City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; New LTCF Funding and Guidelines; Race-Based Trauma Resources; Artist Relief Program
For Immediate Release: June 19, 2020
The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) remind everyone that you are safest at home except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care. If you must leave your home, you are required to wear a face covering when inside buildings. Please keep at least 6 feet of distance from others whenever possible. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19.
New Funding and Guidelines for Long-Term Care Facilities
Governor Northam has announced that $246 million from Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding will be used to support new guidelines and testing requirements for reopening Virginia’s long-term care facilities (LTCFs). This funding will support previously established guidelines for baseline, or point prevalence, surveys and weekly testing of staff and residents for facilities with outbreaks. The additional funding will also support nursing homes and assisted living facilities, particularly those that receive Medicaid payments, to address staffing shortages; increase infection control measures; and purchase personal protective equipment.
Since January, AHD has prioritized efforts to control the spread of COVID-19 across Alexandria’s LTCFs, as outlined in the Strategic Action Framework for Supporting Long-Term Care Facilities. AHD has worked proactively to address the needs of LTCFs by supporting point prevalence surveys at all facilities, providing personal protective equipment, and conducting ongoing, intensive infection control assessments and support for staff. People with loved ones in these facilities are encouraged to reach out directly to the facility to learn more about what they are doing to protect their residents. As part of the Governor's taskforce to support LTCF, families will now be able to see the number of COVID-19 cases in facilities.
Race-Based Trauma Resources and Support in Times of Civil Strife
Chronic stress can have negative side effects on everyone, particularly when it is compounded by multiple sources. Psycho-social factors, specifically including pervasive exposure to racism and discrimination, are a daily stressor for people of color, while also coping with the anxiety of the COVID-19 pandemic. Research shows this to be particularly true for African Americans. The City has developed a collection of resources for coping with racism and trauma. Access a continually growing list of resources for and information related to coping with racism and trauma on individual, interpersonal and family, community and national and global levels.
New Visual Artist Relief Program
The Virginia Artist Relief Fellowship Program has been created to assist artists impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Forty visual artists will each receive a $5,000 grant. To be eligible, applicants must live and work in Virginia; be 21 years of age or older; and derive a significant part of their income from their artwork, including sales and lectures. Applications must be received online by July 10, and recipients will be notified of grant awards on July 24. Complete eligibility requirements and the application can be found on the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts website.
12 New COVID-19 Cases and No Fatalities Added in Alexandria
The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 2,198, including 48 fatalities. Detailed data is available through the links at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. It is important to note that there is still community transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19 and everyone is safest at home. This is especially true for persons at higher risk for severe illness, including those over the age of 65 and those with underlying medical conditions. If you must go out, please remember to keep 6 feet of distance from others; wear a cloth face covering especially when inside public spaces; wash hands frequently; and remember to always carry tissues and hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol with you.
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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/116170.