Albemarle County updates on coronavirus response

Albemarle CountyAlbemarle County continues to monitor guidance from the CDC and VDH. There are no cases of COVID-19 in our community at this time. Read on to learn more about what Albemarle County is doing to respond to COVID-19.

Upcoming Public Meetings, Programs, and Events

We are in the process of reviewing public meetings, events, and recreation programs. At this time, gatherings of fewer than 100 people will proceed as planned. Public meetings, events, and recreation programs expected to have more than 100 attendees are being individually evaluated for how to proceed. Please continue to check these messages and the Albemarle County web calendar (www.albemarle.org/calendar) as the status may change as this situation evolves.

New Modifications

Parks & Recreation

All parks, trails, dog parks, and boat launches will remain open at this time.

Effective March 16 and at least until April 5, 2020:

Suspending

  • Registered Classes/Programs
  • Youth & Adult Sports Leagues (both Parks & Recreation and Outside Organization)

Cancelling

  • Picnic Shelter & Facility Rentals

A determination in the next few weeks if the suspended classes/programs will be able to resume at a later date.

Fire Rescue Stations

Effective March 16 and at least until April 5, 2020:

Training and Community Room Rentals, including birthday parties and community meetings are cancelled at Monticello and Hollymead Stations.

County Office Buildings, 5th Street and McIntire

Effective March 16 and at least until April 5, 2020:

All reservations of County public meeting rooms at the County Office Buildings at 5th Street and McIntire Road are cancelled.

Economic Development Authority

The March 17, 2020 Economic Development Authority meeting is canceled.

What is Albemarle County doing to prepare?

Public safety agencies use a structure called the Incident Management Team (IMT) to plan for and respond to major incidents, including public health crises like COVID-19. The IMT structure allows us to efficiently direct resources and coordinate across organizations. The IMT is meeting at least twice each week but will continue to adjust meeting frequency to address our community’s needs.

Albemarle County’s IMT has developed a multi-phased plan, in alignment with guidance from the CDC, on what measures to take and when to reduce the spread of disease and to maintain our business operations. The phases of the plan are designed to respond to what happens locally – from the current planning phase through to if local cases are reported.

Albemarle County has implemented the following measures:

For our community

  • Public safety personnel are engaging with nursing homes, group homes, and other vulnerable populations to ensure plans are in place for resident safety
  • Our 911 call-takers are now screening callers reporting specific complaints consistent with COVID-19 symptoms. This measure is intended to ensure our first responders take the necessary steps to provide safe care and is consistent with guidance from the International Association of Emergency Dispatchers.

For employees

  • Enhanced cleaning protocol for County-operated buildings
  • Canceled work-related travel outside our community for staff and canceled work-related meetings convening people from outside of our community hosted by Albemarle County and/or in County-operated buildings
  • Encourage employees experiencing respiratory symptoms to stay home
  • Signage encouraging use of hand sanitizing stations and/or hand washing throughout building

What can you do?

First, share this message with your neighbors, friends, and colleagues. Signup to receive these messages in your inbox at  www.albemarle.org/amail .

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a wealth of resources for businesses, households, schools, and faith-based organizations at  cdc.gov/coronavirus . The CDC is specifically encouraging people to:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects (e.g., tables, countertops, light switches, doorknobs, and cabinet handles)

The Virginia Department of Health has resources for the public, travelers, schools, businesses, and large events as well –  www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus.

Local Resources

The Thomas Jefferson Health District (TJHD) is our community’s local public health agency and works closely with the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). TJHD has opened a hotline at (434) 972-6261 to answer questions from the public regarding COVID-19. At this time, that number is staffed Monday through Friday from 8 am to 4:30 pm. The public can leave messages that will be returned as soon as possible.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 911.


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