Joint Information Center Update for Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020

Joint Information Center Update for Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020

As of 2:30 p.m on Thursday, Oct. 22, Calhoun County has a cumulative total of 2,223 confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported to Calhoun County Public Health Department (CCPHD), with a total of 56 deaths attributed to the virus. This information is updated once daily, Monday through Friday, at www.calhouncountymi.gov.
Calhoun County continues to see an upward trend in positive COVID-19 cases. It’s critical that all Calhoun County residents make an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19, by adhering to public health guidance, such as wearing a face covering or mask, maintaining six feet from others, avoiding social gatherings and washing hands frequently.
The Public Health Department is closely monitoring this increase in cases and working diligently to perform contact tracing for the numerous positive cases identified. In a recent summary of data between Oct. 8-21 by the Calhoun County epidemiologist, we learned that cases where the source of infection is unknown remains stable over the last four weeks at 33%, up from earlier in the pandemic and continuing to show that community spread is ongoing in Calhoun.
While cases surge in Calhoun at a quicker pace than earlier in the pandemic, the CCPHD may have to order additional restrictions, like limiting indoor gatherings, to slow the rate of infection. Schools countywide are discussing operations with the CCPHD on a regular basis to discern if/when changes may have to be made.
“I want to be clear that as a community, we need to take action now to bend this curve,” said Calhoun County Health Officer Eric Pessell. “We cannot continue on this trajectory of cases. We are all tired, I get it, but we must work together and do the simple things like washing our hands, wearing a mask, avoiding large gatherings (especially indoors), and staying socially distant.”

Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 3: Vote Safely, Calhoun!Like all communities across the country, Calhoun County clerks offices are seeing an increased number of absentee ballots for the upcoming presidential election, which will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 3. As the safest option for voting, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) encourages voters to consider voting absentee to minimize contact with other people. There are numerous ways to do so.
For people who do want to vote in person, it advises to wash hands before entering and after leaving the polling location, to use alcohol-based hand sanitizer frequently, to cover coughs and sneezes, to wear a mask that covers mouth and nose, and to maintain at least 6 feet of distance from others. It also says, voters should not attempt to clean or sanitize voting equipment themselves and leave that to poll workers who will know how to do so properly.MDHHS Guidance for VotersThe Michigan Secretary of State also provides information and resources for voting early and safely. Michigan.gov/vote and this website on the Secretary of State Office website provide information about the November 3 election. The Secretary of State also provides a quick flyer for safe voting options, including how to vote absentee, linked here
To find information sent from local sources, check out the information below:

Battle Creek Transit will provide all bus and Tele-Transit rides fare-free on Tuesday, Nov. 3.Check out the table to see which bus to ride to your polling location. For those polling places not within a block or two of a bus stop, call Transit at 269-966-3474 to schedule a ride on the door-to-door shuttle.

Opportunities To Get a Flu Shot CountywideThe CCPHD recommends that everyone 6 months and older get your flu vaccine, especially this year. Widespread flu vaccination will reduce the spread of flu during the COVID pandemic, and prevent serious illness as much as possible. It can also reduce the chance that people will become infected with flu and COVID-19 at the same time.
You and your family can schedule an appointment for flu shots at the Albion or Battle Creek clinic, or by visiting a drive-up clinic:
Albion College, Ferguson Parking Lot (corner of Erie and Hannah streets), AlbionMonday, Oct. 26 from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.Friday, Oct. 30 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Tekonsha Fire Department, 166 Spires Parkway, TekonshaFriday, Nov. 6 from 1-4 p.m.
Flu shots are also available at the Calhoun County Public Health Department clinics:Albion CCPHD Clinic214 E. Michigan Ave.Monday/Tuesday, 8 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 1-4:30 p.m. (last appointment at 3:30); and Friday, 8 a.m.-noonPlease call for an appointment, 517-629-9434
Battle Creek CCPHD Clinic190 E. Michigan Ave.Monday-Thursday8 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 1-4:30 p.m. (last appointment at 3:30); and Friday, 8 a.m.-noonPlease call for an appointment, 269-969-6363

Important Volunteer OpportunitiesSouth Michigan Food Bank – As the need to distribute food has increased during the pandemic, the food bank seeks generous volunteers. Check out opportunities and schedule a time to help at smfoodbank.org/volunteerSee the flyer
Meals on Wheels – Senior Services of Southwest Michigan is looking for volunteers to deliver meals to our seniors in Calhoun County. Please call 269-382-0515 ext. 137 for more information

Water Service Update in Battle CreekThe City of Battle Creek will continue to keep water service turned on for all 55,000 customers, through the end of 2020. Since March, the city has stopped water shutoffs for non-payment, and returned service to customers who were experiencing shutoffs at that time. Staff and City Commissioners want all customers to have access to water, so they can follow the hand-washing and cleaning guidance related to the pandemic.
Please note that the city may have to temporarily shut off water in a particular area during system maintenance work. Customers can find that information at battlecreekmi.gov, and sign up for email/text Water System Information notifications at battlecreekmi.gov/notifyme.***
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For updates from Calhoun County, about County operations and COVID-19 in Calhoun County, visit the County website, calhouncountymi.gov.
For updates from the City of Battle Creek, please visit battlecreekmi.gov/coronavirus.
The State’s COVID-19 Hotline is available for anyone who has questions or concerns related to the virus. The hotline is open seven days a week from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Call 1-888-535-6136. For state COVID-19 information, visit michigan.gov/coronavirus.For information, contact Lucy Blair, Calhoun County Communications Manager269-781-0926lblair@calhouncountymi.gov
Jessica Vanderkolk, City of Battle Creek Communications Manager269-966-3378jlvanderkolk@battlecreekmi.gov

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