Emergency Preparedness and Response

Emergency Preparedness & Response

The Department of Emergency Preparedness and Response consists of two divisions which are also the central point of contact for Emergency Management and Emergency Communications (911).

Jan 12

Team Norfolk COVID-19 Update – January 12, 2021

Posted on January 12, 2021 at 1:27 PM by Daniel Hudson

Team-

I hope everyone had a wonderful, safe, and happy New Year.

This morning the Virginia Department of Health reports 407,947 total confirmed, and probable cases of COVID-19 and 5,477 total deaths related to the virus in the Commonwealth.

The seven-day positivity rate, PCR only, for the Commonwealth is 16.4%.

Norfolk is credited with 10,380 total cases and 120 deaths with an 17.6% seven-day positivity rate, PCR only.

According to the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, 3,185 residents in Virginia are currently hospitalized due to the virus. Over 33,500 confirmed COVID-19 patients have been hospitalized and discharged.

As a reminder, Governor Ralph Northam’s restrictive protective measures due to the surges of COVID-19 in Virginia are still in effect. The restrictions started Monday, December 14, at 12:01 a.m., and will last through January.

For more information on this, view this week's Incident Action Plan.

Vaccine update

The FDA has granted Pfizer-BioNTech and Modera emergency use authorizations, allowing the COVID-19 vaccines to be distributed and administered in the U.S.

Last week, Governor Ralph Northam announced the following new actions to support the Commonwealth’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution program and accelerate the pace of vaccinations across Virginia. Read the full release here.

  1. Vaccination goal. Governor Northam set an initial goal of vaccinating 25,000 Virginians each day when supply allows.
  2. ‘Use it or lose it’ model. Medical facilities will be required to put the vaccine they receive into arms as soon as possible, or risk having future vaccine allotments reduced.
  3. Danny T.K. Avula to lead vaccination efforts in Virginia. Governor Northam appointed Dr. Avula, who serves as director of the Richmond City and Henrico County Health Departments to coordinate work between state officials, local health departments, hospitals, and private providers.
  4. Expanded priority groups. Governor Northam announced that K-12 teachers and childcare workers will be among the next priority groups to receive vaccinations after Group A, and outlined the populations that will be included in Groups B and C.
  5. Elevating the Virginia National Guard. As the Commonwealth receives more doses, the Virginia National Guard will provide logistical support and help local health departments will administering vaccines.

On the VDH website, you can find descriptions of each COVID-19 vaccination phase.

Here is the breakdown for each phase:

Phase 1a:

  • Healthcare personnel
  • Residents of long-term care facilities

Phase 1b:

  • Frontline essential workers
  • People age 75 or older
  • People living in correctional facilities, homeless shelters, and migrant labor camps

Phase 1c:

  • Other essential workers
  • People age 65 or older
  • People age 16 or older with underlying medical conditions.
For more information, visit Virginia Department of Health.

VDH has also created a new tool to assist finding out what phase you are eligible to receive the vaccination. Once you are on the Virginia Department of Health’s website, scroll down to the button that says, “Find Out Which Phase You are Eligible For” and answer the questions provided. At the end of the brief survey, you will be provided the phase you are eligible to receive your vaccination.

Finally, concerning the vaccination process, the VDH dashboard now provides daily summaries of how many total doses of the vaccine has been administered, how many people have received at least one dose and how many people have been fully vaccinated.

Today, VDH reports that 200,402 doses of the COVD-19 vaccination have been administered. Of that, 181,316 people have received their first dose, and 19,086 people have been fully vaccinated. These numbers represent the entire state; however, under the summary tab on the Vaccine dashboard, you can find out how many doses have been administered by each locality.

In Norfolk, 2,906 people have received the vaccination.

City Closures

Due to the recent rise in COVID-19 cases and out of an abundance of caution, Recreation, Parks & Open Space facilities temporarily closed recreation centers and indoor pools to the public for four weeks on Monday, January 11, 2021. For more information on this, or to see the sites that are closed, visit Norfolk.gov.

As a reminder, the City of Norfolk’s government offices and libraries will be closed Monday, January 18, 2021 for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

To celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the city will have a special virtual ceremony aired on COX channel Norfolk TV48, NorfolkTV YouTube channel, and Norfolk Facebook page.  The virtual ceremony will include special messages from Mayor Kenneth Cooper Alexander and Vice Mayor Martin Thomas, Jr. and look back to the January 2020 celebration at the Attucks Theatre and wreath-laying ceremony. For additional information and show times, visit Norfolk.gov.

Sadly, the in-person ceremony and march will not be held this year due to current COVID-19 restrictions.

Are you ready to give the gift of life? There are plenty of opportunities for you to give blood this month. Be an American Red Cross Hero by donating blood to help save lives. Click here to view all blood donation opportunities for January in Norfolk.  If you don’t live in Norfolk, don’t worry, you can search by city and find blood drives near you.

Be safe and have a great week, everyone.

Daniel

Daniel Hudson, Deputy EM Coordinator

Norfolk Emergency Preparedness & Response

EOC-Plans@norfolk.gov


Jan 12

Team Norfolk COVID-19 Update – December 29, 2020

Posted on January 12, 2021 at 1:11 PM by Daniel Hudson

Team-

This morning the Virginia Department of Health reports 344,345 total confirmed, and probable cases of COVID-19 and 4,984 total deaths related to the virus in the Commonwealth.

The seven-day positivity rate, PCR only, for the Commonwealth is 12.7%.

Norfolk is credited with 8,697 total cases and 105 deaths with an 13.2% seven-day positivity rate, PCR only.

According to the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, 2,047 residents in Virginia are currently hospitalized due to the virus. Over 30,440 confirmed COVID-19 patients have been hospitalized and discharged.

As a reminder, Governor Ralph Northam’s restrictive protective measures due to the surges of COVID-19 in Virginia are still in effect. The restrictions started Monday, December 14, at 12:01 a.m., and will last through January.

The restrictions include:

  • Modified “stay-at-home order: The modified “stay-at-home” order is for the hours between midnight and 5 a.m. That will exclude those going to work and other essential travel (buying food, getting medical attention, etc.).

  • Reduction in public and private gatherings: All public and private in-person gatherings must be limited to 10 individuals. This includes outdoor and indoor settings. Gatherings include parties, celebrations, and other social events, outdoors and indoors. The rule does not apply to places of work, religious services, and schools.

  • Expansion of mask mandate: All Virginians aged five and over must wear face coverings in indoor public spaces. This DOES include educational settings, Houses of Worship, places of employment, and stores. Masks will also be required outdoors when social distancing is not possible.

  • Strengthened enforcement within essential retail businesses: All essential retail businesses, including grocery stores and pharmacies, must adhere to statewide physical distancing guidelines, wearing face coverings, and enhanced cleaning. Violations are now enforceable through the Virginia Department of Health as a Class One misdemeanor. 

  • Recreational sports: There is a 25-person-per-field limit for indoor recreational sports and two guests per player for outdoor sports. The Governor encourages schools to set up streams online and move sports outside if possible.


For more information on this, view this week's Incident Action Plan.

Vaccine update

The FDA has granted Pfizer-BioNTech and Modera emergency use authorizations, allowing the COVID-19 vaccines to be distributed and administered in the U.S.

The CDC is considering a four-phase plan to distribute vaccines. Phase 1a would be followed by Phases 1b and 1c, which could include essential workers at high risk of infection, other emergency personnel, and people with underlying conditions at a higher risk of Covid-19 complications and death.

For more information, visit Virginia Department of Health.

Court Safety Order

Norfolk Circuit Court issued a Safety Order stating that, “consistent with the guidance of the Center for Disease Control, which currently notes insufficient evidence to support the effectiveness of face shields to protect nearby people from the spray of respiratory droplets from the wearer, the Court orders that face shields without masks are not an acceptable substitute for face masks in the Courthouse.”

The Supreme Court of Virginia issued the Fourteenth Order Extending Declaration of Judicial Emergency in Response to COVID-19 Emergency.  The extension is in effect until January 3rd, 2021. The Fourteenth Order extends the order of provisions set forth in the original Declaration of Judicial Emergency in Response to COVID-19 Emergency.

Don’t forget its Flu season. The CDC and VDH both recommend receiving a seasonal flu vaccination. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the city will not have on-site flu shot clinics this year for city employees. We encourage all employees to get a flu shot this season from their primary care physician or any participating pharmacy. Click here to find flu vaccine locations.

Are you ready to give the gift of life? There are plenty of opportunities for you to give blood next month. Be an American Red Cross Hero by donating blood to help save lives. Click here to view all blood donation opportunities for January in Norfolk.  If you don’t live in Norfolk, don’t worry, you can search by city and find blood drives near you.

As a reminder, the City of Norfolk’s government offices, libraries, and recreation centers will be closed Friday, January 1, 2020 for New Year’s Day.

It looks like we will have a wet and soggy end to the week. We will likely see some scattered showers developing Thursday morning and will last until early afternoon. It will be quite warmer tomorrow, with temps hovering around 60 degrees. Our next round of rain will occur Friday morning an into the late afternoon. Despite the rain, highs will be in the upper 50s. Our last chance of rain will occur overnight Saturday into Sunday. Great news though, our high temps will be near 70 degrees on Saturday. By the end of the weekend our rainfall totals could be near two inches.

Be safe and have a great week, everyone.

Happy New Year!

Daniel

Daniel Hudson, Deputy EM Coordinator

Norfolk Emergency Preparedness & Response

EOC-Plans@norfolk.gov


Dec 15

Team Norfolk COVID-19 Update – December 15, 2020

Posted on December 15, 2020 at 10:28 AM by Daniel Hudson

Team-

This morning the Virginia Department of Health reports 288,309 total confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 and 4,470 total deaths related to the virus in the Commonwealth.

The seven-day positivity rate, PCR only, for the Commonwealth is 11.2%.

Norfolk is credited with 7,503 total cases and 100 deaths with an 11.9% seven-day positivity rate, PCR only.

According to the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, 2,361 residents in Virginia are currently hospitalized due to the virus. Over 26,900 confirmed COVID-19 patients have been hospitalized and discharged.

As a reminder, last week Governor Ralph Northam enacted new protective measures due to the surges of COVID-19 in Virginia. The new restrictions started Monday, December 14, at 12:01 a.m., and will last through January.

The new restrictions include:

  • Modified “stay-at-home order: The modified “stay-at-home” order is for the hours between midnight and 5 a.m. That will exclude those going to work and other essential travel (buying food, getting medical attention, etc.).

  • Reduction in public and private gatherings: All public and private in-person gatherings must be limited to 10 individuals. This includes outdoor and indoor settings. Gatherings include parties, celebrations, and other social events, outdoors and indoors. The rule does not apply to places of work, religious services, and schools.

  • Expansion of mask mandate: All Virginians aged five and over must wear face coverings in indoor public spaces. This DOES include educational settings, Houses of Worship, places of employment, and stores. Masks will also be required outdoors when social distancing is not possible.

  • Strengthened enforcement within essential retail businesses: All essential retail businesses, including grocery stores and pharmacies, must adhere to statewide physical distancing guidelines, wearing face coverings, and enhanced cleaning. Violations are now enforceable through the Virginia Department of Health as a Class One misdemeanor. 

  • Recreational sports: There is a 25-person-per-field limit for indoor recreational sports and two guests per player for outdoor sports. The Governor encourages schools to set up streams online and move sports outside if possible.

For more information on this, view this week's Incident Action Plan.

Vaccine update: Last Sunday, the US Centers and Disease Control and Prevention accepted the recommendation of the agency’s vaccine advisory committee, allowing Pfizer’s vaccine to be distributed and administered in the U.S. The CDC advisory group has recommended the first founds of the Pfizer vaccine be provided to hospitals and health care workers, and residents of long-term care facilities. The CDC stated that both groups are considered an "exceptionally high risk."

The CDC is considering a four-phase plan to distribute vaccines. Phase 1a would be followed by Phases 1b and 1c, which could include essential workers at high risk of infection, other emergency personnel, and people with underlying conditions at a higher risk of Covid-19 complications and death.

To learn more about how Virginia is preparing for the COVID-19 vaccine, the Virginia Department of Health, Office of Health Equity, is holding a virtual COVID-19 vaccine community conversation. Tonight's discussion is surrounding the African American community. Tomorrow, December 16, the dialogue is surrounding the community for Persons with Disabilities. Then on Thursday, December 17, the discussion covers the Rural community. For more information or to register for a conversation, visit VDH.virginia.gov

Understandingly, there are many questions or concerns regarding the safety of the COVID-19 vaccine. To help ease the worries and answer pressing questions, the Virginia Department of Health is holding a virtual Public Town Hall tomorrow night. The Town Hall is appropriately titled, Virginia’s COVID-19 Vaccine: You Ask. The Experts Answer. This is an opportunity where community and medical leaders answer your questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

The Town Hall will take place tomorrow night, December 16, at 7 p.m.  For more information, visit VDH.Virginia.gov.

Don’t forget it's Flu season. The CDC and VDH both recommend receiving a seasonal flu vaccination. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the city will not have on-site flu shot clinics this year for city employees. We encourage all employees to get a flu shot this season from their primary care physician or any participating pharmacy. Click here to find flu vaccine locations.

Are you ready to give the gift of life? There are plenty of opportunities for you to give blood this month. Be an American Red Cross Hero by donating blood to help save lives. Click here to view all blood donation opportunities for December in Norfolk.  If you don’t live in Norfolk, don’t worry, you can search by city and find blood drives near you.

Lastly, it looks like we will miss the snow this week, as a cold front will move in on Wednesday and provide lots of snow to the northeast region. No snow around here, but Wednesday, we will see lots of rain. Highs today will be in the mid-40s. Tomorrow will be a bit warmer, with highs in the mid-50s. For the remainder of the week, temps will hover around the mid-to-upper 40s.

I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful Holiday.  Be safe and have a great week, everyone.

Daniel

Daniel Hudson, Deputy EM Coordinator

Norfolk Emergency Preparedness & Response

EOC-Plans@norfolk.gov