CAL OES April 4th

Coronavirus Briefing by the California Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES), Health and Human Services (CHHS), and the Department of Public Health (CDPH) Friday, April 3, at 3:00 pm

Call Overview:

CHHS, CDPH and Cal OES hosted a briefing conference call for state, federal and tribal officials regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) developments.

Dr. Gilberto Chavez, CDPH

  • CDPH released a new dashboard as a component of the CDPH open data portal to provide a snapshot of information and data related to COVID-19;
    • This is very helpful information that will be updated on a daily basis;
    • As of today, there are 10,701 positive cases in California. That is in an increase of 1,510 since yesterday;
  • CDHP has also released guidance related to face coverings
    • The goal of this guidance is to inform the general public of the benefits of face covering when outside of the home;
    • This is not a mandate for face coverings;
    • The best community defense practices continue to be social distancing practices and hand washing;
  • Information on COVID-19 statewide case statistics can be found here; and
    • This information is currently being updated daily.

Abby Browning, Office of Private Sector/NGO Coordination, Cal OES

  • As soon as the Governor announced the different supplies the state needed, a plethora of offers began to come in;
  • There have been approximately 4,000 emails that have come through this office;
  • There are 16 analysts that go through those emails and determine if they are legitimate sources;
  • There are very specific supply needs for health professionals;
    • Offers that fit those needs also get sent to CDPH, which they vet;
    • These offers then get sent to DGS for procurement;
  • This type of procurement has never been done statewide before;
    • This is usually handled at the local level, but since this is a statewide event, it is being done at the state level in conjunction with local governments;
  • In order to make this process easier, Cal OES launched a new portal;
    • Cal OES is utilizing Salesforce to better track this information; and
    • There is also a place on the portal for manufacturing because several manufacturers in California have offered to make supplies.

Eli Owen, Cal OES

  • Federal Medical Stations are online or will be online soon throughout the state including in Riverside County, Santa Clara, LA County, San Mateo County, and Contra Costa County;
  • There are now 583 total trailers made available in four counties
  • The Housing and Social Services Task Force is actively working with the World Central Kitchen for the purposes of supporting Project Room Key;
  • The Innovation and Technology Task Force is working to create a new webpage specifically to assist those experiencing homelessness;  
  • CalHR is working to provide further guidance based on the recent federal legislation;
  • The U.S. Postal Service is set to host a virtual hiring event in which they hope to hire 1,000 new workers in the bay area;

Darrin Bender, California National Guard

  • There are currently 1,000 service members supporting this emergency and different agencies throughout California;
  • They have delivered 3.5 million meals over the course of 14 days;
  • All of the current missions are humanitarian involving food and medical supply distribution;

Casey De Shong, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region 9

  • FEMA has allocated $500 million to California and $58 million to Los Angeles County for the purposes of commodity purchase, emergency response, and protective measures.

Small Business Administration (SBA)

  • SBA is going to increase the capacity of their website to better accommodate the massive amount of expected traffic.
  • With the passage of the CARES act, SBA is administering the PPP program or the Paycheck Protection Program;
    • More information on PPP can be found here; and
  • There are additional resources on SBA’s website.

Question and Answers:

  • When will CDCR rapid COVID-19 testing be offered to local communities?

CDCR does not have information on this at the time. However, there is a prioritization of the distribution of the rapid testing to first responders and medical professionals.

  • The Governor mentioned the possibility to extend the eviction notice order to commercial properties, is that being considered?

No one on the call can answer the question.

  • Will the Governor waive fees and penalties on those trying to meeting the deadline to pay their property taxes?

The Governor’s office is in on going conversations with local governments on this matter.

  • What are the number of confirmed cased in CDCR?

33 Confirmed Staff Members, One Contractor, Eight Inmates.

  • Is every county reporting on a daily basis positive cases and deaths?

Yes, CDPH is in real time communication with the counties on a daily basis.

  • Has the Employment Development Department begun to ramp up their employment to meet the new demand?


  • What is being done about the backlog of test results?

The issue is that there is a large number of tests and the capacity of the system to process the tests. There is a working group to increase capacity and produce faster results.

  • San Diego County is mandating everyone wear them when they are out and about starting tomorrow, is it safe to wash and reuse them?

Yes, however it must be done the correct way to properly clean the mask. Additionally, there is a concern about mandating face masks for the general public because it could limit the supply of masks available to the medical community.

  • Who is running the day to day operations of the Federal Medical Stations?

It depends on the facility; however, it is most often the local agency or state agency personnel.

  • Will there be guidance from the state or federal government on how private labs will be distributing tests to counties?

Dr. Chavez is not aware of this issue.

  • Will there be additional guidance to food service preparers and grocery store workers regarding the use of masks and gloves?

There is currently no statewide guidance, but they will continue to take a look at the issue.

  • There was an executive order granting waivers to requirements in order to get more nurses online. Has there been action yet by the Board of Registered Nurses?

There has been no action yet but there may be soon.

  • What is the timetable for getting more testing?

There is no doubt that testing capacity needs to be increased but we are competing for resources with the whole country.  

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