COVID task force encourages residents not to be complacent

Election, News
budget
covid-19 task force

Contributed Photo
Construction has begun in earnest on the new addition to the Gordon County Court House annex.

COVID task force: Not the time to be complacent

The Gordon County COVID-19 task force is encouraging people to continue following safety guidelines. COVID-19 cases in Gordon County rose to 240 over the last two weeks, compared to 170 in the two weeks prior.

The task force released the following statement:

“Over the last couple of weeks cases in Gordon County, the State of Georgia and the country have increased after multiple weeks of declines in case numbers. As these numbers declined people may have become more relaxed on precautions such as social distancing, avoiding large gatherings, washing hands, staying home if you are sick and the wearing of masks. As these numbers  continue to trend upward this is not the time to become complacent and lose the gains we have made. We are asking each citizen and family to please remain diligent to keeping yourself and your family as safe as possible by continuing to observe recommendations from public health officials.

We will continue to monitor situations daily and do all that we can to keep our citizens safe. Since the beginning of this pandemic we have worked diligently to try and stay ahead of this virus as a team here in Gordon County. We ask that our citizens continue to do the things that can be done during this time to help our community as a whole. If you do feel you need to be tested the Gordon County Health Department continues testing at the Gordon County Senior Center which is currently closed to normal operations. The Senior Center is located at 150 Cambridge Court in Calhoun and free testing will be conducted on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 8:30-4:30. No appointment is needed for this testing.”

The COVID-19 task force meets every two weeks and communicates daily. It includes members of emergency management, the hospital, and other government officials.

Gordon Central High School and Sonoraville High School go to hybrid schedule as COVID rates increase

Early voting sees record numbers

The Gordon County Elections Office received a verbal pat-on-the-back after Commissioner Bud Owens commended them.

“I’ve had so many people tell me what a great experience it was, that it ran smoothly, the staff was nice,” Owens told the commissioners.

County Administrator James Ledbetter said more than 6,000 people have voted early in Gordon County and the poll workers have worked to keep everything safe.

“They have one who opens the doors for people so voters won’t have to touch the doors,” he said, adding that the voting cards and machines are sanitized after each use.

Alcohol license suspended

The commissioners voted to suspend the alcohol license for Rainbow Corner, 4594 Dews Pond Road, after several violations. The violations include selling alcohol and tobacco to people under the age of 21 and allowing a convicted felon to be the holder of the license. The suspension will remain in effect until at least the November 3 meeting, when the board will decide to reinstate the license or continue the suspension.

Janitorial services

The commissioners awarded a contract for janitorial services at the Agriculture Center to ICS Cleaning Service for $9,000. Although it was not the lowest of the seven bids, it was under the $12,000 maximum amount. The lowest bid was Hammi Building Services at $6,771.96 but they did not receive the recommendation because while they currently hold the contract, the county has received complaints about their performance.

“They just weren’t getting the job done, that’s why we put it out to bid,” said Ledbetter.

In other news:

  • The board appointed Jim Bradley, the ordinance officer, as the agent responsible for deciding if abandoned mobile homes are derelict, giving landowners another level of due process to get rid of unwanted trailers left on their property.
  • Tax bills are mailed.
  • Work is underway at the courthouse annex, which will become the main courthouse upon completion. Plans include extending it and adding a level to it.
  • The county is interviewing the most qualified candidates for the position of financial director.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GC High School and Sonoraville High move to hybrid amid spike in COVID cases

News, Press Release
school

Gordon County Schools has found it necessary to move to hybrid instructional model, as outlined in the district’s Back to School guidance in August, for both Gordon Central High School and Sonoraville High School beginning Monday, October 19.  The tentative return date to full-time, in-person instruction will be Monday, November 30, 2020.

The decision to temporarily move to a hybrid schedule for both Gordon County high schools is a precautionary measure and comes following an increase in active COVID cases, resulting in a higher number of precautionary quarantines. Currently, there are seven (7) positive student cases at Gordon Central and eleven (11) students who are under quarantine from Sonoraville High School because they have tested positive for COVID-19.

Gordon County Schools continues to carefully monitor the active cases that impact schools.  According to the Department of Public Health, the seven-day average of new cases reported increased 4.3% statewide; however, the seven-day average is down 66% state-wide from the peak on July 24.  Gordon County is not labeled by the DPH as having high-transmission indicators at this time.

During this change in the instructional delivery model, all high school students will continue to receive instruction from their assigned classroom teachers utilizing Schoology but will only attend school in-person every other week, based upon the student’s last name.  Having only half of the students in class at one time will allow for additional distancing among students within the classroom. Faculty and staff will work to prepare for this transition on Friday, October 16, and school will be closed to students.  From Monday, October 19 through Friday, October 23, all high school students will have one week of online learning through Schoology.  This will allow adequate time for facilities to receive extra disinfecting and sanitation and for teachers to plan for hybrid instruction.

Beginning Monday, October 26, students whose last names begin with the letters A-K will attend school for in-person instruction for one week, and students whose last names begin with the letters L-Z will complete lessons online through Schoology.  The week of Monday, November 2, students whose last names begin with the letters L-Z will attend school in person, and those with last names beginning with A-K will complete lessons online.  This pattern will continue until Thanksgiving break.  For a complete schedule, visit our webpage.

If a family has children in the same household who would be on a different schedule, please contact the school to make any necessary accommodations for children to attend together.  Additional details will be sent from the schools in the coming days.

Extracurricular activities will continue, unless otherwise notified by the school.  This closure does not impact any other Gordon County school, and all elementary and middle schools will operate as normal.

Check back for updates.

Ask The Doc! Fighting Off Covid-19

Community, Lifestyle
Ask The Doc! Recovery Process Of Covid-19

This morning, The doctors address a comment left on one of the Ask The Doc Segments. What drugs are good for fighting off Covid-19 or do we just wait on a vaccine? The Doctors also address the President and first lady testing positive for Covid-19. What do the Doctors have to say about testing positive with no symptoms? When could he have contracted the virus? How long has he had it? All this and more on Ask The Doc!

 

Ask The Doc! College And Covid-19

Lifestyle
Ask The Doc! Recovery Process Of Covid-19

This morning, the doctors discuss how colleges are dealing with Covid-19. When a Student tests positive, the colleges continue classes and give the infected student their own quarantined dorm. Is this the approach we should be taking with everything? Should we worry over the numbers? Hear Doctor Whaley and Doctor Tidman’s point of view on this right here on Ask the Doc!

 

GCHS closes amid teacher shortage due to COVID

Education, News
school closes

Principal Brian Hall said the on-line learning will be much different than what the students had in the spring.

A case of COVID-19 and the effects of contract tracing has led to Gordon Central High School closing through September 1 so the school can disinfect and hopefully, resume in-person learning. School started Friday for the students.

One student and four teachers tested positive according to Brian Hall, principal, but the contact tracing exposure, within six-feet for at least 15 minutes.

“It’s a matter of not having enough teachers,” said Brian Hall, principal.

Education will continue through Schoology, but it will be different than what the students used in March, when schools first closed due the novel coronavirus.

“Teachers will . . .reinvent the way we instruct virtually,” Hall said. “This will not be like it was back in March. Teachers will be able to record videos, meet with students via video apps and the experience will be much more interactive.”

Online classes will begin on Monday and resume in-person on September 2. Visit gcbe.org for more information.

“I am proud of our students, faculty and staff for following our new protocols, procedures and expectations to keep our GC Tribe safe,” said Hall, adding that students have worn masks, practicing social distancing, and washing their hands and staff have worked diligently cleaning, instructing and caring for the students.

The school will allow students to retrieve any items left, but they need to call ahead. Hall added athletic programs will continue per Georgia Highschool Sports Association.

The school will also provide breakfast and lunch for students. Starting Thursday, Aug. 20, meals will be available from 11-1p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Tuesday will include breakfast and lunch for Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday will include breakfast and lunch for Thursday through Monday. Costs will be what the students normally pay. For students on free and reduced lunch plans will either be free or 40-cents. Regular price is $2.40. This service is only available to Gordon Central students.

Gordon County Board of Commissioners discuss noise  and CARES act in their regular meeting. Read about it here.


 


Gordon County inmate, jail staff test positive for COVID 19.

Police & Government, Press Release
gordon county jail
gordon county jail

The Gordon County Jail recently had an inmate and two staff members recently tested positive for COVID 19.

Two members of the Gordon County jail staff and one inmate has tested positive of COVID 19, according to a press release from the Gordon County Sheriff’s office.

The inmate had been receiving treatment for an unrelated condition when he tested positive. He remains hospitalized in a regional facility for the original medical issue. Other staff members, as well as inmates who have complained of fever, have been tested, but those tests are still pending. The staff members who tested positive or who are waiting on results have been put on leave. Inmates who have shown symptoms or have been tested have been quarantined.

Jail staff continues to decontaminate the facility, which can house 376 inmates. Jail medical staff have been working to identify and treat any inmates with symptoms.

All inmates have access to telephone and email, although in-person visitation remains restricted.

 

 

 

Kemp opens bars and renews state of emergency

State & National
bars

ATLANTA, Ga – Gov. Brian Kemp decided to continue the state of emergency and stay at home order for the elderly and at-risk individuals through July 12. However, the governor also announced the reopening of bars, amusement parks, night clubs, professional sports, and overnight summer camps.

Music venues must remain closed.

Kemp issued timelines for the lifting of each restriction.

May 31 Openings

  • Overnight Summer Camps

June 1 Openings

  • Gatherings of 25 people will be allowed – if the area meets space requirements
  • Bars
  • Night Clubs
  • Professional Sports
  • Amateur Sports

June 12 Openings

  • Amusement Parks
  • Water Parks

Georgia will not mandate citizens to wear masks, but Kemp highly encourages everyone to wear masks in crowded areas and public places.

66 percent of nursing home residents have been tested for COVID-19. On June 1, the Department of Public Health will move to once-daily updates of coronavirus numbers.

Free COVID-19 Testing in North GA Memorial Day Weekend

Health, Lifestyle

UPDATE: 6/3: Gordon Covid-19 cases up slightly

News

CALHOUN, Ga.–Gordon has 166 cases, including 16 deaths:  a 69-year-old man, a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 48,207 cases of COVID-19, including 2,102 deaths and 8,334 total hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 96 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 48 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 391 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 156, including one death, a 58-year-old man with underlying health conditions.

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

 

5/26

Gordon has 142 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 44,932 cases of COVID-19, including 1,957 deaths and 7,746 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 83 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 43 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 311 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 145

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

 

5/26 12 p.m.

Gordon has 139 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 43,586 cases of COVID-19, including 1,853 deaths and 7,511 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 78 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 43 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 283 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 137

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/25 7p.m.

Gordon has 138 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 43,400 cases of COVID-19, including 1,848 deaths and 7,507 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 78 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 43 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 283 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 137

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/24 7p.m.

Gordon has 138 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 42,902 cases of COVID-19, including 1,827 deaths and 7,450 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 78 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 43 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 279 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 135

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/24 12p.m.

Gordon has 138 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 42,800 cases of COVID-19, including 1,823 deaths and 7,436 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 77 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 43 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 273 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 134

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

 

5/23 7 p.m.

Gordon has 137 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 42,132 cases of COVID-19, including 1,811 deaths and 7,411 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 73 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 43 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 267 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 129

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/23 12p.m.

Gordon has 136 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 42,052 cases of COVID-19, including 1,809 deaths and 7,389 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 72 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 41 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 249 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 127

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/22 12p.m.

Gordon has 136 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 40,405 cases of COVID-19, including 1,754 deaths and 7,235 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 72 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 41 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 249 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 126

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/21 12p.m.

Gordon has 134 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 40,157 cases of COVID-19, including 1,724 deaths and 7,194 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 67 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 39 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 210 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 117

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/20 12 p.m.

Gordon has 132 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 38,889 cases of COVID-19, including 1,684 deaths and 7,089 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 65 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 39 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 194 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 116

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/19 7p.m.

Gordon has 132 cases, including 15 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman, 86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 38,855 cases of COVID-19, including 1,675 deaths and 7,076 hospitalizations.

In local counties:

Murray has 64 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 39 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 194 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 116

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

5/19 12p.m.

Gordon has 129 cases, including 16 deaths: a 70-year-old woman, an 85-year old woman, 89-year-old woman,  86-year old man, 85-year-old woman, 89-year-old, a 66-year-old woman, a 77-year-old man, 79-year-old man, a 74-year-old man, a 91-year-old woman, 70-year-old woman, a 68-year-old man, a 63-year-old man, and a 78-year-old man with underlying health issues. A 93-year-old woman also died, but it is unclear if she had underlying health issues.

Calhoun Health Care, 1387 Highway 41 North, Calhoun has had nine deaths, 52 patients tested positive and one staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The nursing home has 67 residents.

The State of Georgia has 38,624 cases of COVID-19, including 1,649 deaths and 7,002 hospitalizations.

For more Covid-19 news, read here.

In local counties:

Murray has 62 cases, including one death.  According the the Georgia Department of Health website, an 83-year-old man with chronic health conditions died.

Pickens has 38 cases, including three deaths: a 72-year-old man, a 70-year-old man and 77-year-old woman, all with underlying health issues.

Pruithealth, 1350 East Church St., Jasper has one resident and two staff members who tested positive for COVID-19 out of 50 residents.

Whitfield: 189 cases, and seven deaths including a 90+ year-old woman, a 93-year-old man, 81-year old man and 78-year-old man, a 68-year-old man, an 81-year old woman and 75-year-old man all with underlying health issues and a 77-year old woman but it was not clear if she had underlying health issues.

Regency Park Health and Rehabilitation Center, 1212 Broadrick Dr., Dalton has one staff member who has tested positive. The facility has 90 residents.

Gilmer: 112

At this time, Fetch Your News does not have any additional details about these cases.  We will bring you updates as soon as information is available for the public.

Fetch Your News has chosen to report on cases confirmed by the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) only. These reports may not reflect real-time spread as the laboratories processing COVID-19 tests are reportedly backlogged by several days. Fetch Your News is also reaching out to local sources to confirm positive cases before writing articles on the subject.

 

 

 

 

Georgia DPH distributes Remdesivir to hospitals for treatment of COVID-19

Health, Press Release
remdesivir

Atlanta – The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) is distributing an initial allotment of the drug Remdesivir received from the federal government. Georgia received 30 cases, with 40 vials of the drug per case, enough to treat about 110 patients, depending on the duration of an individual’s treatment. Remdesivir is an antiviral medicine being used to treat hospitalized patients with serious symptoms caused by COVID-19 like low oxygen levels or pneumonia. It has been found to shorten the duration of disease in patients being treated in inpatient hospital settings.

Remdesivir is given intravenously (IV) and decreases the amount of coronavirus in the body, helping patients recover faster.

The distribution plan for Remdesivir in Georgia was developed by DPH leadership, including district health directors and emergency preparedness staff, in accordance with Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines for its use. It is based on the number of patients on ventilators, the most severely ill, and clinical best practices.

Georgia hospitals receiving Remdesivir reported 10 or more COVID-19 positive patients on ventilators, in addition to patients currently being treated with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), a machine that takes over the work of the heart and lungs. These criteria are subject to change based on the availability of Remdesivir and
the development of patient care at hospital facilities across the state.

The following hospitals are receiving Remdesivir; Tift Regional Medical Center, Northeast Georgia Medical Center, Wellstar Kennestone Hospital, Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, Grady Health System, Emory University Hospital, Emory University Hospital Midtown, and Augusta University Medical Center.

“DPH is pleased to have the opportunity to share this promising treatment with hospitals on the front lines in the fight against COVID-19,” said Kathleen E. Toomey, M.D., M.P.H., DPH commissioner. “While this drug is not a cure for COVID-19, getting it into the hospitals and improving patient outcomes is moving in the right direction.”

Georgia has received a second, much larger allotment of Remdesivir. DPH is surveying hospitals statewide over the weekend to determine need. This second allotment will be distributed next week.

Gilead Sciences, Inc. committed to supplying approximately 607,000 vials of the experimental drug over the next six weeks to treat an estimated 78,000 hospitalized COVID-19 patients under an emergency use agreement (EUA). The donation to the United States is part of 1.5 million vials of Remdesivir the company is donating worldwide.

Remdesivir has not been approved by the FDA for widespread use because it is considered investigational, and it is still being studied. Remdesivir was originally developed for use against Ebola. Clinical trials for Remdesivir were done in Georgia at Emory University Hospital.

For more information about COVID-19 visit https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus or https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

For updates on the COVID-19 situation as it develops, follow @GaDPH, @GeorgiaEMA, and @GovKemp on Twitter, and @GaDPH, @GEMA.OHS, and @GovKemp on Facebook

Kemp changes restaurant and childcare restrictions

Announcements, State & National
childcare

ATLANTA, Ga – On May 12, Gov. Brian Kemp continued to ease restrictions on certain industries – restaurants and childcare – to assist Ga businesses as the state returns to normal.

Childcare facilities now can operate with up to 20 children in a classroom instead of 10 as long as the instructor-to-child ratio is maintained. Departments of Early Care and Learning and Public Health reportedly okayed this expansion and ensured it could be accomplished safely.

Many parents in Ga are returning to work and have encountered difficulty finding childcare services.

“Childcare facilities must continue to adhere to thirteen minimum, mandatory criteria to be able to operate, including strict screening procedures and sanitation mandates for frequently touched items and surfaces. In that same vein, countless families have reached out to my office to discuss how summer camps can safely operate as we battle the spread of COVID-19,” Kemp explained.

Summer day camps have also received the okay to open on May 14 if facilities can meet the 32 requirements developed by the Department of Public Health, constituents, and summer camp operators. The CDC has yet to weigh in on the criteria, but Kemp appeared confident that their plan would move forward.

However, overnight camps are still closed, but eventually, these facilities might be able to open under a case by case basis.

As for restaurants, those who have already opened or considering opening can now allow up to 10 patrons per 300 sq. feet and seat groups of 10. Previously the maximum number at a table was six.

Kemp praised the food industry, “Throughout this pandemic, our restaurant owners and their employees have done a remarkable job in keeping local families fed. These hardworking Georgians have followed the rules, doing the right thing, even when it wasn’t easy.”

Live performance venues, bars, and nightclubs must remain closed through May 31, 2020.

The social distancing and gathering ban on more than 10 people are still in effect unless six feet of separation is possible. The ban applied to all non-critical infrastructure businesses, local governments, and organizations of all types, including social groups, informal get-togethers, and recreational sports, just to name a few. Georgians can expect these protocols to last through at least the end of the month.

“We continue to strongly encourage people to wear face coverings when out in public, and we thank everyone for their willingness to do the right thing,” Kemp added. “The shelter in place provision for medically fragile and Georgians aged 65 and older remains in effect through June 12, 2020.”

Starting on May 18, state agencies will begin transitioning back into in-office services.

As of noon today, Georgia has received its first shipment of Remdesivir from the federal government – thirty cases with forty vials of the drug per case. The Department of Public Health will determine how it will be distributed.

Nursing Home Testing

Georgia’s National Guard has tested 46% of all nursing home residents and 24% of staff at those facilities. However, an estimated 46,000 people who still need to be tested. In total, the Guard has tested 142 nursing homes. The National Guard will continue to test everyone at these facilities until they reach 100 percent.

The press conference did address the re-testing of facilities is new cases are found after the initial testing. Department of Community Health releases daily updates on the status of COVID-19 in nursing homes across Ga.

“As we aggressively test more nursing homes and long-term care facilities, we may see a sharper increase in positive test results. By doing this, it will allow medical providers to intervene earlier and try to mitigate adverse outcomes among vulnerable Georgians. Right now, nursing home, assisted living, and personal care home residents and staff make up 18.5% of our total positive cases, and 49% of total deaths involve nursing home, assisted living, and personal care home residents. We ask everyone to continue to protect the elderly and medically fragile, and we will continue to work around the clock to ensure quick, convenient testing is available for all Georgians,” Kemp explained.

Anyone in Ga can now be tested for COVID-19 either through their local health departments or by downloading the Augusta University ExpressCare app, visit augustahealth.org, or call (706) 721-1852.

“With nearly 250 staff in the field today, the Department of Public Health is making progress. Under the leadership of Dr. Toomey, DPH plans to have 1,000 staff deployed in the coming weeks. To streamline contact tracing across the state, we are rolling out a new online monitoring tool – the Healthy Georgia Collaborative – which allows Georgians to identify contacts and monitor symptoms. Health data remains completely confidential. This monitoring tool does not collect any data other than what is entered by the contact. This is how the process works: residents who test positive for COVID-19 will be contacted by trained public health staff, who will work with that individual to recall anyone that they might’ve had close contact with while infectious. Those contacts will then be interviewed by DPH to help us map and isolate the spread of COVID-19 in communities across the state. If you are contacted by DPH staff, we strongly encourage you to participate in the contact tracing program,” Kemp said about contact tracing.

The governor also urged anyone who needs to visit their doctor for regular appointments or concerns outside of COVID-19 to please do so. Doctors’ offices and emergency rooms have protocols in place to prevent individuals from contracting the virus. Now is not a time to gamble with anyone’s health to avoid COVID-19.

Posted by Governor Brian Kemp on Tuesday, May 12, 2020

COVID-19 testing available to all Georgians

Press Release
testing

Atlanta – The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) has reached its goal of testing 100,000 individuals in 10 days. More than 108,000 tests were processed since Commissioner Kathleen E. Toomey, M.D., M.P.H, set the DPH goal last week.

“This is an important benchmark for Georgia as we work to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the state,” said Toomey. “Increased testing is critical to understanding where there are hotspots of infection and how best to mitigate them.”

Effective immediately, testing is available to all Georgians who request it, whether they have symptoms or not. There are more than 65 specimen point of collection sites (SPOC) throughout the state, with an additional 30 mobile SPOCs –  locations and hours vary daily.

Individuals wanting to be tested can contact any Georgia public health department to schedule an appointment at a SPOC location convenient to them. Contact information for local health departments can be found on the DPH homepage at

https://dph.georgia.gov/.

For more information about COVID-19 visit https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus or https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

For updates on the COVID-19 situation as it develops, follow @GaDPH, @GeorgiaEMA, and @GovKemp on Twitter, and @GaDPH, @GEMA.OHS, and @GovKemp on Facebook.

Shelter in Place order extended for medically fragile until June 12

Press Release, State & National
shelter in place

ATLANTA, Ga – Governor Brian P. Kemp signed Executive Order 4.30.20.01 which extends the medically fragile shelter in place and the Public Health State of Emergency until June 12.

The entire statement from the governor is below:

“Tonight at 11:59 PM, the statewide shelter in place order for most Georgians will expire. However, moving forward, I am urging Georgians to continue to stay home whenever possible. I want to thank the people of our great state who heeded public health advice, afforded us time to bolster our healthcare infrastructure, and flattened the curve. We were successful in these efforts, but the fight is far from over.

“In accordance with our executive orders, businesses across the Peach State must continue to operate with strict social distancing and sanitation rules to keep customers and employees safe through May 13, 2020. Those rules vary by business type for a measured, health-driven approach.

“The health and well-being of Georgians are my top priorities, and my decisions are based on data and advice from health officials. I will do what is necessary to protect the lives – and livelihoods – of our people. I will formally extend our public health state of emergency through June 12, 2020, to continue enhanced testing across Georgia, ramp up contact tracing, and maintain effective emergency response operations in every region.

“To protect vulnerable populations, I will sign an order today requiring medically fragile and elderly Georgians to continue to shelter in place through June 12, 2020. In addition, I will order long-term care facilities – including nursing homes, personal care homes, assisted living facilities, and similar community living homes – to utilize enhanced infection control protocols, ensure safer living conditions, and protect residents and staff from coronavirus exposure.

“Together, we will defeat this virus and emerge stronger. Thank you, and God Bless.”

Click here to view a video message from the Governor.

Blue Angels, Thunderbirds to flyover Atlanta on Saturday

Announcements, State & National

ATLANTA, Ga – The Blue Angels and Thunderbird flyover on May 2 is in support of the state’s frontline workers in the fight against COVID-19.

It will begin over Marietta at 1:35 p.m. and last 25 minutes, ending at 2 p.m. The Thunderbirds and Blue Angels flight path will take them over Buckhead, Sandy Springs,  up to Roswell. The formations will then turn to the south over downtown, Atlanta airport, Fayetteville, and Peachtree City.

Residents are asked to safely view the flyover from their home-quarantine and to refrain from traveling. Social distancing should also be practiced.

Flight path for May 2.

These times are subject to change.

“America Strong is a way for both teams to show appreciation to the thousands of doctors, nurses, first responders, and essential workers out there serving on the frontline day-in and day-out,” said Cmdr. Brian Kesselring, U.S. Navy Blue Angels commanding officer and flight leader for the flyover. “This is an extraordinary and unprecedented time but we will get through this. We are all in this together.”

A formation of 6 F-16C/D Fighting Falcon and 6 F/A-18C/D Hornet aircraft will conduct these flyovers as a collaborative salute to healthcare workers, first responders, military, and other essential personnel while standing in solidarity with all Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This mission, the second of several planned over the coming weeks, is the culmination of more than a month of planning and coordination between the two teams and numerous city and government offices.

The teams welcome and encourage viewers to tag the demonstration teams at @AFThunderbirds and @BlueAngels the flyover on social media with the hashtag #AmericaStrong and #Inthistogether.

For photos and video for America Strong, visit, https://www.dvidshub.net/feature/americastrong.

For more information on the Blue Angels, visit www.blueangels.navy.mil.

For more information on the Thunderbirds, visit www.afthunderbirds.com.

Georgia Dept. of Labor addresses unemployment options

Press Release, State & National
unemployment

Atlanta, GA – Governor Brian P. Kemp and the Georgia Department of Labor are partnering to ensure Georgians understand their unemployment options as the state begins the safe reopening of businesses. Governor Kemp announced plans Monday to safely and incrementally reopen sectors of the economy, and today, Labor Commissioner Mark Butler encouraged employers to work with employees to determine a successful return to work plan.

“Thanks to Governor Kemp and his support, we were able to issue an emergency rule that increased the earnings exemption amount from $55 to $300 allowing individuals to make $300 a week without reducing their weekly benefit amount,” said Commissioner Butler. “If a business opens back up slowly and their employees are returning to work with reduced hours, employers can continue to file employer-filed partial claims on behalf of their employees.”

Pursuant to the emergency rule issued on March 26, 2020, an individual can make up to $300 per week without reducing their maximum weekly benefit amount, allowing employees to work reduced hours and still qualify for state weekly benefits and the federal $600 weekly supplement.

“As we take measured steps to reopen sectors of our state’s economy, it is vital that we continue to support Georgians trying to re-enter the workforce,” said Governor Kemp. “Commissioner Butler and the Department of Labor are working around the clock to do just that. Their action under historic circumstances will continue to give our state’s workforce viable options to put food on the table for their families as we fight COVID-19 together.”

Employer-filed partial claims account for 75 percent of the state’s 1.1 million claims since March 14. Employers are required to report an individual’s weekly gross wages when certifying on behalf of the employee with the GDOL. These employer-filed partial claims can include full-time and part-time employees, as long as employers are accurately reporting an individual’s weekly wages. An employer’s account will not be charged for claims filed against it for employer-filed partial claims during this time.

“Despite claims to the contrary, returning to work does not automatically eliminate an individual’s state unemployment eligibility,” said Butler. “In fact, we designed this provision to encourage employers to continue to file while returning employees to work to take advantage of the CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) benefits.”

The rule states that earnings of $300 or less will not affect entitlement to benefits. Any amount over $300 will be deducted from a claimant’s weekly benefit amount, a payment determination based on an employee’s past wages. As long as a claimant is awarded at least $1 in state benefits, he or she is eligible to receive Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), the additional $600 weekly payment.

“This option was created with lower wage employees in mind,” said Butler. “Allowing Georgians to supplement their income by making an additional $300 or so a week while continuing to receive state benefits, and now the federal supplement, will allow them to continue to heal from the economic wounds brought about by COVID-19.”

If a decision is made by an employee to separate from his/her place of employment, the employee has the right to file an individual claim where an eligibility determination will be made based on the facts presented in the case.

“If an employee is concerned about returning to work due to exposure to COVID-19, we are encouraging employees to communicate with their employers on plans to safely return to work,” explained Butler. “We are all working together on getting Georgians back to work in a safe and stable environment.”

Information on filing an individual unemployment claim, details on how employers must file employer-filed partial claims, and resources for other reemployment assistance can be found on the agency’s webpage at www.gdol.ga.gov.

Georgia Board of Cosmetology and Barbers Issues Safety Guidelines for Reopening

Press Release, State & National
Cosmetology

Atlanta, GA – Georgia State Board of Cosmetology and Barbers issued guidance for the safe reopening of Georgia’s salons and spas.

“I deeply appreciate the work of Kay Kendrick and the Georgia State Board of Cosmetology and Barbers to prepare guidelines for implementation by Georgia’s shops and salons,” said Governor Brian Kemp. “As we begin the process of safely reopening our economy, it is critical that business owners, operators, and contractors adhere strictly to increased safety and sanitation guidelines to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Working together, I am confident that we can get these sectors back online and work to ensure the health and safety of all Georgians.”

“I am very happy that Governor Kemp decided that we can reopen our salons and spas,” said Kay Kendrick, chair of the Georgia State Board of Cosmetology and Barbers. “We have 95,000 licensees under our board, most of whom are independent contractors that have no other source of income.

“Under our sanitation laws and rules, we are charged with the responsibility of protecting consumers from the spread of contagious diseases everyday in our salons. By adding the safety guidelines that have been developed by the board and some of our industry leaders in the cosmetology and barber profession, we feel that our professionals will be able to do an even better job of protecting themselves and their clients. I trust that all our professionals will use these guidelines to be safe and protect their clients. “

Salon/shop owners and managers should use the OSHA “Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19” as a guide for reopening. Below are some of the top-level guidelines for salon and spa operators to follow. The complete list of guidelines will be available here.

Temperature Checks: Salons should consider use of a touchless infrared thermometer to check the temperature of employees each day and of each client who enters the salon/shop.

Screening Questions: Ask each client entering the shop the following questions – Have you had a cough? Have you had a fever? Have you been around anyone exhibiting these symptoms within the past 14 days? Are you living with anyone who is sick or quarantined?

Limit People In Shops/Salons: Salons/shops should consider seeing clients by appointment only. Salons/shops should consider telephonic or online scheduling. Limit the number of persons in the waiting area of the salon/shop. It is recommended that clients wait outside the salon/shop in their vehicle until the cosmetologist or barber is ready to serve them. It is recommended that persons not being serviced in the salon/shop wait outside the salon/shop.

Maintain Social Distancing: Spacing between persons in the salon should be at least six feet at all times. Salons/shops should consider additional spacing between booths, divider shields, and/or alternate work schedules.

Use of Personal Protective Equipment and Best Practices: Salon/shop employees will be required to wear masks at all times. Salons may want to consider providing masks to clients. Clients should wear face masks to the extent possible while receiving services. Salons/shops should also make use of face shields, gloves, disposable or re-washable capes, smocks, neck strips, etc. These items should be disinfected or disposed of between each client. Employees should should arrive at the salon/shop showered and wearing clean clothing and change clothes before leaving the salon/shop each day. Hand washing with soap and warm water, for a minimum of 20 seconds will be required by employees between every client service.

Disinfection: All salons/shops should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected prior to reopening. Disinfect all surfaces, tools, and linens, even if they were cleaned before the salon/shop was closed. Salons/shops should maintain regular disinfection of all tools, shampoo bowls, pedicure bowls, workstations, treatment rooms, and restrooms. Additionally, salons/shops should remove all unnecessary items (magazines, newspapers, service menus, and any other unnecessary paper products/decor) from reception areas and ensure that these areas and regularly touched surfaces are consistently wiped down, disinfected, and that hand sanitizer is readily available to clients and staff. Avoiding the exchange of cash can help in preventing the spread of the virus, but if this is unavoidable, be sure to wash and sanitize hands well after each transaction. The use of credit/debit transactions is preferred, using touch/swipe/no signature technology.

Administration: Employees who are sick will be expected to stay home. Salon/shop owners/managers should provide training, educational materials, and reinforcement on proper sanitation, hand washing, cough and sneeze etiquette, use of PPE, and other protective behaviors. Ensure break rooms are thoroughly cleaned and sanitized and not used for congregating by employees. Be flexible with work schedules/salon hours to reduce the number of people (employees and clients) in salons/shops at all times in order to maintain social distancing.

A full list of these guidelines will be made available on the Georgia State Board of Cosmetology and Barbers’ website.

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