Cullman Regional, local leaders launch campaign to slow spread of COVID-19

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Photo courtesy of Cullman Regional

CULLMAN, Ala. – Cullman Regional and the City of Cullman have joined with U.S. Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Alabama; Cullman County Commission Chairman Kenneth Walker; Sen. Garlan Gudger, R-Cullman; Rep. Randall Shedd, R-Fairview; Rep. Scott Stadthagen, R-Hartselle; and Rep. Corey Harbison, R-Good Hope to launch a campaign to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in the community.

The campaign, dubbed “It’s Not About You,” encourages community members to practice the following:

  1. Wash your hands frequently.
  2. Maintain a 6-foot distance when out.
  3. Wear a mask when you can’t maintain a 6-foot distance from others.

 

“Cullman Regional continues to see an increase not only in the number of community members that need to be tested, but also in the number of community members hospitalized due to COVID-19,” Cullman Regional CEO James Clements said. “No one wants to shut down again, but we need the community’s help to help stop the spread.”

According to the hospital, as of Thursday, July 2, there are nine COVID-19 patients hospitalized. “These patients range from age 41 to over 85. The majority of patients has underlying health issues including but not limited to: pneumonia, COPD, emphysema, heart failure (CHF), diabetes, lung cancer. Some of the patients are aware of their underlying health issues and others are finding out after admission.”

“We’re not asking our community to not live, but we’re asking them to live differently,” Clements said. “We understand and agree that people need community interaction with friends and loved ones and businesses need to continue operating. However, you can interact 6 feet apart or with a mask on. And if you’re sick or have come into contact with anyone with a known positive COVID-19 test, stay home.”

State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris said the increase in cases in Alabama is not due to increased testing.

“Dr. Scott Harris, Alabama Department of Public Health emphasized during a discussion with hospitals across the state of Alabama that the state increase is not due to increased testing,” Cullman Regional Chief Medical Officer William Smith, MD said. “According to Dr. Harris, COVID-19 positive cases (have) increased by 30% in the state of Alabama; however, the state has only seen an 8% increase in testing during this same period.”

“We have learned a lot since the start of this pandemic,” said Aderholt. “One of the biggest lessons we learned is that shutting down the economy is not the answer. A vaccine will come later this year, and I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to sit in the house waiting until then. So, it’s going to take each of use practicing social distancing, washing our hands and wearing a mask when we go to crowded areas to get things back to normal sooner rather than later.”

Commented Gudger, “The Cullman community has to work together to stop the spread of this virus. The changes within our society, specifically how we interact socially with one another are very different for all of us. But if we work as a team and everyone plays their role in achieving a higher standard, together we can beat this virus and keep all of us safe. I urge everyone, please do your part by washing or sanitizing your hands, wearing masks in public and greeting one another with fist bumps instead of shaking hands in order to stop the spread and keep Cullman safe.”

“I’m doing everything I can think of to prevent spreading COVID-19 to my family, friends and people I come in contact with,” stated Shedd. “Let’s all take it seriously and help each other.”

Added Stadthagen, “As our community COVID-19 case numbers rise, I would like to encourage everyone to take the proper precautionary measures to stop the spread. Protect your neighbors, friends and coworkers as you would your family, because that is exactly what we are in this community, a family.”

“Today, (St. Bernard) Abbot (Marcus) Voss, Coach Mike Dean and myself are strongly urging you to wear a face covering for the next 29 days when in public places,” Cullman Mayor Woody Jacobs said. “We cannot make this political or about ourselves.  We believe that each person has it in him and her to place others’ needs in front of their own for the next 29 days.”

For more information on COVID-19, visit www.CullmanRegional.com/covid19.

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Graphic courtesy of the City of Cullman
Graphic courtesy of the City of Cullman
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Wendy Sack

wendy@cullmantribune.com