Category: Health

April 6th, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

CarolinaEast Medical Center has six confirmed positive COVID-19 test results as of Monday, April 6, 2020.

It is not clear if any or all are included in the 18 cases reported by the Craven County Health Department.

“This has been a moving target from the very start,” said Ray Leggett, president and CEO of CarolinaEast Health System. “We receive expert guidance at the federal and state levels, and I have complete faith in our team at CarolinaEast to make these tough decisions and changes as they arise, sometimes several times daily.”

CarolinaEast staff is taking all appropriate measures to care for the COVID-19 patients, including isolation, and will further update as the situation evolves, the hospital announced in a statement released on Tuesday.

CarolinaEast officials have been and will continue to work closely with the North Carolina State Division of Public Health (NC DHHS), local health departments, and emergency management agencies to coordinate preparation and response efforts to COVID-19 in accordance with guidelines from The Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Some of the precautions CarolinaEast has already implemented are as follows:

  • No visitors allowed at any CarolinaEast facility, with few exceptions.
  • All elective surgeries and procedures have been postponed.
  • The cafeteria at the Medical Center is closed to the public and the dine-in seating area is closed to everyone.
  • All visitors entering a CarolinaEast facility are screened for respiratory signs and symptoms, as well as travel history and exposure to any known COVID-19 positive persons.
  • A screening tent outside of the Emergency Department entrance has allowed staff to screen for possible persons of interest of COVID-19 and direct them to a separate area to be fully triaged by staff in appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

New precautions being implemented Monday, April 6, 2020:

  • All staff members will be screened for respiratory signs and symptoms upon entry, as well as travel history and exposure to any known COVID-19 positive persons.
  • CarolinaEast Medical Center is reducing its points of entry to limit access to certain areas and to allow for efficient health screenings.
  • All clinical staff members have been required to wear a mask when in contact with patients; moving forward, all staff, clinical and non-clinical, will be required to wear masks when in public areas of CarolinaEast facilities.

CarolinaEast has many interdisciplinary teams meeting daily, including an incident command structure to ensure all bases of operations are covered. Other preparedness efforts include identifying alternate care areas for an overflow of patients if the need should arise, as well as converting many current care areas to negative pressure isolation rooms recommended for COVID-19 patients.

CarolinaEast has been tightly monitoring and conserving PPE and appreciates the many donations from organizations and community members, and will continue to accept those as we prepare for more potential COVID-19 patients.

CarolinaEast Physicians (CEP) continues to see patients in their offices, but encourages appropriate patients to take advantage of telehealth visits.

Virtual video and phone communication are encouraged for patients and families and the hospital is making technology for virtual communication available for patients as needed to stay in touch with loved ones.

“I am more proud of our CarolinaEast team now than ever before,” said Leggett. “As I often say, no one is better than Team CarolinaEast when the going gets tough.”

CarolinaEast reminds that the public is strongly encouraged to comply with the Stay At Home Executive Order of North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper. Additional preventive measures provided by the CDC can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/

Posted in CarolinaEast, Craven County, Health

April 6th, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

Craven County announced three new COVID-19 cases on Monday morning, bringing the number of cases in Craven County to 18 confirmed cases on April 6, 2020.  

Of the 18 cases, seven have been related to out-of-state travel, nine are from community transmission, and two are a direct contact with a previously confirmed positive. Five of the active COVID-19 cases are hospitalized. 

Out of the 18 confirmed positive cases, seven have recovered and are out of isolation. The recovered cases completed the necessary isolation requirement and have been free of COVID-19 symptoms for at least 72 hours. 

 

Total Confirmed Cases Craven County

Active Cases

Craven County

Recovered Cases

Craven County

NC Cases

NC Deaths

18

11

7

2,870

33

 

The Craven County Health Department works with state, commercial, and private labs to track the number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Craven County. Health care providers determine which lab they send their COVID-19 tests to. There are multiple hospital and commercial labs that conduct COVID-19 tests. These labs manage their own supplies and operate independently from the Department of Health and Human Services and the North Carolina State Laboratory of Public Health.

Craven County will continue to track and post the number of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases; however, it is important to recognize there are many people with COVID-19 who will not be included in daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases, including:

  • People who had minimal or no symptoms and were not tested.
  • People who had symptoms but did not seek medical care.
  • People who sought medical care but were not tested.
  • People with COVID-19 in whom the virus was not detected by testing.

The number of laboratory-confirmed cases will increasingly provide a limited picture of the spread of infections in Craven County as COVID-19 becomes more widespread and the number of infected people who are not included in the daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases increases. 

Posted in Craven County, Health

April 5th, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

Craven County has 15 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of noon Saturday, April 5, 2020. Six were contracted during out of state travel, seven were contracted from unknown sources within the community, and two are a direct contact with a previously confirmed positive case.

Of the 15 confirmed positive cases, five have recovered and are out of isolation. The recovered cases completed the necessary isolation requirement and have been free of COVID-19 symptoms for at least 72 hours.

When using the NCDHHS COVID-19 site to stay up to date, keep in mind that county case numbers may change once residency is verified. Therefore, the total number on the county map may differ from the number of NC Cases.

Total Confirmed Cases Craven County

Active Cases

Craven County

Recovered Cases

Craven County

NC Cases

NC Deaths

15

10

5

2,585

31

 

The Craven County Health Department works with state, commercial, and private labs to track the number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Craven County. Health care providers determine which lab they send their COVID-19 tests to. There are multiple hospital and commercial labs that conduct COVID-19 tests. These labs manage their own supplies and operate independently from the Department of Health and Human Services and the North Carolina State Laboratory of Public Health.

Craven County will continue to track and post the number of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases; however, it is important to recognize there are many people with COVID-19 who will not be included in daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases, including:

  • People who had minimal or no symptoms and were not tested.
  • People who had symptoms but did not seek medical care.
  • People who sought medical care but were not tested.
  • People with COVID-19 in whom the virus was not detected by testing.

The number of laboratory-confirmed cases will increasingly provide a limited picture of the spread of infections in Craven County as COVID-19 becomes more widespread and the number of infected people who are not included in the daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases increases.   

Posted in Craven County, Health

April 5th, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

Target stores is joining Walmart in restricting the number of customers allowed inside their stores at any one time, in an effort to restrict the spread of COVID-19 as we enter a week the U.S. Surgeon General says will be like a “Peal Harbor” and “9/11” moment in U.S. history.

In a statement Target said:

As Target (NYSE: TGT) stores across the country continue helping millions of guests shop for the food, medicine and other essentials they need, the retailer today announced new safety measures to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus. Effective April 4, Target will actively monitor and, when needed, meter guest traffic in its nearly 1,900 stores nationwide to promote social distancing.

Additionally, Target will supply its more than 350,000 team members in stores and distribution centers with face masks and gloves to wear at work, while continuing to encourage healthy hygiene habits as provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These updates are on top of action the company has taken in recent weeks with the health and safety of its guests and team members in mind, such as rigorous cleaning routines at its stores and distribution centers; social distancing measures like floor signage to encourage guests and team members to remain six feet apart; Plexiglass partitions at all registers; and contactless order pickup and home delivery.

“We’re incredibly proud of the commitment our more than 350,000 frontline team members have demonstrated to ensure millions of guests can count on Target, and we’ll continue to focus our efforts on supporting them,” said John Mulligan, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Target. “The measures we’re announcing today are aimed at ensuring we are creating a safe environment for the guests who continue to turn to Target, while also providing our team with additional resources as they fulfill an essential service in communities across the country.”

Store Traffic Monitoring and Metering

To promote social distancing with its team and guests, Target will monitor store traffic, and meter, or limit, the number of guests inside stores, when needed. Occupancy limits will vary by location and be determined by the store’s specific square footage to enhance the average space per person and reduce the possibility of congestion. If metering is required, a Target team member will provide a designated waiting area outside with social distancing markers.

Face masks and gloves for all frontline Target team members

Target will provide all team members in stores and distribution centers with high-quality, disposable face masks and gloves to wear at the beginning of every shift and strongly encourage that they be worn while working. Shoppers with Shipt, the same-day delivery service owned by Target, also will be able to obtain masks and gloves at stores across the country. All stores and distribution centers will receive face masks and gloves within the next two weeks.

Donations to the medical community

On top of Target’s previous donations of anti-viral and N95 respirator masks to first responders and healthcare professionals at more than 50 organizations across the country, the retailer also announced that it will donate an additional 2 million KN95 respirator masks to the medical community. It will continue to explore ways to secure additional inventory for those in critical need.

Encouraging healthy hygiene habits

Target is continuing to provide guidance to encourage its team members to practice healthy hygiene habits, as recommended by the CDC, including asking them to stay at home if they are sick. To date, Target has implemented enhanced benefits to support its team members, including:

  • Investing more than $300 million, including higher hourly wages for frontline team members through at least May 2, which amounts to $240-$480 per team member. Also, for the first time, Target’s paying out bonuses to the 20,000 team leads who manage individual departments in stores.

  • Extending benefits to team members, including waiving Target’s absenteeism policy, offering quarantine pay for 14 days and confirmed illness pay at 100% for 14 days, and making backup care available to all team members.

  • Offering the opportunity to team members who are 65 or older, considered among the most vulnerable by the CDC, or are pregnant to take a fully-paid leave for up to 30 days.

  • Offering dedicated shopping hours so front-line team members can purchase the essentials they and their families need.

Posted in Business, Health

April 5th, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

State of North Carolina
EXECUTIVE ORDERS

EXECUTIVE ORDER 116: Declaration of a State of Emergency to Coordinate Response & Protective Actions to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19

EXECUTIVE ORDER 117: Prohibiting Mass Gatherings & Directing the Statewide Closure of K-12 Public Schools to Limit the Spread of COVID-19

EXECUTIVE ORDER 118: Limiting Operations of Restaurants & Bars & Broadening Unemployment Insurance Benefits in Response to COVID-19
(See FAQs sheet for additional guidance on EO118)

EXECUTIVE ORDER 119: Facilitating Critical Motor Vehicle Operations & Delegating Authority to the Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services to Waive Regulations in Order to Expand Access to Child Care & Support Local Health Departments

EXECUTIVE ORDER 120: Additional Limitations on Mass Gatherings, Restrictions on Venues & Long-Term Care Facilities, & Extension of School Closure Date (May 15)

EXECUTIVE ORDER 121:  Stay at Home Order & Specific Directions for North Carolina in Response to Increasing COVID-19 Cases
(FAQs sheet for understanding the stay at home order)

EXECUTIVE ORDER 124: Assisting North Carolinians by Prohibiting Utility Shut-Offs, Late Fees, and Reconnection Fees; Providing Guidance About Restrictions on Evictions; and Encouraging Telecommunications Providers, Banks, and Mortgage Servicers to Provide Assistance and Flexibility to Their Customers

Posted in Health, State news

April 4th, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

Craven County has 14 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of noon Saturday, April 4, 2020. One new case was confirmed on Saturday.

Out of the 14 confirmed positive cases, six have been related to out-of-state travel, six are from community transmission, and two are a direct contact with a previously confirmed positive.

Five have recovered and are out of isolation. The recovered cases completed the necessary isolation requirement and have been free of COVID-19 symptoms for at least 72 hours. There have been no COVID-19-related deaths in Craven County.

Total Confirmed Cases Craven County

Active Cases

Craven County

Recovered Cases

Craven County

NC Cases

NC Deaths

14

9

5

2,402

24

The Craven County Health Department works with state, commercial, and private labs to track the number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Craven County. Health care providers determine which lab they send their COVID-19 tests to. There are multiple hospital and commercial labs that conduct COVID-19 tests. These labs manage their own supplies and operate independently from the Department of Health and Human Services and the North Carolina State Laboratory of Public Health.

Craven County will continue to track and post the number of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases; however, it is important to recognize there are many people with COVID-19 who will not be included in daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases, including:

  • People who had minimal or no symptoms and were not tested.
  • People who had symptoms but did not seek medical care.
  • People who sought medical care but were not tested.
  • People with COVID-19 in whom the virus was not detected by testing.

The number of laboratory-confirmed cases will increasingly provide a limited picture of the spread of infections in Craven County as COVID-19 becomes more widespread and the number of infected people who are not included in the daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases increases.   

Posted in Craven County, Health

April 4th, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

Walmart is imposing shopping restrictions and Hobby Lobby is closing its stores in response to growing concerns over the spread of COVID-19.

New Bern Post included the two chain stores in an article posted Friday morning about businesses that were not helping prevent the spread of the deadly, virulent virus.

Craven County’s COVID-19 case number more than doubled between Tuesday and Friday, according to Craven County Health Department tracking. Craven County had 13 cases as of Friday, four of whom have recovered. Two of the cases were contracted within Craven County from unknown sources, two were from direct contact with previously confirmed cases, and three were contracted from unknown sources.

Walmart Regulating Store Entry

Starting Saturday, Walmart will limit the number of customers who can be in a store at once. Stores will now allow no more than five customers for each 1,000 square feet at a given time, roughly 20 percent of a store’s capacity.

To manage this restriction, the associates at a store will mark a queue at a single-entry door (in most cases the Grocery entrance) and direct arriving customers there, where they will be admitted one-by-one and counted. Associates and signage will remind customers of the importance of social distancing while they’re waiting to enter a store – especially before it opens in the morning.

Once a store reaches its capacity, customers will be admitted inside on a “1-out-1-in” basis.

Shopping Inside the Store

Walmart will also institute one-way movement through our aisles next week in a number of its stores, using floor markers and direction from associates.

“We expect this to help more customers avoid coming into close contact with others as they shop.” Walmart said on its website. “We’ll continue to put signage inside our stores to remind customers of the need to maintain social distancing – especially in lines. And once customers check out, they will be directed to exit through a different door than they entered, which should help lessen the instances of people closely passing each other.

“We always want people to feel welcome at Walmart, and we know that in ordinary times a store is a gathering place for members of a community to connect and socialize. We look forward to the time when that is again the case; however, we now want to prioritize health and safety by encouraging customers to do their shopping at a distance from others, then head home.

“As the COVID-19 situation continues to develop, our leaders and operations teams will continue to listen to advice from medical experts, associates and customers, and consider how we can best serve people while helping slow the spread of the virus. The health and safety of our associates and customers is what matters the most.

Hobby Lobby temporarily closing all stores

Hobby Lobby will, after careful consideration, close the remainder of its stores, and furlough nearly all store employees and a large portion of corporate and distribution employees, effective Friday, April 3 at 8 p.m.  The stores will remain closed until further notice.

In a statement on its website, Hobby Lobby said, “In order to allow our furloughed employees to take full advantage of the Pandemic Unemployment Compensation and Recovery Rebates provided to eligible employees by the federal government, we are ending emergency leave pay and suspending use of Company provided paid time off benefits (PPTO and Vacation) in accordance with the requirements outlined in the CARES Act (subject to State law requirements).  However, we will maintain medical, dental, life, and long-term disability benefits for employees while furloughed through at least May 1, 2020, and will pay the cost of employee premiums for these benefits on behalf of employees while furloughed without pay.  We encourage furloughed employees to file their claims with their State’s unemployment commissions as soon as possible.  Upon return, employees will retain their original dates of hire and any accrued PPTO and Vacation.  Our sincere gratitude goes out to our dedicated employees at this difficult time, and we look forward to the day when we can welcome them back, once we are able to reopen.

“We know our customers relied on us to provide essential products, including materials to make personal protective equipment, such as face masks, educational supplies for the countless parents who are now educating their children from home, and the thousands of small arts and crafts businesses who rely on us for supplies to make their products.  Over the past several weeks, we implemented several best practices to provide a safer shopping environment, including the installation of physical barriers between customers and cashiers, enhanced cleaning, and the enforcement of social distancing measures.  We are prepared to reopen our stores in a responsible way when the current situation improves, and look forward to welcoming our valued customers back to our stores.  Until then, we pray for those affected by the virus, protection for the health care professionals caring for the sick, economic security for all impacted businesses and employees, and wisdom for our leaders.”

Posted in Business, Health

April 3rd, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

Craven County confirmed three new COVID-19 cases as of 1 p.m. on Friday, April 3, 2020, more than doubling the number of cases since March 31.

There are now 13 cases of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Craven County.

Of those cases, four have recovered, are doing well, and are out of isolation. The recovered cases completed the necessary isolation requirement and have been free of COVID-19 symptoms for at least 72 hours.  

Six of the 13 cases have been related to out-of-state travel, two are from community transmission, two are a direct contact with a previously confirmed positive cases, and were from unknown sources as of Friday.

 

Total Confirmed Cases Craven County

Active Cases

Craven County

Recovered Cases

Craven County

NC Cases

NC Deaths

13

9

4

2,093

19

 

When using the NCDHHS COVID-19 site to stay up to date, keep in mind that county case numbers may change once residency is verified. Therefore, the total number on the county map may differ from the number of NC Cases.

The Craven County Health Department works with state, commercial, and private labs to track the number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Craven County. Health care providers determine which lab they send their COVID-19 tests to. There are multiple hospital and commercial labs that conduct COVID-19 tests. These labs manage their own supplies and operate independently from the Department of Health and Human Services and the North Carolina State Laboratory of Public Health.

Craven County will continue to track and post the number of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases; however, it is important to recognize there are many people with COVID-19 who will not be included in daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases, including:

  • People who had minimal or no symptoms and were not tested.
  • People who had symptoms but did not seek medical care.
  • People who sought medical care but were not tested.
  • People with COVID-19 in whom the virus was not detected by testing.

The number of laboratory-confirmed cases will increasingly provide a limited picture of the spread of infections in Craven County as COVID-19 becomes more widespread and the number of infected people who are not included in the daily counts of laboratory-confirmed cases increases.

Posted in Craven County, Health

April 3rd, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

Craven County issued a Proclamation prohibiting short term rentals in an effort to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to be effective at noon on Sunday, April 5, 2020.  

This Proclamation will prohibit the rental of a hotel room, motel room, rental housing unit, condominium, timeshare, apartment, RV campsite, primitive campsite, or similar accommodation for a term of less than 45 consecutive days starting at 12:00 p.m. on April 5, 2020 until this Proclamation is rescinded.

Individuals fleeing areas significantly impacted by the pandemic are increasing the risk of infections to others which could accelerate the spread of the pandemic.  Craven County is currently experiencing an influx of individuals from other areas.

This Proclamation applies to all unincorporated areas of Craven County and within the jurisdictions of the Town of Trent Woods, the Town of Bridgeton, the Town of Dover and the Town of Cove City.  

This proclamation does not apply to short term rentals within the City of New Bern, the City of Havelock or the Town of River Bend.

As the COVID-19 pandemic impacts other parts of North Carolina and the United States, individuals are fleeing the most significantly impacted areas and are relocating to rural locations throughout the United States.  

Many of these individuals are lodging in facilities that may impede appropriate social distancing because of the nature of these facilities having common areas, lobbies, hallways, and shared sanitary facilities.

Exempted from this Proclamation are:

• Individuals performing essential businesses and operations as defined in the March 27, 2020 Executive Order No. 121 issued by North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper.

• Individuals who were residing in accommodations prohibited by this Proclamation as of March 1, 2020;

• Victims of domestic violence;

• Individuals who are transitioning from one permanent place of residence within Craven County to another permanent place of residence within Craven County, or who are unable to occupy their permanent place of residence in Craven County due to casualty loss, repairs, or other similar temporary situations impacting the habitability of a permanent place of residence located in Craven County;

• Employees of the State of North Carolina; and

• Employees of the United States.

Craven County Government COVID-19 updates will appear on the Craven County website at www.cravencountync.gov, on the Craven County Facebook page @cravencounty and the Craven County Twitter account @cravencountync.  

Residents are also encouraged to register to receive notifications via the Craven County website and to register to receive emergency notifications via text, email and phone calls through the CodeRed Emergency Notification System.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health website at https://ncdhhs.gov/coronavirus

Posted in Craven County, Health, New Bern

April 3rd, 2020 by newbernpostadmin

It seemed like business as usual at the New Bern Walmart Supercenter on Wednesday.

Moen reopened its New Bern factory on Thursday after an employee there tested positive for COVID-19, justifying the reopening by saying that the bathroom and kitchen faucet maker is an “essential contributor” in the fight against COVID-19.

Hobby Lobby is staying open because, according to widely circulated reports, the CEO’s wife prayed about it.

O’Reilly’s Auto Parts is staying open because people need to keep their cars running and smelling good.

Walmart is staying open because it sells groceries and medications — and kayaks, gardening supplies, clothing, electronics, car parts, books, magazines, etc., etc.

And, during a time when cash-strapped families are forced to stay at home and stretch the limits of their internet plans, Suddenlink is imposing overage fees.

The purpose of Gov. Roy Cooper’s stay-at-home order, and President Trump’s extended social distancing order, is to take a relatively short pause in life in order to slow the spread of the highly contagious, often deadly novel coronavirus.

Yet places like Walmart, where hundreds of people shop at any given time despite the state and federal orders, are just the kind of places where COVID-19 is likely to spread.

So too is a factory assemby line, where workers spend hours upon hours in close proximity, breathing and coughing and touching the same equipment and dining at the same break room.

Meanwhile, despite wide-spread examples of good will and personal heroism by everything from hospital orderlies, nurses, and doctors, to grocery clerks, to delivery people, as well as mortgage companies and lenders working with cash-strapped customers — there’s Suddenlink.

“Suddenlink Communications is profiting off of data overage charges while we’re forced to stay home,” a New Bern resident reported on Facebook. “This is disgusting. My wife and daughter have to go to school online right now. What do they expect us to do? I just spoke to one of their customer service representatives and she (tersely) refused to waive the fee. Other companies like AT&T have waived these fees. FCC commissioners have asked ISPs to waive these fees. Here they are, profiting from a pandemic. Disgusting.”

Many employees at O’Reilly’s Auto Parts are unhappy with the company’s decision to remain open.

Said one employee, “I also work the counter for oreillys. … “The idiots coming into the store and buying un-essential crap like paint, seat covers, stupid led lights, and all those type things need to get the F on… and because of those idiots, the storefront needs to be closed down to walkins, and only offer curbside service. that way were still open to the essential workers and first responders, not morons buying crap and coughing on me at the counter. The comment about the virus being on incoming freight is a very very good point i had not considered, and needs to be addressed as well, not impressed at all with how its being handled… hazard pay anyone? And as of 3/26/2020, some stores will be closing at 730 it seems… stay safe everyone, good luck.”

Then there are the excuses.

At Hobby Lobby, the CEO said he decided to stay open because his wife prayed about it and “In her quiet prayer time this past week, the Lord put on Barbara’s heart three profound words to remind us that He’s in control. Guide, Guard, and Groom. We serve a God who will Guide us through this storm, who will Guard us as we travel to places never seen before, and who, as a result of this experience, will Groom us to be better than we could have ever thought possible before now.”

Moen, in a statement, said “The federal and state governments consider Moen an essential contributor in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, and Moen takes seriously its role in manufacturing plumbing products that provide safe environments.”

Look, people, we can do it one of two ways.

We can stay at home for a few weeks and let COVID-19 wither away, or we don’t, and let it continue to spread, overwhelming hospital systems and killing people.

 

 

Posted in Business, Health

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