Coronavirus Update – March 31: Cases surpass 4K, 125 deaths; National Guard activated; city donation drive

The number of confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) cases has jumped to 4,117 and 125 related deaths in the state, according to Georgia Department of Public Health figures released this evening.

Gov. Brian Kemp Over said in a statement that “over the next few weeks” he will activate the National Guard and deploy deploy over 100 Guardsmen to any long-term care facility – assisted living facility or nursing home – with COVID-19 cases. The Governor and Adjutant General will send troops to specific locations to implement infection control protocols and enhanced sanitation methods to mitigate COVID-19 exposure among vulnerable residents. Twenty soldiers are headed to Pelham, Georgia today to Pelham Parkway Nursing Home to audit existing sanitation methods, train staff on utilizing more aggressive infectious disease control measures, and thoroughly clean the facility. This facility has reported five confirmed cases of COVID-19. For future missions, only four or five soldiers will deploy to a specific facility.

An #ATLSTRONG Fund donation campaign to support Atlanta residents and businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic has been launched by Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and the United Way of Greater Atlanta. “Families across Atlanta are facing uncertainty and seemingly insurmountable challenges due to this pandemic,” said Bottoms in a press release. “As a community, we must provide relief to those most in need. Thank you to the United Way of Greater Atlanta for their assistance in meeting these critical needs.”

The fund’s priorities are listed generally as:

  • Food security for Atlanta’s children and seniors;
  • Support for individuals experiencing homelessness;
  • Small business assistance;
  • Emergency assistance for Atlantans suffering financial hardship due to the pandemic, such as loss of income, rent or utility assistance.

The donations are tax-deductible. For more information, see the secure donation website here.

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