No cases of the Coronavirus reported at Jackson Hospital

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    The Times was flooded with calls, texts, and messages about the report of a positive case of the Coronavirus at Jackson Hospital on Tuesday. A quick touch base with Amy Milton at Jackson Hospital dismissed that, “Jackson Hospital does NOT have any cases of the Coronavirus. However, we are working closely with the Jackson County Department of Health and the State of Florida and are prepared should anyone present with symptoms of the Coronavirus. We urge anyone who has questions about the virus to visit www.cdc.gov or www.floridahealth.gov .”
    Superintendent of Jackson County Schools Larry Moore is equally concerned and is being pro-active with the threat of the coronavirus with so many children that could be affected. Moore released the following on Monday as a guide for parents with these instructions to his administrators, “As we make plans to be the best prepared for the Coronavirus, I am asking that you provide containers of hand sanitizer for each classroom, office area, and cafeteria, etcetera. The hand sanitizer should contain a minimum of 60% alcohol. We met this morning with Mrs. Martin, Director, Jackson County Health Department, and she gave us the attached information sheet. A representative from the Jackson County Health Department is planning to attend our Principals’ meeting on Wednesday.”
    The recommendations continue to be the same guidelines for preventing the spread of germs:
    If you are sick, stay home.
    Wash hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.
    Carry and use alcohol-based hand sanitizer (minimum of 60% alcohol).
    Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
    Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
    Sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.
    Monitor your symptoms.
    Call ahead before visiting your doctor.
    Moore said attendance at school had shown little affect with the threat of the Coronavirus until March when he saw a slight decline. On 9/4/2019, PK-12 had a 93.31% school attendance (that was the percentage present with only 6.39% absent). On 2/4/2020, there was a 92.16% present with a 7.84% absenteeism. On March 02, there were 90.74% present with a 9.24% absenteeism. Monday, there were 10 schools at 90% or higher with five schools in the 80%. The lowest reporting attendance was 85.99%. The average attendance from the first day of school for the 2019-20 school year and Tuesday was 91.965%.
    In a press release by Governor Ron DeSantis, it said, “FDOH has been closely monitoring COVID-19 since November 2019, and emphasizes that there is low health risk in the United States. The FDOH Incident Management Team has been working in lockstep with the CDC on daily updates, and hundreds of dedicated FDOH professionals are positioned to respond if the need arises in each county. In addition, county health departments are fully integrated with FDOH and CDC, and are well equipped to respond if necessary.
    This virus is spread mostly through contact from an infected individual and transmitted by coughing and sneezing. Common symptoms include fever, coughing, shortness of breath, and lower and upper respiratory issues. It is more likely to occur in the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. If there is an individual with a suspected case of COVID-19, there are protocols in place with ALL Florida health care providers and practitioners: Immediately contact your health care practitioner or any local hospital. ANY local hospital is equipped to handle COVID-19. Individuals will be evaluated at any local hospital, and tests will be sent to the CDC for evaluation. The goal is containment to stop any transmission.”
    They recommend viewing the FDOH website and the ‘helpful flyer’ for information about handwashing and the use of an alcohol based sanitizer.

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