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The original item was published from 3/24/2020 1:22:36 PM to 3/25/2020 4:51:46 PM.

News Flash

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

Posted on: March 24, 2020

[ARCHIVED] 3/24/2020 message from Haywood County Public Health Director Patrick Johnson

We’veall heard the message and are probably tired of hearing the message, but it’s
important to not get social distancing fatigue. Community transmission is already occurring in westernNC. Therefore, we are moving to a different phase of our response efforts and
will be further increasing our population-based community mitigationstrategies. The goal of mitigation is to decrease spread of the virus among
residents – especially for those who are at highest risk of clinicalseverity--and our health care workers so that fewer people need medical
care at the same time. 

·        Haywood CountyTests: Total
specimens collected-75, tests returned negative-24.  To date there havebeen no positives. We should expect to have our first case in Haywood County
soon. The Haywood County Health Department will enforce isolation,perform contact tracing and follow-up for each positive COVID case in order to
protect the health of our residents.  

·        NC COVID Cases: 398; Western NC: Buncombe 8,
Henderson 2, Cherokee 4, Transylvania 1, Jackson 1. 

·        Global Cases: More than 300,000. It took 67 days
to reach the first 100,000 cases.  It took 11 days to reach the next100,000 cases and just 4 days to reach the third 100,000 cases!

·        NC GovernorGuidance: The
new Executive Order from the Governor further expands Social Distancingguidance and takes effect Wednesday Mar 25 at 5pm. Haywood County Government
will continue to exercise our responsibilities including but not limited toPublic Health, Department of Social Services, Registers of Deeds, Vital Records
and other local government functions that are required to protect and supportour residents. 

·        Testing: See Testing graphic attachment.This describes Priority one, Priority Two and Priority Three

o   There have been changes in testingrecommendations: NC DHHS is now recommends that only people experiencing SEVERE
symptoms consistent with COVID-19 be tested. (See Priority TestingAttachment) Severe symptoms include fever and cough with shortness
of breath.  People with mild symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (mildsymptoms are defined as fever and cough without any of the other
symptoms listed above) do NOT need testing and should be instructed to stayat home to recover.  We wish it wasn’t this way, but it is. Your understanding is much appreciated by everyone
having to make difficult choices. 
Currently it takes 4-5 days toget test results.  

·        Mental Health: See updated website heading "Mental health resources" on this website under "Coronavirus Info" tab.

o   I’m repeating this topic because it
bears repeating. We’re concerned about substance use, mental health, andsuicide during this crisis. If you are having suicidal thoughts, call the
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

·         Food and Nutrition: See website heading "updated food resources" on this website under "Coronavirus Info" tab.

·        Call Center: Is being established and will beup and running, beginning Wednesday 3/25, if you have questions about COVID-19
and would like to speak to a Public Health nurse. This number will be released to the public soon.

·        North Carolina’s and
Haywood County’s response to COVID-19 will continue to rapidly evolve. The mostup to date information and guidance can be found at[] and[] or

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