NH DHHS COVID-19 Update – March 23, 2020
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has issued the following update for March 23, 2020, on the new coronavirus, COVID-19. DHHS will continue to issue COVID-19 updates each day to provide media and the public with current information about the State’s efforts.

On Monday, March 23, 2020, DHHS announced 23 new positive test results for COVID-19. There have now been 101 cases of COVID-19 diagnosed in New Hampshire. The new cases are 12 adult males and 11 adult females. The 23 new cases reside in Rockingham (10), Grafton (5), Belknap (3), Hillsborough County other than Manchester and Nashua (2), Carroll (1), and Strafford (1) counties and the city of Manchester (1). Four of the cases have no identified risk factors. The remaining new cases have either had travel to domestic or international locations or have had close contact with a person with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. Community-based transmission has been identified in the majority of the counties in the State. Nine new cases are isolating at home. Five of the new cases are currently hospitalized; thus far, 11 patients out of the 101 positive cases (11%) have been hospitalized.

DHHS has also announced the State’s first death related to COVID-19. The deceased was a male resident of Hillsborough County who was over 60 years old and had multiple underlying health issues. We express our sympathies to this person’s family and friends.

Since first testing for COVID-19 on March 2, the State Public Health Laboratories (PHL) has conducted more than 2,400 COVID-19 tests. As the PHL continues to ramp up testing, there will be more positive tests. As COVID-19 spreads in our communities, the chance of being exposed to the novel coronavirus is increasing. It is critical that all residents take steps to protect themselves and their communities. DHHS emphasizes that residents should follow the following recommendations:

· Avoid any domestic and international travel, especially on public transportation such as buses, trains, and airplanes.

· Practice social distancing. Stay at least 6 feet from other people, including distancing while in waiting areas or lines.

· Anybody who is told to self-quarantine and stay at home due to exposure to a person with confirmed or suspect COVID-19 needs to stay home, and not go out into public places.

· If you are 60 years or older or have chronic medical conditions, you need to stay home and not go out.

· Avoid gatherings of 10 people or more.

· Employers need to move to telework as much as possible.

· There is increasing evidence that this virus can survive for hours or possibly even a few days on surfaces, so people should clean frequently touched surfaces, including door handles, grocery cart and grocery basket handles, etc.

New Hampshire 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Summary Report
(updated March 23, 2020, 9:00 AM)

NH Persons with COVID-191

101

Deaths Attributed to COVID-19

1 (<1%)

Hospitalizations

11 (11%)

Persons with Test Pending at NH PHL2

869

Total Persons Tested at NH PHL3

2417

Persons Being Monitored in NH (approximate point in time)

900


1Includes specimens presumptive-positive at any laboratory and those confirmed by CDC confirmatory testing.
2Includes specimens received and awaiting testing at NH Public Health Laboratories (PHL). Does not include tests pending at commercial laboratories.

3Includes specimens sent to CDC prior to NH PHL testing capacity.

NH DHHS Daily Update on COVID-19 Archive

For more information, please visit the DHHS COVID-19 webpage at https://www.nh.gov/covid19.

COVID-19 Emergency Healthcare System Relief Fund Accepting Applications
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has announced that the COVID-19 Emergency Healthcare System Relief Fund is now accepting applications from hospitals and healthcare providers on the frontline responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On March 19th, Governor Chris Sununu issued Emergency Order #9, which established the COVID-19 Emergency Healthcare System Relief Fund. The order creates a $50 million fund to provide emergency relief to hospitals and other health care providers that are serving as an essential component of the State’s healthcare system during the COVID-19 state of emergency.

Providers can download an application for the COVID-19 Emergency Healthcare System Relief Fund at https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/documents/covid19-relief-fund-app.docx. Applications should be submitted by email to .

A team consisting of officials with the Attorney General’s Office, the Department of Revenue Administration and DHHS will review applications and make recommendations to Governor Sununu. The first deadline for applications will be close of business Monday, March 30, 2020.

For more information, please visit NH.gov/covid19/.

NWS Issues Winter Storm Warning for Parts of NH
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

CONCORD, NH – New Hampshire Homeland Security and Emergency Management reminds residents and visitors of New Hampshire to be prepared for a winter weather event that will impact the state Monday afternoon into Tuesday.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Gray, Maine issued a Winter Storm Warning for portions of Grafton, Carroll, Sullivan, Merrimack, Belknap, Strafford, Cheshire, Hillsboro, and Rockingham counties from 4:00 P.M. today through 4:00 A.M. on Tuesday. Heavy, wet snow is expected, with total snow accumulations of up 8 inches in parts of the state.

“Travel only if absolutely necessary,” NH Homeland Security and Emergency Management Director Jennifer Harper said. “If you must travel, remember to clear snow and ice from your vehicle, slow down, allow extra time for travel, and leave plenty of space between vehicles.”

Due to heavy, mixed precipitation, power outages and tree damage is likely. If you lose power, be sure to report the outage to your utility provider every 24-hours until your service is restored.

New Hampshire Utility Provider Telephone Numbers:

Eversource.................. 1-800-662-7764

Liberty Utilities.......... 1-855-349-9455

NH Electric Co-Op...... 1-800-343-6432

Unitil........................... 1-888-301-7700

If you see downed power lines, stay away and call 9-1-1.

Harper provides these additional reminders:

· Slow down and move over for emergency vehicles.

· Do not crowd the plows or emergency crews.

· Bridges, overpasses and exposed road areas are the most prone to icy conditions.

· Visit ReadyNH.gov to learn more preparedness tips to help you and your family stay safe.

UNH Experts Offer Tips To Help Parents More Smoothly Shift to Online Learning
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

DURHAM, N.H.— As the coronavirus continues to spread keeping schools across the country closed, children from elementary to high school are transitioning to virtual learning that can be done safely at home. Teachers have been tasked with preparing online lessons and students and parents may be facing apprehension moving into a brave new world of education. But experts at the University of New Hampshire say the most important thing to do is to take a deep breath and stay calm.

“We’re in uncharted territory,” said Alecia Magnifico, an associate professor of English. “Nothing like COVID-19 has happened in our lifetime and the last pandemic like this was over 100 years ago, so no one is really prepared for all these quick changes in everyday life. We have to give ourselves a little grace and trust our educators.”

Schools across the country will have varied teaching styles depending on age groups, course topics and accessibility to technology. A survey by the Pew Research Center shows issues of technology inequity with roughly only 60 percent of rural Americans saying they have access to high-speed internet at home. Bethany Silva, research assistant professor of education and director of the Community Literacy Center at UNH said in the wake of the coronavirus, parents may even see differences in online learning expectations among their own children – something she’s experienced in her own household.

“My husband is a teacher, and his school has an online class for a specific block of time each day, while my son’s school has a series of activities that he’s expected to complete at some point that fits his schedule,” said Silva.

Magnifico and Silva, who work together researching how informal learning interaction can impact and enhance classroom learning say no matter what lies ahead, there are several steps families can take to make this a rich and rewarding experience.​

· Maintain a routine to help children thrive

· It’s OK to think outside the box. Have fun with the schedule – different children have different needs. Maybe allow for TV time during the day if it keeps everyone more productive. Save evenings for board and card games – also good literacy/math activities

· Take breaks – both parents and kids

· Get up and move – go for a walk, try YouTube Yoga, have a house dance party!

· Supplement curriculum with extra activities to enhance learning experiences. For example Journaling or reading stories – especially for younger children

· Remember playtime is important for learning too

“Take advantage of the fact that kids are home and try a little place-based learning,” says Silva. “For example, children and parents can track the signs of spring in their outside spaces, which is a great science activity. When it’s warm enough, they can bring paper and keep a field journal of what they see – while practicing safe social distancing, of course.”

Right now, most children will be craving connection with other kids more than anything else. For younger kids, try a group storytime (one parent reading on Skype or Zoom), or for older kids and teens maybe arrange a group hangout through videoconferencing. “There are all kinds of informal learning opportunities they can connect through like writing fanfiction sites where they can discuss their favorite books or authors and even share their experience through creative writing,” said Magnifico. “The key to remember is that there are all different ways to learn.”

The University of New Hampshire inspires innovation and transforms lives in our state, nation, and world. More than 16,000 students from all 50 states and 71 countries engage with an award-winning faculty in top-ranked programs in business, engineering, law, health and human services, liberal arts and the sciences across more than 200 programs of study. As one of the nation’s highest-performing research universities, UNH partners with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, and receives more than $110 million in competitive external funding every year to further explore and define the frontiers of land, sea, and space.

NH DHHS Announces WIC Appointments Available By Phone
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) today announced that in light of recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention around social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, the New Hampshire Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program has received authorization from the US Department of Agriculture to conduct all appointments by phone.

Individuals can apply for assistance by contacting their local WIC office, and find the office closest to them at http://signupwic.com. All appointment types, including certifications and follow up appointments, can be completed by phone. Residents who have a scheduled WIC appointment should keep it and expect a phone call from their local WIC office.

The WIC program provides nutrition education and support to help keep pregnant women, new mothers, infants, and preschool children healthy and strong, and all New Hampshire WIC offices are working to ensure that clients continue to get the services they need with minimal disruption.

To learn more about the WIC program, please visit https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/nhp/wic/index.htm. Families having difficulty getting through to their local WIC office are encouraged to leave a detailed voice message or call the WIC State Agency 1-800-942-4321.

U.S. Attorney Urges the Public to Report Suspected Fraud Related to the COVID-19 Outbreak
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

CONCORD – U.S. Attorney Scott W. Murray of the District of New Hampshire today urged the public to report suspected fraud schemes related to COVID-19 (the Coronavirus) by calling the National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) hotline (1-866-720-5721) or to the NCDF e-mail address . The public also can report fraud to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.IC3.gov.

In coordination with the Department of Justice, Attorney General William Barr has directed U.S. Attorneys to prioritize the investigation and prosecution of Coronavirus fraud schemes.

“During this national emergency, a small number of cruel and self-serving individuals are seeking to profit from the public’s fear of COVID-19,” said U.S. Attorney Murray. “There are reports of fraudsters selling counterfeit products and fake cures or setting up malicious websites in order to take advantage of people who are attempting to protect themselves from the virus. Such criminal exploitation will not be tolerated and will receive the full attention of federal law enforcement. I urge anyone who becomes aware of this type of fraud to report it. We will work closely with all of our law enforcement partners to end these despicable schemes and bring the criminals to justice.”

In addition to the NCDF hotline, citizens also can report fraud to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) by visiting www.IC3.gov.

“With the outbreak of COVID-19, scammers have found a platform that preys on people’s fears and could make them more likely to be victimized,” said Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Boston Division. “We want you to help us stop these fraudsters by reporting suspicious activity, fraud, and attempted fraud at ic3.gov. We also want you to avoid falling prey to these scams. So don't click on links within emails from senders you don't recognize, always independently verify the information originates from a legitimate source, never supply your login credentials or financial data in response to an email, and visit websites by inputting their domains manually. By working together, we can help stop this type of activity."

Some examples of the fraudulent schemes related to COVID-19 include:

  • Individuals and businesses selling fake cures for COVID-19 online and engaging in other forms of fraud.
  • Phishing emails from entities posing as the World Health Organization or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • Malicious websites and apps that appear to share Coronavirus-related information to gain and lock access to your devices until payment is received.
  • Seeking donations fraudulently for illegitimate or non-existent charitable organizations.
  • Medical providers obtaining patient information for COVID-19 testing and then using that information to fraudulently bill for other tests and procedures.

In a memorandum to U.S. Attorneys issued March 19, Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen also directed each U.S. Attorney to appoint a Coronavirus Fraud Coordinator to serve as the legal counsel for the federal judicial district on matters relating to the Coronavirus, direct the prosecution of Coronavirus-related crimes, and to conduct outreach and awareness activities. The District of New Hampshire Coronavirus Fraud Coordinator is Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Hunter. AUSA Hunter can be reached through the main number at the U.S. Attorney’s Office – (603) 225-1552.

The NCDF can receive and enter complaints into a centralized system that can be accessed by all U.S. Attorneys, as well as Justice Department litigating and law enforcement components to identify, investigate and prosecute fraud schemes. The NCDF coordinates complaints with 16 additional federal law enforcement agencies, as well as state Attorneys General and local authorities.

To find more about Department of Justice resources and information, please visit www.justice.gov/coronavirus.

NH DHHS COVID-19 Update – March 22, 2020
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has issued the following update for March 22, 2020, on the new coronavirus, COVID-19. DHHS will continue to issue COVID-19 updates each day to provide media and the public with current information about the State’s efforts.

New COVID-19 Cases in New Hampshire

On Sunday, March 22, 2020, DHHS announced 13 new positive test results for COVID-19. There have now been 78 cases of COVID-19 diagnosed in New Hampshire. The new cases are all adults, including nine males and four females. The 13 new cases reside in Rockingham (3), Hillsborough County other than Manchester and Nashua (3), Strafford (2), Grafton (1), Manchester (1), Belknap (1), Carroll (1), and Sullivan (1) counties. This is the first positive case of COVID-19 identified in Sullivan County. Eight of the new cases have either had travel to domestic or international locations or have had close contact with a person with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. Five of the cases have no identified risk factors. Community-based transmission has been identified in the majority of the counties in the State. Nine new cases are isolating at home. Two of the new cases are currently hospitalized and one was hospitalized and released; thus far, six patients out of the 78 positive cases (8%) have been hospitalized.

DHHS is also updating the county of residence for a case announced on March 20. DHHS has since determined that the county of residence was Grafton County rather than Coos County. The map issued today reflects this new information.

New Hampshire 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Summary Report
(updated March 22, 2020, 9:00 AM)

NH Persons with COVID-191

78

Persons with Test Pending at NH PHL2

889

Total Persons Tested at NH PHL3

2341

Persons Being Monitored in NH (approximate point in time)

850


1
Includes specimens presumptive-positive at any laboratory and those confirmed by CDC confirmatory testing.
2Includes specimens received and awaiting testing at NH Public Health Laboratories (PHL). Does not include tests pending at commercial laboratories.

3Includes specimens sent to CDC prior to NH PHL testing capacity.

NH DHHS Daily Update on COVID-19 Archive

For more information, please visit the DHHS COVID-19 webpage at https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/2019-ncov.htm.

NH DHHS COVID-19 Update – March 21, 2020
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has issued the following update for March 21, 2020, on the new coronavirus, COVID-19. DHHS will continue to issue COVID-19 updates each day to provide media and the public with current information about the State’s efforts.

New COVID-19 Cases in New Hampshire

On Saturday, March 21, 2020, DHHS announced 10 new positive test results for COVID-19. There have now been 65 cases of COVID-19 diagnosed in New Hampshire. The new cases are all adults, including five males and five females. County or city of residence are Rockingham (5), Grafton (1), Manchester (1), Hillsborough County other than Manchester and Nashua (1), Merrimack (1), and Strafford (1). This is the first positive case of COVID-19 identified in Strafford County. Six of the cases have either had travel to domestic or international locations or have had close contact with a person with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. Four of the cases, including in Rockingham and Hillsborough counties, have no identified risk factors, indicating additional community-based transmission of COVID-19 in New Hampshire. Community-based transmission has been identified in Carroll, Cheshire, Grafton, Hillsborough, Merrimack, and Rockingham counties and the city of Manchester. One new case is hospitalized; thus far, three patients out of the 65 positive cases (5%) have been hospitalized. The other new cases are isolating at home.

New Hampshire 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Summary Report
(updated March 21, 2020, 9:00 AM)

NH Persons with COVID-191

65

Persons with Test Pending at NH PHL2

959

Total Persons Tested at NH PHL3

2212

Persons Being Monitored in NH (approximate point in time)

750


1
Includes specimens presumptive-positive at any laboratory and those confirmed by CDC confirmatory testing.
2Includes specimens received and awaiting testing at NH Public Health Laboratories (PHL). Does not include tests pending at commercial laboratories.

3Includes specimens sent to CDC prior to NH PHL testing capacity.

NH DHHS Daily Update on COVID-19 Archive

For more information, please visit the DHHS COVID-19 webpage at https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/2019-ncov.htm.

NH DHHS Announces New Recommendations for Testing and Patient Management
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has announced new recommendations to help healthcare providers determine who should be tested for COVID-19. These new recommendations acknowledge that providers and first responders nationwide lack the equipment they need to safely and accurately test any person who may be exposed to the novel coronavirus. The recommendations also acknowledge that more than 80% of people who have COVID-19 have mild symptoms and current inventory in all states should be directed to people with severe illness as well as healthcare workers.

Given the nationwide shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other testing supplies, healthcare providers in New Hampshire must preserve the State’s existing inventory of these materials to care for patients who will develop severe COVID-19 illness, as well as exposed health care providers and exposed first responders. Any significant decline in the healthcare workforce will have a negative impact on residents’ access to treatment for COVID-treatment and other health needs.

“The coronavirus has placed an unprecedented burden on our healthcare system, and signs of strain are showing,” said DHHS Commissioner Lori Shibinette. “Everyone who works in healthcare wants to test New Hampshire residents who have symptoms of COVID-19. Testing capacity at the State Public Health Laboratories (PHL) and commercial testing companies is not the issue. However, the challenge for our providers and first responders is national shortages in PPE, nasal swabs and retesting agents. Healthcare providers require access to these supplies to collect a specimen for testing. Until national supply chains are able to meet the demand for testing supplies, New Hampshire, like all states, will be forced to limit testing to those most at risk of severe symptoms and those healthcare employees who are critical to ensuring we can serve our residents’ health needs.”

“COVID-19 continues to spread in New Hampshire, and while most cases continue to be identified in people with recent international or domestic travel, there is now evidence of community-based transmission occurring in several areas in New Hampshire,” said State Epidemiologist, Dr. Benjamin Chan. “As this outbreak expands, it is important for people to stay home when not feeling well, even at the earliest symptoms of illness. It is not possible to test everybody with respiratory or cold symptoms for COVID-19, so as this outbreak expands, people that develop mild respiratory illness should stay home for at least seven days after symptoms first appear and should not go out until at least 72 hours have passed after symptoms begin to improve and any fever has gone away off fever-reducing medications. Everybody should continue to practice social-distancing and frequent hand hygiene to help protect themselves and their communities.”

As COVID-19 becomes more common in our communities, testing every person presenting with mild symptoms of fever or respiratory illness becomes impractical and does not change how a person’s illness is managed. Therefore, DHHS has shared the following recommendations for COVID-19 testing:

People who are 60 years of age and older, or those with chronic medical problems are at higher risk for hospitalization and death from COVID-19 and should:

· Stay at home and away from public places.

· Avoid any domestic or international travel.

· Call a provider if you are experiencing symptoms. If not severely ill, please call ahead before showing up at a hospital or emergency department.

People who have mild symptoms of COVID-19, even if not tested, should stay home until:

· At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.

AND

· At least 72 hours have passed since recovery; which is defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and improvement in respiratory symptoms.

People who do not have symptoms but have been notified that they may have been exposed through close contact with a person with COVID-19 or a person presumed to have COVID-19 (without testing), and any persons who have traveled from countries with widespread sustained transmission should:

· Stay home (self-quarantine) for 14 days from the last day of potential exposure. It can take up to 14 days from the time someone is exposed to develop symptoms of COVID-19.

· Not be tested for COVID-19 because it doesn’t change the need for a person to self-quarantine even if testing is negative.

· Help us preserve our medical supplies by not asking to be tested.

For information on the differences between isolation and quarantine, please see the following information: https://www.nh.gov/covid19/documents/terms.pdf.

Symptoms of COVID-19 most often include fever or respiratory illness, such as cough. Early mild symptoms can include fatigue, headache, and muscle aches. Fever may not develop until several days into illness, or not at all, but people can still transmit the novel coronavirus very early in their course of illness.

For more information on COVID-19 in NH, please visit https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/2019-ncov.htm. For the latest information from the CDC, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

NH DHHS COVID-19 Update – March 20, 2020
Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has issued the following update for March 20, 2020, on the new coronavirus, COVID-19. DHHS will continue to issue COVID-19 updates each day to provide media and the public with current information about the State’s efforts.

What’s New

· New Positive Cases of COVID-19 in New Hampshire

On Friday, March 20, 2020, DHHS announced 11 new positive test results for COVID-19. The new cases are all adults, including six males and five females. Counties of residence are Grafton (3), Rockingham (2), Manchester (1), Hillsborough County other than Manchester and Nashua (1), Carroll (1), Merrimack (1), Coos (1) and Cheshire (1). The positive test results are the first cases in Coos and Cheshire counties. Four of the cases, including in Cheshire, Merrimack, and Rockingham counties and the city of Manchester, have no identified risk factors, indicating additional community-based transmission of COVID-19 in New Hampshire. The other seven cases have either have traveled to domestic or international locations or have had close contact with a person with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. The community-based transmission has been identified in Carroll, Cheshire, Grafton, Merrimack, and Rockingham counties and the city of Manchester. There have now been 55 cases of COVID-19 diagnosed in New Hampshire.

New Hampshire 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Summary Report
(updated March 20, 2020, 9:00 AM)

NH Persons with COVID-19 1

55

Persons with Test Pending at NH PHL 2

942

Total Persons Tested at NH PHL 3

1970

Persons Being Monitored in NH (approximate point in time)

550


1 Includes specimens presumptive-positive at any laboratory and those confirmed by CDC confirmatory testing.
2 Includes specimens received and awaiting testing at NH Public Health Laboratories (PHL). It does not include tests pending at commercial laboratories.

3 Includes specimens sent to CDC prior to NH PHL testing capacity.

For more information, please visit the DHHS COVID-19 webpage at https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/2019-ncov.htm.