With the recent news of COVID-19 sweeping across the United States, City of Wayzata leaders are working with Hennepin County’s Emergency Management Department, the Hennepin County Sheriff, the Minnesota Department of Public Health, and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to develop continuity of operations plans to ensure that essential services are maintained and the public remains informed.
The overall responsibility for addressing Coronavirus is with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Minnesota Department of Health, and Hennepin County Public Health as these entities have the expertise and medical staff to lead and direct the response.
The City of Wayzata’s most important role is keeping our local government operational. The City is developing continuity of operations plans to ensure the most critical of services such as Police and Fire, always remain operational. At the same time, we are also analyzing our core functions to determine our staffing requirements, assessing our technological needs, and considering options for more remote work.
The other important role of the City is to keep our residents informed so they know what to expect. The best way to stay informed of any changes to city services, events, or meetings is to find them on our website www.wayzata.org or by subscribing to our “In The News” News Flash at www.wayzata.org/noifyme. The best and most up-to-date information on the virus, efforts to address it, and personal precautionary measures can be found on the CDC’s website.
The CDC current risk assessment notes that at this time most people in the United States have little immediate risk of exposure. The CDC also states that most of the time the illness is mild, however serious illness occurs in 16% of cases. Serious cases are more common among older people and those with underlying health conditions.
The best way to prevent infection is through simple preventive measures, including:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid travel to areas that have been designated high-risk areas because of multiple verified cases of COVID-19.
- Avoid handshaking and high-fives.
- Stay home if you are sick for any reason.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
- Throw used tissues in the trash.
- You do not need to wear a facemask unless you are sick or caring for someone who is (and they are not able to wear a facemask). Facemasks may be in short supply and they should be saved for caregivers.
- If COVID-19 is suspected, call your health provider. If you need to go to the emergency room, call ahead so they can prepare for your arrival. Also, please review these guidelines for preventing the spread of COVID-19.
Some measures the City has already taken to ensure staff and the public’s risk is minimal include:
- High traffic areas are wiped down more regularly with disinfectant
- We are practicing social distancing in our departments
- All out-of-state travel for our employees is halted
At this time we are not cancelling future events, meetings or implementing additional physical separation measures within our buildings. We will continue to evaluate meetings and other uses of our facilities, as well as off-site gatherings, on an individual basis. We may take additional precautions depending upon how the situation evolves.