Sunday, April 5, 2020
As of April 5, 2020, in the United States, cases of COVID-19 tripled from last week to 337,072 today, the most in any country in the world, with 9,619 deaths. Worldwide, there are 1,272,115 COVID-19 cases and 69,374 deaths. In California, there are 13,438 cases and 319 deaths. In Alameda County, there are 539 cases and 12 deaths.
In this update:
- Wear masks in public
- Updated shelter in place order
- Assisting unsheltered neighbors
- Get emergency alerts
- State COVID-19 hotline
- Upcoming City meetings
- Stay home and save lives
WEAR MASKS IN PUBLIC
Bay Area health officials are recommending residents cover their nose and mouth with cloth when leaving home for essential activities, including medical appointments, grocery shopping, and pharmacy visits.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shares this recommendation and includes steps for how to make a face covering at home here. Recent studies show that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus lack symptoms (“asymptomatic”) and that even those who eventually develop symptoms (“pre-symptomatic”) can transit the virus to others before showing symptoms.
Face coverings do not have to be hospital grade and can include bandanas and fabric masks. Fabric face coverings should be washed frequently with detergent and hot water and dried on a hot cycle. And always wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before and after touching your face or face covering. Many residents are wearing medical masks (N-95) from past wildfire events, but new medical masks are in limited supply and purchasing must be reserved for health care workers and pre-hospital transport providers.
It is critical to remember that covering your face alone is not enough to slow the spread of COVID-19. “While there is no replacing the important role of physical distancing and handwashing, wearing face coverings is one more tool to prevent the spread of this virus in our community,” said Dr. Erica Pan, Alameda County Health Officer.
UPDATED SHELTER IN PLACE ORDER
On March 16, 2020, residents and businesses in Alameda County were ordered to shelter in place, with exceptions for certain essential activities. A new health order issued March 31 and continuing until May 3, clarifies, strengthens, and extends certain terms of the prior order to reduce person-to-person contact in order to slow the spread of COVID-19 and mitigate the impact on our healthcare system. The new order includes:
- Social distancing of at least 6 feet is mandatory at all times.
- Essential businesses must maximize the number of employees who work from home and scale down operations to the most essential.
- Outdoor activities in open space, including walking, running, and biking while maintaining social/physical distancing of at least 6 feet are permitted. However, the use of playgrounds, dog parks, public picnic areas, and shared public recreational facilities such as golf courses, tennis and basketball courts, pools, and rock walls are NOT permitted. Sports or activities that require use of shared equipment, like frisbees, basketballs, baseballs, and soccer balls, may only be engaged in by members of the same household.
- Most construction activities are prohibited, with some exemptions.
Click here for updated answers to Frequently Asked Questions from Alameda County.
City of Alameda school facilities are closed until May 1, but remote learning begins April 6.
ASSISTING UNSHELTERED NEIGHBORS
The City will receive four trailers at no cost from FEMA to house eight people at Alameda Point who are currently unhoused and at high risk of getting ill from COVID-19. Unsheltered Alamedans who are sick will be cared for by Operation Comfort, a County program for individuals who have COVID-19.
For Alamedans who live in their vehicles, safe parking will soon be in place from 7 pm-7 am, with additional services including security, showers, and food assistance.
GET EMERGENCY ALERTS
Please sign up to receive AC Alerts, which is how we communicate with residents in an emergency by phone, email, and text. Sign up today at acalert.org. If you are unable to sign up online, text your zip code to 888777 for text only alerts.
This week we launched a new email alert system to make sure you are receiving the most up-to-date news and alerts from the City. Please sign up for this new program here. We will only send email updates with critical information and we will not share your information with anyone.
The City’s website is updated daily and includes:
- List of restaurants open for takeout and delivery and their hours
- List of essential stores open and their hours
- COVID-19 regularly updated news and information
- Resources for businesses and employees
- Virtual recreation center
STATE COVID HOTLINE
If you have questions about COVID-19 and need assistance finding information, a new statewide hotline is available from 8 am to 5 pm, 7 days a week at 833-544-2374.
UPCOMING CITY MEETINGS
This Tuesday, April 7, is a virtual meeting of the Alameda City Council at 7pm, with Councilmembers attending via teleconference. You can watch the meeting here and address the City Council during the meeting via email, text (510-747-4802), or voicemail (510-747-4802). Download the full agenda here.
The April 9 Recreation and Park Commission and the April 13 Planning Board meetings have been cancelled.
STAY HOME AND SAVE LIVES
The current shelter in place restrictions are difficult for every one of us. We are not used to living life this way, and we are uncertain about the days ahead. But we are all taking these necessary steps to keep our community safe and healthy. We are meeting this moment in a strong way, and we will get through this together.
Please, stay home and save lives. And every night at 7 pm, open your doors and windows and clap for healthcare workers, first responders, and essential workers. Clap for your family, friends, and loved ones. For 60 seconds connect with your community and just clap!