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Posted on: May 2, 2020

Kenosha County Joint Information Center COVID-19 FAQs, May 2, 2020

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The Kenosha County Joint Information Center is presenting the latest in its series answering the community’s questions about COVID-19.

The Kenosha County Division of Health is accepting questions by email at COVID19@kenoshacounty.org. Those asked most frequently will be answered each week, in a news release from the Joint Information Center and in a video produced by the Kenosha Police Department.

Evan Gorr, public health nurse in the Kenosha County Division of Health, and Kenosha Police Lt. Joe Nosalik fielded this week’s questions.

These weekly FAQ videos are available on YouTube at http://bit.ly/KCCOVIDplaylist and on the Kenosha County Government Facebook page, at www.facebook.com/kenoshacountygovt.

A written synopsis of the latest questions and answers follows, beginning with those answered by Gorr: 

Q: Is it true humidity and heat cut down the strength of the virus? If I have a steam sauna in my house is this helpful? What would be the cons? 

A: Every virus and pandemic is different, and there are a number of things that influence them, even in hot and humid weather. With COVID-19 being a novel virus, there is simply not enough evidence to know if there will be a significant slow in infections as temperatures rise.

Q: If I wear a washable, fabric homemade or purchased mask, is it true that the mask should be laundered after each use? 

A: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not offer a specific guideline for how often cloth face coverings should be laundered, but does advise that they be routinely washed depending on the frequency of use. Use the hot water cycle for washing of masks.

Q: With state parks opening Friday and the governor opening pet grooming in his most recent announcement, I was wondering when Kenosha dog parks will reopen. 

A: Kenosha County made the decision to close its dog parks – and other local communities followed suit – after the CDC issued a recommendation that people “treat dogs like family members” and avoid dog parks.

All agree that dog parks have several benefits; we just want to make sure pets are safe and that social distance is maintained among the humans at the dog parks. Kenosha County will wait for further federal or state guidance before reopening its dog parks.

Q: Every summer, my employer offers a summer camp program for school-age children. As you can imagine, we are trying to understand the current guidance to make decisions about programming this summer. 

A: It is a bit hard to define as we do not know what the future of this virus will hold. But we are looking to the Badger Bounce Back plan from Governor Evers and developing specific compliance points that we hope to release soon.

As you know, businesses and camps may not be able to return to “normal” this summer, so our suggestion would be for your teams to plan on alternate paths. How would you operate camps if you had to keep groups under 10 people together? How would you operate camps if everyone had to wear masks and stay 6 feet apart? Is there any way to do camp activities virtually?

We realize these are all very undesirable options, especially for camps, but to begin having those discussions would be good.

Q: I looked at the COVID-19 Dashboard page and I noticed that it does not have an ethnicity breakdown of deaths. Is there a reason for that? 

A: We are working on assembling this data now and will get it up on the Kenosha County COVID-19 Response Hub website next week.

Q: How many people who have tested negative for COVID-19 have also been tested for influenza?

A: As of right now, we do not receive identifiable data about flu tests to be able to cross-reference with the COVID-19 test results.

Q: Please let me know how I can help with making masks. If I have masks that I want to donate, who do I reach out to?

A: Instructions for making masks are available from the CDC and other sources — it’s easy to find these by simply Googling “cloth mask instructions.”

Mask donations can be directed to the Kenosha County Division of Health, which will distribute them to people and organizations in need. If you have masks you’d like to donate, send an email to COVID19@kenoshacounty.org, and someone will be in touch with you.

Q: If I share a ride with someone to work, how do I keep safe?

A: Please wear a face mask and use hand sanitizer/wipes in order to prevent any spread. The CDC recommends the following on how to protect yourself and others during your trip:

  • Clean your hands often.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub your hands together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Wear a cloth face covering in public.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes.

Lt. Nosalik of the Kenosha Police Department fielded the following question:

Q: Who do I call if I see a group of people playing basketball at a park?

A: Please keep in mind that exercise is encouraged during the COVID-19 pandemic. Exercise is an essential component to staying healthy.

With regard to exercise, it must be done so responsibly, in accordance with the Safer at Home order and guidelines issued by the CDC and the Division of Health. If you have concerns about an observation that you feel is not in accordance with social distancing guidelines, please call your local law enforcement agency — and remember to use the non-emergency number.


Joint Information Center disclaimers: 

The Joint Information Center will not provide medical diagnoses or legal advice.

If you have a question regarding the welfare of a person you are unable to check on yourself, please contact your local law enforcement agency. The COVID19@kenoshacounty.org email address is not monitored 24/7, and is not intended to replace the traditional request for law enforcement or emergency service.

Those seeking immediate answers to questions regarding COVID-19 are encouraged to dial 2-1-1 or visit the 2-1-1 website, https:// 211wisconsin.communityos.org.

More information about COVID-19 is also available at:

https://www.kenoshacounty.org/covid-19

https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/disease/covid-19.htm

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov

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