Community-Based Organizations FAQs

COVID-19 General Questions

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  • What personal protective equipment (PPE) would you suggest for us daily if we provide food pantry services for people?

    PPE such as N95 masks are currently only required for essential workers. Those in food pantry services should follow all suggested measures necessary to maintain proper sanitation, employee screening, social distancing and facial coverings. You can find the Governor and the County Public Health orders at County of San Diego Coronavirus Disease 2019.  

  • How does a face covering protect us?

    Starting on May 1, everyone must wear face coverings anywhere in public they come within six feet of another person or whenever they enter a business. Find more details here

    View the latest Public Health Order here.

    From the CDC website.

    We know from studies that there is a significant portion of individuals who are infected with coronavirus but lack symptoms (asymptomatic). Furthermore, those who eventually develop symptoms (presymptomatic) can transmit virus to others prior to showing symptoms. What this means is that the virus can spread between people who are interacting in close proximity – speaking, coughing, sneezing – even if these people are not exhibiting symptoms. Facial coverings, in addition to all of the other non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs), such as physical distancing, hand washing and not gathering, are important to reduce the spread of COVID-19, especially in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. Facial coverings can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and should be used in addition to physical distancing when we are outside.

COVID-19 Testing/Screening

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  • Where are the testing kits available? What can you tell us about tests? I have multiple employees with symptoms, but they don’t “qualify” for testing.

    We have major shortages of tests & personal protective equipment.  We can make it difficult to have the virus infect us. That allows the rate of transmission to be slow enough to avoid more people getting sick and the medical care system from being overwhelmed. The testing is only part of the challenge. In an ideal world, everyone who wants a test can get one.  We are not facing an ideal world currently, so we had to prioritize the people who need to get tested. If you are sick but doing fine stay home - you don't need testing.

    The highest priority for the County of San Diego remains to test those with COVID-19 infection symptoms or people in high-risk groups that may include:

    1. Healthcare workers, first responders, other social service employees, and people in essential jobs
    2. People with chronic medical conditions
    3. People living in a residential or group setting, such as a long-term care facility or shelter
    4. People exposed to infected individuals in place where COVID-19 risk is high
  • Where can people be tested or screened for COVID-19?

    COVID-19 tests are used to evaluate your health and help public health agencies control the spread of the virus. They can show places and groups with higher rates of infection. Understanding these patterns is important to safely reopening. If you have symptoms, contact your medical provider. If you don’t have one, call 2-1-1. If you have serious symptoms, like difficulty breathing, call 9-1-1. You should also contact your health care provider to see if they have free testing. You can get free testing for COVID-19 at many locations throughout San Diego County. You need an appointment to be tested.

    • For County site appointments, call 2-1-1. For a list of testing sites and locations by day, go to the County of San Diego Testing Page
    • For state sites, make appointment online or call 888-634-1123. State sites are in Escondido, El Cajon, Chula Vista, San Ysidro and Southeastern San Diego.

    These are diagnostic tests. The test takes about 5-10 minutes. Test results generally come back in 3-5 days.  [Posted 6/5/2020]


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