The Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management opened the city’s Emergency Operations Center today after yesterday’s announcement of the first presumed positive coronavirus case in Philadelphia.
The Office of Emergency Management encourages the public to stay informed of coronavirus news by enrolling for free text alerts. Text COVIDPHL to 888-777 or visit the city Department of Public Health’s web page, phila.gov/COVID-19.
The EOC brings departments and other stakeholders together for setting objectives and other responses to situations such as coronavirus. The Department of Public Health, Philadelphia Fire Department, Philadelphia Police Department, Managing Director’s Office, School District of Philadelphia and SEPTA are present at the office today.
“Just as we did for the H1N1 flu in 2009 and other global pandemics of this century, we’ve been proactive, engaging our counterparts working across City government,” Liz Hersh, director of the city’s Office of Homeless Services, said in a statement.
The virus is spread when a sick person coughs or sneezes or when their nasal secretions come in contact with a healthy person. It requires proximity within 6 feet to spread. Because of this, it is unlikely to catch the virus from walking down a hallway or street.
The city encourages individuals to take precautions such as washing their hands for 20 seconds or about as long as it takes to sing Happy Birthday twice, avoid touching your face, sneezing only into a tissue or your elbow and staying away from someone who is sick. If you are sick, stay home.