In Todays Media Availability, Dr. Josh Ennis Talks School Reopening, Testing and Tracing, and Why Active Cases Isnt a Very Important Metric – Lost Coast Outpost

Yes, of course.

Maker records of todays media availability with Dr. Josh Ennis, Humboldt Countys deputy health officer, listed below. Video above.
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Excellent afternoon. Were here with Humboldt County Deputy
Health Officer Dr. Josh Ennis for the August 12th media schedule.
Thank you for being here with us.

Thank you,
and would you like to begin by addressing any concerns to the neighborhood?

Yeah, so from the start we understood that uh truly the legs of our reaction were.
going to hinge upon a couple things. One is.
screening, and after that the second one is the capability to do.
large-scale investigation and tracing, therefore this is something.
weve been working on for months and we continue to build.
We do not need volunteer contact tracers at this time.
We are actively onboarding a number of people.
to help with examination and tracing. We have also striven to increase our.
not only Spanish translation capabilities however likewise.
working with people and bringing people in who are native Spanish speakers to.
assist with the examination and tracing efforts.
KMUD News asks: Information on how the coronavirus spreads has actually somewhat varied because the outbreak started. Can you share the present info? (such as does it survive on surfaces or is it only air-borne, can it travel in water, does it die in sunshine?).

Yeah, so you understand theres a lot we dont understand.
I can inform you what we do understand. I d say the.
majority of transmission is by means of respiratory.
droplets. Okay therefore these are bigger beads.
that a mask will capture, and each bead potentially brings.
you know tens, hundreds countless viral particles. Therefore if the droplets.
are bigger the facial covering will capture them.
And thats the huge majority of transmission. Can it be.
spread by what we call fomites or surface areas that youve touched?
Yeah its definitely possible, but its a little minority.
Is it spread by uh airborne route aerosols very tiny droplets that stick around.
in the air for hours afterwards? There might be some suggestion.
looking at particular scenarios that recommend that does happen.
If it does its a minority, I would state that.
of cases where the air flow is poor, or theres some type of either.
procedure in a health center setting that creates lots of.
pressure around respiratory tracts, or um you understand for example doing an activity.
where theres great deals of yelling, yelling, yelling, powerful exhalation.
Those might be more most likely to produce aerosol, but the huge bulk truly.
seems to be respiratory beads..
The Lost Coast Outpost asks: Humboldt State University is returning from the summertime break quickly, which indicates that a minimum of several hundred and most likely thousands of individuals will be moving back into the county, numerous or the majority of them from areas with greater rates of infection than our own. What steps are Public Health and the university taking to decrease risk to the student neighborhood and to the county as a whole?
HSU has been in contact with Public.
Health preparation over the past a number of months. I.
have been less associated with those conversations so I can not comment.
on specifics of the plans but.
they have been in touch with one another generally through Dr. Frankovich.
and they are continuing the conversation this very week.
The Redheaded Blackbelt asks: Photos were taken by a student of Fortuna High and posted on social media that revealed youth obviously closer than the 3 to 6 recommended feet. If trainees and parents are worried, rather than posting on social media, is there a process they can follow through Public Health?

Yeah so throughout the preparation process um this has actually been left up to the decision.
of the regional requirements as determined by the districts themselves.
Public Health in no way can mandate or determine.
um what needs to take place at each specific school its its.
theres simply a lot of to weigh in on and the requirements are different depending.
upon the community themselves therefore if there.
are concerns um I would motivate moms and dads to.
If specific, contact the school administration uh weve been very clear that.
conditions can not be fulfilled that it is risky to reopen schools to.
on-site guideline and so ultimately its going to be the.
school administration who is accountable for implementing the.
plans. If um for whatever factor that, now.
proves to be inadequate or there are larger issues anyones.
certainly welcome to call the JIC at 441-5000.
and maybe stroll through what the concerns particularly are and.
if there are alternate methods for attempting to make.
things as safe as possible.
The Redheaded Blackbelt asks: A staff member at a Fortuna Nursing center evaluated favorable for COVID, were clients exposed? Has there been any subsequent spread to staff?
So whenever there is a confirmed positive case in a nursing.
facility the state California Department of.
Public Health mandates that there is weekly testing till there are no new.
cases for 14 days. I can confirm that there are no even more.
cases determined and we are working with the included.
nursing facility to evaluate essentially all personnel members.
and all patients over the next couple weeks and we have.
To recognize any more cases.
The Times-Standard asks: How is the estimated percent of the population evaluated for existing infection computed? Is it based upon the total number of tests done or the total number of people checked? If its the latter, how is it ensured individuals who take several tests arent double counted?
Uh this is based simply on the the.
total variety of tests, um there are instances in which.
the very same person has a repeat test for a wide range of.
factors. That seems to be a minority nevertheless it.
is as time goes on.
proving to be a bigger portion as possibly.
some of individuals look for re-testing because of worry about.
repeat direct exposure and so they are double counted. Early on we did.
by hand look and it proved to be on the order of just a few percent um.
that was a couple months ago uh I do not understand.
what percentage it is now um its probably perhaps a great time to.
re-evaluate how we are reporting that number at this moment.
Thank you.
The Times-Standard asks: Can you describe the concerns the county is having with effective disease control? What plans are in place to enhance that metric?
Yeah so the county control panel is set up into three separate classifications.
um, its spread of disease, health care capability.
and after that the last one which this concern I believe is getting to,.
efficiency of illness control and what were speaking about is.
community mitigation measures its speaking about the examination and.
tracing ensuring that we have the.
capability to increase as needed, making sure that.
people are offering info thats needed, that were.
getting test outcomes in a prompt manner so we can intervene.
And last week we moved that from level 2 to level three.
Now it had no bearing on the total alert level.
however its informing in some other methods and this is kind of.
the the manner in which we felt things would move. The.
the spread of disease would move first, there d be some.
amount of time and then effectiveness of illness control would move.
next and then well see the healthcare capacity relocation last.
Therefore this is prepared for.
and so what is it, where is that coming from?
Well I believe last week we had a couple double-digit days of reporting positives.
We had nine, one day 10, another day 25 the next day,.
and weve constructed our investigation tracing group from at one point of only.
being three individuals and weve increased that to 41 individuals I believe at.
this point. Some of them are part-time, theyre not.
full-time and so you can envision when theres a substantial.
bolus, big increase of cases suddenly over a matter of couple of days.
that it takes a little time to arrange out and distribute that load of brand-new cases.
You know all 41 individuals are not operating at the exact very same moment in time and so.
the procedure is just its slower when you get that numerous cases.
in that short of an amount of time.
So to enhance that metric it comes down to.
further increasing our capability for examination.
and tracing.
The North Coast News asks: Fortuna high school trainees went back to face to face classes this week. Photos surfaced of trainees that appeared to be sitting in close distance, not spaced out in desks or six feet apart.

Yeah, in evaluating a few of the questions today I felt it was essential to just
possibly state a little bit about present numbers, trends.
You know at the start we were actually concerned about
frustrating our health care capability. I think weve all seen that recently the
numbers have actually started to trend upward, and at an
increased pace, and theres a lot of focus sometimes on
the variety of active cases. And what this number means is those that are
really in isolation because theyre considered contagious.
I believe what you
miss in keying on that number is that for
every case that we actually identify and put on isolation
there is certainly a handful of other cases out there that we have
not recognized. And if we were to take some of the finest
quotes out there by leading epidemiologists, they d approximate that
there are probably 10 cases for every one validated case that we
in fact have. If we, we might make the argument even
wished to say that were really doing really
well in testing, and we are keeping illness really low since
of our community mitigation measures we might revise that number downward as
five, state. Someplace on the order of 5 to ten
times as numerous cases that were actually validating are most likely out there not
getting evaluated for whatever reason.
And so as we consider the number of
cases are possibly floating out there in the community
we can talk a little bit about how lots of hospitalizations we d expect
by taking a look at case hospitalization rates, and
thats somewhere on the order of around ten percent.
Therefore in the recently weve seen three hospitalizations
and that would recommend utilizing that ten percent number
we multiply by ten that theres about 300 cases, and if you put it
in context of the number active cases its simply north of 50 – so thats.
about six times as lots of cases drifting out there. So I think its real crucial.
to not type in on this number. Its not.
catching everyone who has the illness. Its catching a minority, and were.
beginning to see that in the health center a bit..
KMUD News asks: Mendocino County has put a call out for volunteer agreement tracers. Exists an immediate need in Humboldt for resident agreement tracers (possibly more Spanish speakers?) and if so, how can community members get trained and volunteer?

– Who is accountable for making certain the schools keep with resuming guidelines to guarantee trainee security?

– Could the county need schools to close if theyre not able to ensure correct social distancing and COVID security preventative measures are taking place?

KMUD News asks: Mendocino County has actually put a call out for volunteer contract tracers. If trainees and moms and dads are worried, rather than posting on social media, is there a process they can follow through Public Health? The Times-Standard asks: How is the estimated percent of the population checked for existing infection determined? Is it based on the overall number of tests done or the total number of people checked? If its the latter, how is it ensured individuals who take numerous tests arent double counted?

– What happens if the school doesnt have adequate PPE (like masks, hand sanitizer, etc.). Are PPE costs expected to come out of their own budget plans to guarantee student security and compliance with the countys order, or exist government funds available?
Yeah so perhaps ill simply deal with that in parts, um.
you know for whos responsible for making certain the schools uh.
keep with the reopening uh plans I believe Ive already spoken to this and.
thats actually the school administration if theres really any concern I believe.
parents require to bring it back to the school.
and attempt and fix it with the school administration.
Certainly you might pass a message and try along to the.
School superintendent. With 70-plus schools Public Health is not.
able to manage individually each and every.
private school. In regards to a school closure.
due to appropriate social distancing, COVID precautions,.
you know I think theres a huge societal benefit to.
having in-person school instruction specifically with.
younger kids so I believe we require to attempt tough to make this work as a neighborhood.
Weve been extremely clear that resuming to on-site in-person instruction should.
If it can be done in a method that it, only be taking place.
follows the guidance as it exists now.
And to keep everyone as safe as possible.
in concerns to PPE uh I believe the state has done direct.
outreach to the school districts, they have offered PPE to them also.
and there is a path for schools to request PPE straight from the state.
They could certainly concern the county also, there is a procedure in location.
for offering PPE at the county level however.
the schools, is my understanding, has a direct route.
to PPE through the state.