County Mayor’s Notes – April 29th, 2020

Governor Lee’s Plan to Reopen
Today, Governor Lee announced plans to reopen close-contact businesses such as salons, barbershops, massage therapists, and nail technicians.  Those businesses will be allowed to open next Wednesday, May 6th.  Guidance for close-contact businesses should be available by the end of the week.

The prohibition on non-emergency dental services is being extended to Wednesday, May 6, to allow more time for the Tennessee Dental Association, the Tennessee Dental Hygienist Association, and the Tennessee Board of Dentistry to continue work on guidance for safe reopening and practice.  The dental association has been notified, as has the dental hygienist association.

As businesses begin the process of reopening, please remember that social distancing works and to continue the practice.  Wash your hands frequently, stay at home if you are sick, and wear a cloth face mask when appropriate.

COVID-19 Update
31 active cases (down 1)
74 tested positive (up 4)
43 recovered (up 5)
1 death officially reported
1,505 negative tests
1,579 total tested

Contact tracing is completed by the Tennessee Department of Health (TDH).  Once a patient is contacted about a positive test result by the health department or their local primary care physician, they are immediately contacted by the TDH contact tracing team who investigates their movements and persons that they may have come in close contact with.  TDH considers close contact to be within six feet for more than 10 minutes.  TDH employees will identify themselves when calling. Contact tracing is done out of the regional office. If you are contacted and have questions or concerns about authenticity, etc., feel free to call 931-646-7586.

These numbers are intended to be a brief summary of the information provided by the Tennessee Department of Health.  More detailed information can be found here:

County Government Offices
I met with the county-wide elected officials this morning to discuss reopening county offices to the public.  Everyone agreed that county government offices will remain closed to the public until May 11, 2020.  During that time, business can still be conducted as it is now, via phone, mail, email and online, while precautions are taken such as plexiglass installation for customer/employee safety.  On May 11, access will be by appointment only.  This includes the County Clerk, Circuit Court Clerk, Property Assessor, Register of Deeds, Trustee, Election Commission, Clerk and Master, and the Mayor’s Office.  Please contact the office you need to conduct business with for more detailed instructions.  Contact information can be found on the county website here.

Antibody Testing (repeat from yesterday as there was a lot of information)
I’ve had several questions lately about antibody testing.  As Gov. Lee focuses on expanding COVID-19 testing, the Unified Command Group is working to provide information to help the Tennesseans understand how serology, or antibody, can, and cannot, inform the State’s re-opening strategy.

According to the Governor’s Office, although the research is still ongoing, this will give a first estimate of the number of Tennesseans with COVID-19 antibodies, which will assist in developing a strategy for more widespread antibody test of the general population. The Tennessee Department of Health will be distributing a technical brief to health care providers in Tennessee with details about antibody testing and its limitations. TDH is also working on a plan to test of up 10,000 health care workers in Tennessee’s public teaching hospitals.

More information including answers to several questions can be found here.

Cloth Masks and Hand Sanitizer
The Cumberland County EMA is compiling a list of those selling cloth masks and hand sanitizer.  If you are in need of either, please check out the link below.  If you want to be placed on the list, message the EMA Director on Facebook.

Health Department Testing
Your primary care physician and the local Health Department are capable of testing for COVID-19 free of charge.  The local Health Department (1503 South Main Street) is conducting drive through testing Monday through Friday from 9 AM to 3 PM.  As of this writing, patients generally receive results within 2-3 days by phone.  For more information call 931-484-6196. 

Thank you for being part of the solution and thank you for the opportunity to serve as your County Mayor.  If you are interested in hearing my thoughts and views on news, events, and activities in Cumberland County, please subscribe to my newsletter, and follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Thank you,

Allen Foster
Cumberland County Mayor

Published by allenfoster

Cumberland County Mayor

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