Public-Health COVID-19 Updates

TRAVEL ADVISORY FOR NYS 
updated 8.7.20

Please be advised that a joint travel advisory has been issued requiring all individuals traveling from states with significant community spread of COVID into New York, New Jersey or Connecticut to self-quarantine for 14 days.⁠

 

Traveler Health Form –  Travelers by car are also encouraged to please submit this form. It will go to Hamilton County Public Health and Nursing. 



It applies to travelers arriving from states that have a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents or a state with a 10% or higher positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average.⁠

The full, updated list of states on the travel advisory is below:

The full, updated travel advisory list is below: 

Alaska
Alabama
Arkansas
Arizona
California
Florida
Georgia
Iowa
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maryland
Minnesota
Missouri
Mississippi
Montana
North Carolina
North Dakota
Nebraska
New Mexico 
Nevada
Ohio
Oklahoma
Puerto Rico
Rhode Island
South Carolina
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Virginia
Washington
Wisconsin

 

This list of states will be updated regularly as COVID numbers change.⁠  This does include all visitors who have traveled to our region by car and or via air travel or any other means of getting to our area. 

For travelers to the Long Lake/Raquette Lake Region, we welcome you. We are open and ready for you.  Please know that cloth-face coverings are required in all local businesses.  Physical distancing 6 feet apart is the best practice and please be mindful when visiting area public restrooms that face coverings are required. 


For more guidance on this advisory, quarantine requirements, an updated list of states, as well as exemptions for first responders and essential workers, please visit

NYS Covid-19 Travel Advisory

Traveler Health Form –  Travelers by car are also encouraged to please submit this form. It will go to Hamilton County Public Health and Nursing. 

NYS Quarantine Information FAQS on essential workers & Travel

NYS Covid-19 Traveler Guidance for Medical Treatment

NYS Travel Enforcement Operations Info 

GENERAL NEWS & INFO FROM NYS

JUNE 23, 2020: Tri State approach – NY, NJ, Conn
If you are returning from travel to a designated state, and if such travel was for longer than 24 hours, you are required to quarantine for 14 days, unless you are an essential worker.


Travel Advisory Alerts – sent to the county for international travel and domestic travel. Please note:  Hamilton County Public Health received 120 travel alerts over the weekend. Every single person traveling into Hamilton County from airports will be contacted by Public Health to set up and confirm appropriate quarantining measures.  If you are traveling by car, or bus please fill out a Traveler Health Form

ESSENTIAL EMPLOYEES

Employers should call Public Health to discuss essential employees

Employers should place employees on quarantine x 14 days if they are not considered essential employees. (consider work from home)

AIRLINE TRAVEL

DOH staff is positioned at 13 airports in NYS.
DOH will be at the gates and people will not be able to get off the plane before filling out a travel form.
If this is not done the individual will be served with a commissioner order to comply.
Non compliance will result in a $2,000 fine, up to $10,000

GENERAL INFO
Employees – MUST BE WEARING A MASK IN THE WORKPLACE 
Mass Gatherings are currently Max 50

Hamilton County is part of the North Country and is currently in Phase 4 of New York States Phased Reopening.


·Face-Coverings — 10 NYCRR § 66-3.2
Any person over two years of age and able to medically tolerate a face-covering must wear a mask or face-covering when in public and unable to maintain social distance.


Passengers over the age of two and able to tolerate a face-covering must wear a mask or face covering when on public transport or private for-hire transport.

Drivers or other employees of transportation carriers must wear a mask or face-covering if there are paying passengers on such transport.

Any employee present in the workplace must be provided a mask or face-covering and must wear it when in contact with customers or the public, or unable to socially distance

Business operators and building owners must deny entry and/or remove any person who fails to comply with face-covering requirements.

Adequate face coverings include cloth masks, surgical masks, N-95s, and face shields.

To maintain social distance, persons must keep at least 6 feet away from any other person, other than their own family members.

This page was updated with additional states for the NYS Travel Quarantine on Tuesday 7.28.2020

Update from Hamilton County Public Health
Friday, July 24, 2020

Hamilton County Needs Your Help

This past week Hamilton County Public Health received notification of over 200 travelers visiting Hamilton County from states that require quarantine upon entering New York State. All travelers coming from designated states must complete the Traveler Health Form upon entering New York, either at the airport or online if traveling by car.

Two new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Hamilton County this week, bringing our total to 9 positive cases. Both new cases have resulted in limited community exposure, and proper follow up contact tracing, isolation, quarantine and testing has been done to determine the extent of the exposure.

Our department is working very closely with the school districts in Hamilton County in hopes of re-opening in the fall. Getting our kids safely back into the school is a high priority, however will not be possible if our infection rates continue to increase.

Please continue to take personal responsibility with the Governor’s Executive Orders. Be smart when making plans. Wear your mask when in public and when unable to socially distance! The health of our county depends on it!

Erica Mahoney, Director of Public Health
Hamilton County

Welcome to the Town of Long Lake.  We understand these are very unusual times and we welcome everyone to our communities of Raquette Lake and Long Lake. At this time we ask our guests, residents and visitors to please observe physical distancing protocols when using public spaces, hiking trails and in our area businesses. We have been working hard to provide the safest environment we can provide by developing new strategies for all of our public spaces and businesses around the town.

All physical distancing protocols are currently in place for all parks and public spaces in Long Lake & Raquette Lake. Maintain six feet apart and please wear masks/cloth face-coverings when visiting public spaces and businesses in our community when you are less than six feet apart from others.  

We have had an very low-infection rate in Hamilton County and we are very grateful that we have enjoyed the natural social distancing living in our Adirondack community brings us. Many of our seniors have been hunkered down for a very long time missing their famliies and friends and we want to ensure our most vulnerable population continues to be protected as we move through the summer and do our phased re-opening strategically and as best as we can. 

Thank you. We will continue to post updates as they become available. 

 

Info on Novel CoronavirusBusiness Reopening Template

DOH Covid-19 Facts 4.17.20

April 16, 2020

Public Health Director Update:
Currently in Hamilton County, we have 2 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Both individuals are recovering and doing well. To date, we have completed over 50 investigations, and followed up with precautionary quarantine or isolation as necessary.


Things have certainly changed over the last month, but Hamilton County Public Health has been working around the clock to ensure your health and safety during this pandemic. Initially testing was a big concern, as testing kits were scarce. Currently test kits are available for Hamilton County residents, and there are now drive through mobile testing centers in Warren and Albany Counties, where providers are able to make testing appointments for individuals exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.

I wanted to take a minute to highlight some of the things we are doing on a regular basis.
• Triaging calls and performing investigations for possible exposure.
• Working closely with our primary care offices and hospitals to provide guidance, coordinate testing and provide follow up for potential COVID-19 patients.
• Monitoring patients that are on quarantine or isolation 1-2 times per day.
• Working with the County Emergency Manager to ensure proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is provided to our local Ambulance Corps, Primary Care providers, and facilities that are outside of Hamilton County but provide care to our residents, including Elderwood Nursing Home, Glens Falls Hospital and St. Mary’s Hospital.
• Helping to provide guidance and support to other county and town organizations, including businesses and school districts, to ensure they all have the guidance and tools they need to be successful in preventing an outbreak or transmission of the virus.

We know that the data documented on various websites is not accurate, and we have mentioned this before. Every department and agency in NYS is working hard to provide the most up to date, accurate data, in the fastest amount of time. The data is not always perfect, and does not have the ability to be cleaned and verified before it is posted and becomes public knowledge. These organizations are doing their best, and so are we.

We ask that you continue to practice good hand washing and social distancing, stay home and limit travel to essential business, and starting Friday 4/17/20, wear protective face coverings when in public. If we all do our part, our numbers will continue to be low, and we will make it through this pandemic with limited exposure.

Be safe and stay healthy!
Erica Mahoney
Director of Public Health

“New York on PAUSE” will be extended until May 15th. This action is taken in consultation with other regional states. Non-essential workers must continue to stay home and social distancing rules remain in place. We will re-evaluate after this additional closure period.

Public Health Director Update: The CDC and Hamilton County Public Health Recommend Wearing A Protective Cloth Face Covering When in Public Posted 4.5.2020

Social distancing has been an excellent public health intervention for slowing the spread of COVID-19 to residents in Hamilton County. However, there are times where it is necessary to travel outside of your home, such as going to the pharmacy, grocery store or post office. On these occasions, the CDC and Hamilton County Public Health are recommending that you wear a cloth face covering to protect yourself and others.

Over the last month we have had a chance to observe areas with high concentration of COVID-19 respond to the virus being present in their community. We know that COVID-19 is present in Hamilton County, we have expected this all along, and now our job is to prevent it from multiplying, keeping our numbers and rate of transmission low. Wearing a cloth face covering when in public is another prevention strategy that we can easily implement to maintain the health and safety of our community.

New Guidance From CDC
“CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission. CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.”

An individual with COVID-19 may only display mild symptoms, and can be asymptomatic for 1-14 days. Wearing a cloth mask does not necessarily protect you from contracting the virus, but rather acts as a protective barrier from you infecting others. Vulnerable individuals, such as those with complex medical comorbidities, immunocompromised are strongly encouraged to continue to self-isolate and stay home during this pandemic.

Medical grade protective equipment, such as surgical masks and N95’s, should not be worn by the public. These supplies should be reserved for healthcare workers and first responders, as they are already in short supply, and are at high risk for exposure to COVID-19.
Cloth face coverings should:
• Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
• Cover the mouth and nose
• Be secured with ties or ear loops
• Include multiple layers of fabric
• Allow for breathing without restriction
• Be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

“Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance.”

If the face cloth becomes moist or soiled, it is more likely to hold bacteria and viruses, so it is important to keep it clean and dry. Be careful when removing the cloth face covering to avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and wash your hands after.

Remember, with COVID-19 and individual can be infectious for 4 to 5 days, without showing symptoms. In addition to social distancing and handwashing, this is one additional strategy where Hamilton County residents can work together to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our communities.

Erica Mahoney
Director of Public Health

To the residents of Long Lake and Raquette Lake:    


3/26/2020     
To sum up the last couple weeks in a few words; stressful, daunting, unique, busy, and difficult.  However here in Long Lake we have approached these situations head on.  I have been involved in multiple daily phone meetings with the Hamilton County Board of Supervisors, Erica Mahoney- Director of Hamilton County Public Health, and other neighboring Town Supervisors, to get the latest news and advice on the Coronavirus.  We have been working closely with Dr.Rider to determine what steps our community can take to stay safe and healthy.  I have also worked very closely with Noelle Short to find safe solutions for Long Lake School, students, and employees.  She in return has helped us in the same respect.


I have recently spoken to Stephanie Howe of the Long Lake Rescue Squad and Tony Clark of the Long Lake Fire Department who have both stated they are up to date with current Health Department protocols and are getting updates daily. 
Town of Long Lake staff are avidly researching and brainstorming the next obstacles we may face, while reaching out to townspeople to see what needs can be met.  I am confident that we have a firm grasp on what’s happening and even more confident we’ll get through this with our heads held high. 


I understand the hardships we are all going through.  Local business’s forcing to close, some being laid off from work, having to isolate from others, not being able to socialize, attend church, birthday parties, you name it.   We’ll get through this because we are The Town of Long Lake, and we are strong, smart, hardworking, caring, compassionate, problem solvers, and as some people say, stubborn. 


We need to stay strong as a community and support each other in these difficult times.  Keeping our distance from others and remaining in social isolation is not easy, but it will ensure our community does all it can to stay safe and healthy.
Please continue to be responsible, caring, and considerate of yourselves and others around you.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me anytime by phone or email.


Be well,


 
Clay J Arsenault
Long Lake Town Supervisor

Emergency:  9-1-1

Hamilton County Public Health Nursing Services

Director of Public Health:  Erica Mahoney 518-648-6497
e-mail:  erica.mahoney.hcphns@frontier.com

Link to Hamilton County Public Health & Nursing on Facebook

Economic Recovery Resources (ADK/NYS)
Important Local Phone Numbers
Local Business Updates
NYS COVID Tracker Map

Public Health Director Update:
Community Transmission Stops With You!
March 27, 2020

The circumstances around the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continue to change on a daily basis, with the greatest change being around testing. Previously individuals could report to their primary care doctor, and if symptomology suggested COVID-19 as a likely diagnosis, they could be sent to a drive through COVID-19 outpatient testing location. Swabbing would be done, and sent to the lab to determine COVID-19. This individual would be monitored for 14 days by Hamilton County Public Health Department.


Currently, there are no outpatient testing centers available to Hamilton County residents. These individuals are now being sent home from their primary care doctor under precautionary quarantine without confirmed laboratory testing. Hamilton County Public Health does not have testing kits. Testing is being done in the hospital settings for healthcare workers and hospitalized patients only at this time.


Our greatest risk in Hamilton County at this point is community transmission, where one individual comes in contact with someone who is carrying the virus, and then carries the virus to others, including family members.
What does this mean?


NYS and CDC data charts report confirmed cases only. Without testing being done, it will continue to show limited confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Hamilton County, making it appear that COVID-19 is not in Hamilton County.
We should conduct ourselves with the assumption that the Coronavirus is in Hamilton County, and anyone you come in contact with may be carrying the disease. Because the symptoms vary from individual to individual, what may present like a common cold/cough could in fact be the Coronavirus.

Highest Risk Individuals
Right now, the highest risk individuals are elderly with comorbidities, healthcare workers and those working in occupations that are considered “essential.” Be careful, use personal protective equipment (PPE) cautiously, wash your hands frequently and maintain 6 feet distancing precautions.

What can you do?
• Practice social distancing, maintain 6’ distancing when in public.
• Wash your hands frequently.
• Avoid gatherings.
• Stay home if you are sick.
• When going to pick up groceries/necessities, go alone. Do not bring your children into the store.
• Screen and limit visitors to your house.
We all must work together to prevent community transmission in Hamilton County!

Erica Mahoney,
Director of Public Health

Public Health Director:
New York State on Pause:  Please Stay Where You Are
March 25, 2020

As of March 22, 2020, New York State is practicing the “pause” on most public, personal, and commercial activities in attempt to slow the transmission of novel coronavirus (COVID-19).  All non-essential businesses are now closed and residents are asked to remain in their home, with the exception of emergencies, seeking medical care, solitary local exercise, and shopping for food and other necessities. Travel within the United States is not recommended, especially for vulnerable populations, who are more likely to contract the virus. Just to be clear, even if you conclude you are not vulnerable, you are wrong, plus we all have a responsibility for protecting others.

 
Hamilton County is the least populated county in New York State, with approximately 4,500-year-round residents, most of which are over the age of 65 years. We are experiencing a large influx of travelers into the county to occupy second homes and short-term rentals. Our current healthcare infrastructure is able to care for year-round residents, but we are not equipped for this influx, nor will State resources be available to come north for quite some time.
 
Escaping to the Adirondacks may seem like an attractive and safe solution to decrease your risk of exposure to COVID-19, however there are several things to consider in terms of health, safety, and your wellbeing. While you may be looking for a way to isolate your family, you also will be isolating them from healthcare and supplies. Most small businesses in Hamilton County are closed, and while our convenience stores are still open to the public, there is a limited supply of food and other necessities.

 
Hamilton County Public Health and our primary care providers do not have testing kits. We do not have a hospital within the county or a hospital within reasonable travel distance for COVID-19 testing. If you or your family member becomes sick, there will be a delay in healthcare delivery and follow up services.
 
Hotels are considered essential services and are regulated by NYSDOH for cleanliness and safety.  Airbnb, Vacation Rental by Owner, and other rental sites are not regulated by NYSDOH.  If you are renting out your home through one of these organizations, the risk and responsibility for cleanliness falls on you. We politely request that you remove your short-term rentals from these websites, and refrain from renting during this pandemic. Please understand this is for your protection, plus the protection of anyone who might be entertaining the idea of staying in your rental. Your long term success will be far greater, if the news stories don’t start to revolve around those sickened or trapped without health care in a short term rental unit.
 
We truly appreciate all you do to stimulate our small communities and economy, and hope that you will take this information into consideration before coming to the Adirondacks during this public health pandemic. Lastly, if for some reason your personal situation absolutely requires you to come here, we ask that you consider the CDC recommendation of self-isolating for 14 days once you arrive. Your health and the health of others depend upon it.
 
Please contact Hamilton County Public Health at (518) 648-6141 with any questions.

Update from Dr. Rider:                                                                                   3/20/20


As of press time today, we are seeing increased numbers of Covid-19 infections across the state and in response, the Governor has increased the number of workplace reductions and restrictions. These announcements can provoke anxiety and fear about the virus.  Keep in mind the following:


·      Many people may acquire the Covid-19 virus, but most of those infections will be unnoticed or mild and the biggest threat that the infection holds is the threat to society by exposing the elderly or medically compromised.  Therefore, isolation is the most important action you can take to prevent the spread of the infection.
·      Some people are  getting  caught up in the numbers of confirmed cases in each county….do not get a false sense of security that your county may only have a few or no confirmed cases…..presume the virus is here (because it most assuredly is)…isolate, wash your hands, and when out getting necessities,  stay 6 feet away from others (especially the elderly). 
·      As of today,…. we have no reliable treatment for Covid-19, so even if you test positive for the virus there is nothing to offer you for the treatment of mild cases.  You should treat it like you would a cold…. stay in your home, isolate, monitor your temperature, wash your hands and seek medical treatment if symptoms worsen or you develop difficulty breathing.
·      Getting tested for a mild case is not necessary and as you may have seen, many places have limited testing to only those who are very sick or healthcare workers so they can return to work if negative.
·      In response to the Governor’s directive, many municipalities and counties are reducing staff, limiting access to buildings, and restricting visitors.  At my office we are limiting visits to “necessity only” and routine visits will be cancelled and re-scheduled later or conducted by telephone.  This is not only to protect you…but to protect me, my staff, and other patients from unnecessary exposure. 
·      Please note that many offices, as well as my own, will have locked entrance doors and are asking people to call staff in advance so we can provide directions for entering the building.  We are taking the isolation/exposure issue very seriously and hope you are too!
 
We all need to take a deep breath, slow down and not panic over all the information and news we are getting thrown at us daily….our County and State Departments of Health are doing a great job in keeping us up to date on the latest information as they receive it,  and ensuring our residents are getting the care they need.


We will get through this together.  Well, actually…6 feet apart!
Russell E. Rider MD and Staff  

March 16, 2020
To all the Citizens of the Town of Long Lake:
We as your elected officials, are working to deal with the potential/pending pandemic outbreak of the COVID-19 virus in our community. This virus needs to be viewed as very dangerous to our residents should they come in contact with this virus, or with others that may be infected or exposed. We are putting plans in effect that will help delay or deflect an outbreak of this virus.
We are working with several agencies to gain the proper information and advice regarding this virus. These agencies include the Federal Center for Disease Control, the New York State Health Department, the Hamilton County Public Health Department, and local medical personnel.

Through written material and advice provided by the above agencies we have learned the following. Our goal is to mitigate against the spread of the virus and to reduce its rate of transmission. Working towards this goal, we will take these actions and make these recommendations.

In order to work towards our goal of mitigating and controlling the spread and transmission of the virus, the number one action that can be taken is proper hand sanitizing. For this action the best method is washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 to 30 seconds. This should be done frequently and especially after handling items that are in public. The bottled “hand sanitizers” are the second-best method and should be used when soap and water are not available. The directions on the bottles should be followed.

The symptoms of this virus can begin with the following. A person may feel they have a fever. This may be accompanied with chills. There also may be coughing or respiratory problems. If you encounter any of these symptoms you should stay home and contact your primary physician for further instructions.
If you are going out in the public the following should be done. You should stay away from areas with large crowds or crowded areas. The Governor has issued orders regarding limits on the number of people at an event. The maximum number of people that can be at an event is 500, With an allowed occupant limit in areas that are normally less than 500 being reduced to 50% of the posted limit. In addition, on Sunday, March 15th the CDC recommends that for the next 8 weeks, organizers cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the U.S. More Information on Mass Gatherings.

At any rate people should allow at least 6 feet between themselves and others. This is necessary as this virus is generally spread by person to person contact such as coughing or sneezing. If you cough or sneeze you should do so into a Kleenex. If a Kleenex is not available, you should use the inside of your elbow but not your hands. Any Kleenex used should be discarded into a trash/garbage receptacle and not left lying around.

If we as a community work together we can limit or slow down the spread of this virus and withstand the negative effects of this outbreak. One of the best ways is to work together with our fellow community members to assure that every citizen is afforded the best information we have available. We are in constant contact with the Hamilton County Public Health Service. We stand willing to see that any questions you have regarding this virus or methods to control it are answered in a timely manner.

For those wishing to read and research the latest information we are listing the following web sites/phone numbers for your use. Center for Disease Control www.CDC.Gov, NYS Health Dept. www.Health.ny.gov or by calling the NYS Health Hot Line at (888) 364-3065,  or by calling the Hamilton County Public Health Office  at (518) 648-6497 or Hamilton County Office Emergency Management (518) 548-6223.

To repeat from above we will get through this pandemic if we follow our recommendations. If we work together, we can protect ourselves, our neighbors, and maintain the safest community possible.
 
 
Respectfully,
Supervisor Clay J. Arsenault

(518) 832-0164 (cell)  ​ (518) 624-3001 ex 111 (office)
 
 

From the Long Lake Medical Staff:

To patients of Dr. Rider….                                                 3/16/20
With the recent Covid-19 issues our office will be conducting business a little different than usual- and these procedures are ever changing based on the latest updates from the CDC and the Department of Health.
We need to limit the exposure to our staff and most vulnerable patients. Therefore, we ask the following:
·      For those patients with respiratory issues-(fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other issues like sore throat, runny nose, muscle aches, etc. )  PLEASE call the office before coming in so our nurses can obtain your history and Dr. Rider can determine the best protocol for accessing and treating you.
·      If you have a scheduled appt and have fever, cough or other respiratory symptoms – please call before coming into the office.
·      If you are having difficulty breathing call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.   
·       We do not have COVID-19 testing available in our office, but if Dr. Rider determines you need it, we do have the means to get you tested. 
·      If you have general questions about Covid -10 please call 1-888-364-3065 and trained personnel can answer many of your questions.  This also prevents our limited staff from taking phone calls so we can treat/respond to those patients needing actual care.
 
We will update this notification as we get new information.   We appreciate your patience and understanding. 
Long Lake Medical Staff

INFORMATION LINKS FOR COVID-19 LONG LAKE/RAQUETTE LAKE

2020.03.17 Long Lake Town Court Closed2020.03.17 Ham Co Public Health Nursing Update2020.03.16 Update from Supervisor Clay Arsenault2020.03.16 Medical Center Update

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