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Calaveras Sets Up Coronavirus Emergency Operations Center

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San Andreas, CA – An emergency center has been activated to address COVID-19 related issues in Calaveras County.

According to Sheriff’s spokesperson Sgt. Greg Stark, the County Office of Emergency Services has activated an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to support Calaveras Public Health’s response to the spread and impact of the novel coronavirus.

The EOC is primarily focusing on coordinating a multi-agency response to the evolving challenges relating to the COVID-19 outbreak. Among the state and local agencies involved in this effort are ambulance services, law enforcement and fire departments, Mark Twain Medical Center, and the American Red Cross.

Currently, the EOC reports no significant community exposure to COVID-19. However, testing for the virus has been expanded for county residents. Those who think they may have been exposed to or have symptoms of COVID-19 illness should immediately call their healthcare provider for evaluation. Symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

The EOC is reiterating the latest information from state public health officials as to public gatherings. To protect public health and slow the rate of transmission of COVID-19, gatherings, as described below, should be postponed or canceled for at least the remainder of March.

• Large gatherings that include 250 people or more should be postponed or canceled.
o This includes gatherings such as concerts, conferences, and professional, college, and school sporting events.

• Smaller gatherings held in venues that do not allow social distancing of six feet per person should be postponed or canceled.
o This includes gatherings in crowded auditoriums, rooms or other venues.

• Gatherings of individuals who are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19 should be limited to no more than 10 people.
o This includes gatherings such as those at retirement facilities, assisted living facilities, developmental homes, and support groups for people with health conditions.

• A “gathering” is any event or convening that brings together people in a single room or single space at the same time, such as an auditorium, stadium, arena, large conference room, meeting hall, cafeteria, or any other indoor or outdoor space.

Per the California Department of Public Health, this applies to all non-essential professional, social, and community gatherings regardless of their sponsor.

Gatherings that do not meet the above criteria should only be conducted if the activity is essential and could not be postponed or achieved without a gathering; meaning that some other means of communication could not be used to conduct the essential function. Please see the guidance for gatherings for additional information.

Public Health officials strongly recommend folks observe the following measures to protect themselves and others from COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses:
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Stay home from work or school and limit contact with others if you are sick.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
• Clean surfaces that are touched often, like toys and doorknobs.

Older adults and people with serious medical conditions – like heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes – are urged to take extra steps to protect themselves from COVID-19. These high-risk groups should:
• Stay at home and avoid crowds as much as possible.
• Get food brought to your house by friends, family, or neighbors.
• Have a plan if you get sick.
• Stay in touch with family, friends, and neighbors.
• Have a back-up person if your caregiver gets sick.