News Release Full Story

Health Director Provides Latest Information, Mitigation Efforts

Mar 12, 2020

Cumberland County Public Health Director Dr. Jennifer Green gave an update about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and the latest mitigation efforts by local and state health officials during an agenda session meeting of the Cumberland County Board of Commissioners today in the Courthouse.

“We want people to take appropriate levels of precaution. We don’t want people to be scared,” Dr. Green said. “We want people to assess their risks and be prepared, not scared.”

There are no confirmed or presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 in Cumberland County.

Dr. Green’s presentation highlighted the ongoing and coordinated efforts of the Cumberland County Department of Public Health and the N.C. Department of Health to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Find the video here: https://youtu.be/uqxmQMr_x1Q

Gov. Roy Cooper also announced today that NC DHHS is making recommendations to all North Carolinians for the next 30 days to reduce the spread of the infection. NC DHHS does not recommend pre-emptive closure of schools and childcare centers at this time, but the agency is recommending that schools and childcare center cancel or reduce large gatherings.

NC DHHS recommends that people at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19 should stay at home to the extent possible to decrease the chance of infection. People at high risk include people:

  • Over 65 years of age, or
  • with underlying health conditions including heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes, or
  • with weakened immune systems.

NC DHHS recommends that organizers of events that draw more than 100 people should cancel, postpone or modify these events.

Residential establishments for high risk persons should limit visitors and restrict all visitors who have respiratory illness or potential exposure to COVID-19. Congregate living facilities include nursing homes, independent and assisted living, correctional facilities and facilities for medically vulnerable children.

Guidance for Symptoms

People who feel sick with fever, cough or difficulty breathing and have traveled to affected geographic areas or were in close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past 14 days should contact their doctor or local health department. People who have symptoms should call ahead and give history before going to their doctor, urgent care or emergency room to avoid exposing others.

Health Department Not Testing

The N.C. State Public Health Laboratory is conducting the COVID-19 testing, not the local health departments The Health Department will assist with specimen collection if needed. State Lab test results are required to be confirmed by the CDC.

If there is a confirmed or presumptive positive test from the State Lab, an immediate public health response will be initiated from the N.C. Department of Public Health, N.C. Emergency Management and local health departments and hospitals.

County Continues to Monitor

The Cumberland County Department of Public Health continues to carefully monitor the COVID-19 situation. Meetings are being held with Cumberland County Management, Cape Fear Valley Hospital, Cumberland County Schools, Emergency Management and other partners. Information is being shared with local healthcare providers, long-term care facilities, childcare providers, Fayetteville VA Hospital and others.

Dr. Green emphasized the importance of facts instead of fear.

The North Carolina Division of Public Health has established a call line at 1-866-462-3821 to address general questions about COVID-19 from the public.

We encourage the public to seek information from credible sources including the Cumberland County Health Department’s COVID-19 webpage at co.cumberland.nc.us/covid19 and the NC DHHS website at ncdhhs.gov.