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COVID-19 Joint Information Center Update: April 6, 2020

COVID-19 Joint Information Center Update: April 6, 2020

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The Washington County, Maryland Joint Information Center (JIC) provides the following update regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.
MERITUS HEALTH
Meritus Medical Laboratory at the Meritus Medical Plaza, 13260 Crayton Blvd., has set temporary new hours, 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday-Friday.
Meritus Health continues to offer telehealth visits. These visits will allow patients to speak directly with a primary care provider to discuss health concerns.
Telehealth visits are available from 8:00am to 4:00pm, Monday through Friday. To request a telehealth visit please complete the form below.
COVID-19 TESTING SITES
Click on the map to right to access the closest testing site.
Once you have spoken with someone on the COVID-19 care line – 301-790-9170 – or to your physician about your symptoms, you may be directed to Meritus Health’s drive-thru or walk-thru screening center.
  • Drive-thru Center: COVID-19 screening is available behind Meritus Medical Plaza, at 13620 Crayton Blvd. Hours are Monday – Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and weekends from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
  • Walk-thru Center: COVID-19 screening is available at 24 N. Walnut St, Hagerstown, MD. The walk-thru screening center is open Monday – Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
To view testing guidelines for COVID-19 at Meritus testing locations, please click here.
For the most up-to-date information on Meritus Medical Group e-visits, visitor restrictions at Meritus Health facilities including the hospital and other COVID-19 resources, please visit https://www.meritushealth.com/patients-visitors/public-notice/.
Below is a short video from Dr. Matthew Wagner as he speaks on emotional self-care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A message from Dr. Wagner 2 mp4 HD
WASHINGTON COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT
The Washington County Health Department continues to do contact tracing for all positive COVID-19 cases in the county. Our Communicable Disease Nurses will be contacting anyone who was found to be in contact with a positive case through their investigations.
Our building is closed to the public however, essential services that the health department provides to the community are still being continued at this time. Many of our staff our teleworking as per the Governor’s orders to reduce staffing in government buildings. For more information on what services are still being continued or have reduced hours please visit our website at washcohealth.org or call us at 240-313-3200.
WASHINGTON COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS
April 7, 2020 Board of Education Meeting
The Washington County Board of Education will hold a teleconference business meeting on April 7, 2020, beginning at 6:00 p.m.
Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, Washington County Board of Education (WCBOE) members and presenters will participate via conference call. Agenda items have been condensed to include only those items that require WCBOE action at this time. The public comment portion of the meeting will not take place; however, the WCBOE encourages the public to submit their comments in writing to [email protected] and this information will be distributed to Board members. The business meeting will be recorded and the public may access the public meeting on Channel 99, Facebook www.facebook.com/wcpsmd, and on the WCPS website at http://wcpsmd.com/school-board/board-meetings.
**Please note that there will be no public access to the Washington County Public Schools Center for Education Services, 10435 Downsville Pike, Hagerstown, MD.
Changes to Meal Site Operations
Effective today, Monday, April 6, meals will be served on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. Children will receive two meals on Mondays, one meal on Wednesdays, and two meals on Thursdays. One “meal” consists of lunch, a snack, and breakfast for the following day. All food is served in a grab-n-go style to promote social distancing. Meals are provided to any child 18 or younger who is present at the site.
The change in operating schedule provides greater support of Governor Hogan’s order for Marylanders to stay at home while continuing to provide the same level of support for children to access food, which has been a priority of WCPS through the school closure period.
To view a full listing of all 19 meal sites, click here.
WASHINGTON COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
The information below and links to disaster relief resources, webinars and more can be found on the Chamber website, www.hagerstown.org and the Chamber’s special breakout page www.hagerstown.org/strongtogether
UPCOMING WEBINARS
Tuesday, April 7, 2:00-3:30pm
Navigating the Coronavirus Business Resources (Hosted by the Washington County Chamber of Commerce)
REGISTER HERE
Your Chamber has put together this free webinar featuring guest speakers and a chance to ask the questions that matter most to you right now.
  • Andrew Sargent, Senior Business Development Representative, Western Region
  • Maryland Department of Commerce
  • Topic: Maryland State Business Resources
  • Fiona W. Ong, Attorney, Shawe Rosenthal, LLP
  • Topic: the Families First Coronavirus Response Act
  • Mark Harrell, President & CEO, CNB Bank, Inc.
  • Topic: The Banking Industry and Lender Roles in Coronavirus Relief
  • Debora Gilbert, Executive Director, Western MD Consortium
  • Topic: Unemployment Insurance Program
  • Nick Vaugh, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Topic: Economic Injury Disaster Loan program
  • Paul Frey, President & CEO, Washington County Chamber of Commerce
Now that we’re weeks into this “new normal”, there are more and more resources to navigate your way through. You don’t have to do it alone. We’ve assembled this valuable panel to provide you with the best ways to charter towards relief during the COVID-19 pandemic.
UPDATES to SBA’s EIDL and CARES (PPP) COVID 19 Loans
Tuesday, April 7, 3:00-4:00 p.m. (Hosted by SBDC)
The SBDC will be doing a webinar to discuss SBA’s Disaster Economic Injury Disaster Loan, and current data on the CARES (PPP) Act, just passed. Please RSVP to this event and make sure that we have a valid email with your registration. Space is limited so they are requiring an RSVP- if they get an overwhelming response, they can schedule another webinar and also send out the recorded webinar. After registering you will receive the Zoom Meeting link to click on or dial in for the webinar. If you have specific questions that you would like addressed, please contact John Hickman
Attention Employers:
Employer Information on Federal Business Relief Programs
For a good overview of various federal loan, grant, and other relief programs, businesses can access and download their deck of slides used during a recent webinar from last week. The webinar was very informative, and the slide deck has a chart that nicely summarizes and compares the various programs offered:
The Washington County Chamber of Commerce is gathering stories, data, and recommendations from our member businesses to see how they are being impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic. We are in regular contact with our local, state, and federal officials and are sharing the impact of the steps taken to fight the spread of COVID-19 on area businesses, as well as advising them on programs and support services they should implement to assist businesses during these difficult economic times.
There are many support programs being considered at all levels of government and other organizations. Your feedback is critical to ensure that limited resources are being strategically provided to the areas businesses and their employees need most.
Complete this simple form and we’ll be sure to help share the information!https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeZfwkl1NaK_wDZClUzSyNaImjvSDqiuyUONqt7LUQ3SVPV2g/viewform?usp=sf_link
Application Process for Payroll Protection Program Loans (PPP) Now Open
The Paycheck Protection Program provides small businesses with funds to pay up to 8 weeks of payroll costs including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. The application process for eligible businesses and nonprofits interested in the PPP Program started Friday, April 3rd, and is expected to start for independent contractors and those who are self-employed on April 10th. You must apply for these loans through a participating bank.
Please note, that the specifics and guiding documents behind the PPP program are a fluid issue and some things that are still being worked out. The banks just received the main guiding documents late Thursday evening and had more adjustments came Friday morning. Many banks will need time to sort through the information and educate their staff, so please be patient as these application processes are rolled out and refined.
The Department of the Treasury is advising small businesses “to apply as quickly as you can because there is a funding cap to the program” and the expectation for a significant volume of applications. It is also recommended that businesses and nonprofits first contact their bank to see if they are SBA certified, let them know their desire to apply, and learn about their bank’s internal process in handling customers for these loans. Due to expected volume, some banks are addressing their current customers prior to taking on any new ones. A list of participating lenders as well as additional information may be found at www.sba.gov.
In addition, businesses should consider contacting their accountant for assistance with gathering the necessary information and paperwork, as well as advice on whether they are applying for the best SBA programs given their specific circumstances.
Finally, due to the number of visitors there could be breakdowns when accessing some pages on the SBA website or filling out online applications. Please be patient with your banks and SBA as they work to handle a volume of SBA business over ten times more than a normal year.
For more details:
Additional Information
The Governor released a 2 new Executive Orders over the weekend:
WASHINGTON COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office has established plans to respond to COVID-19 at the Washington County Detention Center and Central Booking. The Washington County Detention Center has not had a positive case of COVID-19 to date, but preparation is critically important. These plans include education of and continuous communication with staff and the inmate population on COVID-19, including ways to stop the spread of disease, the establishment of additional cleaning schedules, and modifications to processes to increase the possibility for social distancing within the WCDC facility.
In order to minimize the spread of COVID-19, the department has implemented the following procedures:
  • Outside programs and visitation has been suspended (03/16/20).
  •  Inmates receive two free phone calls per week.
  • Limited movement of inmates to essential medical and mental health services.
  • Dedicated quarantine housing has been established; one housing unit is being utilized to quarantine all new arrivals for the first 14 days prior to being placed into the general population. Regular medical checks are conducted.
  • Food service inmates have been separated into two units by assigned shifts. The inmates are kept away from the general population and provide masks for wear while conducting food preparations.
  • WCDC has worked with Judges, the State’s Attorney Office and the Office of Public Defender to reduce the inmate population by 58 inmates since this State of Emergency began.
  • WCDC has collaborated with the Secretary of Public Safety and fellow Wardens/Directors to eliminate movement of inmates from one correctional facility to another.
In addition, the Washington County Detention Center has established cleaning schedules with increased frequency for all high traffic areas. WCDC has also instituted a temperature check protocol for new detainees who enter the facility. Detainees with a temperature of 100 degrees or more are placed into immediate isolation.
Employees are reminded to wash hands frequently; any employee with fever or other symptoms must stay home and not enter the facility.
WCDC staff is provided with personal protective equipment for duties requiring contact with inmates who may have been exposed to or have symptoms of COVID-19. To date, WCDC has no confirmed positive cases of COVID-19.
The health and well-being of our employees and those in our custody are our highest priority; the WCDC has conferred with the National Commission on Correctional Health Care, PrimeCare Medical Inc. officials and the NIC on how to best manage this pandemic inside our facility.
COMMUNITY RESOURCES & INFORMATION
Hearty Pet Retail Store
Hearty Pet Retail Store at 19918 Jefferson Blvd. in Hagerstown is asking customers to include a small gift card with their purchase, that will be used to thank a first responder or medical worker visiting their store. They’re also establishing their retail location as a drop off point for essential PPE items for area workers (subject to EOC approval to promote this second part, of course).
United Way of Washington County & Community Foundation of Washington County COVID-19 Partnership
In response to the impact of COVID-19, United Way of Washington County, Maryland & the Community Foundation of Washington County have established a COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund to support Washington County community-based organizations. In the weeks and months ahead, the COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund will provide additional capacity to community-based organizations in Washington County. This fund will deliver economic assistance and access to vital food and basic need supplies to the many children, families and households who already have and will be impacted by the temporary loss of income. The Washington County COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund may also be deployed to strengthen our community’s ability to prepare for and respond to a variety of health and other emergencies, as well as to support programs and initiatives that are focused on fighting for the health, education, basic needs and financial stability of our community.
Donations made to the COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund will support efforts to provide relief to people impacted by Coronavirus and its effect on our community.
You can also text CovidWashCo to 313131.
For additional information, please contact the Public Relations and Marketing Department at 240-313-2380 or [email protected].
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