COVID-19 UPDATE: Preparedness, Not Panic
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Following Governor Roy Cooper’s State of Emergency Declaration for the State of North Carolina on Monday, March 10, I have made the decision to do the same for the City of Rocky Mount.
Rocky Mount is the first city in North Carolina to file a state of emergency. Though this is a serious measure to take, there is no need for elevated concern. Rather, it is important to understand that this is a proactive step taken for the sake of preparedness and prevention. There will be a press conference held at 3:00 pm this afternoon on the third floor of City Hall where I will announce this officially to the media.
The primary reason for this declaration is to allow access to state and federal resources and early adoption of those resources, that would otherwise not be available. This decision was made to ensure the safety and well-being of all Rocky Mount residents and visitors.
Currently, North Carolina has 17 cases of COVID-19. This number is expected to rise. Of these cases, none are located in the City of Rocky Mount.
“Our priority is to keep our city protected and safe during this time,” Ms. Small-Toney said. “The city’s leadership team is keeping constant communication with local and state organizations to ensure proper actions are taken if and when necessary.”
Visit rockymountnc.gov or the city’s various social media platforms for updated and accurate information.”
I, along with City Officials, am in continuous communication with local and state organizations to ensure proper action is taken.
If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice. According to the DHHS in Raleigh, testing criteria has been widened and anyone experiencing a fever, lower respiratory symptoms and has already tested negative for the flu.
Check for updated information frequently on the City’s website.
HOW CAN YOU PROTECT YOURSELF AND YOUR FAMILY?
- Take everyday preventive actions to stay healthy.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other social distancing measures.
- Stay informed. CDC’s COVID-19 Situation Summary will be updated regularly as information becomes available
Stay home except to get medical care You should restrict activities outside your home, except for getting medical care. Do not go to work, school, or public areas. Avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis. Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home People: As much as possible, you should stay in a specific room and away from other people in your home. Also, you should use a separate bathroom, if available. Animals: Do not handle pets or other animals while sick. Call ahead before visiting your doctor If you have a medical appointment, call the healthcare provider and tell them that you have or may have COVID-19. This will help the healthcare provider’s office take steps to keep other people from getting infected or exposed.
Wear a facemask You should wear a facemask when you are around other people (e.g., sharing a room or vehicle) or pets and before you enter a healthcare provider’s office. If you are not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then people who live with you should not stay in the same room with you, or they should wear a facemask if they enter your room.
Cover your coughs and sneezes Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw used tissues in a lined trash can; immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
Avoid sharing personal household items You should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people or pets in your home. After using these items, they should be washed thoroughly with soap and water.
Clean your hands often Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day High touch surfaces include counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables. Also, clean any surfaces that may have blood, stool, or body fluids on them. Use a household cleaning spray or wipe, according to the label instructions. Labels contain instructions for safe and effective use of the cleaning product including precautions you should take when applying the product, such as wearing gloves and making sure you have good ventilation during the use of the product.
Monitor your symptoms Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening (e.g., difficulty breathing). Before seeking care, call your healthcare provider and tell them that you have, or are being evaluated for, COVID-19. Put on a facemask before you enter the facility. These steps will help the healthcare provider’s office to keep other people in the office or waiting room from getting infected or exposed. Ask your healthcare provider to call the local or state health department. Persons who are placed under active monitoring or facilitated self-monitoring should follow instructions provided by their local health department or occupational health professionals, as appropriate. When working with your local health department check their available hours. If you have a medical emergency and need to call 911, notify the dispatch personnel that you have, or are being evaluated for COVID-19. If possible, put on a facemask before emergency medical services arrive.
Discontinuing home isolation Patients with confirmed COVID-19 should remain under home isolation precautions until the risk of secondary transmission to others is thought to be low. The decision to discontinue home isolation precautions should be made on a case-by-case basis, in consultation with healthcare providers and state and local health departments.