal is to be as fast and transparent and as accurate as we can be. We have a website that was stood up again very quickly. It has a robust amount of information on it. We will continue to look at how to best organize that so people can find information quickly for what they need to be able to continue to move forward and to appropriate preparations, response actions. We will again continue to push out information. We are formalizing our stakeholder outreach. There has been much of that going on again well before the task force was formed through regular local health department calls and other outreach with key state quarters that has now been well expanded. And so you should see. Hopefully you’ll there may be a redundancy built into that. But that’s the goal is to get out information as much as possible. We will also be moving to sharing public dashboards on a daily basis so that folks will know exactly what is happening at the state level. And then, lastly, we will be standing up. You’re getting next week, a daily media availability so that we can again continue to address questions and meet people’s needs. With that, I just want to echo the, um, the advice to make sure you’re getting accurate information That’s based in fact, um, and that you all serve as ambassadors to help continue to push out that accurate information. Thank you. Thank you, Tracy. This time I’m gonna turn over to the governor. I wanted to recognize the president of the University of North Carolina system, Dr Bill Roper, and wanted to thank him for working in a coordinated way with our staff. With his experience at the CDC, he is, uh, been helpful to us, Dr Cohen, Duct Tilson and others and wanted him to give a little overview of some recent decisions that have been made at the university. And, uh, we thank you for being here, doctor. Thank you, Governor. And thank you for your leadership and the words you spoke just a few minutes ago. Our pitch Perfect. I’ve had the opportunity to interact with Secretary Cohen and Director Tilson and the other teammates in the last few days. What I’d like to do is just take a couple of minutes toe as you invited, tell you the decisions that we made yesterday and announced for the UNC system. And we’re trying, as you all are, surely to find the right balance between what I’d call prudent action and panic and and I think you’re hitting it exactly right in the UNC system. We have 17 educational institutions and some other affiliates, and it’s important for us to, uh, most of the time give why discretion for flexibility across the system. This is not one of those times. What we’re trying to do is give direction and act in a coordinated fashion across the system because, as I’m sure you will understand If one university within our system makes the decision to pull all study abroad students home today, then the instant thing that happens is parents, students, faculty and others will inundate us with phone calls. What about Iran Institution? What are you going to do there? So we’re determined to move as a system in a coordinated way, making the right decisions at the system level, but still giving lots of flexibility across the system for its implementation. Oh, overarching. All of this and again, Dr Tilson highlighted this. The virus is here in North Carolina. We can’t prevent its entry into our state. But I think as much as possible everything we need we are doing needs to be directed at interruption interrupting the transmission of the virus across our state. So the things that we’re doing as far as moving from in person, of course delivery at the university level to as much as practicable online courses so that we can minimize large classes and the and the aggregation of students in single locations. Ah, as much as possible. We sent out a directive yesterday saying that we were not gonna have events on our campuses of larger than 100 people unless that it is deemed to be necessary by the chancellor or army. We are have banned travel outside the state on university business by everyone, and we’re looking at what further things to do on study abroad. I just stressed the 0.18 to 22 year olds are not at high risk. This is not about protecting the health of students on our campuses. Rather, it is trying to prevent them bringing the virus to a university campus and in accelerating the transmission because grouping of students and then they’re going out and exposing. Lots of other people were preparing for further testing and health care needs, et cetera. We’re coordinating all of this with the state health authorities. Thank you for that. I just final point. We have the copies of the thing we sent out yesterday will be leaving it with you all. If you want to transmit it, that’s perfect. Panic is not warranted and a TTE the same time. Creating this as a trivial matter and warning against overreacting is not helpful either. And so I just would say I am absolutely confident we’re going to get some things wrong, and tomorrow will correct those. But this is an occasion where we shouldn’t be held back until we have perfect information before making prudent decisions. That’s the point. Thank you, sir.
New presumptive COVID-19 cases in NC announced Thursday
NC presumptive cases stand at 12
Two people from Forsyth County and a person from Johnston County have tested presumptive positive for novel coronavirus (COVID-19), bringing the total of presumptive positive cases in North Carolina to 11.One of North Carolina’s presumptive positive cases is a Durham resident who tested positive in another state.North Carolina also has one positive case, according to the NC Department of Health and Human Services website. The presumptive positive tests will have to be confirmed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lab. All are doing well and are in isolation at home. While awaiting confirmation of results from the CDC, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services will treat presumptive cases as positive and follow CDC guidelines to protect public health and limit the spread of infection. >>Last cases in Carolinas, Georgia and the latest headlines “We are starting to see the number of our cases going up,” said North Carolina State Health Director Dr. Elizabeth Tilson. “The number of people testing will be very important thing for us to know as we start to move through mitigation strategies.”>>FULL continuing coverage of the coronavirusThe Forsyth and Johnson County local health departments will work to identify close contacts. The couple from Forsyth was on a cruise where other travelers have tested positive. The exposure for the person from Johnston County is being investigated. The CDC defines close contact as being within approximately 6 feet of a person with an infection with COVID-19 case for a prolonged period of time of 10 minutes or longer. Based on information provided by the individual, county health officials will assess risks of exposure, determine which if any additional measures are needed such as temperature and symptom checks, quarantine and/or testing.Because COVID-19 is most commonly spread through respiratory droplets, North Carolinians should take the same measures that health care providers recommend to prevent the spread of the flu and other viruses, including washing your hands, avoiding touching your face, staying home if you are sick and covering coughs and sneezes with your elbow.
Two people from Forsyth County and a person from Johnston County have tested presumptive positive for novel coronavirus (COVID-19), bringing the total of presumptive positive cases in North Carolina to 11.
One of North Carolina’s presumptive positive cases is a Durham resident who tested positive in another state.
North Carolina also has one positive case, according to the NC Department of Health and Human Services website.
The presumptive positive tests will have to be confirmed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lab.
All are doing well and are in isolation at home.
While awaiting confirmation of results from the CDC, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services will treat presumptive cases as positive and follow CDC guidelines to protect public health and limit the spread of infection.
“We are starting to see the number of our cases going up,” said North Carolina State Health Director Dr. Elizabeth Tilson. “The number of people testing will be very important thing for us to know as we start to move through mitigation strategies.”
The Forsyth and Johnson County local health departments will work to identify close contacts. The couple from Forsyth was on a cruise where other travelers have tested positive. The exposure for the person from Johnston County is being investigated. The CDC defines close contact as being within approximately 6 feet of a person with an infection with COVID-19 case for a prolonged period of time of 10 minutes or longer. Based on information provided by the individual, county health officials will assess risks of exposure, determine which if any additional measures are needed such as temperature and symptom checks, quarantine and/or testing.
Because COVID-19 is most commonly spread through respiratory droplets, North Carolinians should take the same measures that health care providers recommend to prevent the spread of the flu and other viruses, including washing your hands, avoiding touching your face, staying home if you are sick and covering coughs and sneezes with your elbow.
- 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