Photo: Melissa Phillip, Houston Chronicle / Staff photographer. Chevron right deputies salute as funeral home staff load the casket of Harris County Sheriff's Office Sgt. The YMCA of Greater Houston, which has been operating 19 sites for the children of essential workers, will screen students and staff members' tempertatures three times a day, and will have smaller group size ratios of nine children per one counselor. Teacher Cynthia Cornish wears "Grad" glasses while cheering as YES Prep: Public Schools White Oak campus graduating seniors drive by and pick up their caps and gowns in a parade of cars Thursday, May 7, 2020 in Houston. The U.S. Navy Blue Angels fly past downtown as seen from over the Buffalo Bayou, Wednesday, May 6, 2020, in Houston. Look to meditation, We're looking for 2020's top Houston fitness instructors, Beaumont activist fights HIV's big challenges: stigma and racism, Everything you need to know about collagen supplements, Himalaya chef's pre-diabetic diagnosis changed his menu, Virtual Turkey Trots and fitness events in and around Houston. Angela Blanchard, president emerita of BakerRipley, is one of Houston’s leading experts on disasters. We asked her about the Houston area’s response to COVID-19, the novel coronavirus. Alfredo Gutierrez, left, fills out paperwork as Conner Scott donates plasma at Houston Methodist Hospital on Friday, May 15, 2020 in Houston. "First responders and medical teams need to be reminded we support them, ad they have each other's back. The statue of Charles Bellinger Stewart, designer of the Texas flag, is seen with a facemask at Cedar Brake Park, Tuesday, May 5, 2020, in Montgomery. The Houston Health Department didn’t explain why it hasn’t used the smartphone exposure notification system so far, but sounded a bit more open to the possibility of implementing … Russell has been trying to find ways to stay connected with her mom since coronavirus precautions started preventing her from visiting her in person at the Houston memory care facility where she lives. Heavy rain comes down on pedestrians in the Texas Medical Center on Friday, May 15, 2020 in Houston. The rapper spent the day handing out 10,000 masks to people in neighborhoods all around the city. Additionally, this site supports the City’s recovery from recent disasters. With COVID-19, you will likely spread it to two to three other people, and they will, too. Our local city and county health departments are in charge of health emergency declarations, and it’s up to them to announce a health emergency. Health Alert Network (HAN) No. While we have a tendency in a hurricane to come together, we will need to keep our distance for an epidemic. The City of Houston Emergency Information Center is your resource for up-to-the-minute emergency information. Courtney and Micahl Wyckoff started making masks out of their home after both finding themselves out of work because of coronavirus. And we need to understand the “bell curve” of disease contraction and recovery from the virus. If we have a curve that looks like Mount Everest, the peak reaches above the clouds and, at that point, beyond the capacity of the system to care for seriously ill people. Their business is Grab Bag Masks.com. Don’t forget entertainment. Regarding Health and Safety Policy and Face Coverings. Olivares owns a gym maintenance company, and he said he started providing disinfecting services about a week before the shutdown, after about 80% of his clients asked for them. You have to visualize two bell curves — one that looks like Mount Everest, and another one that looks like a Hill Country “peak.” Our health system capacity is the clouds above. Houston Police Dept. Lisa Gray is a senior writer on the features desk. While the federal agencies — Centers for Disease Control, and Health and Human Services — have declared a public health emergency for the nation, our local officials remain in charge here. If you have the "ordinary flu" you may (and will likely) spread it to 1.3 other people. Monica Hughes, left, holds a sign for seniors as the graduating class at Lake Creek High School picked up graduating appeal and yard signs, Friday, May 8, 2020, in Montgomery. These seniors are the first graduates from the White Oak campus. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, caps and gowns were required to be picked up in drive-by fashion. American Legion honor guard members Jack Clemons, left, and Ralph Massengill salute the American flag while wearing facemasks during a National Day of Prayer, Wednesday, May 6, 2020, in Willis. For this, we need to stretch the spread out over time — remembering that the emergency ceases with the availability of the vaccine. Tammy Young takes the temperature of stylist Brittany Purr before she starts her shift at Salon on Kirby in Houston on Thursday, May 7, 2020. In a disaster scenario, that machine is the scary structure of nightmares. Put simply, we need health officials in our region to declare a public health emergency, and the sooner the better. It's not about the money," said Joseph Hayes (left), manager of Phayes Two Barber Shop on W. Bellfort at S. Gessner, as he pulls everything out of the shop to continue a deep clean before their planned reopening Friday morning, while working on the shop on Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Houston. Or follow her on Facebook, where she spends way too much time. Stephen Olivares, left, talks with Antanique Landry as he disinfects her gym Friday, May 15, 2020, in Houston. UTHealth's Emergency information portal. HOUSTON — Houston City Council is extending the city’s emergency health declaration related to COVID-19. EXCLUSIVE: Daughter of Houston area’s first coronavirus patient speaks out. Treat COVID-19 like a hurricane: Supply your homes with at least a one month supply of everything the members of your household use daily, including your pets. Persse says all Houston hospitals, clinics and doctors’ offices have been put on alert to be on the lookout for symptoms in patients, which can present similarly to the common cold or the flu. "I am trying to get masks to people who wouldn't normally be able to get one," he said. The HCPHD currently has about 50 contact tracers and the agency is aiming to have 200 by the end of the week, and have 300 contact tracers next week. She has been a player in helping Houston recover from multiple disasters, and at Brown University now teaches graduate-level public-policy courses on Disaster and Displacement. I worry about the hurricane that arrives just as we reach the peak of COVID-19 disease cases. The nightmare scenario is that Houston might struggle not just with an outbreak, but with one or more other disasters — say, a hurricane and a major water-main break — all at the same time. High-risk … Should they hold the event? Owner Leon Apostolo carefully shapes a flat top for a customer at Shepard's Barber Shop, Friday, May 8, 2020, in Conroe. Medical workers wanted to send a message to the United States Navy's Blue Angels after they performed a flyover the Medical Center Wednesday, May 6, 2020, in Houston. We need that structure now — and data that tells us about the size and “windspeed” of this storm. If you assume that everyone will get the virus, why does slowing the spread matter? At the moment, we don’t have an epidemic playbook. Color Guard lines up before the casket for Houston police officer Jason Knox arrives to the funeral at the First Baptist Church on Katy Freeway, Sat. Gov. This location of the free Kroger Health free COVID-19 drive through testing is open from 9am to 4pm and will continue through Thursday, May 14. ", Bryan Anderson, directs a group shot of the Nassau Bay, Webster, and Johnson Space Center first responders from a bucket truck for his personal project, "First Responders Texas Strong" at Space Center Houston, in Houston, Wednesday, May 13, 2020. Their declaration can lead to other voluntary and mandatory measures being implemented and enforced. HEADS UP: Blockbuster snowstorm could take shape in Northeast next week. Memorial City will Shine Blue, with blue ribbons and the buildings, bridges and garages lit in blue, in recognition of National Nurses Week and National Hospital Week and to honor those healthcare heroes fighting on the frontline against COVID-19. The Blue Angels flew over the area in tribute to frontline workers. On Tuesday, Nov 17, Harris County sent out an emergency text alert to all 4.7 million of its residents asking them to cancel their holiday gatherings and to get tested. Medical alert services enable a senior to safely live an independent life. The City of Houston Health Department and Harris County Health Department each have the power and authority independently to declare a health emergency, and to issue recommendations and/or rules regarding the spread of a dangerous virus. Photo: Elizabeth Conley, Staff photographer. Seniors who enjoy medical alert services never feel alone. Emergency – 911 University Police – 713.743.3333. After the hurricanes in Puerto Rico, people there told me of all the new wonderful traditions that were rebooted by the isolation after the storms had passed. The City of Houston Emergency Information Center is your resource for up-to-the-minute emergency information. CORONAVIRUS IN HOUSTON: All of the latest news, numbers and analysis to keep you up-to-date. Allan Anderson ties a blue ribbon around one of the trees that surround Memorial City Mall on Friday, May 8, 2020 in Houston. Parents and students hold signs asking for real graduations as Houston ISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan held a press conference in front of the Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center, in Houston, Friday, May 15, 2020. See a list of all of the Official Weather Advisories, Warnings, and Severe Weather Alerts for Houston, TX. At the moment, the simple fact is that we don’t understand it. What does that mean for our response to this kind of disaster? Oil, water and viruses are a bad mix. The Village at the Heights is a senior living facility. Harris County Jail clinic medical staff Shannon Kloeber, Cathy Rossi, and Beverly Howard wave at the United States Navy's Blue Angels from the rooftop of the county jail as they fly by on Wednesday, May 6, 2020, in Houston. Bartender Sarah Miller irons masks on the bar inside of the Maple Leaf Pub, in Houston, Thursday, May 7, 2020. Photo: Steve Gonzales, Houston Chronicle / Staff photographer. As a population, we can’t flee it. Pay less attention to the water and power-related items, and more to first aid, prescriptions and food. Photo: Jason Fochtman, Staff photographer. Will we take the right steps to protect vulnerable people if we ourselves are feeling fine and healthy? Anderson, a local wedding photographer, has been photographing multiple first responder departments around the Houston area, shooting dramatic socially distanced group shots for a project he calls "First Responders Texas Strong". 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