April COVID-19 Updates

April 30th Update:

Northam To Allow Elective Surgeries, Dental Procedures In May

State officials also said the Virginia Department of Health will have case data by zip code available in a few days.

By Emily Leayman, Patch Staff 
Apr 29, 2020 4:46 pm ET | Updated Apr 29, 2020 4:58 pm ET

 

VIRGINIA — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam will allow his ban on elective surgeries at hospitals to expire after April 30 as the state avoided a hospital resource surge from the new coronavirus crisis. In addition to allowing elective surgeries, Northam said Friday non-emergency dental procedures can resume in May.

The March 25 order from Northam and Dr. Norm Oliver, the state health commissioner, aimed to preserve personal protective equipment for front-line workers in case Virginia saw a surge similar to New York City. The order did not apply to emergencies, procedures in which a delay would harm a patient, or outpatient visits in hospital-based clinics.

"Our efforts to slow the spread of this virus are showing success," said Northam. "Our hospitals have not been overwhelmed. We have been able to get more PPE and developed ways to decontaminate masks and gowns. Hospitals have ramped up testing with a much quicker turnaround time. Early on ... test results were taking more than a week, and now in most cases it takes less than a day."

 

Northam said hospitals and dental facilities have been working for weeks to reopen and are prepared to safely restart non-emergency procedures. The Virginia Dental Association issued guidelines to members Tuesday.

"We all recognize that the longer dental practices remain closed to preventative and non-emergent treatment the more likely that our patients' untreated dental diseases will progress, increasing the complexity and cost for treatment," said Dr. Elizabeth Reynolds, president of the Virginia Dental Association.

Reynolds said Virginia dentists will wear forms of protective equipment and follow interim guidelines from the state and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Offices will have new protocols such as mask-wearing during visits, COVID-19 screenings, and minimizing or eliminating patients in reception areas.

 

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City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Living in Close Quarters; Funeral Arrangements 

­­For Immediate Release: April 29, 2020

 

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Living in Close Quarters

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has provided guidance for people living together in close quarters, available in multiple languages, for those who share a small apartment, live in the same household with large or extended families, or other similar situations. The City’s COVID-19 Information for Landlord and Renters page addresses frequently asked questions about COVID-19, including what to do if if a renter is diagnosed with the disease; cleaning and disinfecting; legal rights for renters; what landlords can do to stop the spread of COVID-19; and more.  

Handling Funeral Arrangements

State orders and guidance on how to handle funerals has changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, adding stress to families already grieving. The Virginia Department of Health provides frequently asked questions about holding funerals and visitation services, cremations and burials, as well as information about what funeral directors need to know.  

47 New COVID-19 Cases and 1 Fatality Added in Alexandria

The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 700, including 21 fatalities. Detailed data is available through the links at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. It is critical for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

 

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Alexandria City Council Adopts Fiscal Year 2021 Budget

For Immediate Release: April 29, 2020

On April 29, the Alexandria City Council unanimously adopted a Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 General Fund Operating Budget of $753.3 million, which is 5.8% lower than the $799.9 million operating budget originally proposed by City Manager Mark Jinks in February. The adopted budget reflects the revised operating and capital budgets proposed by Jinks on April 7, due to the nearly $100 million budget gap created by the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In the face of an unprecedented economic crisis, City Council’s adopted FY 2021 budget represents a responsible balance between meeting urgent community needs and deferring other expenses,” said Mayor Justin Wilson. “We are grateful to the City Manager, City staff, and all those who contributed to the development of this budget. Thanks to their hard work and City Council’s long history of prudent fiscal management, we are in a stable position to help our community through the current pandemic.” 

The approved budget, which represents a 1.6% decrease from the FY 2020 budget, focuses on continuing the City’s record of prudent fiscal management; relieving some of the burden on taxpayers; and delivering core services to the community.

As in the City Manager’s April 7 revised proposal, the budget approved by City Council does not include an originally proposed 2-cent increase in the 2020 real estate tax rate to fund City and Schools capital projects. The real estate tax rate approved by City Council remains at $1.13 per $100 of assessed value, and there are no other tax rate increases. This will require the beginning phases of the Waterfront Park and Flood Mitigation plan and the high school facility project at the Minnie Howard Campus to be rescheduled to FY 2023. However, the new MacArthur Elementary School project remains budgeted and will proceed on schedule. 

The adopted budget defers many previously proposed program enhancements (totaling $2.1 million of $3.9 million proposed), and reduces the scope of several projects in the 10-year Capital Improvement Program or defers them from FY 2021 to a future fiscal year. The budget defers previously proposed pay increases for City employees and implements a selective hiring freeze for much of FY 2021. This $22.5 million savings will avoid the need to eliminate any incumbent positions or furlough current employees. The budget also reduces the operating transfer to the Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) by $7.4 million, an amount equivalent to previously proposed pay increases for ACPS staff (the final decision on ACPS employee compensation rests with the Alexandria School Board).

The approved budget allocates $1 million to the Alexandria Health Department from potential federal funding under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, to be used along with potential state funding for substantially increased epidemiological staffing. Although the Alexandria Health Department is a division of the Virginia Department of Health, more than 50% of its budget is funded by the City.  

Visit alexandriava.gov/Budget to learn more about the entire budget process and view all budget documents.

April 29th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Managing Health and Wellness; Virtual Fun and Fitness 


For Immediate Release: April 28, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Mental Health and Wellness During COVID-19  

It can be emotionally draining to handle the stresses of being an essential worker on-site; working from home; educating and entertaining children; or managing a household. The City’s COVID-19 Wellness Resource Guide contains a range of resources for individuals, parents, children, families and responders.  

City Offers Virtual Fun, Fitness

Looking for ways to challenge your mind and body while connecting with your community? Virtual programming options are now available through RPCA at Home! Enjoy free performances, fitness classes, poetry readings, and activities for youth. New activities are added regularly; visit alexandriava.gov/Recreation.

26 New COVID-19 Cases and 2 Fatalities Added in Alexandria

The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 653, including 20 fatalities. Detailed data is available through the links at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. It is critical for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/114995.

April 28th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Six New Symptoms; Infant Immunizations; Food Calculator

For Immediate Release: April 27, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

CDC Adds Six New Symptoms for COVID-19

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has added several new symptoms to its existing list of symptoms for COVID-19. Up until now, the agency has cited fever, cough and shortness of breath as indications that someone might have the disease. CDC has now added six more conditions that may come with COVID-19: chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat and new loss of taste or smell.

Parents Urged to Maintain Children’s Immunization Schedules

Pediatricians across Virginia have noted a decline in infants receiving their scheduled vaccinations, over concern about exposure to the coronavirus. During National Infant Immunization Week, parents are being reminded of the importance of keeping children on their vaccine schedules, to protect them from diseases that are preventable through the immunization process. Parents should feel free to ask doctors what practices their offices are maintaining to minimize risk of exposure to illness, both during the COVID-19 pandemic and at all other times.

“Stay at Home” Food Calculator

The COVID-19 pandemic has led some people to buy more food and other staples than necessary, resulting in empty store shelves at times. Reuters has produced graphic food calculators to help determine how much food is needed to stay at home. The calculators show common food items that saw large increases in U.S. sales in March 2020.

36 New COVID-19 Cases and No Fatalities Added in Alexandria

The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 627, including 18 fatalities (yesterday’s count included one fatality mistakenly attributed to Alexandria). Detailed data is available through the links at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. It is critical for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/114976.

April 27th Update:

SOCIAL DISTANCING TIMELINE 

Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House Coronavirus Task Force coordinator, told NBC News' "Meet the Press" on 4/26/2020, that while the coronavirus trends give her “great hope” for slow re-openings over the next few months, many of the social distancing measures that have upended American life will be a constant fixture through the summer. 

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Governor Northam and COG Board Issue Statements on Reopening

 

On April 22, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) Board of Directors issued a statement thanking the public for staying at home and practicing physical distancing, which have been working to reduce the spread of the virus. The statement acknowledges that while it will take more time before the public can return to daily routines, the localities in the National Capital Region are committed to working together to thoughtfully plan for the reopening of the regional economy. Any strategy to reopen must be cautious and deliberate, and consistent with the sound guidance of public health officials.

 

On April 24, Governor Northam presented the “Forward Virginia” blueprint, which will help guide the Commonwealth on when to safely begin easing public health restrictions. The blueprint includes a phased approach that is grounded in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines and has specific goals to contain the spread of the virus through increased testing, personal protective equipment and supplies, and medical capacity. Key indicators will include a 14-day downward trend in confirmed cases as a percentage of overall tests and in reduced COVID-19 hospitalizations. While hospitalization rates have largely stabilized in the Commonwealth, confirmed cases continue to rise.

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Governor Northam Announces Plans to Postpone Upcoming Virginia Elections in Response to COVID-19

Governor delays June primary by two weeks, asks General Assembly to move May elections to November

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today requested the General Assembly move the May General Election and all special elections scheduled for May 5, 2020 to the November 3, 2020 General Election date to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19. The Governor is also exercising his statutory authority (§ 24.2-603.1 of the Code of Virginia) to move the June primary elections from June 9, 2020 to June 23, 2020.

“As other states have shown, conducting an election in the middle of this global pandemic would bring unprecedented challenges and potential risk to voters and those who work at polling places across the Commonwealth,” said Governor Northam. “Making these decisions now will help election officials prepare and implement the necessary changes. This is about protecting the health and safety of Virginians during this pandemic and ensuring our citizens can make their voices heard in a safe, fair, and uniform manner. I urge the General Assembly to do their part and take action to move our upcoming elections.” 

“Free and fair elections are at the core of our democracy and no Virginian should have to choose between their health and exercising their right to vote, said Attorney General Herring. “I’m proud to have worked closely with Governor Northam and his team on a solution that protects both public health and the integrity of our elections.”

Moving the upcoming May elections requires action by the General Assembly. The plan the Governor is proposing includes the following measures:

  • There will be one ballot in November.
  • Voters who are qualified in November will be able to vote in November. An individual who was not qualified in May but is qualified in November will be able to vote.
  • All absentee ballots already cast will be discarded. Virginians will have an opportunity to vote for local elected officials in November.
  • Those officials whose terms are to expire as of June 30, 2020 will continue in office until their successors have been elected on the November 3, 2020 and have been qualified to serve.
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City of Alexandria  - Food Safety and COVID-19
 

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) offers recommendations for the proper handling of food and how to support the food retail industry during the COVID-19 pandemic. While there is currently no evidence of transmission through the food supply chain, the FDA provides guidance for safety precautions to take when grocery shopping and proper handling of food purchased to minimize the possibility of coming in contact with surfaces that may have been exposed to the virus. There is also information available for restaurant owners, employees and customers; temporary changes to packaging and labeling of food; and frequently asked questions that address food supply.

April 24th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Treatment FAQs; Caring for Pets; Vehicle & License Expirations Extended 

For Immediate Release: April 23, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 Treatments

Over the last few weeks, several drugs, as well as home remedies, have been touted as ways to prevent or treat COVID-19. At this time, there is no specific treatment for coronavirus infections. Treatment consists of supportive care, relief of symptoms, drinking plenty of fluids, staying at home to rest, and practicing home isolation and physical distancing within the household to avoid spreading infection to others. The Virginia Department of Health has developed Frequently Asked Questions about proposed treatments, remedies, and over-the-counter drugs.

CDC Provides Guidance on Caring for Pets

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a small number of pets have been reported to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, mostly after contact with people with COVID-19. At this time, there is no evidence that animals play a significant role in spreading the virus that causes the disease. Based on the limited information available to date, the risk of animals spreading COVID-19 to people is considered to be low. Treat pets as you would other human family members – do not let pets interact with people or animals outside the household. If a person inside the household becomes sick, isolate that person from everyone else, including pets. Visit the CDC website to learn more about COVID-19 and pets.

Expirations Extended for Driver’s Licenses, License Plates, Safety Inspections

Governor Northam has extended the closure of Virginia’s DMV offices and mobile units until May 11, and extended the validity of driver’s licenses and vehicle credentials that were due to expire. Those needing to renew a license or vehicle registration are encouraged to do so online. Governor Northam also directed the Virginia State Police to suspend enforcement of the time period in which new Virginia residents must get a driver’s license or register their vehicles, the expiration of temporary license plates, and the time period in which temporary residents may operate vehicles with out-of-state plates. This directive also continues the suspension of enforcement of motor vehicle inspections by Virginia State Police. Until further notice, the City will not issue citations for driver’s licenses, license plates, or safety inspection decals that expired after February 29, 2020. 

38 Cases and 2 Fatalities Added in Alexandria

The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 512, including 15 fatalities. A graph showing the history of cases and fatalities in Alexandria is available at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. The Virginia Department of Health is now counting cases that are considered “probable” in addition to positive test results in this total number. Probable cases include symptomatic patients diagnosed in a clinical setting, but not tested. This expansion in case categorization provides a more accurate picture of how COVID-19 is impacting Alexandria. It is essential for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/114923.

April 23rd Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates: Resources for Businesses; Preventing Alcohol Abuse; Plasma Donors Sought

For Immediate Release: April 22, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

COVID-19 Resources for Businesses

Help is available for businesses impacted by COVID-19:

  • The Alexandria Economic Development Partnership has an updated collection of COVID-19 resources for businesses, including information on disaster assistance; tax and regulatory changes; support for affected workers; government response; how to support local small businesses, and more. 
  • Visit Alx at Home to experience Alexandria’s restaurants, shops and attractions while staying at home. From virtual shopping at local boutiques to restaurant delivery to virtual ghost tours, see more than 100 ways to support the independent businesses that make Alexandria so special.
  • The Alexandria Chamber of Commerce’s COVID-19 Updates and Resources webpage provides links to webinars and updates on the operating status of local businesses, and links to other resources.
  • The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated frequently asked questions for businesses, including information about reducing the spread of COVID-19; workplace cleaning and disinfection; dealing with potential or confirmed cases in the workplace; healthy business operations; and critical infrastructure.

SAPCA Reminds Residents of Healthy Coping Practices, Dangers of Alcohol

The risk for misusing alcohol and other substances increases during times of stress, like the COVID-19 crisis. The Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Alexandria reminds residents of the dangers of substance misuse and the importance of healthy coping practices. Visit the City’s web page to learn more and find resources to help.

FDA Seeks Donors for Convalescent Plasma

Individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 may be able to help others struggling with the disease. The U.S. Federal Drug Administration, in coordination with the American Red Cross and other organizations, is seeking people who have fully recovered from COVID-19 to donate blood plasma to help current patients. People who have fully recovered from COVID-19 have antibodies in their plasma that can attack the virus. This “convalescent plasma” is being evaluated as treatment for patients with serious or immediately life-threatening COVID-19 infections, or those judged by a healthcare provider to be at high risk of progression to severe or life-threatening disease. For more information, including eligibility criteria, visit the American Red Cross donor eligibility form.

12 Cases and 2 Fatalities Added in Alexandria

The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 474, including 13 fatalities. A graph showing the history of cases and fatalities in Alexandria is available at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. The Virginia Department of Health is now counting cases that are considered “probable” in addition to positive test results in this total number. Probable cases include symptomatic patients diagnosed in a clinical setting, but not tested. Cases added to the cumulative totals today may have occurred in the past and were recently recategorized. This change in case categorization provides a more accurate picture of how COVID-19 is impacting Alexandria. It is essential for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/114902.

April 22nd Update:

Coronavirus: Where To Get Face Masks, Face Coverings In Alexandria

As many wear face coverings for tasks like grocery shopping, small businesses have switched gears to make and sell them.

By Emily Leayman, Patch Staff

Apr 21, 2020 12:42 pm ET | Updated Apr 21, 2020 12:47 pm ET

 

ALEXANDRIA, VA — While wearing face masks in public places isn't required in Virginia, it's becoming the norm to see people wear them in places like grocery stores. Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention encourage residents to wear cloth face coverings in public places where physical distancing is hard to maintain, and Alexandria's Fresh Market grocery store is requiring customers to wear coverings. If you need these non-medical-grade coverings, Alexandria small businesses are selling them or offering DIY kits.

 

Visit Alexandria's ALX at Home has a new section detailing where you can get face coverings. Customers can contact individual businesses to order.

 

Below are the Alexandria businesses listed as selling face coverings. Let us know about other small businesses selling face coverings in the comments below. We'll keep adding to this list.

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City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; New Data on Age, Sex & Race Impacts

­­For Immediate Release: April 21, 2020

 

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

VDH Publishes New Alexandria Data on COVID-19 Impacts by Age, Sex, and Race

 

COVID-19 affects every age group, gender, and race and ethnicity. However, the burden and impacts of this disease vary depending on a number of factors. The Virginia Department of Health's (VDH) daily dashboard now includes case, hospitalization, and fatality information by age, sex, and race for Alexandria. 

 

The distribution of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria by age and race are similar to the overall age and race distribution of Alexandria residents. However, patients over 65 and African Americans seem to have higher rates of hospitalization if they contract the virus. This aligns with nationwide research on health outcomes. Underlying health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease can create additional complications and more severe symptoms if someone contracts COVID-19. For generations, historically discriminatory systems in education, housing, and the workforce have created conditions that contribute to higher rates of chronic conditions in communities of color. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated these existing inequities in health outcomes.   

 

These types of differences in health outcomes have been a longstanding concern in Alexandria and across the country. AHD and community partners like the Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria have been working for years to eliminate these differences and ensure everyone has the opportunity to attain their highest level of health and well-being. AHD and the City are working with diverse, at-risk communities throughout Alexandria to provide information about COVID-19: what it iswhat people can do to prevent it, and, for those who do not have a doctor or health insurance, where they can seek testing and care. 

 

AHD cautions that the published VDH data is incomplete; more than one-third of cases do not have race reported. AHD is working with doctors' offices throughout Alexandria to improve data collection. AHD is also working with VDH to expand the current analyses to include ethnicity, as well as the number of tests completed by age, gender, race and ethnicity. 

41 COVID-19 Cases and 1 Fatality Added in Alexandria; New Case History Graph Available

 

The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 462, including 11 fatalities. A new graph showing the history of cases and fatalities in Alexandria is now available at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. The Virginia Department of Health is now counting cases that are considered “probable” in addition to positive test results in this total number. Probable cases include symptomatic patients diagnosed in a clinical setting, but not tested. Cases added to the cumulative totals today may have occurred in the past and were recently recategorized. This change in case categorization provides a more accurate picture of how COVID-19 is impacting Alexandria. It is essential for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/114889. 

 

Six Steps to Stop the Spread

PROTECT YOURSELF & OTHERS • IF YOU'RE SICK • FAQs • HELP WITH BASIC NEEDS

To get alerts, text ALEXCOVID19 to 888777.
For questions about COVID-19, call 703-746-4988.
For chest pain or shortness of breath, call or text 911 immediately.

 

April 21st Update:

14 Questions to Ask the Long-Term Care Facility Caring for Your Loved Ones

Residents with loved ones in long-term care facilities may worry about how to best keep them safe from COVID-19. The Alexandria Health Department has extensive, standing relationships with all long-term care facilities, and has been working closely with them by providing guidance, equipment, assessments, and training to help them implement the best possible infection prevention measures. Consider calling facilities with loved ones and asking them these 14 questions.

Take Care When Cleaning

The City encourages the public to exercise caution when cleaning and disinfecting their homes against the COVID-19 virus. On April 20, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released research that shows calls to poison control centers for exposure to cleaners and disinfectant increased substantially in March, corresponding with the rise in COVID-19 cases. Follow CDC’s guidance on cleaning and disinfecting your home. When using household cleaners and disinfectants, follow label instructions; don’t mix chemicals; wear protective gear; and store chemicals out of reach of children.

April 20th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates and Health Resources

For Immediate Release: April 19, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Resources for Mental Health in Response to COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home orders continue, everyone is dealing with overwhelming emotions. The City’s Coping with Fear and Uncertainty webpage includes information about how residents can access a variety of essential mental health services; resources to meet basic needs for those affected by COVID-19; and tips for coping, combating stigma, and more. If you feel you are in crisis, please contact the City’s emergency mental health services hotline at 703.746.3401, available 24 hours a day. 

29 New COVID-19 Cases and 1 New COVID-19 Fatality in Alexandria

The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 383, including 8 fatalities. The Virginia Department of Health is now counting cases that are considered “probable” in addition to positive test results in this total number. Probable cases include symptomatic patients diagnosed in a clinical setting, but not tested. This change in case categorization provides a more accurate picture of how COVID-19 is impacting Alexandria. It is essential for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person, or consult a list of resources for patients without a primary care physician or health insurance (also available in Spanish, Amharic and Arabic). Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 
  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.
  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings. 

April 17th Update:

Supplemental Security Income Recipients Will Receive Automatic COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments

The Social Security Administration announced today that Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients will receive automatic Economic Impact Payments directly from the Treasury Department.  Treasury anticipates these automatic payments no later than early May.

SSI recipients who have qualifying children under age 17, however, should not wait for their automatic $1,200 individual payment.  They should now go to the IRS’s webpage at www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here and visit the Non-Filers: Enter Your Payment Info section to provide their information.

For more information, please visit https://www.ssa.gov/news/press/releases/.

Increased Unemployment Benefits; Resources for Victims of Domestic Violence and Assault

For Immediate Release: April 16, 2020 - The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Expanded Unemployment Benefits

Virginia has announced expanded unemployment benefits as part of the federal CARES Act, which increases weekly benefits by $600 for workers with unemployment insurance claims effective March 29 through July 31. Payments to eligible claimants will be retroactive and will be made automatically in conjunction with weekly claims. New benefits for previously uncovered workers were also announced. Affected workers like the self-employed, who are not eligible under traditional unemployment insurance, may be eligible under the new federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program. To be eligible for this new program, workers must first apply through traditional unemployment by visiting the Virginia Employment Commission or the Virginia Workforce Connection.

Resources for Victims of Domestic Violence or Sexual Assault

These are stressful times because of health risks from COVID-19 and because everyone must stay home as much as possible. For some people, staying home doesn’t always feel safe, because someone there may threaten or hurt them. If this describes your situation, call the City’s Sexual Assault Hotline at 703.638.7273 or Domestic Violence Hotline at 703.746.4911. Learn more about resources for victims of sexual assault or domestic violence, including a shareable flyer on staying safe at home during this crisis.

National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, April 12-18

National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week is an annual recognition dedicated to raising appreciation and awareness of hard-working public safety call takers and dispatchers across the country. Nearly three dozen City telecommunicators dispatch law enforcement, fire, and emergency medical personnel and coordinate with other agencies. Public Safety Telecommunicators are the “first of the first responders” — the first point of contact for people responding to emergencies, and the first point of contact for those seeking emergency services, ranging from persons dealing with intense personal crisis to community-wide disasters like the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2019, the City received approximately 70,000 calls to 911. The City’s public safety telecommunicators are committed and dedicated to helping every caller through any emergency, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Reminder: Trash Goes in Plastic Bags -- Recycling Does Not

Beginning Monday, April 13, residents receiving City trash and recycling service must place all materials in their City-issued bins or carts. Trash should be tied or sealed in plastic bags within the bins or carts. Recycling should be placed loose, with no plastic bag, inside the blue bins or carts. Residents who have not been issued a City trash container should place tied or sealed plastic trash bags on the curb. Those who do not use a City recycling bin or cart should place recyclables in paper bags on the curb. For the safety of collection crews and to encourage waste to be reduced, loose trash or recycling on the curb will not be collected. For additional service changes related to Resource Recovery, see alexandriava.gov/ResourceRecovery.

30 New COVID-19 Cases and 1 New Fatality in Alexandria, Bringing the Total to 303 Cases and 7 Fatalities

On April 16, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed 30 additional cases of COVID-19 and one additional fatality in Alexandria, bringing the total number of cases to 303 (including 7 fatalities). The continued rise in positive cases reflects the additional testing capacity of private healthcare providers as well continued community transmission. It is essential for all community members, even those who don't have a diagnosed illness, to stay home except for essential trips such as brief visits to the pharmacy, doctor, or grocery store.

To respect the privacy of individuals and their families, AHD will not disclose additional details about cases or fatalities unless there is a public health need to do so. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within 6 feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g., nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe.

If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds.
  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.
  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings.

April 16th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Governor Extends Business Restrictions; Additional City Council Action

­­For Immediate Release: April 15, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Governor Extends Business Restrictions Until May 8

Governor Northam has announced the extension of Executive Order 53, which bans crowds or more than 10 people; closes recreation, entertainment and personal care businesses; and limits restaurants to offering takeout and delivery services only, until May 8. The order was extended to allow physical distancing, and other measures shown to be slowing the spread of COVID-19, to continue. Extending the order also allows state officials to evaluate the situation and plan for how to ease restrictions so businesses may eventually operate without endangering public health. Executive Order 55 (requiring Virginians to stay at home unless they must leave for essential services) remains in effect until June 10.

Alexandria City Council Approves Additional Funds for COVID-19 Community Response

On April 14, the Alexandria City Council unanimously approved an additional $100,000 contribution of City matching funds for the ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund, following an initial contribution of $100,000 on March 14. The Fund provides a rapid-response grants process to help community organizations provide critical services including emergency food, rental assistance, financial assistance, child care, household and medical supplies, medicine, and more.

City Council also allocated an additional $220,000 to ALIVE! to ensure adequate food supply for food distributions and food pantries through the end of May, following an initiation contribution of $20,000 on March 14. ALIVE! provides nutritious staple foods to Alexandrians in need through direct distribution to clients and by supporting Alexandria’s food pantries, meal kitchens, public schools, recreation centers and other community partners.

City Council Calls for Moratorium on Rental and Mortgage Payments

On April 14, City Council unanimously adopted a resolution recognizing the unprecedented economic hardships resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. The resolution calls on the U.S. Congress and the Governor of Virginia to address the immediate crisis of rent and mortgage payments through a potential moratorium, and to suspend the reporting of negative credit information by credit bureaus.  

City Council Passes Resolutions of Support for Partner and Sister Localities

On April 14, City Council unanimously adopted resolutions of support to sister cities Caen, FranceDundee, Scotland; and Helsingborg, Sweden. The resolutions extend gratitude and appreciation to first responders, municipal leaders, service workers, educators and residents who employ the safest practices to “help combat this scourge which has so deeply altered their way of life, bringing with it a season of grief.” A similar resolution of support was extended to the City of Norton and Wise County, Virginia, Alexandria’s partners under Virginia’s Local Government Exchange program. The resolutions extend Alexandria’s thoughts and support to the municipal leaders, staff, and people of these partner localities.

Hospital Communication Guide for Persons Who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing

The Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons is providing a COVID-19 Communication Guide and technology information to help persons who are deaf and hard of hearing to communicate with healthcare providers. The printable card may assist in situations where interpretation and other tools used to navigate medical encounters may not be available, or patients cannot read providers’ lips due to surgical masks. Users are advised to review and complete the card and download apps that may assist them before they need to go to the hospital.

26 New COVID-19 Cases and 2 New Fatalities in Alexandria, Bringing the Total to 273 Cases and 6 Fatalities

On April 15, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed 26 additional cases of COVID-19 and two additional fatalities in Alexandria, bringing the total number of cases to 273 (including 6 fatalities). The rise in positive cases is likely due to a combination of additional testing capacity through private healthcare providers as well as an increase in community transmission. It is essential for all community members to stay home as much as possible, even if they don't have a diagnosed illness. 

To respect the privacy of individuals and their families, AHD will not disclose additional details about cases or fatalities unless there is a public health need to do so. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within 6 feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g., nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders.

If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 
  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.
  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings. 

 

April 14th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Open Container Reminder

­­For Immediate Release: April 13, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep six feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Carryout Alcoholic Beverages Must be Consumed At Home
Although the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority has temporarily allowed licensed restaurants and bars to sell beer, wine and mixed drinks for carryout and delivery, the Alexandria City Code still prohibits carrying open containers of alcohol in public. This includes parks, streets, sidewalks, alleys, and any other public or private property open to the public, and includes vehicles in those locations. Please consume alcoholic beverages responsibly, and at home. 

16 New COVID-19 Cases and 1 New Fatality in Alexandria, Totaling 241 Cases and 2 Fatalities
On April 13, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed 16 additional cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria and one additional fatality, bringing the total number of cases to 241 (including two fatalities). The rise in positive cases is likely due to a combination of additional testing capacity through private healthcare providers as well as an increase in community transmission. It is essential for all community members to stay home as much as possible, even if they don't have a diagnosed illness. 

To respect the privacy of individuals and their families, AHD will not disclose additional details about cases or fatalities unless there is a public health need to do so. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within 6 feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g. nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders. 

If You Have Symptoms or a Diagnosis of COVID-19
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

If you have COVID-19 symptoms or have tested positive, follow these steps to protect your neighbors and loved ones from infection. 

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 

  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.

  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings. 

Physical Distancing is Working -- Keep it Up!


New infectious disease modeling by the University of Virginia’s Biocomplexity Institute and the nonprofit RAND Corporation shows that physical distancing is slowing the spread of COVID-19 in Virginia. Current models show physical distancing measures that began on March 15 are keeping the rate of new cases steady. This means that although cases are increasing, they are not increasing as quickly as before. Although data and testing remain limited, current trends suggest the state’s hospital bed capacity will be sufficient in the near future. However, because lifting physical distancing restrictions too soon could quickly lead to a second wave of COVID-19, everyone must remain vigilant in maintaining physical distancing and other measures to continue slowing the spread of the virus.

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How to Protect Yourself from COVID-19 Scams:

Please be careful!  The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has reported that as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to impact the United States, phone scammers have seized the opportunity to prey on consumers.

The FCC has received reports of scam and hoax text message campaigns and scam robocalls offering free home testing kits, promoting bogus cures, selling health insurance, and preying on virus-related fears.

A text message scam may falsely advertise a cure or an offer to be tested for coronavirus. Do not click on links in texts related to the virus, and check cdc.gov/coronavirus for the most current information. 

Some text scams are impersonating government agencies. The FCC recently learned of a text scam claiming to be from the "FCC Financial Care Center" and offering $30,000 in COVID-19 relief. There is no FCC program to provide relief funds to consumers. The text is likely a phishing attempt to get banking or other personal information from victims. The BBB is also warning of a text message scam impersonating the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services informs recipients that they must take a "mandatory online COVID-19 test" using the included link.

Scammers are also using robocalls to target consumers during this national emergency.

For example, the World Health Organization recently issued a warning about criminals seeking to take advantage of the pandemic to steal money or sensitive personal information from consumers. It urges people to be wary of phone calls and text messages that purport to be from the WHO, or charity organizations, asking for account information or for money.

The FCC has received reports of robocalls purporting to offer free virus test kits, in an effort to collect consumers' personal and health insurance information. One pernicious version of this scam is targeting higher risk individuals with diabetes, offering a free COVID-19 testing kit along with a free diabetic monitor. Other robocalls are marketing fake cures and asking for payment over the phone.

The Federal Trade Commission and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration have posted consumer warnings about fake websites and phishing emails used to promote bogus products.

Opportunists are also making robocalls to offer HVAC duct cleaning as a way to "protect" your home and family from the virus.

Fraudsters are also preying on financial fears tied to the pandemic. The FCC is aware of robocall scams with COVID-19 themed work-from-home opportunities, student loan repayment plans, and debt consolidation offers. Consumers aren't the only target. Small businesses are also getting scam calls about virus-related funding or loans and online listing verification.

Many consumers will receive checks as part of the federal government response to the coronavirus. No one will call or text you to verify your personal information or bank account details in order to "release" the funds. The Treasury Department expects most people to receive their payments via direct-deposit information that the department has on file from prior tax filings.

If you think you've been a victim of a coronavirus scam, contact law enforcement immediately.

The FCC offers the following tips to help you protect yourself from scams, including coronavirus scams:

  • Do not respond to calls or texts from unknown numbers, or any others that appear suspicious.
  • Never share your personal or financial information via email, text messages, or over the phone.
  • Be cautious if you’re being pressured to share any information or make a payment immediately.
  • Scammers often spoof phone numbers to trick you into answering or responding.  Remember that government agencies will never call you to ask for personal information or money.
  • Do not click any links in a text message. If a friend sends you a text with a suspicious link that seems out of character, call them to make sure they weren't hacked.
  • Always check on a charity (for example, by calling or looking at its actual website) before donating. (Learn more about charity scams.)

For more information about scam calls and texts, visit the FCC Consumer Help Center and the FCC Scam Glossary. You can also file a complaint about such scams at fcc.gov/complaints.

ProtectfromEngli

 

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Resources in the City of Alexandria

ARHA has provided a list of resources in the City of the Alexandria to help during this uncertain time. Click Here for the full list.

April 13th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; New Guidelines If You’re Sick; Virtual City Events and Activities

­­For Immediate Release: April 12, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep six feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

AHD Releases New Guidance for Those with COVID-19 Symptoms or Diagnosis

All Alexandrians must do their part to stop the spread of COVID-19. In addition to staying home and thorough hand-washing practices, residents who are sick or have a COVID-19 diagnosis can take additional steps to protect their neighbors, co-workers, and loved ones. New guidance from AHD outlines how to limit the spread of COVID-19 in your household, and how to identify and reach out to your close contacts so that they can take the proper precautions. 

Virtual City Events and Activities this Week 

Many City meetings, events and activities can now be attended virtually. This week’s activities include live concerts, fitness classes and workshops. The City Calendar has a complete list of virtual opportunities, as well as cancellations. 

25 New COVID-19 Cases in Alexandria, Bringing the Total to 225

On April 12, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed 25 additional cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria, bringing the total to 225 (including one fatality). It is essential for all community members to stay home as much as possible, even if they don't have a diagnosed illness. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within 6 feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g. nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders. The rise in positive cases is likely due to a combination of additional testing capacity through private healthcare providers as well as an increase in community transmission. 

If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 

  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.

  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings.

April 10th Update:

Alexandria Retirement Home Resident Positive For Coronavirus

ALEXANDRIA, VA — A hospitalized resident at Alexandria's Hermitage Northern Virginia retirement community has tested positive for the new coronavirus, which causes COVID-19 respiratory illness. The facility was notified by Inova Alexandria Hospital Wednesday night.

The resident started experiencing mild symptoms on April 7 and was taken to the hospital for testing. The patient remains hospitalized. This is the retirement community's only confirmed case of COVID-19.

Hermitage Northern Virginia's health care management team and the Alexandria Health Department have identified and notified residents and workers who were potentially exposed. Those individuals are under self-quarantine for 14 days. Other residents or workers aren't experiencing symptoms, Hermitage Northern Virginia said in a statement.

The West End retirement community asked all residents are to remain in their apartments or health care rooms as a precaution. Workers are wearing masks on the job, and the facility is seeking more personal protective equipment (PPE) from the Virginia Healthcare Coalition.

"Because of the precautions already in place, we are hopeful that the potential spread of the virus is limited, but we must continue to practice self-isolation, good hand washing and the use of appropriate PPE," said Chris Henderson, CEO of Pinnacle Living.

Hermitage Northern Virginia previously restricted visitors with exceptions for individuals essential for a resident's care. Approved guests must answer screening questions and may be required to wear personal protective equipment. Workers are screened before their shifts and are asked to practice physical distancing when not at work. Dining venues are closed with residents receiving meal delivery service, but select dining areas in health services are operating. Restrictions continue until public health officials provide different guidance.

As of Wednesday, Alexandria has 149 cases of COVID-19 and one death. The Alexandria Health Department does not release locations of cases for privacy reasons, said city spokesperson Craig Fifer. Residents are urged to take the same precautions to protect themselves and others regardless of case locations.

The city notifies residents in cases of public concern, such as a person with COVID-19 who visited Murphy's Irish Pub, or a person who tested positive and spent time at the Immanuel Chapel of the Virginia Theological Seminary.

The health department advises close contacts of confirmed cases to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. Those experiencing symptoms should seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders. The common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, and shortness of breath; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a coronavirus self-checker.

The Alexandria Health Department urges residents to stay home except for essential trips and follow these precautions:

  • Wash your hands often by rubbing them together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Maintain six feet of personal space whenever possible.
  • Stay home when you are sick. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public spaces where it is hard to maintain physical distance.

For more public health information, visit www.alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus.

 

April 9th Updates:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; New State Data Dashboard; Support from City of Norton
For Immediate Release: April 9, 2020
The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep six feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 
Virginia Department of Health Provides Weekly COVID-19 Report
This week, the Virginia Department of Health launched a new Weekly COVID-19 Activity Report, a dashboard showing the impact of the coronavirus pandemic in Virginia. The site provides data on the number of confirmed cases, hospitalizations, and deaths from COVID-19. The dashboard also includes regional data on emergency room visits; aggregate data by age, sex and race; and the overall status of the pandemic in Virginia. Data on age, sex and race is collected by individual healthcare providers as they see patients. 
A significant number of cases do not include reported race and ethnicity, and AHD cautions against drawing conclusions with incomplete datasets and without historical and systemic context. Risk of COVID-19 infection is primarily based on individual exposure to the COVID-19 virus, not an individual's demographics. AHD is working to produce a local version of this data analysis. 
Resolution of Support from Norton, Virginia
The City of Alexandria has received a resolution of support from the City of Norton, a partner locality under Governor Ralph Northam’s Local Government Exchange Program. The Norton City Council’s April 7 resolution offers sympathy for those who have lost their lives and their family members; expresses its “great admiration for all first responders and other medical personnel that are on the front lines of this crisis,” and “extends our thoughts and prayers of support to the City Council, City staff, and the great people of Alexandria.” The Local Government Exchange Program, which began its pilot phase in February, is designed to bridge cultural and geographical divides across Virginia; help localities learn about each other’s challenges and opportunities; and build and strengthen statewide partnerships.
21 New COVID-19 Cases in Alexandria, Bringing the Total to 170
On April 9, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed 21 additional cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria, bringing the total to 170 (including one fatality). Many of the recent results were from tests done four to eight days prior. This lag in test results underscores the continued need for all community members to stay home as much as possible, even if they don't have a diagnosed illness. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within six feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g. nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders. The rise in positive cases is likely due to a combination of additional testing capacity through private healthcare providers as well as an increase in community transmission.
If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.
Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members
  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 
  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.
  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings. 
To receive text message alerts from the City related to COVID-19, text ALEXCOVID19 to 888777. For more information about the COVID-19 coronavirus and how you can help protect yourself and those around you, visit alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. For questions about COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Virginia residents can also call the Virginia Department of Health public information line, 877.ASK.VDH3, for questions about the novel coronavirus situation. If you have chest pain or shortness of breath, call or text 911.
For inquiries from the news media only, contact Craig Fifer, Director of Communications and Public Information, at craig.fifer@alexandriava.gov or 703.746.3965.
# # #
This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/114646.

Virginia Announces Changes in Unemployment Insurance program as a result of the Federal CARES Act

~ $600 increase in benefits for workers ~

The CARES Act provides increased benefits for workers collecting unemployment insurance by $600 for claims effective March 29th until July 31st.  Increased benefits for eligible claimants under traditional unemployment insurance will start to be paid as soon as next week.  The Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) recently received guidance from the United States Department of Labor and is working to implement needed system changes to make this happen as soon as possible.  Payments to eligible claimants will be retroactive and will be made automatically in conjunction with their weekly claim.

New Benefits for Previously Uncovered Workers

Affected workers, like the self-employed, who are not eligible under traditional unemployment insurance may be eligible under a brand new federal program called Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA).  To be eligible for this new program, workers must first apply through traditional unemployment by visiting www.vec.virginia.gov or www.vawc.virginia.gov. The state is required to verify eligibility under traditional unemployment before allowing claimants to be considered for the new PUA program.  If you are determined to be ineligible for traditional unemployment, you will be contacted by phone (text or voice message) on how to file the supplemental information to complete your claim under the new PUA program.  VEC will be announcing more details on the start date for this new program later this week.  

More information

Please note that there are many requirements in the legislation and every worker has unique circumstances and criteria that affect eligibility.  The VEC will be posting additional updates on our website at vec.virginia.gov as new information is available. 

As a reminder, after completing an initial claim, claimants must file a weekly certification each following week in order to be paid.  This can be done by calling the interactive voice response line at 1-800-897-5630 or through your online account at www.vec.virginia.gov or www.vawc.virginia.gov.

 

Dedicated Grocery Hours; Guidance for Persons with Disabilities

Released: April 8, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep six feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Shopping Hours to Reduce COVID-19 Complication Risks
The City’s website now lists Alexandria grocery stores that have provided information about separate shopping hours for customers at higher risk for COVID-19 infection complications. All residents should continue practicing physical distancing while in public and avoid unnecessary trips. AHD's Environmental Health staff have been conducting outreach to grocery stores with these types of policies to support proper sanitization efforts. Grocery stores interested in beginning similar measures can reach out for technical assistance and guidance at 703.746.4910.   

CDC Provides Guidance for Persons with Disabilities
Although most people with disabilities are not inherently at higher risk for becoming infected with or having severe illness from COVID-19, some people with disabilities might be at a higher risk of infection or severe illness because of their underlying medical conditions. All people seem to be at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 if they have serious underlying chronic medical conditions like chronic lung disease, a serious heart condition, or a weakened immune system. Adults with disabilities are three times more likely than adults without disabilities to have heart disease, stroke, diabetes, or cancer than adults without disabilities. Review new CDC guidance for persons with disabilities, and talk with your healthcare provider if you have a question about your health or how your health condition is being managed.

8 New COVID-19 Cases in Alexandria, Bringing the Total to 149
On April 8, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed eight additional cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria, bringing the total to 149 (including one fatality). Many of the recent results were from tests done four to eight days prior. This lag in test results underscores the continued need for all community members to stay home as much as possible, even if they don't have a diagnosed illness. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within six feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g. nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders. The rise in positive cases is likely due to a combination of additional testing capacity through private healthcare providers as well as an increase in community transmission.

If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 

  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.

  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings. 

April 8th Updates:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates, Anti-Stigma Materials

­­For Immediate Release: April 7, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep six feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Combating COVID-19 Stigma
Anxiety about the COVID-19 can cause fear and hostility that hurts people and makes it harder to keep everyone healthy. This disease knows no neighborhood boundaries, and the virus presents a risk to everyone. Alexandria is stronger as a community when we stand together against stigma, which can lead to discrimination. Combating COVID-19 Stigma flyers are available in English, Spanish, Amharic and Arabic, to help share ways to prevent, interrupt and respond to stigma. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also provides information about coping and reducing stigma.

11 New COVID-19 Cases in Alexandria, Bringing the Total to 141
On April 7, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed 11 additional cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria, bringing the total to 141. Many of the recent results were from tests done four to eight days prior. This lag in test results underscores the continued need for all community members to stay home as much as possible, even if they don't have a diagnosed illness. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within six feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g., nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders. The rise in positive cases is likely due to a combination of additional testing capacity through private healthcare providers as well as an increase in community transmission.

If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 

  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.

  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings. 

Living a Healthy Life - Inova

Inova Wellness has invited you to watch a series of videos that will help you to continue to be healthy and stay active during this pandemic. Click Here for more.

April 6th Update:

Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax County Urge Residents to Protect Collection Crews by Minimizing Waste 

For Immediate Release: April 6, 2020
The City of Alexandria, Arlington County and Fairfax County are asking residents to reduce the waste they discard, in order to help protect collection crews. As residents heed the call to stay home, an increase of up to 40% in residential trash tonnage since mid-March has placed strain on regional waste management systems. Refuse and recycling collection are vital to the region's health and safety, and localities are committed to providing this essential service. Every morning, collection crews report to work while facing the same life challenges as the rest of the community.  
To help ensure crew health and safety, as well as daily completion of routes, residents are asked to follow these guidelines: 
  • Dispose of used wipes, tissues and paper towels in trash bags that are tied shut. 
  • Refrain from generating large amounts of waste--wait to dispose of the bulk materials in your basement, attic or garage until normal operations resume.
  • Flatten cardboard boxes to create more room in recycling carts.
  • For customers with City-issued trash carts, bags and bulk material placed outside the carts will be left uncollected. This change will take effect Monday, April 13. 
  • For customers who do not have City-issued trash carts, all trash must be contained within sealed or securely tied plastic bags (loose and bulk material will be left uncollected).
  • Yard waste pickup in Alexandria remains suspended until further notice; consider backyard composting or grasscycling lawn clippings.
Learn more helpful tips and additional guidance from the City of AlexandriaArlington County, and Fairfax County
For more information on COVID-19 related service changes to Alexandria's waste management services, visit alexandriava.gov/ResourceRecovery.
For inquiries from the news media, contact Sarah Godfrey, Public Information Officer, at sarah.godfrey@alexandriava.gov or 703.746.4027.
This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/114574.

 

April 5th Update:

City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Video on Correct Use of Cloth Facing Coverings

­­For Immediate Release: April 5, 2020

The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep six feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Guidance for Wearing Cloth Face Coverings
On April 3, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended wearing face coverings in public where other physical distancing measures are difficult to maintain. Wearing a cloth face covering is only effective when used in conjunction with frequent hand washing and physical distancing, which includes staying at least six feet away from other people. While purchased or homemade face coverings will not prevent individuals from catching the COVID-19 virus, wearing them will help prevent people who have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others. It is important to recognize that a face covering is not a surgical mask or N95 respirator. The  general public is urged not to use these items, since these are crucial limited supplies needed for healthcare workers and first responders.

The Alexandria Health Department has produced a short video showing how to make and use a cloth face covering correctly

11 New COVID-19 Cases in Alexandria, Bringing the Total to 104
On April 5, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed 11 additional cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria, bringing the total to 104. Many of the recent results were from tests done four to eight days prior. This lag in test results underscores the continued need for all community members to stay home as much as possible, even if they don't have a diagnosed illness. AHD is contacting all confirmed cases and providing them guidance to give to their close contacts (people who came within six feet of cases for more than 10 minutes). AHD is also calling close contacts of confirmed cases in high risk settings (e.g. nursing homes, assisted living facilities, healthcare centers). All close contacts are asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they are advised to seek medical care if their symptoms are severe or if they are healthcare workers or first responders. The rise in positive cases is likely due to a combination of additional testing capacity through private healthcare providers as well as an increase in community transmission.

If You Have Symptoms of COVID-19
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are coughing, fever of over 100.4 F, and shortness of breath. Use the CDC's Coronavirus Self-Checker to review your symptoms. If you are concerned you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider to ask whether you should come for an exam or test before visiting in person. Most people who get COVID-19 recover on their own at home and do not need testing or treatment. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness should isolate themselves; avoid contact with other people; wash their hands frequently; and disinfect surfaces regularly.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and believe you've been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Alexandria Health Department does not provide COVID-19 diagnosis or testing. If you need a letter about your health status, contact your healthcare provider. If AHD has contacted you directly for active monitoring or quarantine, AHD can provide a letter for your employer clearing you to return to work once that is complete.

Protect Yourself and Others, Especially Vulnerable Community Members

  • Wash Your Hands. Rub hands together with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Use Hand Sanitizer. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol as you would wash your hands, rubbing them together for 20 seconds. 

  • Don’t Touch Your Face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Stay Home. If you are feeling sick, stay home. If you are well, avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Use Your Elbow. Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands.

  • Disinfect Surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

  • Manage Stress. The CDC recommends taking breaks from exposure to the news; take deep breaths or meditate; try to eat healthy; get sleep or rest; make time to do activities you enjoy; and connect with others to share your feelings. 

To receive text message alerts from the City related to COVID-19, text ALEXCOVID19 to 888777. For more information about the COVID-19 coronavirus and how you can help protect yourself and those around you, visit alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. For questions about COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at 703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Virginia residents can also call the Virginia Department of Health public information line, 877-ASK-VDH3, for questions about the novel coronavirus situation. If you have chest pain or shortness of breath, call or text 911.

 

April 1st Update:

  • The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) strongly urge everyone to follow Governor Northam's order to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as work, to make food purchases and to receive medical care.  Please keep six feet apart from others whenever possible. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

 

  • On March 31, the Alexandria Health Department confirmed eight additional cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria, bringing the total to 44. AHD is identifying and contacting individuals who came in close contact with the confirmed cases. The close contacts will be asked to self-quarantine and actively monitor for fever and respiratory symptoms. If they start experiencing symptoms, they will immediately undergo testing. As a result of the AHD’s case investigations and expanded testing through private providers, the number of positive cases is expected to continue to increase.

 

  • Alexandria Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is a group of medical and non-medical volunteers who support the Alexandria Health Department in emergency preparedness, response and recovery. In response to COVID-19, new volunteers are urged to  join Alexandria MRC to help with staffing the call center and conducting community outreach to our most vulnerable populations. Training will be provided.
 
For questions about COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Information Line at  703.746.4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Virginia residents can also call the Virginia Department of Health public information line at 877-ASK-VDH3. If you have chest pain or shortness of breath, call or text 911. 

 

Please stay tuned to our website and Alexandria City for more ongoing news and helpful tips.

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