Tampa Mayor Jane Castor Answers Coronavirus Questions


Joining us now we have Tampa mayor Jane castor mayor how are you I'm doing great how are you good thank you so much for joining us so first let me just throw to you what message do you need to get out to the city of Tampa about this corona virus outbreak what's the latest our first of all I want everybody to text camper ready to eight eight eight seven seven seven and you'll get a real time updates and information from the city of Tampa and so you know we're we're getting a lot of news around the country and you know about different events being canceled and new cases coming up as I've said from the beginning it wasn't if it was when we were going to get some of these get the corona virus cases in our community now that we have the test kits available will detect more than likely detect new cases that you know may not have been detected previously but with that said everyone just needs to take the steps necessary simple steps necessary to avoid contracting the corona virus and also to know that those individuals that have contracted it and they are not elderly or have other health considerations that it's just like a mild case of the flu for them so what we're looking at is is trying to avoid the spread of the because the the key to the corona virus virus is that it is so easily contracted one of them everyone did well god I'm going to I just want everyone to insure that everyone's getting their information from reliable sources I just was at an event today the retirement for the superintendent of schools and an individual showed me a text from his daughter and said that her office had been evacuated because someone there tested positive I talked to the doctor Holt hills were county health department and he said that's not true so you know people need to have accurate information from reliable sources let me ask you this one of the big questions that we've had and that we've had trouble getting answers to from a state officials what is our testing capacity here in the Tampa Bay area do you know well I don't know if they're testing capacity we have the test kids now but that's something that we're we're working with we intend to have a press conference tomorrow with the executives from the three major health facilities here TGH TGH Bakare and add that hello and talk about you know the emergency management policies and procedures that we have in place that included surge capacity and so that's what we want to avoid is having individuals go into doctor's offices or hospitals when they feel that they may have the corona virus because now you're going to have the doctor and the medical personnel have to be quarantined as well so we we are going to provide that information in the days or tomorrow it will be provided we're having the emergency policy I'm sorry executive policy group is meeting at one thirty tomorrow but we have the capability to do the testing and working on if it becomes necessary to have those remote testing site and quarantine areas if it becomes necessary we're talking to Tampa mayor Jane castor here on P. M. Tampa Bay I know one thing you've been focused on is our elderly community here in the Tampa Bay area what steps are being taken to make sure they're protected as they're the most at risk for the most severe symptoms from this disease yes without a doubt so yesterday we went to all of the nursing homes and assisted living facilities there's eighty eight in the city within the city of Tampa and we had personnel from the city of Tampa from city of Tampa code enforcement Tampa fire rescue in the Tampa police department visit each one of those facilities and provide them with the information from the CDC about monitoring visitors if they're allowing those jurors monitoring for when they come in to make sure that they don't have any signs or symptoms of fever shortness of breath coughing those types of things and then also the simple steps that they could take to keep all of their residents say the majority of these have been employed it was more of a reminder than anything else but we also wanted to have that face to face connection with the the supervisors in each of these locations so that they have that point of contact if they had any questions or any concerns whatsoever that they'd be able to reach out to the city of Tampa and and get those questions answered those concerns taken care of we're talking to Tampa mayor Jane castor about Tampa's corona virus preparations when it comes to look at a closing schools or canceling events things like that that we're seeing in other cities across the country how does that decision making process work is that up to you is that up to the governor is that up to you health officials at the federal level talk a little bit about that well not at the federal level clearly the governor you know it is declared state of emergency and and he can make decisions for the state but most of the decisions are being made locally and that's something that you know I have to wait two things one is that the health and safety of our citizens which is paramount but I also have to balance that with our economy as well and think about those individuals that count on these events and these conferences and so forth so the health and safety will always of our citizens will always win out but I also have to make those other considerations and ensure that we're not canceling events unnecessarily and you know there's no nobody has a crystal ball but I will always make decisions that are in the best interests of our citizens the NC double a tournament obviously March madness now to be limited in terms of who can attend those games going to be basically essential personnel some family members people like that when it comes to St Patrick's day we know New York and Chicago New York and Chicago are the latest to cancel their parades what's the St Patrick's day situation for Tampa are you still on for now I don't intend to cancel that unless there's changes in the next you know the next day or two by Friday and clearly that's a local event and so I have the the liberty of waiting till the last minute if you know of other cases arise in our community then that's clearly something that that I would consider but also you have to look at these events to if they're bringing individuals from out of state or individuals you know that are coming in on flight into our city the St Patrick's day parade is a very a very local of that and small in size compared to events in Chicago and New York City but I was on a phone call just an hour ago with a number of individuals here in the city of Tampa that other officials and also individuals that are handling these large events including our convention center and talking about those conventions as conferences that are coming some of the hockey game there decided a couple of cities have decided yeah the play those games without stands and so that's clearly an issue that the lightning are looking at very very closely but it's a it's a very delicate balance but again the health and safety of the citizens well will be

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