WFMY News 2 is providing daily coronavirus updates with the latest information from emergency leaders, the state's task force, health departments, universities, school districts and a lot more.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 8, 2020
8:38 p.m. - A second person has died from COVID-19 in Rockingham County.
The first death was reported on April 1 in the county.
8:00 p.m. - A Davidson County paramedic has tested positive for COVID-19.
The individual has self-isolated, and will not return to duty until medically cleared. Emergency Services is working closely with the Health Department on this case. All close contacts at risk of exposure to COVID-19, including those receiving services from EMS have been contacted by members of the health department team. All affected surfaces have been appropriately cleaned and disinfected in accordance with CDC recommendations. As an added precaution, Emergency Services has implemented a protocol of temperature checks for all employees at the beginning of each shift.
7:30 p.m. - A Greensboro police officer has tested positive for COVID-19.
The Officer is in quarantine at this time and is doing well. The Greensboro Police Department is taking precautions to help reduce the risk of further spreading the virus to other employees and is decontaminating all spaces and equipment the employee may have come in contact with.
6:30 p.m. - Gov. Roy Cooper signs Executive Order No. 130 to expands the pool of health care workers and orders essential childcare services for workers responding to the crisis.
“In a time of emergency we need to make it easier for hospitals to free up bed space and hire more medical staff and this order does that,” Governor Cooper said.
The Order temporarily puts measures in place for licensing, Certificates of Need, and other regulations.
“We have never faced emergency demand for health care like we do today, and we must act now,” added Governor Cooper. “If we do this work well, along with social distancing, our hospitals can handle the hardships of this pandemic.”
EXPANDING SERVICES, BEDS STATEWIDE
The Order offers flexibility using and moving resources, such as beds, dialysis stations, CT and MRI scanners. It means hospitals can more quickly increase the number of beds to take critically ill patients and allow an ambulatory surgical facility to operate as a temporary hospital.
Though the Order loosens regulations, expanding beds and services will still require the NCDHHS, Division of Health Service Regulation to approve written requests that explain how increase in capacity, relocation or addition of resources, equipment acquisition, or change in facility operation addresses public health needs and related safety measures.
EMERGENCY CHILD CARE SERVICES
The Order allows childcare facilities to remain open or to reopen to care for children of essential business workers, children who are receiving child welfare services, or children who are homeless or living in unstable or unsafe living arrangements.
The Order requires the facilities to apply for approval and to follow the NCDHHS Emergency Facility Guidelines, but also provides flexibility in activities and continuing education requirements for caregivers.
EXPANDING POOL OF HEALTH CARE WORKERS AND ACCESS TO TELEHEALTH
The Order will allow out of state-licensed workers to practice in North Carolina during the emergency, and may allow retired health care professionals, students training for health care jobs and unlicensed, skilled volunteers to provide care.
Expanded telehealth services and flexibility for in-home care are also included in the Order.
The Council of State concurred with the Order today. Read the full Order.
Read a summary of the Order.
4:20 p.m. - Winston-Salem firefighters wearing N-95 masks.
4:15 p.m. - Guilford College will furlough 133 staff members.
3:55 p.m. - The state has more than 3,400 coronavirus cases and has reported 58 deaths.
Statewide, 42,987 tests have been completed and 386 people are hospitalized.
North Carolina has 240 National Guard airmen and soldiers working a variety of missions, including planning, warehousing, and shipping, cyber-security, and engineering. The costs of activating National Guard resources to support our state’s COVID-19 response will be covered by the federal government, officials announced.
North Carolina received a shipment of 200,000 N-95 masks Wednesday. The limited supply of personal protective equipment is being sent in small, short-term quantities for the most urgent needs around the state, officials said.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper says he is likely to issue a statewide order Thursday limiting the number of people, including both staffers and shoppers, in a store at the same time.
3:25 p.m. - Governor Cooper announces 60 confirmed coronavirus cases at a nursing facility in Orange County, N.C.
3:00 p.m. - Governor Roy Cooper and the state's coronavirus task force will hold a press briefing at 3 p.m. You can watch it live in this story.
1:20 p.m. - Beginning today, Harris Teeter grocery stores will limit the number of customers to 50 percent of the building code capacity to further support social distancing. Store associates will monitor the number of customers to ensure the limit is maintained, Harris Teeter officials said in an emailed release.
Harris Teeter has also installed plexiglass protective shields at check stands, Customer Service and Pharmacy counters, floor decals at checkout and signage throughout the store to promote social distancing.
11:40 a.m. - NCDHHS is reporting 3,426 coronavirus cases across the state and 53 deaths. Eight people have died in Guilford County - the most out of any other North Carolina county.
8:15 a.m. - FEMA approved funding for North Carolina to turn 16,500 spaces like hotel rooms, motel rooms, and college dorms into alternative housing for people with unstable living conditions. The money will help house people who may be most at risk of getting or spreading COVID-19.
News to note on Wednesday:
- The City of Burlington made some changes to its state of emergency order that will go into effect tonight at 7. The city says large retailers that are essential must limit the number of customers that can come into their stores to practice better social distancing.
- A Guilford County woman tested positive for coronavirus, and she just became a new mother. Now, she's waiting on her baby's coronavirus test results.
- Check out how the Triad is making masks in the fight against coronavirus, including a Davidson County teen who is dedicating her sewing skills to help first responders.
FACTS NOT FEAR
Remember facts, not fear when talking about the coronavirus. You should take the same measures recommended by health leaders to prevent the spread of the flu and other viruses. That means washing your hands, avoiding touching your face, and covering coughs and sneezes.
WHERE YOU GET INFORMATION ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS IS IMPORTANT
It is important to make sure the information you are getting about the coronavirus is coming directly from reliable sources like the CDC and NCDHHS. Be careful not to spread misinformation about coronavirus on social media.
NC CORONAVIRUS HOTLINE
The state also has a special hotline set up where you can call 866-462-3821 for more information on the coronavirus. You can also submit questions online at ncpoisoncontrol.org or select chat to talk with someone about the virus.
You can also text keyword VIRUS to WFMY News 2 at 336-379-5775 to find out more information.
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