Franklin Health Department issues recommendations on coronavirus

Franklin Health Department
Memorandum
To: Mayor Olson, Franklin Alderpersons, Franklin Board of Health
Date: March 12, 2020
RE: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak
From: Courtney Day, RN, BSN – Director Health and Human Services

  1. Issue
    The number of COVID-19 cases in Wisconsin has increased to 8 cases, 7 of which have been diagnosed this week. Today, Governor Tony Evers, signed executive order #72 declaring a Public Health Emergency in Wisconsin.
  2. Background
    In addition to several countries with elevated travel health warnings (China, South Korea, Italy, Iran, Japan, and Hong Kong) several states have confirmed large numbers of COVID-19 cases through community-spread. For the most up to date travel information visit the CDC travel website:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019ncov/travelers/index.html

While the threat to the general public in Wisconsin and more specifically in Franklin remains low, the number of cases in and around our State is growing daily increasing the likelihood of community-spread cases in our region.

  1. Recommendation
    Based on the guidance from the CDC, the Wisconsin Division of Health Services (WI DHS), and congruency with many of our neighboring communities, I am making the following recommendations effective March 13, 2020 to the Franklin Community.

Community Events and Large Gatherings:
In accordance with WI DHS, I am recommending the suspension of large gatherings and community events with attendance estimates of 250 or more people until further notice. While this may be frustrating and disappointing to the community at large it is the best way to protect our most vulnerable residents from illness.

Domestic and International Travel:
The Health Department recommends all residents avoid travel to countries and states with confirmed cases of sustained community-spread COVID-19. These locations currently include; China, South Korea, Italy, Iran, Japan, Hong Kong, and the states of Washington, New York, and California. It is also advised that residents avoid cruise ships and those older residents or those with underlying health conditions should also avoid all non-essential travel. Travel guidance can change quickly and without warning. For the most up to date information visit the CDC website’s travel page. Those that choose to travel to these regions may be subject to self-quarantine and possibly isolation orders upon return to Franklin.

The Health Department continues to meet with city officials and community leaders to address the needs of other potential high-risk populations including daycares, schools, senior housing and long-term care facilities and further guidance will be forthcoming early next week regarding these facilities.

For all of our residents we strongly encourage continuing with personal preventive measures such as:
• Frequent hand washing with warm water and soap or hand sanitizer
• Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands
• Cover your nose and mouth when you cough and sneeze
• Stay home when you are sick

Please remember, N-95 masks require specialized FIT testing to determine correct style and size. Surgical masks do not fit close enough to the face to prevent virus particulates from entering. Therefore, masks are not recommended for the general public. We also strongly discourage the general public from purchasing household products in bulk creating a shortage of basic goods for others in the community.

As always, we continue to follow-up on all reportable communicable diseases in the community to control and prevent future spread of illness. If any individual is suspected of having, or tests positive for COVID-19, we would work closely with the individual, the CDC, and the WI DHS to limit the spread of the virus.

For additional information you can view the dedicated CDC website:
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html or call the Franklin Health Department at 414-425-9101.

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