Weekly Highlands COVID-19 Task Force Touchpoint

April 6, 2020 

11 a.m.

Krystal Onaitis, Covington City Manager, opened the conference call.  

Organizations/Representatives via phone conferencing: DSS, HCA, Carillion, VDH, Alleghany County,   Covington City Manager, Iron Gate Town Clerk, Local Emergency Managers, Sheriff’s office & Regional jail, Commonwealth Attorney, Covington Police Dept & EMS, Covington and Alleghany County Schools, CSB, Salvation Army, Clifton Forge Police Dept, VA Dominion, Area elected officials 

  • There are no new COVID-19 cases in the Alleghany Highlands. The area zip code, 24426, includes Covington City limits and Alleghany County. 
  • VDEM is sending small shipments to the area for needed PPE. VDH has also provided some supplies to the area. 
  • There is ongoing inventory of PPE for tracking the rate of use. 
  • The hospital is using CDC guidelines in reference to masks being used in patient care areas. 
  • The area bus drivers and school staff are delivering meals. They are using gloves and will request masks from VDEM through the Emergency Managers for their areas. 
  • Local Managers are meeting via conference calling with department heads. Those that are able to telework are doing so. They are continuing to get updates on the area and applying for PPE for first responders. 
  • Covington City Hall is closed with limited access for employees. 
  • Walmart is limiting the number of shoppers in the store. There is a process to enter the store.  
  • VDH and LewisGale Hospital Alleghany were thanked for their work and sharing information. 
  • In reference to court, the Grand Jury has been moved to May 4 and the date may move again. There are very little court sessions being held. Instead of an arrest warrant there are summons.  
  • The Regional Jail are screening inmates and if there would be a positive case, that inmate would be quarantined. If a domestic case would be in process, they would have to bring them in, otherwise there would be a summons to limit access. 
  • Clifton Forge has requested PPE, are continuing to keep officers out in the community with limited contact with the public. They are keeping staff and vehicles sanitized. 
  • Social Services are waiting on ability for remote staffing.  
  • Community Services Board are working with a quarantine that is within a group home. They are using PPE and have staff 24/7. They are working with VDH for proper information.  
  • All area schools are continuing to provide instructional material and food to students. They are setting goals for the next school year.  
  • The Salvation Army is providing food for the homebound. They are ordering large quantities of food. They have 50 bottles of bleach if it is needed elsewhere. The organization, Mountaineer Minuteman Militia (M3), are also providing food for the homebound.  
  • VDH are promoting information for Public Health Week. There will be Community information on local television stations today at 7:00 p.m. 
  • There have been many media interviews and posts on facebook for updates and community outreach. Unfortunately there has been a death in the area from the virus. Everyone is encouraged to take this very serious, to slow the spread, to sanitize and stay home.  
  • There is a testing site being planned.  
  • The hospital will notify first responders if there is a positive test result of a patient that has been transported to the hospital.  
  • The hospital is testing any patient that is suspected of having the virus. There are not enough resources to test everyone.  
  • Everyone was thanked for their time and work for the common goal for everyone to stay well.