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originally posted by: Salander
a reply to: Irishhaf
The drive through is a brilliant idea by Colorado and now others.
Drive-through centers have helped South Korea do some of the fastest, most-extensive testing of any country. And while nobody is claiming that South Korea has defeated the outbreak, experts credit the emphasis on testing with reducing case numbers and fatalities.
A nation of 51 million, South Korea has tested about 250,000 people since its outbreak began on Jan. 20, with a daily capacity of 15,000. It has conducted 3,600 tests per million people compared to five per million in the U.S.
South Korea's aggressive testing may make it unnecessary to impose the sort of lockdowns to which China and Italy have resorted, although health officials insist that all options remain on the table in dealing with the epidemic.
Georgia's coronavirus cases have risen to 121, with the Atlanta area most affected.
That comes after cases of the deadly new strain of virus had jumped from 66 to 99 in one day.
There remains one coronavirus death in the state - a 67-year-old man in Cobb County.
The cases remain centered around the Atlanta area, with 27 cases now in Fulton County and 22 in Cobb County. There are now five in Gwinnett County.
The world's largest gun store, in metro Atlanta, has had lines that are six and eight people deep. A gun store in Los Angeles had lines that stretched down the block. And at least one store in Idaho put limits on sales after its shelves were nearly cleared out.
Just as grocery stores have been stripped bare by Americans panicked by coronavirus, guns and ammunition have started flying off the shelves. Retailers say the buying frenzy is being fueled by consumers who are worried that people are becoming so desperate and unpredictable, they need to ensure they can protect themselves.
“It's been insane,” said Jay Wallace, who owns Adventure Outdoors in Smyrna, Georgia, adding that his ammunition sales are up more than five times the usual numbers. “This is like a Rod Serling ‘Twilight Zone’ episode."
Effective at midnight, Atlanta’s bars and gyms will be closed.
Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced that she has signed an executive order limiting restaurants to take out service and closing gyms and nightclubs.
All movie theaters, live music venues and bowling alleys are included.
The order also includes suspending towing and booting of vehicles in the city’s right of way.
Bottoms also said she could be open to alcohol takeout.
State Sen. Brandon Beach said he was screened for the disease Saturday when he sought medical attention for a cough and mild fever, but that the test results didn’t arrive until Wednesday.
In between, the Alpharetta Republican said he felt healthy enough to join dozens of legislators, staff members and reporters for a one-day special legislative session
“I’m shaking with rage. We were told if we had symptoms to refrain from going to the Capitol on Monday. Senator Brandon Beach knew he was exhibiting symptoms since MARCH THE 10TH!” wrote state Rep. Scot Turner on Facebook.
An Albany hospital said laboratory tests confirmed two patients had the virus when they died. Test results are still incomplete for a third patient who also died at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, and authorities are waiting to learn the findings of autopsies on two other Albany residents who died Sunday, one at a nursing home.
With the number of confirmed cases rising in many Georgia counties, including among people hospitalized with COVID-19 symptoms, the deaths in Albany and Atlanta suggest the coronavirus may already have killed more people than state officials had previously acknowledged.
“People are dying – that’s how serious this is,” Dougherty County Coroner Michael Fowler said at a news conference in Albany. “It is not a game.”
I had no idea that the worlds largest gun store was here. Googled it and if I'm not mistaken it's in the old Phar Mor in Smyrna.
12:15 p.m.: The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Georgia increased to 287, Chelsea Prince reports, up from 197 cases Wednesday. The state says 10 people have died.
Gov. Brian Kemp said he does not plan currently to impose any statewide mandatory curfews, business closures or forced quarantines following the confirmed deaths Thursday of 10 people infected with coronavirus in Georgia.
For the time being, the governor said he will leave it up to local officials whether to shut down businesses or require people to stay home. He is urging people to avoid social gatherings, wash their hands regularly and call their doctor first before showing up at the hospital if they are sick.
“We are all in this fight together and together we will emerge stronger than ever,” Kemp said in an online news conference late Thursday afternoon.
Georgia lawmakers hope that $5 million added to the amended fiscal 2020 budget will help maintain the rural health-care system through the pandemic and beyond.
“Our rural hospitals are the backbone of that network even though we do not always think about them that way,” House Appropriations Committee Chairman Terry England, R-Auburn, said. “These funds and the strike team will help stabilize those facilities in an immediate and long term fashion.”
Rural communities usually have a population that is at higher risk for COVID-19.
Georgia's first drive-thru COVID-19 testing site began, receiving participants at Jim Miller Park in Marietta on Wednesday afternoon.
"Today we are starting with pre-approved testing of high-risk individuals," Dr. Janet Memark, who is the Public Health Director for Cobb and Douglas Counties, told FOX 5's Deidra Dukes.
Dr. Memark says the site received less than 50 testing kits, so high-risk individuals who interact with a large number of people like health care workers, nursing home staff, and public safety workers will receive priority.
Georgia’s entire legislative branch was urged to self-isolate after a state senator revealed he tested positive for coronavirus, two days after he showed up for a special session vote with symptoms of the disease while he was waiting for the results.
The development sparked outrage from some of his colleagues, a reprimand from Gov. Brian Kemp and new scrutiny over recent decisions by legislative leaders that could have prolonged the exposure to hundreds of people at the Capitol.
All 236 Georgia lawmakers and dozens of the Legislature’s staffers, along with teenage pages, received memos late Wednesday urging them to isolate themselves for two weeks after the state senator, Brandon Beach, disclosed his positive test for COVID-19.
Governor Brian Kemp announced Georgia has received an official statewide disaster declaration from the U.S. Small Business Administration. This declaration will provide assistance in the form of SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans to impacted small businesses in all 159 counties in Georgia.
"This is great news for Georgia small business owners," said Governor Kemp. "As we continue to navigate the impact of COVID-19 on our economy, small business owners can apply for much-needed funding to continue operation and pay their employees. My thanks to the Trump Administration for their swift action to protect small business owners throughout the country."
The police department has been ordered to stop enforcing the laws prohibiting it.
All restaurants in the City of Atlanta are operating under a to-go only policy after Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms signed an executive order on Thursday closing all restaurant dining rooms. After news of the order broke, the restaurant community reached out her on Twitter to advocate for the ability to also sell alcohol, a big revenue driver for the industry.
The order mention wine and/or malt beverages but not liquor.
Updated: March 21, 2020 - 12:29 PM
GEORGIA — There are now 507 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Georgia and 14 deaths, as of 12 p.m. Saturday. That is up from 485 cases and 14 deaths as of 7 p.m. Friday.
This number could change later today. The Department of Public Health said they will now update the number of cases twice a day, at noon and 7 p.m. as the number of tests increases.
Due to an extremely high volume of unemployment claims filed as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, individuals may experience a delay in requesting weekly benefit payments. If you are unable to claim your weekly benefits by March 27th, please try again later.
As of Monday afternoon, the Atlanta hospital says it's "operating at or near capacity."
An influx of coronavirus patients and limited resources - even before the global pandemic - are making the problem worse.
The hospital was already feeling the pinch after a 24-inch pipe burst in early December. The flooding wiped out 200 patient care beds that won't be back in use until this fall.
In the metro Atlanta area, the researchers say if just 20 percent of the population gets infected in the next six months, hospitals in the area would need nearly twice as many beds than they currently have.
ProPublica and Harvard report that as of 2018, there were about 12,800 hospital beds in Atlanta and that about 1,600 of those were ICU beds. Nearly three-quarters of them were already occupied.
According to the American Hospital Directory, Grady Memorial had 974 total staffed beds before the December flooding.
Under less ideal scenarios - if, for instance, 40 percent of the adult population contracted the virus - Atlanta would potentially need as much as four times the beds it currently has.
"The stress is not just capacity," Chief Medical Officer Dr. Robert Jansen told CBS News. "It's not just stress of supplies, but on the individuals taking care of the patients. Because so much is not known."
At all of Atlanta's four major hospitals, every ICU bed is taken.
Back in Georgia, at one rural hospital, 12 COVID-19 patients have died. That's more than in thirty-eight states. The hospital is overwhelmed.
"They've asked for help, but we can't give it," Jansen said.
“Despite what has been reported in the media, we understand from the GBI forensic pathologist conducting the study that the results are still pending and it has not yet been determined whether the death was a result of COVID-19.”
The statement continued: “However, because we were told that an initial COVID-19 test performed after her death was positive, and because we know people can expose others before they show evidence of the disease, as a cautionary measure, we have contacted the employees and patients who may have had contact with this employee in the days leading up to the colleague’s last day at work.
Fannin County is one of many that made an emergency declaration this week amid the coronavirus pandemic.
County sheriff’s officials are now clarifying that this means people from Atlanta with cabins in the area cannot go to their cabins at this time. The Fannin Sheriff’s Administration posted this on Facebook Thursday:
“I have received multiple inquiries wanting to know if people from Atlanta can come to their cabins. The answer is ABSOLUTELY NOT!! Atlanta is under a “Shelter in Place” order. Our ordinance specifically prohibits this.”