Harnett County continues to work with state officials and local agencies to closely monitor the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19). Residents are encouraged to stay up-to-date with the latest COVID-19 information by reviewing our daily press release. We will continue to provide new information while also communicating reminders for residents during this time.
In today’s update, the following sections include new information:
HARNETT COUNTY COVID-19 DATA
As our cases continue to increase, protect yourself and others by doing the 3 Ws: WEAR a cloth covering over your nose and mouth, WAIT 6 feet apart, and WASH your hands. These actions can protect our families and neighbors. Highlights of the data derived from the confirmed positive COVID-19 cases for Harnett County as of October 9, 2020 include:
It is important to remember that the data contained in this release is subject to change as cases are investigated and additional testing is performed.
Outbreaks and Clusters: The Health Department is currently monitoring eight outbreaks and three clusters for COVID-19. In a congregate living setting, a COVID-19 outbreak is defined as two or more laboratory-confirmed cases. The following facilities are experiencing a second COVID-19 outbreak: Harnett Woods Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Cornerstone Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Universal Healthcare and Pinecrest Gardens. Confirmation regarding positive cases of COVID-19 outbreaks are also reported at Greenleaf Assisted Living, Emerald Health and Rehabilitation Center, and Senior Citizen Village, and one correctional institution, Harnett Correctional Institution. Facilities with less than 10 residents are not included to protect patient confidentiality.
Clusters: A COVID-19 cluster is defined as a minimum of five laboratory-confirmed cases in close proximity. Three COVID-19 clusters have been reported, two clusters are reported at Campbell University and one cluster is reported at the Summerville Fire Department. Data are preliminary, and these numbers and facilities are subject to change as more information is obtained during outbreak investigations. VIEW REPORT
COVID-19 Harnett County Dashboard-October 9, 2020: The COVID-19 Harnett County Dashboard offers a snapshot of confirmed COVID-19 cases specific to Harnett County. The report includes daily case counts, cases per week, cases by age, race, ethnicity, gender and deaths. For more information regarding the data in this report contact the Health Department at 910-893-7550. VIEW REPORT
COMMISSIONERS TO HOLD WORK SESSION ON OCTOBER 13
The Harnett County Board of Commissioners will hold their next work session on Tuesday, October 13, 2020 at 9:00 AM. A quorum of the Harnett County Board of Commissioners and County staff will be stationed in the meeting chambers to maintain the recommended social distancing of 6 feet.
The meeting will not be open for the public to attend in person; however, options are available for the public to attend the meeting virtually. Virtual attendees can receive live updates from the meeting by tuning into Harnett County Government’s YouTube Channel at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCU7mTF6HTD65x_98EhAMeMg/featured. The live stream will be audio only. You may also follow along on Twitter (@HarnettCounty) to get live updates during the meeting or call in and listen to the meeting by dialing (910)-814-6959.
The October 13 work session agenda includes:
ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS MOVE TO PLAN A STARTING OCTOBER 26
Based on guidance from the Office of the Governor, Harnett County Schools will transition from a hybrid A/B learning model to five day in-person instruction for grades K-5 starting October 26th, 2020.
Students in grades 6-12 currently participating in the hybrid A/B learning model will remain on this schedule until the Governor implements Plan A (in-person instruction) for middle and high school. Any student in grades K-12 that selected remote learning as an option is permitted to remain on their current schedule.
Harnett County Schools is committed to utilizing a variety of health and safety measures aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other illnesses. These include mandatory face coverings, social distancing, frequent hand-washing, and regular cleaning/disinfecting of common spaces inside of all buildings and on school buses.
2020-2021 TRANSITION TO IN-PERSON INSTRUCTION SCHEDULE
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 14
No in-person or remote learning.
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 21
Remote Learning Day
Teachers, students, and staff are remote on designated “state remote learning days.” Future designated “state remote learning days” are 12/21, 2/12, 3/26, and 5/7.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 23
Final day of A/B schedule for K-5 students.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 26
Five-day daily in-person instruction (Plan A) begins for students in Kindergarten through fifth grade.
Please note: Grades 6-12 will begin five-day instruction once allowed by executive order. HCS will notify parents once this date is confirmed.
For further information and updates on the district’s reopening plan, please visit www.harnett.k12.nc.us.
COOPER ANNOUNCES $35M TO SUPPORT CHILD CARE PROGRAMS
Governor Roy Cooper announced that the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) is providing $35 million in operational grants from federal Coronavirus Relief Funds to help child care programs providing in-person child care during the COVID-19 pandemic. From April through July, NCDHHS has provided over $80 million in monthly operational grants for child care programs that served over 105,000 children statewide throughout the pandemic.
The grants will be awarded to licensed child care providers operating in-person during the months of August through October 2020 to help offset the significant financial strains due to the additional expenses to meet health and safety guidelines, while experiencing reduced revenues from lower enrollment. Providers have the flexibility to use these grants to meet their unique individual business and operational needs.
All eligible licensed child care programs will receive some level of operational grants. Specific grant amounts are based on program size, quality, and whether the program serve infants and toddlers.
Throughout the pandemic, NCDHHS has maintained North Carolina’s long history of investments in child care by providing monthly operational grants since April, child care teacher and staff bonuses in April and May, and an emergency subsidy child care program in April and May.
For more information about child care during COVID-19 in North Carolina, visit www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/covid19/child-care.
NEW COVID-19 TOOLKIT AVAILABLE FOR PLACES OF WORSHIP
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services updated its COVID-19 guidance for places of worshipOpen PDF and shared a toolkit to support faith leaders in slowing the spread of the virus.
The updated guidance recommends that places of worship continue to meet online or outside if possible. If in-person services are held, NCDHHS recommends limiting gatherings to 30 percent of occupancy or 100 people, whichever is less.
A new online toolkit is available to help faith leaders slow the spread of COVID-19 in their communities. It includes 10 actions faith leaders can take with supporting materials and templates. Actions include:
The toolkit is available in English and Spanish. It includes talking points, sample language for websites and newsletters, social media posts, flyers, information to host a community testing event and to request Personal Protective Equipment and FAQs.
WIC PROGRAM EXTENDS SUPPORT FOR FAMILIES
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has extended essential flexibilities for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) to ensure participants continue to receive the food and health support they need throughout the COVID-19 national public health emergency. Extending these waivers allows nutritionally at-risk mothers, babies and children to use their benefits in a safe manner and enables the WIC program to operate based on local conditions throughout the pandemic.
WIC remains open to serve eligible families, with some modifications in how services are provided in response to COVID-19. USDA’s The WIC waivers allow for:
Additionally, people who are currently certified to participate in the WIC program will have their benefits added to their eWIC account without any further action and can use current eWIC cards for ongoing food benefits. New applicants can apply by completing the online referral form. These modifications limit face-to-face interactions at the local WIC clinic for the safety of both beneficiaries and local administrators of the program.
Anyone who has questions, needs to update certification or who is seeking WIC services for the first time can call a local WIC office for specific guidance on how services are being provided.
The North Carolina WIC program is administered through the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and provides supplemental foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding support and health care referrals to more than 250,000 participants each month, including low-income pregnant, postpartum and breastfeeding women, infants and children under five who are determined to be at nutritional risk. Program services are provided by county health departments, community and rural health centers and community action agencies. WIC is an equal opportunity provider.
To learn more about the WIC program or to find a local WIC clinic, visit www.nutritionnc.com/mywic.
COOPER MOVES NC TO PHASE 3
North Carolina will ease cautiously some restrictions while continuing safety measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 as the state’s metrics remained stable in September, Governor Roy Cooper announced last week.
Executive Order 169 began on Friday, October 2 at 5 p.m. and will continue for three weeks through October 23. Its new provisions include:
State and public health officials will continue watching the key COVID-19 trends over the next several weeks to determine if any further restrictions can be eased when the current Executive Order expires October 23.
Read Executive Order 169.
Read the FAQs on Executive Order 169.
Read the slides from this week's briefing.
PROGRAMS & ACTIVITIES FOR HARNETT COUNTY RESIDENTS
Harnett County Health Department
Drive Thru Flu Shot Clinic. Everyone 6 months of age and older should get a yearly flu vaccine. The Health Department will be providing drive thru flu shot clinics Monday-Friday from 8:00a.m.-11:00a.m. and 1:00p.m.-4:00pm. The drive thru clinics will allow you to receive your flu vaccine without leaving your car. Download our consent form, complete and bring along with insurance information including Medicare and Medicaid. Vaccination Consent Form. The Vaccine Information Statement
Pink Ribbon Breakfast 2020. The Harnett County Health Department announced the annual “Pink Ribbon Breakfast,” in recognition of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month has been cancelled due to increased concerns about COVID-19. Public Health Officials felt this was the best way to proceed. We are disappointed that we are unable to hold this event for our breast cancer survivors and families, however the safety of attendees must always come first. Throughout the month of October, the Health Department will be providing access to mobile mammography screenings, and providing health information and resources for women. For more information, contact the Harnett County Health Department at 910-893-7550 or log onto the Health Department’s web site located at www.harnett.org/health.
Be Smart, Eat Smart Wellness Challenge. The Be Smart, Eat Smart Wellness Challenge will take place October 19th-November 15th. It is a virtual program that helps participants eat healthy by focuses on the following healthy eating strategies: Enjoying More Fruits & Vegetables, Rethinking Your Drink, Enjoying More Whole Grains, and Right-Sizing Your Portions. During the challenge, participants will receive newsletters with the benefits of adopting healthy behaviors, receive healthy recipes, earn points for practicing the healthy eating strategies each day during the challenge, and track points in the challenge log. All participants will be entered into a drawing for prizes at the completion of the program. For more information or to register call 910-814-6196. The registration deadline is Friday, October 16th. Learn more
Harnett County Public Library
The Harnett County Public Library is open with some service limitations. The number of customers allowed in the building will be limited. Patrons are required to wear masks and are encouraged to complete their library transactions and exit the building as quickly as possible so that library staff can safely accommodate others.
The Harnett County Public Library continues to provide access to content that enriches the lives of our community. This includes:
Visit the Harnett County Public Library’s COVID-19 Resources webpage for the latest information about library programs and services.
StudentAccess Updated. StudentAccess, an online student library card initiative that began last year between the Harnett County Public Library and the Harnett County Public School System, was recently updated for the 2020-2021 school year. New and incoming students now have access to all of the educational electronic resources the Harnett County Public Library has to offer. Animated picture books, e-books, homework help, language learning apps, and so much more are now just a click away. To take advantage of this resource, students should first go to the library’s website at www.harnett.org/library and visit the Kids e-library page. To login to any of the e-resources, students will use their PowerSchool Student ID number as their library card number and the last 4 digits of that number will serve as their pin.
Dial-A-Story Service. The Harnett County Public Library also launched a new Dial-A-Story service. With this service, parents can call 910-814-6350 anytime of the day to let their children listen to a pre-recorded message of one of our librarians reading a storybook! The stories will be updated every few weeks and will feature different readers each time.
Book Bundles. Need a great story for your little ones? We’ve got you covered! The Harnett County Public Library now offers Book Bundles! Book Bundles are a selection of 5-7 storybooks picked out by our librarians and put together by a certain theme. We’ve got fairy tales, dinosaurs, bedtime stories, and so much more! You can check out a book bundle in the library or pick one up curbside. Call 910-893-3446 to reserve your Book Bundle today!
Virtual Youth Programming Resumes. Youth programming including virtual storytimes, digital library rooms, and Take & Make STEAM activities for school-aged children and teens will resume in September. Please visit the HCPL Facebook page or library website for more information.
Harnett County Parks & Recreation
Virtual Nature Hikes. Harnett County Parks and Recreation launched a virtual nature hike series in May. The first hike at Anderson Creek County Park explored the many different elements of a Long Leaf Pine Ecosystem. This multi-part series explored some basics of a long leaf line ecosystem, including plant life, signs of local wildlife, the benefits of conducting prescribed burns, etc. The second hike was held at the Cape Fear River Trail Park in Erwin and explored many interesting finds at the park such as the very large "grandfather trees", observed flora and fauna, and the soothing sounds of the Cape Fear River waters.
All parts of these virtual hikes can be found on the Harnett County Parks and Recreation YouTube Channel.
Virtual Art Lessons. Harnett County Parks & Recreation has partnered with Elyse Johnson with Artifactual to bring you virtual art lessons. You can view all of the previous art lessons on the Harnett County Parks & Recreation Facebook page.
HARNETT COUNTY BUSINESS RESOURCES
Harnett County Economic Development
Harnett County Economic Development has compiled the latest COVID-19 information and resources for businesses in Harnett County. If your company is considering transitioning to production of medical supplies or equipment, please contact Angie Stewart at email@example.com for an expanded list of resources to potentially assist beyond those listed on the website. For businesses preparing to reopen, view these COVID-19 resources.
NCDHHS Checklist for Developing a Reopening Plan
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) is encouraging all businesses and employers to create and implement a plan to minimize the opportunity for COVID-19 transmission at their facility. When developing these plans, there may be certain considerations to follow for compliance with applicable Executive Orders and guidance provided for individual business types. This checklist will help retail businesses and other entities reduce the spread of COVID-19 in their communities.
Count on Me NC Safety Training Program
Governor Roy Cooper and Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Mandy Cohen, announced a partnership with North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association (NCRLA) for an innovative safety training program for North Carolina businesses and restaurants. Count on Me NC is a free online training program to help restaurants, hotels and other businesses learn the best ways to protect customers and employees from COVID-19.
Businesses across North Carolina can participate in this no-cost training that was developed with the NC Department of Health and Human Services. It includes evidence-based practices on social distancing, employee health and sanitation to protect people’s health.
The first phase of Count on Me NC training is designed for restaurants and hospitality businesses that serve food. The program plans to expand to other tourism businesses including lodging and attractions and add courses in Spanish by June.
Count on Me NC also encourages customers to take precautions before returning to restaurants, especially if they’re in a high-risk population and to be respectful towards staff as they adjust to these guidelines. Individuals can take the Count on Me Pledge to practice the Three Ws – wear a face covering, wash hands frequently, wait six feet apart from others – and to stay home if they’re feeling sick.
See which businesses have already completed training and learn more on how to participate at CountOnMeNC.org.
Harnett County Small Business Center
Free Workshops, Seminars, and Webinars from Across the State and Just Down the Road
Support from Local Chambers
Businesses can also receive support from the County’s five Chambers of Commerce. Small businesses are encouraged to reach out to these organizations for additional support during COVID-19.
STATEWIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR FACE COVERINGS
Effective June 26, North Carolina is adopting a face covering requirement to help slow the spread of COVID-19. This new executive order makes it mandatory for people to wear a cloth covering over your nose and mouth when they are indoor and in outdoor public places and where staying 6 feet from people who are not part of their households is impossible. Face coverings are a simple way to control this virus while we protect ourselves, our families, and other people around us. Employees and customers of retail businesses and restaurants, as well as workers in manufacturing, construction, meat process and agriculture settings, must wear face coverings in those places.
RESOURCES FOR INDIVIDUALS
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services continues to provide ongoing benefits as well as some emergency benefits as the impact of COVID-19 continues in our state. There are several ways you can apply or find out more information online to get benefits for you and your family. Click here for links, direct contact information, and scannable QR Codes.
NC 2-1-1 is an information and referral service that families and individuals can call to obtain free and confidential information on health and human services resources within their community. NC 2-1-1 operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year and resources are available in most languages. North Carolinians can text COVIDNC to 898211 to receive general information and updates about COVID-19.
HOW TO HELP: INFORMATION ABOUT VOLUNTEERING AND DONATIONS
As our state leaders urge North Carolinians to stay home during this unprecedented pandemic, there are ways you can make a difference.
Donate Medical Supplies and Personal Protective Equipment
Our current purchasing efforts are focused on medical supplies, including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). If your company can supply any of the supplies listed below, or related commodities or services, please provide your company’s information to VendorHelp.COVID19@dhhs.nc.gov.
Critical supplies include:
State Surplus has provided guidance for local and state government agencies and schools on Executive Order 122, related to donation and/or transfer of medical/health supplies including PPEs. Learn more.
Health Care Volunteers Needed
A crucial part of supporting our health care system includes recruiting volunteers to supplement our health care workforce. We are asking for your help to meet these needs.Open PDF This response is provided through the State Medical Response System (SMRS), which recruits and manages volunteers in the following areas:
If you can volunteer, please register here.
Volunteer in Your Community
From helping to stock food banks to donating blood, there are numerous ways to help your community. Check out these opportunities across North Carolina.
Under Governor Cooper’s Stay at Home Executive Order, local government offices are considered essential business and are able to continue operations. You can view more about essential government operations by clicking here.
Public Access Closure Notice
Effective March 19, 2020, Harnett County officials closed public access to Harnett County Government Office Buildings due to COVID-19.
Some Harnett County Facilities have reopened for public access. These include: Harnett County Courthouse, Health Department, Board of Elections, Tax Department, Public Library, and Development Services. Residents are encouraged to contact these departments prior to traveling to confirm hours of operation.
Harnett County Landfills and Convenience Sites and Harnett County parks & trails are operating on a normal schedule until further notice.
Although office buildings will be closed for public access, Harnett County Government staff will continue to offer services and provide support to residents at this time. Residents are encouraged to visit www.harnett.org to receive services online or call County Departments for assistance with services. A list of County department phone numbers can also be found at www.harnett.org/department-index.asp.
Residents can also visit www.harnett.org/publicinfo/covid19-cancellations-.asp to learn the latest updates from County Departments and how to access online resources and services.
Although your risk of contracting COVID-19 remains low, the county’s public health team encourages you to protect yourself from COVID-19 and any other flu-like illness by following these simple steps:
WHAT TO DO IF YOU FEEL SICK
Coronaviruses like COVID-19 are most often spread through the air by coughing or sneezing, through close personal contact (including touching and shaking hands) or through touching your nose, mouth or eyes before washing your hands.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has put together some guidelines for what to do if you feel sick.
Most people will not need to be tested. When you leave your home to get tested, you could expose yourself to COVID-19 if you do not already have it. If you do have COVID-19, you can give it to someone else, including people who are high risk.
Call your doctor if your symptoms are getting worse or you have any concerns about your health.
What should my family members do? Anyone in your household or others who have been in close contact with you should stay home for 14 days as much as possible and monitor themselves for symptoms. Close contact means within six feet for at least 10 minutes. If they start having symptoms of COVID-19, they should take the same steps to prevent spreading it.
Residents are asked to prepare for COVID-19 by getting the latest information directly from reliable sources. The COVID-19 outbreak has been accompanied by a flood of misinformation from unreliable sources. Be thoughtful about what you read or hear about the virus and make sure you are separating rumor from fact before you act.
Please visit Harnett County’s COVID-19 webpage (http://www.harnett.org/publicinfo/coronavirus-covid19-updates.asp) for the latest information from the NC DHHS and the CDC. Harnett County will also be providing updates on our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Nextdoor social media accounts.