CITY OF COVINGTON

Update on Efforts, Resources & Testing

The Highlands COVID-19 Task Force met last week to discuss on-going efforts in the Highlands relating to re-openings, economic impacts, VDH and CDC public health recommendations as well as local testing access. Currently, long term care facilities are being contacted by RCAHD for testing given the need to ensure health and safety of those within these facilities. Additionally, the National Guard has assisted with this effort and has also been in the area working to provide “fit test” training on the proper wearing of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), namely medical-grade masks at these facilities.

The Task Force wants to remind everyone, that we all can do our part to help keep case counts low by following CDC and VDH guidelines of wearing face coverings, practicing social distancing, having proper personal and communal space hygiene. These measures remain the best defense against COVID-19. VDH has also provided guidelines cautioning against travel to “hot spots”, such as Myrtle Beach, as travel to such areas has led to an increase in cases within RCAHD. This was determined through contact tracing efforts.

The regional VDH office, RCAHD, shared with the Task Force that there will be a community testing event in the Highlands. The testing is scheduled for July 7th and will be done at Alleghany High School as a drive-up service. Testing will be done on a first-come, first-served basis. More details are to come from RCAHD on this. Tests will be sent to Virginia Tech’s lab for results and results will take several days to process. RCAHD will work to determine our testing needs and hopes to have monthly community testing here.

We are #HighlandsStrong and #WeAreAllInThisTogether, it is important that we help one another by practicing kindness, compassion and just checking in on others.

The Task Force wishes to remind those in the Highlands of the below efforts and resources available:

I need food…

  • Text “food” to 877-877 to see food distribution sites for information on Covington and Alleghany school systems feeding programs if you have school age children.
  • Call 1-855-635-4370 to see if you are eligible for emergency SNAP benefits.
  • Contact the Salvation Army in Downtown Covington at 540-962-6206 for local assistance on emergency feeding programs.

I have lost some or all of my income because of the coronavirus pandemic….

  • Call 1-866-832-2363 to apply for unemployment benefits.
  • Call the local Virginia Employment Commission Office at 540-962-1151 for localized assistance with career counseling.

My business has been impacted by COVID-19…

  • Contact the Alleghany Highlands Chamber of Commerce and Tourism at (540) 962-2178.
  • Call the Alleghany Highlands Economic Development Corporation at (540) 862-0936.

I am worried I have coronavirus/COVID-19…

  • Call the Alleghany County/City Covington Health Department at 540-962-2173 for general information on public health.
  • To reach the regional COVID-19 VDH hotline, call 1-855-945-8378.
  • Call an urgent care center or your primary care doctor if you have shortness of breath, fever and dry cough.

I need supplies for my baby/child…..

  • Call 211 for the state resource hotline for all assistance programs and to speak with a state representative on support programs that may be available.
  • Call 833-782-2229 to ask about free diapers.
  • Contact the Alleghany County/City of Covington Department of Social Services at 540-965-1780.
  • We also encourage mothers in need to contact their local church for support and/or assistance as many have community programs.

I have questions regarding the upcoming public school year, or questions on the Summer Feeding Program for my school age child/children….

  • Call Covington School Board Office at 540-965-1400.
  • Call Alleghany County School Board Office at 540-863-1800.

I am a senior who needs help at my home….

  • Contact the Alleghany County/City of Covington Department of Social Services at 540-965-1780.
  • Call 211 for the state resource hotline for all assistance programs and to speak with a state representative on support programs that may be available.
  • Contact the Salvation Army in Downtown Covington at 540-962-6206.
  • We also encourage seniors in need to contact their local church for support and/or assistance as many have community programs.

I am worried about my mental health and/or addiction issues…

  • Call the Alleghany Highlands Community Services Board at 540-965-2100 for clinic appointments Monday-
  • Friday 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM or 1-800-446-0128, for emergency appointments and services after hours.
  • For intellectual/developmental disabilities call 540-965-2100.
  • The National Suicide Prevention Hotline is 1-800-784-2433.
  • For LBGTQ issues please text 804-793-9999 (it is confidential).

For more information on COVID-19, the following online resources are recommended, CDC website:
https://www.cdc.gov/, or the VDH website: http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/. For those without internet, VDH has a
regional hotline 1-855-949-8378, as well as a state hotline, 1-877-ASK-VDH3.

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