Thursday, April 2, 2020

Govenor Lee goes from a "safer at home" order to a "STAY Home!" order. COVID-19 Bulletin #11

Press release, Thursday, April 02, 2020 | 04:45pm - Today, Governor Bill Lee provided an update on Tennessee’s efforts regarding COVID-19 relief. Gov. Lee’s daily press conferences can be viewed live each day this week at 3 p.m. CDT here.

Gov. Lee has also established a website specific to COVID-19 updates which can be found here.

Administration Action
Executive Order 23 – Requiring Tennesseans to Remain at Home

Gov. Lee will sign Executive Order 23 requiring that Tennesseans stay home unless they are carrying out essential activities as data shows an increase in citizen movement across the state.

Data from the Tennessee Department of Transportation analyzed traffic patterns for March 2020. While safer at home measures and further restrictions on businesses showed a steep drop-off in vehicle movement from March 13-29, data beginning on March 30 indicates travel is trending upwards, again. The Administration also analyzed data from Unacast to understand cell phone mobility and determine movement trends among people. Unacast indicates the movement of Tennesseans is trending toward pre-COVID-19 levels.

The executive order remains in effect until April 14, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Additional information is available here.

Surge Capacity
Today, FEMA approved Tennessee’s COVID-19 major disaster declaration. This accelerates efforts to work with the US Army Corps of Engineers and expand statewide capacity by an additional 7,000 beds.

The Corps of Engineers is working for FEMA and in partnership with Tennessee in responding to this crisis. Through Tennessee’s partnership with the Corps of Engineers, the state is assessing sites across Tennessee to build capacity and create Alternate Healthcare Facilities.

  • The Music City Center in downtown Nashville will be transformed into a COVID Positive Non-Acute Alternate Healthcare Facility. It will serve COVID patients who need hospital care, but do not require critical care. The current plan for the Music City Center is to provide more than 1600 Patient Care Spaces.
  • In Memphis, the Corps will be constructing a COVID positive Non-Acute Alternate Healthcare facility at Gateway Shopping Center. Additional sites in Memphis are being actively assessed to ensure capacity in this hotspot is built up quickly and efficiently. 
  • Chattanooga Convention Center and the Knoxville Expo Center will also serve as a COVID positive Non-Acute Alternate Healthcare facility. 
While facilities are a key part of planning for a surge in COVID-19 patients, we must have staff available to care for these patients. All displaced or furloughed health care personnel are urged to register on the Tennessee Department of Health website here.

Rod's Comment: This is an escalation and Governor Lee lets you know it: STAY HOME!  Big Brother is Watching!  Your movement are being tracked.  It was only day before yesterday he issued the "safer at home" order which kind of strongly suggested you stay at home unless you had a pretty damn good reason to be out.  Now it has gone to no-more-mister-nice-guy: "Stay Home!"  So what is the order day after tomorrow? People out and about will be shot on sight?  I really don't think so, but that was a quick escalation from a nicely worded order to pushing people around.  I know it is an awesome responsibility to be governor at this time.  I was okay with the order of day before yesterday; this one kind of makes me bristle. I still support our governor and pray for his wisdom and well being, but I am wondering if this rapid escalation was really necessary. Maybe it was.  However, if he issues a shoot to kill order, he has lost my support.

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