Update on the Coronavirus


As of April 1, the California Dept. of Education State Superintendent Tony Thurmond and Governor Gavin Newsom have not ordered but suggested that students may not be able to return to school campuses before the end of the school year.

Glendale Unified School District announced that it will not be reopening schools in its district for the current school year but instead will transition from traditional classrooms to a remote learning model.

GUSD Superintendent Dr. Vivian Ekchian issued the following statement:

“The Board of Education and our district leadership are committed to ensuring the health and safety of our entire Glendale Unified community. Based on recommendations from state and local health and education authorities, we have made a decision to extend remote learning through the end of the 2019-20 school year.

“We are considering many options for graduations and end-of-year celebrations. We recognize the importance of these momentous life events, especially for our seniors, and we will work closely with our students, staff and families to make these experiences as meaningful as possible for our amazing students.

“We remain committed to ensuring our students maintain continuity of education and our highest-need families receive healthy meals and access to necessities while our schools are closed. We will continue to keep our community informed as we learn new information and appreciate your support and patience as we navigate this unique situation together.”

LA County

In her daily conference update on April 1, Dr. Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Los Angeles County Public Health director, discussed the topic of masks and whether the public should be wearing masks when they are in public areas. She stated the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] is considering new guidelines for wearing a mask.

“Emerging evidence suggests that there may be a significant number of people infected with COVID-19 who are asymptomatic and capable of spreading the virus to others. New guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that we need to think about using universal precautions all the time – assuming that each of us can infect others even when we aren’t sick,” according to a LA County Public Health Dept. statement.

“They don’t feel sick, don’t think they are sick but when tested they end up being positive,” she said.

That means they could have transmitted the disease without being aware of having it. Wearing a mask, like a regular surgical mask, is not something that would prevent the wearer from getting COVID-19 but may help prevent the spread by those who have the disease but are without symptoms.

If someone has tested positive, or is presumed to be positive, he/she needs to self-isolate but also must notify everyone he/she had come in close contact with within 48 hours prior to showing the first symptoms, she said.

The public does not have to use regular surgical masks; it is important to remember that the mask and glove needs of medical staff are priority. The public can wear homemade masks, bandanas or scarves when they go out to public areas, like the grocery store and pharmacies and other areas where there may be other people, but still practice social distancing.

“Our sadness is not diminished by the daily frequency of announced deaths related to COVID-19, and reminds us of our need to work together to protect each other,” said Ferrer. “The hard truth is we have some difficult days ahead as we work tirelessly to flatten the curve of this horrible virus. Though the end may not be as close as we’d like, if we all continue to do our part to slow the spread by staying home, social distancing, self-isolating when we are positive or presumed positive, and self-quarantining if we are [in] close contact of a positive case, we will  get to the end of the COVID-19 crisis more quickly, together.”

As of noon on April 1, 3,518 cases of COVID-19 were reported in LA County with 65 deaths. As of April 1, 733 people who have tested positive for COVID-19 have been hospitalized at some point during their illness. The City of Glendale has 86 cases, La Cañada Flintridge has eight, Eagle Rock has 11, Sunland has eight and Tujunga has five.

Verdugo Hills Hospital

There are four patients with confirmed COVID-19 who are currently in the hospital; 13 have been sent home and nine were transferred. Of the number of patients with negative COVID-19 tests, 14 are currently in the hospital, 92 have been sent home and one was transported. Of the number of patients with pending COVID-19 tests, five are currently in the hospital and three were sent home.

Glendale Memorial Hospital and Health Center

Dignity Health-Glendale Memorial is currently offering a free virtual care service, Virtual Care Anywhere, for anyone in our community experiencing mild symptoms of COVID-19, such as low-grade fever, a cough, or shortness of breath. The service is a safe and convenient way for medical professionals to evaluate patients virtually, while avoiding interactions with others and ensuring they receive the appropriate level of care in the right setting.

To use the service, visit dignityhealth.org/virtualcareanywhere, download the Virtual Care Anywhere app in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store, or call (855) 356-8053 and use the coupon code COVID19. The service has a $35 fee, which will be waived for any patient who thinks they may be experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. After requesting a virtual care visit, a provider will contact the patient, typically within 30 minutes, although high demand may result in longer wait times.

Additionally, Glendale Memorial Hospital is accepting donations of new supplies for use by hospital physicians and staff, including Personal Protective Equipment (i.e. N95 masks, face shields, gloves, gowns). The hospital would also appreciate donations of hand sanitizers or disinfectant wipes. Please note handmade masks are not being accepted at this time. Those who would like to make a charitable donation to support the work of Glendale Memorial can visit www.supportglendale.org for more information.

Daily CVW updates concerning COVID-19 can be found on our website www.cvweekly.com and on the Crescenta Valley Weekly Facebook page. Readers can also subscribe to the CVW email blast by sending their email address to Rachelle@cvweekly.com so they can be included in the Blast Zone.