FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 25, 2020
Melissa J. Dixon
Erie, PA – County Executive Kathy Dahlkemper today announced that no new positive cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Erie County. Contact tracing by Erie County Department of Health continues.
Dahlkemper also announced the launch of a new Community Chat Line – 814-273-7007 – which is a free support network for those experiencing emotional distress. Community professionals are available to help guide people in need to available resources within Erie County. This includes answering questions regarding COVID-19 and resources available within the Erie region.
Although the Community Chat Line is staffed with mental health professionals, it is not to be used for crises. Hours of operation are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Additional resources are available at eriecountypa.gov.
The COVID-19 page on eriecountypa.gov is broken out into sections: Resources, Updates, Impacted Counties, Translated COVID-19 Information and Videos. There are subcategories of information, such as “Emotional Distress Assistance,” organized under each section.
In order to help the local hospitals, the County Executive asked the public to donate blood to the Community Blood Bank because it is the blood provider to the local hospitals. Donating blood is an essential task associated with the community’s health and safety. Please book appointments for blood and platelet donations throughout the coming weeks for the Erie Donor Center or any of their mobile blood drives by calling 814-456-4206.
“If you are an employer, please do not allow employees who are sick in any way to physically report to work,” Dahlkemper said. “Help us help you. The more we continue to practice social distancing and follow the guidance of my stay-at-home order, I believe we can help stop the potential spread of COVID-19. If everyone follows the guidelines, the bigger the chance for us all to go back to work and life as we’ve known it in Erie County.”
Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 and had symptoms have been in contact with Erie County Department of Health and should know that they cannot return to work for a minimum of seven days after start of symptoms and being symptom free for 72 hours.
This means, if an employee is still having symptoms after seven days, they cannot return to work until an additional 72 hours have passed without fever and without using medications to reduce fever and improvement in respiratory symptoms.
If employees tested positive for COVID-19 and never had symptoms, they may return to work when at least seven days have passed since the date of their first positive COVID-19 diagnostic test and have had no subsequent illness.
For more information related to COVID-19, visit eriecountypa.gov.