The World Health Organization officially declared coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic today, March. 11. In the U.S., there are now more than 1,000 cases of COVID-19 and 31 people have died.
Emory Healthcare has admitted its first patient who has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). Which hospital is treating the patient was not disclosed. A statement posted online reads: “We are committed to maintaining patient privacy in accordance with federal regulations. The coronavirus situation remains fluid and we are prepared to see more admissions and ambulatory visits moving forward. For patients who test presumptive positive, depending on their condition, they may or may not remain in the hospital. In some instances, patients may be sent home for home quarantine in coordination with Georgia Department of Public Health to await a confirmation from the CDC. If a test result is confirmed and the patient requires hospital care, Emory Healthcare is fully prepared and equipped to treat the patient. We are following all established screening protocols and have implemented infection control best practices throughout the health system.
A second Fulton County Schools employee has tested positive for COVID-19, according to a report on the system’s website. The second employee is also from Woodland Middle School in East Point where an infected teacher was identified on Monday. Woodland will remain closed until March 23 for additional cleaning, but the county’s other schools are still expected to open tomorrow, March 12.
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms’ annual “State of the City” address, originally scheduled for March 12, has been postponed indefinitely at the request of its “title sponsor,” the Coca-Cola Company, due to coronavirus concerns. No new date was announced after the last-minute postponement. A notice sent by Coca-Cola to “State of the City” guests and provided by company spokesperson Scott Leith cited the coronavirus as the reason for the postponement. “While the number of presumed cases of coronavirus in Atlanta is currently low, we believe acting with an abundance of caution is the right thing to do for all of us,” the statement said. The “State of the City” was scheduled to be held the morning of March 12 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta hotel in Downtown.
City of Atlanta residents with unpaid water bills will not have service shut off for the next 60 days under a March 11 order from Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms issued in response to coronavirus concerns. “The health and wellbeing of Atlanta residents is at the forefront of everything we do as a city,” said Bottoms in a press release. “Access to water is paramount in the prevention of COVID-19 or any infectious health threat and no one should be deprived of this fundamental resource because of an inability to pay.” The order does not specify the end date of the grace period, but in calendar days it would be May 10.