COVID-19

Text 850COVID to 41444 to donate to the COVID-19 Relief Fund established by United Way of Northwest Florida. Funds will be shared among our certified agency partners in this time of crisis.

Information from our Agency and Community Partners Regarding COVID-19

Click here for the latest Situation Report from
Bay County Emergency Management regarding COVID-19

Click for the latest information from the
Florida Department of Health-Bay County

Click HERE for an Interactive Map of all the COVID-19 cases in Florida

Click HERE for the latest info from the Centers for Disease Control

Click HERE for the Florida Department of Health’s COVID-19 webpage

HERE is a link to the latest information as published by WMBB News 13

HERE is the latest information as published by WJHG NewsChannel 7

Click HERE for information from the City of Panama City Beach

Click HERE for the latest information from Gulf County

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Florida Department of Health launches COVID
Community Action Survey

Today, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) announced the launch of a new community action survey, StrongerThanC-19, designed to aid Florida as the state continues to fight the spread of COVID-19. This cutting-edge tool gives residents the power to unite in the fight to help slow the spread of coronavirus in Florida. Click HERE to fill out the survey.

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Governor Ron DeSantis Signs Stay at Home Executive Order

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed an executive order on April 1, ordering all non-essential personnel to stay at home for the next 30 days. Click HERE to read the Executive Order and click HERE for a list of the essential jobs according to the Department of Homeland Security.

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List of childcare providers forwarded by the Early Learning Coalition as of 4/8/20

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Important Information furnished by Senator George Gainer’s office

🚨For an immediate life-threatening emergency, call 9-1-1
‼ For non-emergency assistance, call 2-1-1

📌 Governor Desantis Executive Orders
https://www.flgov.com/2020-executive-orders/

♦ Holmes County Emergency Management:
(850) 547-1112 or
https://holmescountyem.org/

“Holmes County Sheriff’s Office: (850) 547-3681 or
http://holmescosheriff.org/index.html

♦ Jackson County Emergency Management:
(850) 482-9678 or
https://rightservicefl.org/node/18784

Jackson County Sheriff’s Office: (850) 482-9664 or
https://www.jcsheriff.com

♦ Washington County Emergency Management:
(850) 638-6203 or http://www.washingtonfl.com/…

Sheriff’s Office: (850) 638-6111 or
http://www.wcso.us/

♦ Bay County Emergency Management:
(850) 248-6040

Sheriff’s Office: (850) 747-4700
http://www.bayso.org

♦ Okaloosa County Emergency Management:
(850) 651-7150 or
http://www.co.okaloosa.fl.us/

Sheriff’s Office: (850) 651-7410 or
https://www.sheriff-okaloosa.org/

♦ Walton County Emergency Management:
(850) 892-8065 or
https://www.co.walton.fl.us/1063/Emergency-Management

Sheriff’s Office: (850)892-8111 or
https://waltonso.org/

🦠 COVID-19 Call Center available 24/7 – 1(866)779-6121 – COVID-19@flhealth.gov

🏥 The Florida Department of Health COVID-19 dashboard. Updated twice daily. https://fdoh.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html…

⁉ Need help finding your local health department?
http://www.floridahealth.gov/all-county-locations.html

👨🏻‍🏫 Florida Department of Education
Find statewide school closure updates here: www.fldoe.org/em-response/index.stml

View the Florida Department of Education’s list of resources for families on distance learning: www.fldoe.org/em-response/resources-families.stml

🍔 Families can now find free meals for kids under 18 via: Text FLKIDSMEALS to 211-211
Call 2-1-1 to speak with live operator 24 hours/day Visit SummerBreakSpot.FreshFromFlorida.com

🛠 FEMA: 1-800-621-3362 or 1-800-462-7585 for the speech/hearing-impaired.
Apply for disaster aid online at www.disasterassistance.gov
http://www.fema.gov/hurricane-michael

👨🏻‍🔧👩🏽‍💼  Florida businesses in that have sustained economic injury due to #COVID19 may contact Florida SBDCN for assistance to apply for the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan through May 8.
☎ Call 866-737-7232.
📲 Email Disaster@FloridaSBDC.org.
📍Apply here: pos.li/2f8tw1

👷🏽‍♂ Floridians looking for re-employment assistance can get help online at www.floridajobs.org/Reemployment-Assistance-Ser…/…/claimants.

👩🏼‍💻 Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Assistance Center:
1-800-659-2955, or online http://www.sba.gov/content/disaster-assistance

🚨 State of Florida Emergency Management:
1-800-342-3557 or online https://floridadisaster.org/

☎ American Red Cross:
Disaster and Emergency Assistance: http://www.redcross.org/find-help
National Number: 1-800-733-2767

🖥 Many people are experiencing unexpected difficulties during the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19). On Benefits.gov, you can find federal government benefits related to unemployment assistance, healthcare, and food and nutrition. You can also take their Benefit Finder to find additional benefits you may be eligible for.

🇺🇸 Veteran Disaster Hotline:
1-800-507-4571

☑ Elder Affairs Hotline:
1-800-963-5337

🏘 Disaster Housing Relief Resources and Information
www.floridahousing.org

📲 Businesses can post job openings and individuals can find job opportunities:
https://disasterrecovery.employflorida.com/

👩🏻‍🚒 Volunteer Information: https://www.volunteerflorida.org/

📋 Insurance Questions or Assistance: The Florida Department of Financial Services has insurance specialists available to answer questions. Claims need to be filed with your insurance company, but the division can assist consumers with questions about insurance and help guide them through the process. Impacted residents can call the Division of Insurance at: 1-877-693-5236. For more information, visit https://myfloridacfo.com/division/consumers/needourhelp.htm

👷🏼‍♂ Information on Contractors: Be sure to ask contractors for references and check them before you sign a contract for repairs, removal or replacement. Check with the Better Business Bureau, or the Florida Department of Professional Business Regulations:
http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/

🚦 Department of Transportation:
For travel information, visit http://www.fdot.gov/. You can also follow FDOT at https://www.facebook.com/FLDOT/ (Facebook) or @MyFDOT (Twitter) Listing of closed state roadways and bridges at FL511.com

🐊 Florida Fish and Wildlife
For more information, go to http://myfwc.com/, @MyFWC (Twitter) or https://www.facebook.com/MyFWC (Facebook).

🍅 Department of Agriculture
For the latest updates from the Florida Department of Agriculture please visit: http://www.freshfromflorida.com/Consumer-Resources/

❌ Florida Attorney General’s Office (AG)
The Florida Attorney General’s Office hotline is now available for anyone to report price gouging of essential commodities during the coronavirus crisis. To report price gouging to the Florida Attorney General’s Office online, visit MyFloridaLegal.com. To call the Attorney General’s Price Gouging Hotline, dial 1(866) 9NO-SCAM or 1-866-966-7226.

💼 Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program is currently available to small business owners located in all Florida counties statewide that experienced economic damage as a result of COVID-19. For details on eligibility requirements and the loan process, visit: https://floridadisasterloan.org/.

👨🏻‍💻 The Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced that Florida small businesses that are being economically impacted by COVID-19 can now apply for low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans.
APPLY HERE: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/

🌽USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) provides food assistance to those in need in areas affected by a disaster. This federal assistance is in addition to that provided by state and local governments. For further information I encourage you to visit their website: https://www.fns.usda.gov/disaster/disaster-assistance

🌾 Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) – ECP provides funding for farmers and ranchers to rehabilitate farmland damaged by floods and other natural disasters. Program availability is subject to the availability of funding. More information is available on their website found here: http://www.fsa.usda.gov/FSA/webapp…

🏘 Residents in Rural Development-financed apartment complexes who are displaced by a natural disaster may apply for occupancy at any USDA-financed apartment complex and receive special priority consideration for the next available unit. Displaced tenants who are receiving rental assistance may have their subsidy transferred if the complex they move to is eligible for the Rental Assistance program. More information is available at: https://www.rd.usda.gov/…/multi-family-housing-rental-assis…

👨🏻‍⚖ LEGAL ASSISTANCE: If you think you need legal support, please call the American Bar Association Disaster Hotline at 1-800-504-7030 or visit http://www.americanbar.org/…/r…/disaster_legal_hotlines.html

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Gulf County COVID-19 information available by text

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Testing Guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control

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Help line for Bay District Schools

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Update from Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida

For over 91 years, Catholic Charities has been serving the most poor and vulnerable across Northwest Florida.  We have faced many challenges throughout the years, and together as a community we always rise to meet those challenges head on.  COVID-19 is a challenge that many of us never thought we would have to face.  Please know that Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida stands ready to respond to the needs of our community.  

Beginning March 20, 2020, Catholic Charities staff will be working remotely.  Over the past two weeks, we have been planning and taking steps that will allow us to continue to serve those in-need. The health and safety of our clients, our staff, and their families is our top priority.  After many discussions with our Leadership Team, and members of the Catholic Charities’ Board of Directors, we feel it is best to protect the well-being of our clients and staff to work remotely at this time.  This was not an easy decision for us to make, and I know each of you are struggling with the same issues.  

Catholic Charities will continue to serve the community during this challenging time.  Although our plan will have to be fluid, we are confident that we have taken the necessary steps to continue to offer effective services to the community.  Following are the steps that we have taken to continue to serve those most in need during this time:

  • Staff have been provided the tools and resources to be able to continue serve our community remotely.  
  • Hours of operation will remain the same.  Monday through Friday, 8 am – 4 pm.
  • Office numbers will remain the same.  Office numbers have been forwarded to work cellphones.  
  • Emails will be responded to in a timely manner.
  • Financial Emergency Assistance (EA) will continue to provide assistance to those in-need.  Interviews be conducted via phone.  Our Financial Assistance forms have been digitized and made fillable. 
  • Referrals from other agencies will still be accepted.  
  • Immigration Services will be following the same procedures as Financial Assistance.
  • Adoption Services will be following the same procedures as other programs in our agency.  
  • Food Pantries will remain open.   We will be limiting operations to meet CDC recommendations.  Following are the details of how your local Catholic Charities’ Food Pantry will serve the community:  

Panama City Food Pantry – 3128 E 11th Street, Panama City, FL Monday and Thursday, from 9:00 to 2:00 by appointment only 5 clients will be scheduled every 30 minutes to eliminate large crowds.  Those in-need of food assistance can call the main office number @ (850)763-8475, to schedule a pickup time.

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Updated meal information from Bay District Schools

Please see the graphics and information related to our meal service beginning 3/23/20.
We continue to ask for waivers from the USDA to be able to deliver meals to bus stops and to allow parents to pick up for their children without children being present, but currently, we do not have those waivers and so we cannot develop associated plans. So, subject to change we get more information, but beginning 3/23 this is our plan:
1. All school-aged children can access three pre-packaged meals per day, served to go only, at any of these sites.
2. Children must be present.
3. Meals will be available between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.
4. All school-aged children, with parental permission, of course, can ride the trolley for free to any of these sites where there are trolley stops nearby. Thanks to Bay County TPO for their generosity and support of this process.
5. Parents can drive up and receive three meals a day for each school-aged child present in the car.
6. This current plan stands as the plan for next week, there may be revisions to the plan depending upon waivers received and additional delivery methods developed.
7. We do anticipate making meals for our school-aged children as available as possible throughout the closure.


AVAILABLE TROLLEY STOPS – KIDS RIDE FOR FREE
A. Crawford Mosley High 501 Mosley Dr., Lynn Haven-Stop-Hwy 77 & Mosley Drive
Breakfast Point Academy 601 N. Richard Jackson Blvd., Panama City Beach-No Stop
Cedar Grove Elementary 2826 E. 15th St., Panama City-15st-Near Everitt Ave on 15th Street
Hutchison Beach Elementary 12900 Middle Beach Rd., Panama City Beach-Hutchison Blvd & Clara Ave.
Jinks Middle 600 W. 11th St., Panama City-11th & Entera Drive.
Lucille Moore Elementary 1900 Michigan Ave., Panama City-Michigan Ave. & 19th St.
Lynn Haven Elementary 301 W. 9th St., Panama City- 11th Street & Harrison
Northside Elementary 2001 Northside Dr., Panama City-19th St. & Northside Dr.
Parker Elementary 640 S. Hwy. 22A, Panama City-Hwy 22A & Hickory st.
Patronis Elementary 7400 Patronis Dr., Panama City Beach-Thomas Dr. & Patronis Dr.
Rutherford High 1000 School Ave., Panama City-11th St. & School Ave
Southport Elementary 1835 Bridge St., Panama City-No Stop
Tommy Smith Elementary 5044 Tommy Smith Dr., Panama City-No Stop
Tyndall Elementary 7800 Tyndall Pkwy., Panama City-No Stop
Waller Elementary 11332 Hwy. 388, Panama City-No Stop
*These are based on which direction you are going*
To confirm routes and stops visit- www.Baytowntrolly.org Use Trip Planner OR Call 769-0557
Here are the school names and addresses for meal service next week
LYNN HAVEN/SOUTHPORT AREA
A. Crawford Mosley High 501 Mosley Dr., Lynn Haven, FL 32444
Lynn Haven Elementary 301 W. 9th St., Panama City, FL 32444
Southport Elementary 1835 Bridge St., Panama City, FL 32409
PANAMA CITY AREA
Cedar Grove Elementary 2826 E. 15th St., Panama City, FL 32404
Jinks Middle 600 W. 11th St., Panama City, FL 32401
Lucille Moore Elementary 1900 Michigan Ave., Panama City, FL 32405
Northside Elementary 2001 Northside Dr., Panama City, FL 32405
BEACH
Breakfast Point Academy 601 N. Richard Jackson Blvd., Panama City Beach, FL 32407
Hutchison Beach Elementary 12900 Middle Beach Rd., Panama City Beach, FL 32407
Patronis Elementary 7400 Patronis Dr., Panama City Beach, FL 32408
EAST-SIDE
Rutherford High 1000 School Ave., Panama City, FL 32401
Parker Elementary 640 S. Hwy. 22A, Panama City, FL 32404
Tyndall Elementary 7800 Tyndall Pkwy., Panama City, FL 32403
NORTH COUNTY
Tommy Smith Elementary 5044 Tommy Smith Dr., Panama City, FL 32404
Waller Elementary 11332 Hwy. 388, Panama City, FL 32466
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Update from the Bay County Council on Aging

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Gulf Power is offering resources for customers experiencing difficulties during the pandemic. Click HERE for the information.
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Frequently Asked Questions regarding Bay District Schools and students:

1. What about meals for students when you’re closed?

Beginning 3/23, and throughout the closure period, we will be serving FREE “grab and go” meals for all BDS students according to the following schedule:MEALS AVAILABLE BETWEEN 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.All school-aged students, regardless of school of enrollment, will be able to pick up pre-packaged breakfast, lunch and dinner bags between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.The USDA requires that students be present to pick up the meals. We understand that this may create challenges for some families but this is a federal rule that we cannot waive.All meals will be “to go” only. Meals will be available at: A. Crawford Mosley, Cedar Grove, Rutherford, Jinks, Breakfast Point, Northside, Beach Elementary, Lynn Haven Elementary, Parker Elementary, Patronis Elementary, Southport Elementary, Tommy Smith Elementary, Tyndall Elementary and Waller Elementary.

2. What about meals for students during Spring Break?

Mercy Chefs is serving dinner for all (packaged to go only) from the kitchen at Patterson Elementary School (1025 Redwood Ave., Panama City, FL 32401) from 4:30-7 p.m. Monday-Saturday of Spring Break. Students do not need to be present to pick up meals however, we ask that each family only pick up what’s needed for their family for that day so there’s enough for everyone.

3. My student was receiving mental health assistance through his/her school. What happens now?

If your child is currently being served by the Bay District Schools Mental Health Team and is in need of crisis services while schools are closed, 24 hour crisis mental health services include Life Management Center 850-522-4485, Emerald Coast Behavioral Hospital 850-763-0017, National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK.

4. What about the AP study sessions that were planned for later this month?

Saturday Study Sessions scheduled for March 28th at Mosley and Arnold high schools have been cancelled and will not be rescheduled. We apologize for the inconvenience.

5. Why did you just announce that you’re closing schools when, before, you said you weren’t?

All previous guidance from the DOE was to keep schools open while following CDC/DOH guidelines. This afternoon, in a 3:30 p.m. conference call with Superintendents, the DOE announced an additional week of closure statewide after each district’s Spring Break. For us, that means a closure next week for Spring Break and then the following week. We announced this news literally as soon as we hung up from the phone call. We have been told to prepare for students to return after the two-week break but also told that’s subject to change and updates in the future from the DOE. As soon we know something firm about the return date, we will share!

6. What about make up days?

We do not know, at this time, DOE’s decision regarding whether or not these days will have to be made up. As soon as we get that information we will definitely share it with everyone.

7. Will my student be required to complete school work during the closure week?

No. The DOE did not direct districts to implement their distance learning plans during this week. BDS has been working hard for the past two weeks to develop hybrid lesson plans involving online and paper-based activities designed to meet the needs of all families. We have been asked to use the closure week to finalize those plans but not to deploy them at this time.We will, however, be sharing fun, free activities that can be done from home throughout Spring Break and closure week. All of these are completely optional.

8. What about FSA testing?

The DOE informed us last week that FSA testing will definitely be delayed by at least two weeks. We do not have any more specifics about that but as soon as we know, you will know.

9. What about extra-curriculars and sports?

ALL activities of that nature, per the DOE, are cancelled for two weeks beginning Monday, 3/16/20. If you have questions, we encourage you to reach out to your school via their FB page.

10. What about Bay Base?

Bay Base will continue during Spring Break as planned for those families who pre-registered for that service. During the additional closure week, however, there will not be any Bay Base services in the district.

11. I heard you’ll be doing some cleaning during this closure. What does that entail?

While the children are off campus, the custodial staff will be taking this opportunity to thoroughly clean commonly-used areas and items. We’ve ordered additional disinfecting/sanitizing supplies and we anticipate each school getting thoroughly disinfected.
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Emergency Prescription Refills are Available

INFORMATIONAL MEMORANDUM
Florida Office of Insurance Regulation
David Altmaier, Commissioner
TO ALL HEALTH INSURERS, HEALTH MAINTENANCE ORGANIZATIONS AND OTHER HEALTH ENTITIES AUTHORIZED TO DO BUSINESS IN FLORIDA
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EARLY PRESCRIPTION REFILLS PURSUANT TO EXECUTIVE ORDER 20-52 ~
Following Governor DeSantis’ Executive Order 20-52 declaring an emergency in the state of Florida in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) is issuing this Informational Memorandum to all health insurers, health maintenance organizations and other health entities authorized to do business in Florida as a reminder of Florida law regarding early prescription refills.
Declaration of Emergency by Governor DeSantis
Governor Ron DeSantis has issued Executive Order 20-52, declaring a state of emergency in the state of Florida regarding the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency.
This memorandum is a reminder that all health insurers, health maintenance organizations and other health entities must comply with the provisions of section 252.358, Florida Statutes, which allows for early prescription refills in the event the Governor issues an Executive Order declaring a State of Emergency. This mandate remains in effect until the Governor’s Executive Order is rescinded or expires.
In accordance with section 252.358, Florida Statutes, Emergency-preparedness prescription medication refills, all health insurers, managed care organizations, and other entities that are licensed by the Office of Insurance Regulation and provide prescription medication coverage as part of a policy or contract shall waive time restrictions on prescription medication refills, which include suspension of electronic “refill too soon” edits to pharmacies, to enable insureds or subscribers to refill prescriptions in advance, if there are authorized refills remaining, and shall authorize payment to pharmacies for at least a 30-day supply of any prescription medication, regardless of the date upon which the prescription had most recently been filled by a pharmacist, when the following conditions occur:
(1) The person seeking the prescription medication refill resides in a county that:
(a) Is under a hurricane warning issued by the National Weather Service;
(b) Is declared to be under a state of emergency in an executive order issued by the Governor; or
(c) Has activated its emergency operations center and its emergency management plan.
(2) The prescription medication refill is requested within 30 days after the origination date of the conditions stated in this section or until such conditions are terminated by the issuing authority or no longer exist. The time period for the waiver of prescription medication refills may be extended in 15- or 30-day increments by emergency orders issued by the Office of Insurance Regulation.
This section does not excuse or exempt an insured or subscriber from compliance with all other terms of the policy or contract providing prescription medication coverage.In accordance with section 465.0275, Florida Statutes, emergency prescription refill, if the Governor issues an emergency order or proclamation of a state of emergency, the pharmacist may dispense up to a 30-day supply in the areas or counties affected by the order or proclamation, provided that:
(a) The prescription is not for a medicinal drug listed in Schedule II appearing in chapter 893.
(b) The medication is essential to the maintenance of life or to the continuation of therapy in a chronic condition.
(c) In the pharmacist’s professional judgment, the interruption of therapy might reasonably produce undesirable health consequences or may cause physical or mental discomfort.
(d) The dispensing pharmacist creates a written order containing all of the prescription information required by this chapter and chapters 499 and 893 and signs that order.
(e) The dispensing pharmacist notifies the prescriber of the emergency dispensing within a reasonable time after such dispensing.
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