Working group will plan for potential resurgence of COVID-19 in the fall

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WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney on Monday signed Executive Order #39, creating a Pandemic Resurgence Advisory Committee (PRAC) to plan for a potentially dangerous resurgence of COVID-19 in fall 2020.

Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long and Secretary of State Jeff Bullock will co-chair the PRAC, along with the co-chairs of three subcommittees:
Health Subcommittee: Chair – Dr. Nancy Fan, Chair of the Delaware Health Care Commission

Chair: Dr. Nancy Fan, Chair of the Delaware Health Care Commission
Dr. Karyl Rattay, Director of the Delaware Division of Public Health
AJ Schall, Director of the Delaware Emergency Management Agency
State Senator Bryan Townsend
State Representative Dave Bentz
State Senator Ernie Lopez
Representative Steve Smyk
Mickey Carroll, Nursing House Administrator of the New Castle Health & Rehabilitation Center
Vickie Fox, VP – Director of Operations of Genesis Health Care
Dr. David Tam, President and Chief Executive Officer of Beebe Healthcare
Janice Nevin, President and Chief Executive Officer of ChristianaCare Health System
Dr. Joseph Straight, President of the Medical Society of Delaware

Equity Subcommittee: Chair – Eugene Young, President, Metropolitan Urban League of Wilmington

Chair: Eugene Young, President, Metropolitan Urban League of Wilmington
Commissioner Claire DeMatteis, Delaware Department of Correction
AJ Schall, Director of the Delaware Emergency Management Agency
Director Anas Ben Addi, Delaware State Housing Authority
Chief Information Officer James Collins, Delaware Department of Technology and Information
State Senator Elizabeth Lockman
State Representative Sherry Dorsey-Walker
Senator Gerald Hocker
State Representative Lyndon Yearick
Rev. Rita Paige, Pastor of Star Hill AME Church
Freeman Williams, NAACP State Conference Executive Member and former Superintendent of the Christina School District
Lolita Lopez, President and Chief Executive Officer of Westside Family Healthcare
Van Hampton, President and Chief Executive Officer of True Access capital
Maria Matos, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Latin American Community Center
Dr. Leroi Hicks, Vice of the Department of Medicine for the ChristianaCare Health System
Rosa Rivera, Chief Operations Officer of La Red Health Center
Jane Hovington, NAACP State Conference Executive Member and President of the Richard Allen Coalition
Dr. Josh Thomas, Chief Executive Officer/Executive Director of NAMI Delaware

Business Subcommittee: Chair – Katie Wilkinson, Chair of the Board of Directors, Delaware State Chamber of Commerce

Chair: Katie Wilkinson, Chair of the Board of Directors, Delaware State Chamber of Commerce
Secretary Jen Cohan, Delaware Department of Transportation
State Senator Nicole Poore
State Representative Bill Bush
State Senator Dave Wilson
State Representative Jeff Spiegelman
Kurt Foreman, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Delaware Prosperity Partnership
Nelson Hill, Vice President of UFCW Local 27
Todd Lawson, Sussex County Administrator
Steve Chambliss, General Manager of the Christiana Mall
Taryn Delmasso, Plant Manager at Edgewell Products
Chris Schell, Chief Executive Officer of Schell Brothers Homebuilding
Judy Diogo, President of Central Delaware Chamber of Commerce
Carrie Leishman, President & CEO of the Delaware Restaurant Association
Dick Willey, President of Perdue Agribusiness LCC

Click here to read Executive Order #39.

“This pandemic is not over,” said Governor Carney. “The COVID-19 virus is still active in Delaware, and there’s a real risk of a dangerous second wave this fall. Our most vulnerable populations – especially our elderly neighbors and those with underlying health conditions – remain most at risk. I want to thank everyone who agreed to serve on this committee. This distinguished group will help us look forward, and develop a comprehensive plan for managing a second wave of this disease.

“In the meantime, Delawareans need to remain vigilant. Visit your favorite restaurant, but maintain social distance in all public settings. Wash or sanitize your hands frequently. Wear face coverings, and please stay home if you feel sick. Now is not the time to let up.”

Under Governor Carney’s executive order on Monday, the PRAC will:

Develop a healthcare system and public health strategy that’s ready in case of a resurgence of COVID-19;
Identify tactics and resources to manage a resurgence of COVID-19 including, but not limited to testing capabilities, personal protective equipment (PPE), social distancing, economic recovery and health facility readiness; and
Assess methods to protect vulnerable populations and consider disproportionate effects on minority-owned businesses in the event of a resurgence of COVID-19.

“We must be prepared as we move into the fall with a plan that assumes there will be no vaccine or treatment in the event COVID-19 resurges,” said Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long. “These last few months have shown us what has worked, and what has not. We must build on those lessons to improve and protect the health of all Delawareans, in a way that is equitable and fair for all communities, and all sectors of our economy.”

“This is an inclusive and transparent effort to prepare for the worst while continuing to hope for the best,” said Secretary of State Jeff Bullock. “We’ve learned a lot in the last few months about what works in responding to a pandemic, and some things that don’t work as well. This committee will build on that experience to improve the ways we’ll respond if we see a resurgence.”

The PRAC will produce and submit two written reports of its findings and recommendations to the Governor – the first by July 31, and the second by September 30. Delaware’s Office of Management and Budget, the Delaware Department of Justice, and the Office of the Governor will provide administrative and leadership support for the PRAC and each of its subcommittees.

The PRAC virtual meetings will be scheduled in the coming weeks, and meeting information will be posted on Delaware’s public meeting calendar.

Anyone with a question about COVID-19, should call Delaware 2-1-1, or email info@delaware211.org
. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can text their ZIP code to 898-211. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Medical-related questions related to testing, symptoms, and health-related guidance can also be submitted by email at DPHCall@delaware.gov

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The Delaware Division of Public Health will continue to update the public as more information becomes available. For the latest on Delaware’s response, go to de.gov/coronavirus.