Ulster County Runs Through Potential Health Scenarios Related to the Virus
County Executive Ryan will Conduct Briefing with Municipalities, Schools, and Other Stakeholders to Update them on the County’s Plan
KINGSTON, NY – Today Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan convened and led a Health Emergency Management Exercise at the Ulster County Emergency Operations Center. The exercise included a run-through of numerous potential public health scenarios in order to better prepare for a potential outbreak and included leadership from over a dozen agencies including the Health Department, Sheriff’s Office and Emergency Management.
In addition, tomorrow County Executive Ryan will convene local leaders at the municipal and school levels, along with area hospitals and other stakeholders to brief them on the County’s plan.
The plan, which was developed in close coordination with the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the NYS Department of Health (DOH), and other relevant agencies, covers everything from coordinating with emergency medical services and hospitals to monitoring, testing and isolating individuals who may be infected.
“Protecting the health and safety of our residents is my absolute top priority,” said Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan. “Today’s exercise was very valuable and helped ensure that we are ready to execute the plan that we have been working on and fine-tuning for weeks. We will continue to provide the public with updates and we ask that all residents do their part to help prevent the spread of the virus by following preventive measures and reaching out to our Health Department with any concerns or questions.”
At this time, there are no confirmed or suspected cases of coronavirus in Ulster County. Following protocol and pursuant to DOH and CDC guidelines, traveling individuals returning from certain specified areas where they may have been exposed to the coronavirus are asked to voluntarily isolate themselves for a period of fourteen days. All residents returning from these areas have agreed to voluntarily quarantine in their homes, as well as to be monitored by the Health Department.
County Executive Ryan has directed the Ulster County Budget Director to ensure that emergency funding is available, if necessary, to combat the further spread of the virus locally.
County Executive Ryan has also launched a webpage to give the public resources and up to the minute updates. Information and preventive tips are available at https://ulstercountyny.gov/Coronavirus.
Residents should take the following steps to help minimize and contain potential exposures. These include preventative measures, such as:
- Washing hands with soap and water frequently, for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating
- Avoiding touching surfaces in public spaces, whenever possible
- Avoiding touching eyes and mouth
- Always covering a cough or sneeze with a tissue or a sleeve, rather than your hands and dispose of the tissue in the trash
- Staying home if sick, except to seek medical attention, to avoid infecting others
- Getting the flu shot if you have not done so already – it’s no too late
- Helping to keep your immune system strong by getting enough sleep and reducing stress
Coronavirus symptoms can include fever, cough, fatigue, trouble breathing and pneumonia. These symptoms can also be seen in season flu and other coronavirus infections. CDC believes that at this time symptoms of coronavirus infection may appear in as few as two days or as many as 14 days after exposure. If you suspect that you or anyone in your family may have been exposed to coronavirus through travel to affected areas or are experiencing symptoms, please contact your medical provider immediately. New York State’s state-of-the-art Wadsworth Laboratory, in Albany, is now authorized to conduct testing for coronavirus and can provide your doctor with a definite determination if coronavirus infection is present.
For more information, please visit the New York State Department of Health Coronavirus site at https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/coronavirus/ or the CDC’s Coronavirus site at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html. The New York State Department of Health has also set up a special COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-364-3065.