As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Vernon County Board of Supervisors Chairman Dennis Brault has declared a public health emergency, although there are no confirmed cases in Vernon County as of March 13.
This declaration will give the County Health Department, as well as Brault, the ability to use all resources and funds necessary to respond to and contain the outbreak. It also will allow emergency spending for necessary equipment, medicines and other needed supplies.
“We have been working very hard to do our part to help control and mitigate the spread of this virus,” Brault said. The County Health Department has been in close contact with emergency management, Vernon Memorial Healthcare, other health officials, schools, and Wisconsin Department of Health Services.
Just this week, Wisconsin has had six new cases of COVID-19 and Illinois and Minnesota have also seen increased cases. With these new cases there needs to be extensive contact tracing to contain the spread of COVID-19.
If COVID-19 begins to spread in Wisconsin communities, local and state public health officials will consider community interventions such as social distancing, replacing in-person meetings with telework when possible, reviewing workplace sick leave policies, modifying, postponing or canceling mass gatherings, implementing restrictions on visitors to residential treatment and living facilities, and closures of schools, childcare settings.
Decisions about the implementation of community measures will be made by state and local officials based on CDC and DHS guidance, as well as the scope of the outbreak.
People should follow simple steps to avoid getting sick, including:
- Frequent and thorough hand washing with soap and water.
- Covering coughs and sneezes.
- Avoiding touching your face.
- Staying home when sick.
For more information, call the emergency management office at 608-637-5266 or the County Health Department at 608-637-5251.
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