County of Orange Subscribe  |   Unsubscribe
Lisa Bartlett - Supervisor, Fifth District
April 24, 2020 Volume 7 Issue 20
Please Help Protect Our Seniors From COVID-19

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Launch of OC COVID-19 Testing Network

The OC Health Care Agency (HCA) is pleased to announce the launch of the OC COVID-19 Testing Network, which offers COVID-19 testing starting Tuesday, April 21, 2020 to Orange County residents who meet the criteria detailed below.

The Network coordinates and expands testing across Orange County to create a safety net for any community member who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms but is unable to receive testing through a health care provider.

“We have partnered with an initial set of community health centers who are performing FDA-approved PCR testing, the most reliable testing available to detect current infection,” said Dr. Nichole Quick, County Health Officer. “The OC Health Care Agency will continue to work diligently to expand this network by bringing more locations online in the days and weeks to come.”

The PCR test identifies if someone is currently infected from a sample taken with a swab. It is not a blood test, nor does it test for antibodies. Residents with symptoms of COVID-19, which generally include fever, cough, and shortness of breath, should first contact their medical provider to get guidance on testing and care. Individuals who are unable to be tested by their provider may schedule an appointment at any Network test site to receive a medical screening and test. Initial locations include:

  • AltaMed Medical Group, Anaheim
  • AltaMed Medical Group, Santa Ana/Bristol
  • Nhan Hoa Comprehensive Health Care Clinic, Garden Grove
  • UCI Health, multiple locations

A continually-updated list of test sites, with information on scheduling and the appointment process, can be found here or by calling the HCA’s Health Referral Line at (800) 564-8448. 

“Because of continued challenges of obtaining testing supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) for health care providers, testing may be restricted at times to high priority groups as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),” said Dr. Quick. “Residents must make an appointment for testing to assure eligibility and availability of testing.”

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Essential Businesses Must Wear Face Coverings

Effective today, Friday, April 24, all employees of any grocery store, pharmacy/drug store, convenience store, gas station, restaurant, food preparation establishment, or retail store in Orange County who may have contact with the public must wear a cloth face covering while at work.

The Orange County Board of Supervisors this week approved the directive pursuant to Government Code section 8634 that will apply countywide.

Furthermore, employees must comply with this regulation for the health and safety of all in the community as it is enforceable by law enforcement per Government Code section 8665.

Though the regulation issued by the Board today does not apply to customers, County Health Officer Dr. Nichole Quick continues to strongly encourage residents to wear face coverings while engaged in essential activities outside the home. 

If a city has a more restrictive rule regarding face coverings, the more restrictive rule will apply to their jurisdiction.

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COVID-19 Orange County Case Counts by Cities

The Orange County Health Care Agency (HCA) continues to release the daily COVID-19 case counts by cities in Orange County, in addition to the cumulative cases and deaths to date in Orange County. As of today, HCA is reporting 1,845 positive cases in Orange County and 36 deaths.

Please be advised that the city data is reflective of where cases live, not necessarily where transmission occurred. Additionally, city numbers should not be interpreted to reflect where transmission is geographically focused or not, as COVID-19 is present in all communities in Orange County.

Case counts are also not reflective of all disease transmission in any given community because testing is prioritized for those at greatest risk or most sick. Asymptomatic and persons with mild disease may not be reflected due to not being tested.

Because transmission occurs throughout the County, it is important for all residents to practice social-distancing as directed by the Governor and the Orange County Health Officer regardless of the case count in their city. Doing so will help to reduce the spread of infection, ease the burden on our hospital and healthcare system, and protect those most vulnerable in our county.

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Laguna Beach Tactics to Avoid Spread of Virus

The Laguna Beach City Council and the community are kept apprised of tactics in place or being planned to protect Laguna’s residents by Community Updates and reports from City Manager John Pietig. All Laguna Beach trailheads, beaches, and adjacent beach parks were closed on March 23.

On April 22, the City sent a release to the community that violators of the closure may be cited with a misdemeanor, fined up to $1,000, or arrested by the Laguna Beach Police Department. 

The popular facilities will remain closed despite pleas from some residents and remain closed to reduce the spread of the coronavirus that has swept throughout the county. 

“This was a difficult decision for the council,” said City Manager John Pietig at Tuesday night’s televised and streamed City Council meeting. “We want to provide amenities, but not in a way that endangers our residents.”

Opening city beaches would mean large crowds and also would mean more people in grocery stores, gas stations, convenience stores, and take-out restaurants, again increasing the risk to many, including our residents and those most vulnerable to COVID-19, according to the Community Update. 

Staff and officials are discussing how to reopen the amenities in a way that would not encourage large gatherings at which social distancing could not be maintained. Pietig opined Tuesday it would require the management of public safety personnel. 

For more information, please visit Stu News Laguna.

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OC to Follow State Guidelines for Wearing Masks
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Guidance for Use of Washable Face Coverings
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Disposing of Personal Protective Equipment

As we continue to wear disposable gloves and masks to protect ourselves, please remember to properly dispose of used protective equipment in the trash bin. Littering of waste can pollute the environment and pose a threat to human health, including children who may not realize the items they are touching and can potentially be hazardous.

We’re encouraging Orange County residents to make smart decisions to help us all stay healthy and safe during this difficult time.

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Governor Newsome Outlines Six Critical Indicators Before Modifying Stay-at-Home Order

Governor Gavin Newsom this week unveiled six key indicators that will guide California’s thinking for when and how to modify the stay-at-home and other orders during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Governor noted that the progress in flattening the curve, increased preparedness of our health care delivery system and the effects of other COVID-19 interventions have yielded positive results. However, these actions have also impacted the economy, poverty and overall health care in California. Any consideration of modifying the stay-at-home order must be done using a gradual, science-based and data-driven framework.

“While Californians have stepped up in a big way to flatten the curve and buy us time to prepare to fight the virus, at some point in the future we will need to modify our stay-at-home order,” said Governor Newsom. “As we contemplate reopening parts of our state, we must be guided by science and data, and we must understand that things will look different than before.”

Until we build immunity, our actions will be aligned to achieve the following: 

  • Ensure our ability to care for the sick within our hospitals;
  • Prevent infection in people who are at high risk for severe disease;
  • Build the capacity to protect the health and well-being of the public; and
  • Reduce social, emotional and economic disruptions

California’s six indicators for modifying the stay-at-home order are: 

  • The ability to monitor and protect our communities through testing, contact tracing, isolating, and supporting those who are positive or exposed;
  • The ability to prevent infection in people who are at risk for more severe COVID-19;
  • The ability of the hospital and health systems to handle surges;
  • The ability to develop therapeutics to meet the demand;
  • The ability for businesses, schools, and child care facilities to support physical distancing; and
  • The ability to determine when to re-institute certain measures, such as the stay-at-home orders, if necessary.

The Governor said there is not a precise timeline for modifying the stay-at-home order, but that these six indicators will serve as the framework for making that decision.

He also noted that things will look different as California makes modifications. For example, restaurants will have fewer tables and classrooms will be reconfigured. For more information on California’s response, visit

To view the slide deck of "California's Roadmap to Modify the Stay-At-Home Order" used during the Governor’s press conference, click here or on the image below.

In addition, the Governor this week announced plans to resume delayed medical care for Californians, which was deferred as the state prepared for a surge of COVID-19 patients. This action helps hospitals retain business and patients resume needed non-COVID-19 care. For more information, click here.

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County of Orange Mental Resiliency Resources

As the spread and far reaching impacts of COVID-19 dominate the world news, we have all witnessed and experienced the parallel spread of worry, anxiety, and uncertainty. The way to overcome this natural tendency is to build our mental resilience, the ability to refocus, clear our minds, and discard negative thoughts.

Here's what you can do...

1) Remember that knowledge is power. Understanding the factors that affect a person’s immune response to COVID-19 will matter as much as, or more than, understanding the virus. There is great information available on the Orange County Health Care Agency's website

2) Don’t accept everything you read or hear. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides information and frequent updates on the COVID-19’s spread, severity, risk assessment, etc., on the CDC's website

3) Get your emotional support system in place:

  • Maintain familiar routines in daily life as much as possible; take care of your basic needs and employ helpful coping strategies; rest during work or between shifts, eat healthy food and engage in physical activity.
  • Stay connected with friends and family, even virtually connected, and maintain your social networks.
  • Have the emails and phone numbers of close friends and family handy.

4) Take control, incorporate preventative measures:

  • See the CDC’s list of preventative measures.
  • The constant stream of news reports can cause anyone to feel anxious or distressed. Instead, seek updates and practical guidelines at intervals during the day.
  • Be supportive to others. Assisting others in their time of need can benefit the person receiving support as well as the helper.

If you or a loved one are feeling anxiety, worry or fear related to the social disruption caused by COVID-19, you can also reach out to these resources for support:

For general information about COVID-19, please call the OC Health Care Agency’s (HCA) Health Referral Line at (800) 564-8448, HCA website, or follow HCA on Facebook and Twitter.

For non-medical questions, contact the County of Orange Public Information Hotline at (714) 628-7085. 

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COVID-19 County of Orange Resource Directory

The County of Orange has consolidated the information and links to various local, state and federal resources that are available to residents and businesses. Please visit our new COVID-19 Resource Directory!  

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Toll-Free Hotline for COVID-19 County Resources

Residents can now call (833) 426-6411 for inquiries related to COVID–19 in Orange County. This hotline will provide resources specific to the Orange County COVID-19 response.

Through the hotline, callers can be connected to the following County of Orange agencies:

  • Orange County Health Care Agency – Health Referral Line, Behavioral Health Resources
  • Orange County Social Services Agency – Risk Benefits
  • Orange County Office on Aging – Resources for Seniors
  • Orange County District Attorney’s Office – Scams, Price Gouging
  • County of Orange Emergency Operations Center Hotline – Non-Medical Questions

Residents who have questions about COVID-19 can contact the Orange County COVID-19 Hotline at any time, but individual hotline hours will vary. The Orange County COVID-19 Hotline can be reached at (833) 426-6411.

The Orange County Health Care Agency website has information that is regularly updated regarding the status of COVID-19 in Orange County.

For information about COVID-19 in the State of California, please visit their website.

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COVID-19 Hotline Hours Have Changed
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While You Are Home, Spot the Scams

Many of you are at home working or self-isolating and spending more time on the internet. Unfortunately, thieves are taking advantage of this situation and coming up with new and innovative ways to separate you from your money.

Now would be a good time to educate yourself on the various ploys that are used by scammers regarding COVID-19. Read more here.

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REMINDER: Call 9-1-1 in a Medical Emergency
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Please Check On Your Elderly Neighbors
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COVID-19 Resources for Families with Children
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Letter to the Community from OC Public Libraries
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Resources for Learning & Teaching from Home
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COVID-19 Animal Testing Guidance
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Important Pet Info: COVID-19 FAQs

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COVID-19 Hotline for Current IHSS Recipients
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Electronic Benefit Transfer Card Online Purchasing
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Rest Assured, Your Tap Water is Safe & Reliable
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For South County water providers, click here.
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Click the image above for information on their
Meals on Wheels and Congregate Lunches for Seniors.


Click the image above for information on their
Drive-Thru Food Distribution, weekdays in San Clemente.


Click the image above for information on their
 Drive Through Food Bank, Monday - Friday in Irvine.


Click the image above for information on their
 Food Pantry, Monday - Friday in Laguna Beach.


Click the image above for information on their
PEACE Community Resource Center Food Pantries.


Click the image above for information on their
Food Pantry Services weekdays by appointment.

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For questions or comments regarding my E-Newsletter, please contact my office staff at (714) 834-3550 or email my Community Relations Advisor, Sergio Prince, at .
In This Issue
Doug Woodyard
Chief of Staff

James Dinwiddie
Deputy Chief of Staff

Sara May
Senior Policy Advisor

Yasie Goebel
Policy Advisor

Sergio Prince
Community Relations Advisor

Megan Dutra
Communications Advisor

Pauline Colvin
Executive Assistant

Rosemary Conteras
Staff Aide

Stay Updated!
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