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Coronavirus in Georgia on March 31

At 11Alive News, our coverage of the coronavirus is rooted in Facts, not Fear. Here is the impact on Georgia on March 31.

For live updates on how the coronavirus is impacting Georgia on April 1 click here--> https://bit.ly/39FhUjD

Below is an archive 

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At 11Alive News, our coverage of the coronavirus is rooted in Facts, not Fear. Visit the 11Alive coronavirus page for comprehensive coverage, find out what you need to know about Georgia specifically, learn more about the symptoms, and keep tabs on the cases around the world here. Have a question? Text it to us at 404-885-7600.

State and federal officials with the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are continually monitoring the spread of the virus. They are also working hand-in-hand with the World Health Organization to track the spread around the world and to stop it.

We will continue to track the most important coronavirus elements relating to Georgia on this page. Refresh often for new information.

Key Facts: 

Credit: WXIA

Tuesday, March 31

Number of confirmed cases crosses 4,000 with more than 120 deaths

The number of cases of coronaviurs in Georgia has grown to 4,117. There are also now 125 deaths being reported. Another 885 people statewide have been hospitalized. 

The number of cases in Fulton county is just under 600 with 18 deaths being reported. Dougherty County continues to be a hot bed for the virus. The southwest county, home to Albany, has 466 cases and the deaths has spike to 26, up from 18 deaths since noon.

DeKalb, Cobb and Gwinnett counties each have more than 200 cases, with Bartow, Carroll and Clayton counties each reporting more than 100 cases. 

County - Cases - Deaths

Fulton    599    18
Dougherty    466    26
Dekalb    360    4
Cobb    287    13
Gwinnett    242    2
Bartow    137    3
Carroll    123    1
Clayton    112    3
Lee    90    7
Henry    86    2
Cherokee    78    3
Hall    67    0
Clarke    51    5
Douglas    51    1
Floyd    50    2
Fayette    48    4
Forsyth    47    1
Rockdale    45    2
Coweta    41    2
Richmond    40    0
Terrell    40    2
Sumter    35    2
Mitchell    34    1
Chatham    32    2
Early    32    1
Newton    31    0
Paulding    31    0
Houston    30    3
Worth    28    1
Columbia    24    0
Lowndes    23    1
Bibb    20    0
Colquitt    20    1
Tift    20    0
Barrow    19    2
Muscogee    19    0
Troup    18    1
Glynn    17    0
Crisp    16    0
Gordon    16    1
Oconee    16    0
Polk    15    0
Spalding    15    0
Laurens    13    0
Coffee    11    0
Dawson    10    0
Thomas    10    0
Ware    10    0
Whitfield    10    1
Calhoun    9    0
Walton    9    0
Burke    8    0
Butts    8    0
Decatur    8    0
Dooly    8    0
Jackson    8    0
Bryan    7    0
Greene    7    0
Lumpkin    7    0
Peach    7    1
Pickens    7    1
Meriwether    6    0
Seminole    6    0
Bacon    5    0
Baldwin    5    1
Clay    5    0
Effingham    5    0
Haralson    5    0
Liberty    5    0
Monroe    5    0
Murray    5    0
Randolph    5    0
Upson    5    0
Baker    4    1
Camden    4    0
Catoosa    4    0
Fannin    4    0
Franklin    4    0
Hart    4    0
Lincoln    4    0
Miller    4    0
Schley    4    0
Stephens    4    0
Turner    4    0
Washington    4    0
Banks    3    0
Ben Hill    3    0
Chattooga    3    0
Harris    3    0
Irwin    3    0
Jones    3    0
Lamar    3    0
Madison    3    1
Mcduffie    3    0
Pierce    3    0
Pulaski    3    0
Toombs    3    0
Warren    3    0
White    3    0
Brooks    2    0
Bulloch    2    0
Dodge    2    0
Habersham    2    0
Jasper    2    0
Jefferson    2    0
Macon    2    0
Morgan    2    0
Pike    2    0
Rabun    2    0
Tattnall    2    0
Taylor    2    0
Twiggs    2    0
Wilkes    2    0
Appling    1    0
Berrien    1    0
Bleckley    1    0
Candler    1    0
Charlton    1    0
Chattahoochee    1    0
Clinch    1    0
Cook    1    0
Dade    1    0
Emanuel    1    0
Gilmer    1    0
Grady    1    0
Heard    1    1
Jenkins    1    0
Johnson    1    0
Long    1    0
Mcintosh    1    0
Oglethorpe    1    0
Screven    1    0
Stewart    1    0
Talbot    1    0
Walker    1    0
Webster    1    0
Wheeler    1    0
Wilcox    1    0
Wilkinson    1    0
Unknown    183    1

Atlanta Fire department monitoring firefighters' temperatures

A spokesperson for the department confirms that all firefighters must have their temperatures checked at the beginning of each shift and will be asked to go home if their temperature is more than 100 degrees.

Second DeKalb Jail employee test positive for coronavirus

The DeKalb County Sheriff's Office says a second jail employee - a supervisor - has tested positive for COVID-19. The office says that their own leader, the sheriff herself, is also self-monitoring for symptoms. 

According to the sheriff's office, the 45-year-old jail employee often accompanied Sheriff Melody Maddox during the sheriff's daily walk-throughs of the jail complex. 

The sheriff's office said Maddox was found to have been one of the people possibly exposed to the employee, and sought a medical screening via telemedicine services. No COVID-19 symptoms were found, the sheriff's office said. 

“Although I have been medically-cleared to continue working, I am more keenly aware that no one is exempt from this threat,” says Sheriff Maddox. “Our challenge is that this agency never closes, and we are constantly in proximity to each other and individuals from throughout the community. 

So far, the sheriff's office has reported four confirmed cases of COVID-19 since mid-March involving two employees and two inmates.

7 confirmed COVID-19 cases in South Fulton senior living facility

The Arbor Terrace at Cascade senior living facility confirms it is handling seven confirmed COVID-19 cases.

The facility says its residents have been under quarantine in their apartments since March 26 to reduce the spread of the illness. The facility added that it has been in regular contact with its residents with voice messages and emails. 

The facility said that a cleaning company has since performed a complete sanitization of all the common areas of the building. They have also supplied masks, goggles and gloves, with more on the way. 

The facility said they have been in contact with local health officials and are following their guidance. 

Atlanta Children's Shelter closed until April 24

The Atlanta Children's Shelter said it is following the most recent directive from the Governor's Office and will close and remain closed until at least April 24. 

"We remain committed to serving all the ACS homeless families and recently housed families throughout all of this," the group said. "We continue to provide them with emergency support daily."

Employee tests positive at Stewart Detention Center

According to a spokesperson for CoreCivic Facility Support Center, one of their employees who works at the Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, Georgia tested positive for COVID-19. 

The company told 11Alive the employee's last shift was on March 20, and they are currently isolated at home and in communication with their healthcare provider. 

The company said they have are working to notify employees or contractors who may have been in contact with the ill employee and have directed nine employees who had direct contact with the employee to self-quarantine for 14 days.

Another 33 detainees at the facility have been placed in a separate housing unit at the facility. 

The detention center is widely used to house ICE detainees.

East Point extends emergency coronavirus ordinance

The city of East Point approved a fourth emergency ordinance this week. 

The new ordinance extends the city's stay-at-home order and curfew until April 7, 2020. All non-essential businesses will remain closed until that time. East Point is currently under curfew from 9 pm to 7 am.

East Point is also extending the deadline for all city tax exemptions until a later date, that hasn't been announced. The deadline was set for April 1, 2020.

Confirmed cases nearing 4,000 in Georgia

The Georgia Department of Health announced new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday -- shortly after they released the Noon numbers. Just before 1 p.m., they said there were 3,929 confirmed cases of the virus and 111 deaths reported. This is up from the 3,817 confirmed cases and 108 deaths that they announced at Noon.

Of the 3,929 confirmed cases, 570 are in Fulton, 462 are in Dougherty, 335 are in DeKalb, 279 are in Cobb and 238 are in Gwinnett. In all, there are cases reported in 138 counties (165 cases are listed as unknown counties). For a breakdown by county, view the 11Alive interactive map.

They said 833 patients are hospitalized with COVID-19.

State to release some inmates amid coronavirus outbreak

Some prisoners may be released sooner than they expected amid the coronavirus outbreak and the state’s efforts to combat the virus. 

The State Board of Pardons and Paroles have begun reviewing specific cases for clemency release, they said on Tuesday.

“The Board will be exercising its constitutional authority to affect releases with a goal of providing the Department of Corrections more flexibility in handling the impact of the COVID-19 virus within Georgia’s correctional system,” Parole Board Chairman Terry Barnard said.

The Board will be considering for a clemency release individuals currently serving for a non-violent offense(s) who are within 180 days of completing their prison sentence. The majority of these individuals will be released to community supervision.

US Rep. urges GDOT to loosen regulations, provide guidelines for truckers

US Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) sent a letter to the Department of Transportation requesting the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration loosen certain regulations and provide guidelines for truckers in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak. 

“My office has heard from truckers all across Georgia that they are concerned about meeting the regulatory requirements mandated by the FMCSA and the personal contact their job often requires,” Collins wrote. “Specifically, truckers are required by FMCSA regulations to renew their CDL license and get regular physicals. While these regulations are important for trucker and driver safety, this abnormal situation requires us to adapt to keep truckers safe and moving. In order to keep truckers on the road and keep necessary products in American households and grocery stores, I ask that the FMCSA consider loosening regulations that are difficult for truckers to comply with during the coronavirus outbreak.”

As truckers are working overtime to maintain our country’s food supply chain in the midst of this outbreak, they face an even higher demand to ensure the items they are moving are handled safely and responsibly, he said. 

Collins went on to say that in order to "protect their health and safety, we must find ways to minimize their face-to-face contact with suppliers and receivers." 

“In light of these concerns, I ask that the FMCSA consider providing a grace period for certain renewals and requirements that would mandate face-to-face contact or visits to doctors’ offices. Further, I ask the FMCSA to issue guidelines for truckers, suppliers, and receivers to help establish policies that will ensure truckers are able to follow the Administration’s guidelines and reduce the spread of coronavirus.”

Georgia National Guard to be deployed to nursing homes with COVID-19 cases

Gov. Brian Kemp and Georgia National Guard Adjutant General Tom Carden said on Tuesday that over 100 Georgia National Guardsmen will be activated and deployed to any long-term care facility, assisted living facility or nursing home with COVID-19 cases.

The troops will be sent to specific locations to implement infection control protocols and enhanced sanitation methods to mitigate COVID-19 exposure among vulnerable residents.

"Georgia's top priority is increasing healthcare capacity to protect vulnerable Georgians, especially those residing in long-term care facilities," Kemp said. "If we can keep these populations as healthy as possible, we will be able to conserve precious medical supplies and hospital bed space in the coming days and weeks."

Twenty soldiers are headed to Pelham, Ga., on Tuesday, to Pelham Parkway Nursing Home to audit existing sanitation methods, train staff on utilizing more aggressive infectious disease control and thoroughly clean the facility.

State to use college campus labs to increase testing

Gov. Brian Kemp announced a laboratory surge capacity plan to quickly increase the availability of testing for COVID-19 in Georgia. 

This initiative leverages the collective laboratory resources under the University System of Georgia, Georgia Public Health Laboratory, and Emory University. Upon implementation, labs will process over 3,000 samples per day.

"Adequate testing for COVID-19 has continued to be a top priority for the Coronavirus Task Force as we fight this pandemic," Kemp said. "With this innovative partnership between state government agencies, our world-class research institutions, and private-sector partners, we will be able to dramatically increase testing capacity."

The ramp-up of laboratory testing surge capacity begins today.

In a statement, University System of Georgia Chancellor Steve Wrigley said: “The experts at Augusta University, Georgia State, Georgia Tech, and the University of Georgia understand that urgency and have the capacity and expertise to make this work for Georgia. We appreciate their hard work, and we thank our laboratory partners at Emory University and the Georgia Public Health Laboratory.”

Confirmed cases in Georgia continue to creep up with 3,817 and 108 deaths

The Georgia Department of Health announced new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday. As of Noon, there are 3,817 confirmed cases of the virus and 108 deaths reported. This is up from the 3,032 confirmed cases and 102 deaths that they announced on Monday evening.

Of the 3,817 confirmed cases, 547 are in Fulton, 455 are in Dougherty, 325 are in DeKalb, 272 are in Cobb and 233 are in Gwinnett. In all, there are cases reported in 139 counties (159 cases are listed as unknown counties). For a breakdown by county, view the 11Alive interactive map.

They said 818 patients are hospitalized with COVID-19.

Of the confirmed cases, 1 percent are between the ages of 0-17, while 58 percent are 18-59 years old, 35 percent are over 60 and 6 percent are unknown.

In total, 14,260 tests were conducted at commercial labs, reporting 3,491 positive cases. At the Department of Public Health Labratory, 1,921 tests were conducted with 326 positive results.

County - Cases - Deaths

Fulton - 547 - 17
Dougherty - 455 - 18
Dekalb - 325 - 3
Cobb - 272 - 11
Gwinnett - 233 - 2
Bartow - 129 - 2
Carroll - 22 - 1
Clayton - 96 - 3
Lee - 85 - 6
Henry - 76 - 2
Cherokee - 74 - 2
Hall - 65 - 0
Clarke - 50 - 5
Douglas - 48 - 1
Fayette - 44 - 4
Forsyth - 43 - 1
Coweta - 40 - 2
Richmond - 40 - 0
Terrell - 39 - 2
Rockdale - 34 - 2
Floyd - 33 - 2
Sumter - 32 - 2
Mitchell - 31 - 1
Newton - 29 - 0
Worth - 29 - 1
Paulding - 28 - 0
Houston - 27 - 2
Early - 26 - 1
Chatham - 25 - 2
Columbia - 23 - 0
Lowndes - 21 - 1
Bibb - 20 - 0
Muscogee - 19 - 0
Tift - 19 - 0
Barrow - 18 - 2
Glynn - 17 - 0
Gordon - 16 - 1
Polk - 15 - 0
Troup - 15 - 1
Colquitt - 14 - 0
Crisp - 14 - 0
Oconee - 14 - 0
Laurens - 13 - 0
Spalding - 13 - 0
Coffee - 11 - 0
Dawson - 10 - 0
Whitfield - 10 - 1
Ware - 9 - 0
Burke - 8 - 0
Calhoun - 8 - 0
Lumpkin - 8 - 0
Seminole - 8 - 0
Thomas - 8 - 0
Bryan - 7 - 0
Decatur - 7 - 0
Greene - 7 - 0
Jackson - 7 - 0
Peach - 7 - 1
Butts - 6 - 0
Dooly - 6 - 0
Meriwether - 6 - 0
Miller - 6 - 0
Pickens - 6 - 1
Walton - 6 - 0
Liberty - 5 - 0
Randolph - 5 - 0
Schley - 5 - 0
Upson - 5 - 0
Baker - 4 - 1
Baldwin - 4 - 1
Camden - 4 - 0
Clay - 4 - 0
Effingham - 4 - 0
Fannin - 4 - 0
Franklin - 4 - 0
Haralson - 4 - 0
Harris - 4 - 0
Hart - 4 - 0
Lincoln - 4 - 0
Monroe - 4 - 0
Murray - 4 - 0
Stephens - 4 - 0
Banks - 3 - 0
Ben Hill - 3 - 0
Catoosa - 3 - 0
Chattooga - 3 - 0
Irwin - 3 - 0
Jones - 3 - 0
Lamar - 3 - 0
Madison - 3 - 1
Mcduffie - 3 - 0
Pierce - 3 - 0
Pulaski - 3 - 0
Toombs - 3 - 0
Turner - 3 - 0
Warren - 3 - 0
White - 3 - 0
Appling - 2 - 0
Brooks - 2 - 0
Bulloch - 2 - 0
Dodge - 2 - 0
Habersham - 2 - 0
Jasper - 2 - 0
Jefferson - 2 - 0
Macon - 2 - 0
Morgan - 2 - 0
Pike - 2 - 0
Rabun - 2 - 0
Tattnall - 2 - 0
Taylor - 2 - 0
Twiggs - 2 - 0
Washington - 2 - 0
Wilkes - 2 - 0
Bacon - 1 - 0
Berrien - 1 - 0
Bleckley - 1 - 0
Candler - 1 - 0
Chambers - 1 - 0
Charlton - 1 - 0
Chattahoochee - 1 - 0
Clinch - 1 - 0
Cook - 1 - 0
Dade - 1 - 0
Gilmer - 1 - 0
Grady - 1 - 0
Heard - 1 - 1
Jeff Davis - 1 - 0
Jenkins - 1 - 0
Johnson - 1 - 0
Long - 1 - 0
Mcintosh - 1 - 0
Oglethorpe - 1 - 0
Screven - 1 - 0
Stewart - 1 - 0
Talbot - 1 - 0
Webster - 1 - 0
Wheeler - 1 - 0
Wilcox - 1 - 0
Wilkinson - 1 - 0
Unknown - 159 - 1

Georgia Tech clears out labs, to donate truckload of PPE for healthcare workers

It's what many of us are doing while staying home -- organizing, cleaning out closets and maybe creating a pile of old clothes to donate. 

Responding to a call from the University System of Georgia (USG) to all its members, faculty and researchers across Georgia Tech’s campus spent a few days taking inventory of what kind of personal protective equipment (PPE) they had in their labs. 

Just last week, workers from Tech’s Department of Environmental Health and Safety shipped at least eight pallets of the much-needed materials.

“It was incredible how this came together so quickly. We managed to collect this all in just a couple of days,” says Nazia Zakir, assistant vice president of Environmental Health and Safety.

The teams included a small crew of only essential campus workers, they said, who pulled together 167,900 gloves, more than 3,700 surgical and N95 masks, 6,000 shoe covers, and thousands of other items like eye protection, protective coveralls, and cleaning supplies. All from scientific labs whose work is on pause. 

According to a news release, Georgia Tech is working with USG, the Georgia Emergency Management Agency and the Department of Public Health to identify where PPE and other supplies might be gathered from university campuses across the state.

GEMA and DPH will determine where supplies are needed the most, and workers from agencies at all levels are assisting with that effort. 

Atlanta mayor announces hazard pay policy for 'front-line' city employees

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms issued an administrative order directing the institution of a hazard pay policy for "front-line" city employees. Eligible employees will be compensated an additional $500 per month.

“As Atlanta families manage the COVID-19 crisis, there are City employees going out each and every day so that critical City services continue without disruption,” said Mayor Bottoms. “These men and women leave their homes to keep our streets safe, ensure our communities are maintained, keep our water clean and so much more. They are putting their lives on the line and we are grateful for their service.”

According to the mayor's office, the hazard pay policy would apply to nearly 5,400 positions, including: sworn public safety positions and civilians performing critical watershed, aviation, solid waste, transportation, inspection, parks and recreation and other frontline functions.

This policy is to be effective March 30, 2020.

Things to know Tuesday morning

  • Atlanta Public Schools hosting "Virtual Spirit Week"
  • The Gwinnett County Solicitor General’s Office said on Monday that they will prosecute all individuals who violate the stay-at-home order issued
  • The Fulton County Sheriff said nine more inmates tested positive for COVID-19 since Sunday, bringing the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases currently at the jail to 13.
  • Coca-Cola donates plastic for Georgia Tech students making shields
  • Atlanta based UPS plans to open Worldport facilities for FEMA use, which will intensify the focus on health care services.
  • Six Flags Over Georgia and White Water have extended their closure based on new guidance. On Monday they said they will open in "mid-May, or as soon as possible thereafter."
  • A model predicting the course of the coronavirus outbreak state-by-state points to April 23 as the worst day in Georgia, when an estimated 84 people would die during the pandemic's peak week in the state.
  • Website launched to inform Georgians how to access high-speed internet
  • Kroger's Atlanta Division to install plexiglass shields at registers 
  • Atlanta Dogwood festival announces new dates
  • Fulton County changes testing criteria

MORE CORONAVIRUS HEADLINES: 

Coronavirus live updates: Denmark may ease restrictions; Japan extends travel warnings

This is a breakdown of Georgia's coronavirus-related deaths

What new parents need to know about the stimulus checks

County-by-county guide to shelter-in-place orders and curfews in metro Atlanta

These are the coronavirus hot spots in Georgia

Georgia only at the beginning of seeing fatal cases of coronavirus, model predicts

11Alive reporter recovering from coronavirus describes how bad the symptoms were

Local 12-year-old creates virtual prom night for kids missing out