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Updates on School opening 2021

Updated: Mar 24, 2021

Sarasota County schools are shortening required quarantine time frames for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released a scientific brief that provides options to reduce quarantine time frames.

As a reminder, close contacts are those individuals who have been within six feet of an infected individual for a cumulative of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, regardless of mask usage. The new policy allows someone to return to work or school on day 7 if they have no symptoms or if the person has a negative PCR test any time after the sixth day. Individuals are to be counseled to adhere strictly to public health mitigation through Day 14, including social distancing and wearing a mask. School districts have indicated they will be

implementing these new guidelines by spring of 2021.

Flu season is the ‘holiday gift’ nobody wants

As the holiday season comes to an end and the new year approaches, catching a cold or the flu during the holidays is not only inconvenient, unfortunately, it is also common. The viruses that cause influenza are different from the ones that cause COVID-19, meaning that it is possible to be infected with both viruses simultaneously. More importantly, COVID-19 infection can weaken the immune system, leaving you susceptible to subsequent flu infection. Considering this, it is more important than ever to go get your yearly flu vaccine. Find flu vaccines for yourself and your family using this vaccine finder tool. As a reminder, please do not forget that the use of masks and maintaining social distance are flu precautions as well!

Public outreach

Over the past month, our Safekeepers have been going strong maintaining an active role in community events and continuing to bridge the information and resource needs that exist in Sarasota and Manatee county. So far for the month of December, the Safekeepers have participated in (13+) Sarasota and Manatee County community events, have fed nearly 900 families and have hosted several food donation events for the holiday season. JoOni, MHI Safekeeper, reacts to her experience in helping the community, saying

“I am overwhelmed when I visit communities with limited resources and see how they are forced to survive this COVID-19 Pandemic. While servicing an event in Palmetto, I was surprised to see families who had shelter (not considered homeless) but that was all. Some had no running water (filling water-jugs at a park fountain for drinking/washing/toilet), no heat, no electricity, and limited ability to prepare food (built fire pit in the backyard).”

Multicultural Action Team (MAT) continues strong collaborative efforts including UnidosNow recent impactful Red Barn event and United Methodist Church. At the Red Barn event, we distributed nearly over 2,000 health brochures with the help of UnidosNow and we were able to distribute over 250 masks. Support us in similar efforts.

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