Posts

Economic Impact Payments May Require Additional Steps; Deadline TODAY!

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Information courtesy Granville Vance Public Health

If you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Veterans Affairs benefits, have qualifying children under the age of 17, and didn’t file a tax return in 2018 or 2019, you may need to take extra steps to register to have $500 per child added to the $1,200 Economic Impact Payment you’ll receive this year.

The deadline to register with the IRS is TODAY, May 5, 2020.

Visit the IRS website for more information: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here

For a short video with tips for using the IRS website (e.g., the information you’ll need to complete the online application): https://app.vyond.com/videos/cf708ddd-11da-4fbd-8653-2fc13b8a0424

The application requires an email address, so if you need help creating an account, see these simple instructions to create an e-mail account via Google: https://app.vyond.com/videos/1f24fb37-ef7f-4ad3-b123-d75f11373b25

Granville Vance Public Health Logo

14 COVID-19 Deaths, 254 Confirmed Cases in Granville, Vance Health District

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Information courtesy Granville Vance Public Health

As of May 4, 2020, there are 144 known COVID-19 cases in Granville County, 110 cases in Vance County, and 11,848 confirmed cases in North Carolina.

There are two outbreaks at congregate living facilities in the district – one at Federal Correctional Complex in Butner, NC and one at Pelican Health Nursing Home in Henderson, NC.

Of the total positive cases in each county, 87 in Granville County are associated with the prison and 47 in Vance County are associated with the nursing home.

Of the 57 community-based cases in Granville County, 34 have been released from isolation and 46 of the 87 cases at the prisons have been released from isolation.

Of the 110 cases in Vance, 19 have been released from isolation and 6 are hospitalized.

There have been a total of 14 deaths in the health district – 8 in Vance County and 6 with the Bureau of Prisons in Granville County.

GVPH updates its website daily with Vance and Granville COVID-19 statistics. Please visit www.gvph.org/COVID-19/ for the latest information.

Franklin County Logo

Franklin Co. Reports First Community (Non-Facility Based) COVID-19 Related Death

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Press Release, Franklin County Government

Sadly, Franklin County has now recorded its first community COVID19 related death. As of the date and time of this press release, this death is not associated with any congregate care outbreak

This brings Franklin Countys current total number of COVID19 related fatalities to nineteen (19), and this community loss is reflected in the NCDHHS numbers that were updated on May 1, 2020, which includes the report of 105 total labconfirmed coronavirus cases in Franklin County

Please note that the NCDHHS COVID19 website now contains maps that show confirmedcases by zip codes.This is a new feature, and only includes results for zip codes where the population exceeds 500 people. Here is the link for this new feature: https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/publichealth/covid19/covid19nccasecount#zipcodemap 

Look for more updates from the Franklin COVID19 EOC as more information becomes available.

NC Governor Logo

‘Some Indicators Moving in Right Direction, Others Not’ in Decision to Ease COVID-19 Restrictions

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Press Release, Office of Governor Roy Cooper

Governor Roy Cooper and NC DHHS Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen shared an update on where North Carolina stands in the fight against COVID-19 and urged North Carolinians not to let their guard down.

“North Carolinians have made tremendous sacrifices and it is making a difference,” said Governor Cooper. “We remain hopeful that the trends will be stable enough to move into Phase 1 next week.”

“We need to keep up the actions that will slow the spread of the virus. The good news is that we know we can do this. If we stay home now to protect our loved ones and our communities, we can put ourselves on a path to begin easing restrictions and moving forward as planned,” said Dr. Cohen.

As of today, North Carolina has 10,509 lab-confirmed cases, 546 people in the hospital, and 378 deaths due to COVID-19.

Governor Cooper and Secretary Cohen updated on where North Carolina stands on the following key metrics:

  • Sustained Leveling or Decreased Trajectory in COVID-Like Illness (CLI) Surveillance Over 14 Days
  • Currently, North Carolina’s syndromic surveillance trend for COVID-like illness is level over past 14 days but has been on an uptick over the past seven days.
  • Sustained Leveling or Decreased Trajectory of Lab-Confirmed Cases Over 14 Days
  • Currently, North Carolina’s trajectory of lab-confirmed cases over the last 14 days cases is still increasing.
  • Sustained Leveling or Decreased Trajectory in Percent of Tests Returning Positive Over 14 Days
  • Currently, North Carolina’s trajectory in percent of tests returning positive over the last 14 days is decreasing.
  • Sustained Leveling or Decreased Trajectory in Hospitalizations Over 14 Days
  • Currently, North Carolina’s trajectory of hospitalizations over the last 14 days is largely level.

In addition to these metrics, the state continues building capacity to be able to adequately respond to an increase in virus spread. These areas include:

  • Increase in Laboratory Testing.
  • North Carolina has surpassed 4,000 tests for the last 6 of 9 days with 6,000 tests reported yesterday.
  • Increase in Tracing Capability.
  • NC DHHS announced the Carolina Community Tracing Collaborative, a new partnership with Community Care of North Carolina (CCNC) and the North Carolina Area Health Education Centers (NC AHEC) to double the state’s current contact tracing capabilities. The Collaborative has started recruiting for these positions.
  • Availability of Personal Protective Equipment.
  • The state has a 30-day supply of most personal protective equipment, except for gowns and N95 masks.

“We need everyone to continue following the Stay At Home order right now so that we can move to the next phases of easing restrictions. Complacency could risk lives and undo these plans,” added Governor Cooper.

Volunteer Hospital Gown Project Continues in Face of Local COVID-19 Surge

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

A message from Amy Starr Russell, Associate Minister, First Baptist Church:

Last week we were excited to receive the news that MPH was well stocked with gowns. We felt that our project was reaching a natural conclusion and that we could wrap up our work this week. However, that decision was made with the caveat that we would reassess should there be a surge in our area. Unfortunately, that surge came this past weekend.

With the outbreak at Pelican Health, the need is greater than ever for our local healthcare workers.

We have committed to work for three more weeks or 1,500 more gowns, whichever comes first. We need your help and our community’s help to reach this goal and meet this need.

Beginning on Monday, May 4, 2020, we will resume our regular shifts of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. weekly with evening shifts on Tuesday and Thursday at 6 p.m. All shifts are currently at McGregor Hall (201 Breckenridge – entrance at the corner of Wyche and Winder Streets in downtown Henderson).

If you are able to help, please sign up here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70a0449afad2fa7fb6-protective2

Volunteers are required to sign up online before participating.

All volunteers 17 and under must be accompanied by an adult. All volunteers will be screened upon arrival and must have a temperature below 100, no symptoms, and no known exposure to COVID-19 (including no known exposure by anyone in their household). Please bring a mask and scissors with you.

We are asking that all volunteers isolate as much as possible for the sake of each person who comes to give their time. All volunteers are required to wear masks, wash hands frequently throughout their shift and maintain social distance.

With the beginning of this second phase, our financial need has also increased. If you would like to make a donation toward this project, go to this website: https://engage.suran.com/fbchenderson/s/give/new-gift and choose “COVID-19 Protective Medical Gown Project.”

Warren County Logo

Warren County Reports Nine Confirmed COVID-19 Cases, No Virus-Related Deaths

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Information courtesy Warren County, NC

As of the afternoon of April 29, 2020, the Warren County Health Department received two (2) new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the total confirmed cases to nine (9).

Two of those nine cases have recovered and there are zero (0) deaths related to COVID-19 in Warren County.

The numbers reported are not a net total; they are a sum total. This means that recovered cases are not subtracted from the total that is reported.

Health officials have already established that community spread is happening across the nation, so please continue to stay at home as much as possible, follow the stay at home order and Warren County curfew and implement safety precautions when out in public.

Granville Vance Public Health Logo

Confirmed Vance COVID-19 Cases Increase to 79, Granville Remains Steady at 130

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Information courtesy Granville Vance Public Health

As of April 27, 2020, Granville Vance Public Health reports 130 known cases of COVID-19 in Granville County, 79 cases in Vance County and 9,142 confirmed cases in North Carolina.

There are two outbreaks at congregate living facilities in the district – one at Federal Correctional Complex in Butner, NC and one at Pelican Health Nursing Home in Henderson, NC. Of the total positive cases in each county, 85 in Granville County are associated with the prison and 33 in Vance County are associated with the nursing home.

Of the 45 community-based cases in Granville County, 21 have been released from isolation and 46 of the 85 cases at the prisons have been released from isolation.

Of the 79 cases in Vance, 10 have been released from isolation* and 6 are hospitalized. There have been a total of 8 deaths in the health district – 3 in Vance County and 5 with the Bureau of Prisons in Granville County.

*Granville Vance Public Health (GVPH) does not have official guidance at this time to determine whether someone is ‘recovered’ since many details about this virus and its effects are still being discovered. GVPH shares the number of those who have been ‘released from isolation’ as determined by the CDC Guidance for discontinuation of isolation for persons with COVID-19.

GVPH updates its website daily with Vance and Granville COVID-19 statistics. Please visit www.gvph.org/COVID-19/ for the latest information.

What does the Health Department do when there is a positive case in our community?

Once a positive test result is received, the health department reaches out to the affected person to ensure they are isolating in their home. Families of individuals who are confirmed positive for COVID-19 are given information about isolation and quarantine and asked to monitor symptoms.

Local public health officials then conduct an interview with the patient to begin contact tracing – investigating any known contacts from the previous two weeks. GVPH determines any potential at-risk contacts and notifies them individually of that contact and that risk.

GVPH’s commitment to the public is to announce all positive cases as soon as the results are confirmed. Therefore, announcements may be made before contact tracing is fully completed. GVPH will share more information as it is appropriate.

To protect privacy, no additional information about the individuals will be shared by the health department.

Franklin Co. Health Dept. Temporarily Closed; Six Employees Test COVID-19 Positive

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Information courtesy Franklin County Government

As noted previously in prior communication, on Friday, 4/24/2020, the Franklin County Health Department (FCHD) received positive coronavirus testresults for two (2) employees. Those two (2) employees do not serve as healthcare providers within the department. Also as previously noted, on Friday 4/24/2020 a total of 48 Health Department staff had samples collected and submitted for coronavirus testing

As a precaution, the FCHD was disinfected on Saturday, 4/25/2020, and as of this current release, the Department is remaining closed for regular business from 4/27/2020 until operations resume on Monday 5/4/2020, at 8 a.m

The Health Department has received the results for all staff tested on Friday 4/24/2020, and those results indicate that an additional four (4) staff have tested positive, bringing the current total of Health Department Employees with positive test results to six (6). None of the Health Departments now six (6) total positive employees are healthcare providers

The Franklin County Health Department continues to conduct Contact Tracing for COVID-19, so any individual suspected of being exposed to the coronavirus will be notified by Health Department staff and given specific instructions on what they need to do next.

Out of an abundance of caution, the Health Department is adopting a stringent response to this current situation. As of the date and time of this release, the following Health Department programs will be closed from Monday 4/27/2020 until they reopen on Monday, 5/4/2020

  • All clinical services
  • Care Management Services (clients may call their workers for callback); and 
  • WIC (clients may call for assistance)

After consultations with NCDHHS, the Health Department has been approved to move forward with the following plan for our CLINICAL closures this week

  • Clinic patients provided with the option of receiving some mandated services at our neighboring counties’ Health Departments;
  • Patients given the option to receive services at other healthcare providers both inside and outside the county. Patients whose appointments were canceled are being notified and those appointments will be rescheduled.

Environmental Health Services (septic, wells, food & lodging inspections, etc.) and the Franklin County Home Health Agency services will continue to operate remotely (as they have been doing for some time). Limited dropoff service will be available for Environmental Health needs

For the week of 4/27/2020 through 5/1/2020, only critical Health Department employees with a negative test and no current symptoms (i.e. with no fever as verified by temperature checks threetimes per day) have returned to work to continue the Countys Emergency Operations Center and to complete contact investigations. The Health Department will resume all services on Monday, 5/4/2020

Look for more updates from the Franklin COVID19 EOC as more information becomes available.

Warren Co. Commissioners Extend Curfew Through May 8

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Information courtesy Warren County Government

The Warren County Board of Commissioners enacted a curfew earlier this month that was meant to last the duration of Governor Roy Cooper’s stay at home order.

The curfew is in effect from the hours of 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. daily and will be extended through the new date of the order – May 8, 2020. During this time, travel should be reserved for situations deemed as essential in the governor’s order, such as medical care, grocery pickup or travel to/from an essential job.

Please heed the curfew and the stay at home order as we are doing everything in our power to #slowthespread of COVID-19 in our community.

How School Grades Will be Assigned for 2019-20

100.1 FM ~ 1450 AM ~ WIZS, Your Community Voice ~ Click to LISTEN LOCAL

-Press Release, NC DPI

Responding to continuing challenges caused by the COVID-19 school closure, the State Board of Education recently approved measures addressing student grading for the remainder of the school year, incomplete teacher evaluations and $380 million in additional emergency funding from the state.

Under a temporary grading policy approved by the board, elementary and middle school students will not receive traditional grades for the year, and high school students in grades 9-11 will have the option of choosing between a grade of pass/no credit or a numeric grade for their spring semester courses this year.

The grading policy for the current year will allow high school students in grades 9-11 and non-graduating seniors to choose which option is in their best interest under remote instruction since schools were closed March 13 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Students also will have the option of receiving a grade of pass for the semester, based on their course grade as of March 13. Students who were not passing as of that date will be able to raise their grade to a pass or a passing numeric grade. Otherwise, the course will not appear on their high school record.

Board Chairman Eric Davis said the grading policy is intended to support all the state’s students facing many differing circumstances since mid-March, when schools were closed and students began remote learning.

“No grading policy will completely address equity issues that exist across our state during these challenging times,” Davis said, “especially when our educators cannot be physically present with their students each day and while many students struggle to access remote learning opportunities.

“We are making every effort to mitigate any potential negative impacts of COVID-19 on student grading while also trying to validate the efforts of students, families, teachers, and support staff during this period of remote learning.”

Sneha Shah-Coltrane, director of Advanced Learning and Gifted Education and who helped lead the development of the grading policy, told the board that it is intended to positively impact as many students as possible, to lessen potential negative impacts of remote learning on student grading and to be responsive to the concerns of students and parents.

“We do want to validate the efforts of students, families, teachers, and support staff during remote learning,” Shah-Coltrane said, “and to ensure that we are doing the best for North Carolina students and also addressing issues of equity and excellence.”

Elementary and middle school students will not receive traditional grades for this year.

Instead of final grades in elementary schools, teachers will provide year-end feedback for students regarding learning from the full academic school year, using a format determined locally.

In middle schools, students will receive a grade of pass or “withdraw” for the final course grades for all courses. A student’s grade will be held harmless for learning after March 13, and a grade of pass will be assigned to any student who was meeting expectations and passing the course as of March 13 or who worked to improve to the point of passing after March 13 through remote learning.

Under the policy, a “withdraw” does not equate to a failing grade, nor does it indicate that a student should be retained or that the course must be repeated. The grade WC19 simply indicates a lack of evidence of mastery of standards addressed in the particular content area.

For elementary and middle school students, teachers will document individual student strengths and needs from both an academic and social/emotional perspective to ensure an effective transition from this spring’s remote learning to the 2020-21 academic year. Middle school students taking high school level courses such as Math I or Math II will have the same grading options as high school students.

For high school students, the grading policy means they will be held harmless for their remote learning since March 13 and that they can only improve their numeric grade if they choose that option. Students will be able to choose how each final course grade will appear on their transcript at the end of the semester after consulting with their teacher and school and also in consultation with their parent or guardian. For students who choose a grade of “pass” or no credit, there will be no impact on their GPA, either for spring semester or yearlong courses.

Under a separate policy that the board adopted March 27, graduating seniors will receive for their spring semester courses a designation of pass or withdraw, if they were failing, as of their performance on March 13. For students who had a failing grade, districts and schools have been directed to provide remote learning opportunities to help them to pass.

The board also acted to suspend annual evaluations for those teachers for whom the required number of classroom observations had not been completed this year. As part of teacher evaluations, administrators complete a set number of observations for each teacher during the year. Some teachers may have had those observations completed before March 13, but others may not have.

Tom Tomberlin, director of Educator Recruitment and Support, told the board that evaluations based on remote teaching would not be considered valid, and that many teachers are still mastering the skills of remote instruction.

“We can’t guarantee the validity of the results,” Tomberlin said. “Many teachers are in the midst of the learning process themselves. It would be inappropriate to evaluate them.”

On other issues related to COVID-19 school closures, the board approved a joint request from the board and the Department of Public Instruction for a $380 million request to the General Assembly for emergency funding for a list of needs, including school nutrition, remote learning, support for exceptional children’s programs and funding for a Summer Bridge/Jump Start program for rising first through rising fourth graders needing extra support.

State Superintendent Mark Johnson told the board that the joint funding request represents an important milestone in the state’s efforts to get students and schools back on track for the next school year.

“We are moving from a reactive phase to a proactive phase to ensure we return strong to school in the fall,” Johnson said.