Sept. 30 COVID-19 update: School safety and rumors
Across Arizona, 1,750,673 Arizonans have been tested for COVID-19 with 218,507 positive results and 5,650 deaths, according to a Yavapai County Community Health Services (YCCHS) news release Wednesday, Sept. 30.
That is an increase of 323 positive cases and 18 deaths since Tuesday.
Yavapai County has tested 43,142 residents with a total of 2,567 positive cases, 1,317 recovered, and 82 deaths. Yavapai County’s increase in positive cases since Tuesday is eight.
YRMC West is caring for six COVID-19 patients with two persons under investigation (PUI); the East campus has two COVID-19 patients and one PUI. Verde Valley Medical Center in Cottonwood reports two COVID-19 hospitalizations and two PUI. The Prescott VA reports one COVID-19 patient and no PUI.
Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman on Wednesday urged more communication and transparency about the coronavirus cases on school campuses to help ease community fears.
She wrote in a letter, “Having detailed communications protocols in place – and making them publicly available – can help provide some level of certainty in these very uncertain times.” The letter, posted to Facebook, also noted there was genuine fear about COVID-19 present in the community and that transparency was a key to maintaining trust “with our educators, students and families.”
Hoffman said she had heard from many people who were alarmed to learn “through the grapevine” of positive cases in their schools. She added, “While we can’t control every rumor that goes through a school, we – as school leaders – should prioritize consistent and transparent communication.”
She encourages all school leaders to utilize the Roadmap for Reopening Schools, particularly the sections on communication procedures and emergency preparedness, to ensure that the communities we serve feel confident in our ability to be focused on transparency and safety.
Roadmap for Reopening Schools (disponible en español) is at: https://www.azed.gov/cov…/covid-19-roadmap-reopening-schools. YCCHS’ COVID-19 School Q&A Guidance is available on its website, as well. For a positive case or an outbreak at a Yavapai County school, a school staff member can call Stephen Everett, YCCHS Epidemiologist, at 928-442-5486, during the day, or 928-442-5262. If he doesn’t answer, please leave the student’s name and date of birth. This is a secure line.
• Get your Flu Shot! Full schedule of rural community clinics available at www.yavapai.us/chs and click on the flu shot banner.
• County COVID-19 Data, Testing Sites, School & Business Guidelines & Resources: www.yavapai.us/chs;
• Yavapai Emergency Phone Bank: 928-442-5103 – Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• COVID-19 information en español: https://azhealth.gov/covid-19.
Information provided by the Yavapai County Community Health Services.