Northam: ‘Nowhere close to hitting that peak…’ Coronavirus cases, deaths continue to rise

(WYDaily file/Courtesyf of Gov. Ralph Northam official Facebook page)

The Peninsula is one of three areas in Virginia with highest number of positive cases of the coronavirus (COVID 19).

Gov. Ralph Northam said Tuesday the coronavirus could last a few months, if not longer.

Virginia now has 290 cases with 37 cases in James City County, 17 in Virginia Beach, six in York, five in Norfolk, five in Williamsburg, three in Portsmouth and Newport News, Gloucester and Isle of Wight have two, and Suffolk, Chesapeake and Suffolk each have one case, according to the Virginia Department of Health’s website. There are currently no cases in Hampton at this time.

So far, seven people have died in Virginia — 5 in the Peninsula Health District, 1 in Fairfax County and 1 in Virginia Beach.

The other two areas in the state with the highest number of cases is the Arlington and Fairfax health districts.

On Monday, there were 254 cases in Virginia.

Northam recapped several actions he took recently, including closing K-12 schools for the rest of the academic year, closing all recreation and entertainment venues and personal care facilities that cannot adhere to social distancing as well as restricting restaurants to carry-out, curbside or delivery only.

“Stay home,” Northam said. “Please stay home unless necessary.”

Medical equipment

  • Personal Protective Equipment: More supplies next week.
  • One PPE shipment is from overseas (10-day delivery time).
    • 1 million surgical masks overseas.
  • 595 respiratory masks ordered, unclear if from overseas.
  • Vetting different suppliers to make or provide PPE such as face shields, masks, gowns, face masks.
  • Northam said some companies have donated supplies, some distilleries are making hand sanitizers.
  • Department of Corrections made 25,000 masks.
  • Pact: Washington, D.C. mayor and Maryland governor will share excess supplies with Virginia and vice versa.
  • Need more supplies from federal government.
  • Need federal government to enable manufacturing nationwide to create more PPE. (Story continues below the video)

Other updates

  • Testing criteria: No update on the amount of testing kits available.
  • Positive cases: Unknown how many health care workers have tested positive. Data will be released later.
  • Hospital capacity: Unknown, will get more data in a few days.
  • No social distancing at work? Northam recommends speaking with supervisors and if nothing changes, go to OSHA.
  • Is social distancing effective? Data doesn’t tell us that, bu going off previous experiences with infections, Northam said.
  • Barbershops, salons: Working on a plan for haircuts, etc.
  • Federal government: Need more supplies and nationwide manufacturing order.

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