City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Information about Vaccine Planning; COVID-19 Resources and Public Charge Rule
For Immediate Release: October 15, 2020
The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) remind everyone that you are safest at home. Older adults and persons with underlying medical conditions are at greater risk for severe disease and are advised to minimize potential exposures as much as possible. Please keep at least 6 feet of distance from others. To stop the spread of COVID-19, everyone ages 10 and older must wear a mask over their nose and mouth in indoor public places and when at least 6 feet of physical distance cannot be maintained between those of different households in outdoor public places. Learn more about the state order and City ordinance requiring masks, including exceptions. Use the Virginia Department of Health’s COVIDWISE app to be quickly and anonymously notified of likely exposure to the virus. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you.
Researchers are working to develop vaccines for the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is coordinating closely with health departments and partners to develop plans to deliver the vaccines to the public once they are available. The safety of a COVID-19 vaccine is the top priority. Several vaccines are being developed, and some may be available before others. The supply of vaccines may be limited to start and is expected to increase over the first few months. The initial limited quantity may result in some groups being recommended to receive the vaccine first, which will be determined in the most fair and ethical way possible. The federal government has committed to making the vaccine available at no cost, however providers may be able to charge for administering the vaccine, and most insurance companies are expected to cover the cost. People without insurance will have access to the vaccine at no cost. The CDC’s frequently asked questions web page will continue to provide information on the plan for vaccine administration as it becomes available.
Accessibility to COVID-19 Resources
Testing, treatment and basic needs resources for anyone who has been exposed to or impacted by COVID-19 is available regardless of immigration status or insurance coverage. Since the virus does not discriminate, it is in the entire community’s interest that everyone stays healthy. For those without lawful permanent resident status, or who are concerned about immigration status or applications, download or view a list of testing locations that include anonymous testing options and healthcare facilities that do not ask for or require immigration status to receive services. Doctors and medical providers take privacy very seriously. The City has compiled a fact sheet of benefits that are subject to the public charge rule; frequently asked questions about public charge rule, which includes a full list of immigrants exempt from the rule; and a video about what to do if you are sick, available in English, Spanish, Amharic and Arabic.
20 New COVID-19 Cases and No New Fatalities Added in Alexandria
The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 4,077, including 73 fatalities. Detailed data, including data on age, race and ethnicity, is available through links at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus.
AHD estimates that approximately 1 in 12 infected Alexandrians have required hospitalization. An estimated 66% of Virginia adults who become infected never have symptoms, so everyone must maintain at least 6 feet of distance from others, wear a mask over both the nose and mouth, and carry and use hand sanitizer with at least 60% ethyl alcohol. Be prepared to help your family and neighbors by answering a call from AHD if you are identified as a close contact of someone who tests positive for COVID-19.
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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/118339.