West Central Mountains COVID Task Force Meeting Notes 07/16/2020
Cascade Medical Center (CMC): Seeing about a 10% positive rate now. Cascade has had at least 3 business close temporarily due to covid, including their only pharmacy (now reopened). Have responded to calls from other business owners on exposure issues and how they should respond. Two restaurants are still closed due to exposure. Activities this week: Monday – CMC presented to Cascade City Council asking for mask ordinance. Council requested their attorney to draft a RESOLUTION encouraging people to wear masks in doors. CMC is scheduled to update the council at the next meeting, 7/27. Will present new and updated information and again ask for an ordinance.
Tuesday – CMC presented to Cascade Chamber. Similar presentation but provided handouts on recommended business protocols (email admin AT wcmedc DOT org to be sent materials). Hospital is still providing drive-through testing, with appointments, if patient is symptomatic and provider orders test.
St. Lukes McCall has tested 1030 people with 53 positives. Hospital is running fairly full. 79 patients statewide, a significant increase from last week (66). 42 two weeks ago. 18 COVID positive patients in the ICU’s statewide. Plenty of ventilators available for now. Still testing symptomatic people. Had a town hall Monday, it was a success, looking forward to having additional meetings to discuss with the community.
New Meadows is considering a discussion about a mask policy.
CDH: Continuing to monitor, 28 official local cases. Working with MDSD on the school’s reopening plan. Valley County was not included in the mask mandate that was implemented in Ada County. City level data may be available soon (rather than county). Would be helpful in understanding the picture.
Testing: Rite Aid is starting testing soon locally (McCall). Appointments have to be made online through their website. Titled Project Baseline. There is eligibility criteria (exposure, symptomatic). Self administered in your car outside of the store. 2-5 days for results typically, nasal swab, no out of pocket cost. Crush the Curve has been very busy and tough to get to come to the area. The group is working on some educational materials for businesses pertaining to testing protocols.
There’s a discussion elevating about creating a part time community care coordinator position to help businesses and individuals who aren’t in the hospital system navigate COVID realities and proctor various resources. May be an opportunity to partner with St. Lukes McCall and WCMEDC. More to follow.
There’s still thousands of people who have COVID who aren’t in the hospital and there are some concerns about the volume of spread. CDH has instructed them to stay home, which is reassuring.
Might be good to run this group’s efforts up to the Governor’s task force for advisement.
Marketing: With city/county mandates and resolutions passed asking for masks, looking at creating a video for next phase of marketing to personalize the message about mask wearing. New mask page on website too. PR push and PSA to Boise and local markets. McCall is working on some business signage advocacy. Two new electrified road side signs requiring masks to be installed at entryway to McCall by Friday, compliments of USFS and City of McCall. Team is also working on a mask hand out day with some info attached to help educate folks. Some concerns about reaching younger folks–how can we target/educate a younger audience? Tik tok and snapchat might be good options. Will do some outreach to businesses to get teams of people and leaders to share the message. McKenzie will send out an email soon to get video shoots scheduled with various people and groups (school teams, businesses, etc.). Need to pull together some budget for this project.
Might be good to reach out to some of the mask advocacy groups on social media and have them promote responsible mask wearing or volunteer in the effort to get masks out. There’s different levels of effectiveness for different types of masks. Future efforts could include educating folks on types of masks.
McCall amateur golf tourney is at the end of the month: The city contracts out for golf services so the golf pro is responsible for events. CDH has been engaged, but there are some concerns from the community about hosting an event. It is an invitation-only event. The Golf Pro has established COVID protocols that are detailed on the McCall Golf Club website such as all indoor activities are cancelled, limits on participant numbers and spectator gatherings. Violators will be disqualified. The city has received some complaints and will continue to educate and monitor, but the conduct of tournaments is the golf pro/contractor’s responsibility. The golf course remains open with USGA and Central District Health safety protocols in place.
Open discussion about branding concerns for events and competitions (bike races, tournaments, etc.).
City of McCall has had an employee test positive, with 3 possible other exposures (employees). Monitoring and weathering the situation.
Cascade authorized a resolution for encouraging masks, as did Valley County.
SW District Health and CDH continue to monitor and form recommendations based on masking and current realities. More to follow as the situation changes. Can contact local delegates and Board of Health to advocate for policies of interest to the group.
McCall Farmer’s Market has been a great example of social distancing and masking. Good local policies are proving to be very effective and folks are encouraged.