SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. – The Seminole County Emergency Management team is using social media and a new hotline to answer any and all questions surrounding COVID-19.
This is in light of the recent presumptive positive case involving a 68-year-old Seminole County man who recently traveled on a Nile River cruise in Eqypt.
Seminole County EOC Director Alan Harris said his team is in constant contact with the man and his wife as they both undergo isolation measures at home.
"He's in high spirits," Allen said. "He was laughing on the phone last night with us. Seems to be doing really well."
Harris talked to News 6 moments after taking questions from citizens during a Facebook live.
The live social media briefing is one of the many proactive measures Seminole County is doing to inform Seminole County residents about what is opened, what is closed and what to do during the coronvirus pandemic.
For now he says county parks and libraries will remain open, although activities at libraries have been canceled. Harris says the latest information can be seen at www.prepareseminole.org.
Harris said he is also awaiting the test results of at least nine more people who fear they may have been exposed to COVID-19.
“So we have a few folks that their spouse, roommate or loved one is stuck also in the house as well,” Harris said. “Some of them have five or six days left and others have 14 days.”
As questions and concerns continue to build, calls slowly started coming in to the new Seminole County hotline, which for now will be manned Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The number is 407-665-0000. Those who call the number outside those dates and times will be connected with the Department of Health 24-hour hotline.
“We have been seeing calls about people wanting to know if they can go out of their home safely, go to certain events,” said call center manager Tish Callahan-Smith. " We want to tell people not to panic, practice really good personal hygiene - like keeping their distance, washing their hands, and not to worry. And to let them know we are here if they need something."
"We want to stop this, Harris said. “We want to stop COVID-19 in its tracks. We don’t any more new cases. We want to prevent this from moving any further - close this down and go back to normal operations.”
Harris said the county is also taking measures to help those under self-quarantine and isolation as they await those COVID-19 tests results. That includes delivering and paying for food and groceries to their homes.
“Those that are living paycheck to paycheck, they’re on food stamps, we’re going to help them,” Harris said. “We don’t want them to go out and buy groceries. We don’t want anyone else quarantined in our community.”