COVID-19 NEWS FOR MIFFLIN, JUNIATA COUNTIES

COVID-19 NEWS FOR MIFFLIN, JUNIATA COUNTIES

COVID-19 NEWS FOR MIFFLIN, JUNIATA COUNTIES

Our goal at Merf Radio is to provide Mifflin and Juniata countians with any information you may need to prevent and/or deal with COVID-19. The coronavirus is spreading rapidly and, although we have not been directly impacted as of yet, many events and group gatherings we may have planned to attend have been.

Bookmark this page and check back often for updates. If you remain on page for a length of time, be sure to refresh.

To submit your information, send all the info, including your contact information, to publicservice@merfradio.com.

The Merf Radio/Seven Mountains Media offices will be closed to the public until further notice. If you have won a prize and would like us to mail it to you, just let us know and we will take care of it.

To keep up-to-date on how many cases are in our area, click here.

Click here for the latest from the Centers for Disease Control.

Seven Mountains Media has also produced a list of symptoms of COVID-19 to be on the lookout for. You can find that information by clicking here.

Locally, Geisinger has established a hotline and website to share important information regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19). For general questions and information about COVID-19, you can visit geisinger.org/coronavirus. Utilizing these resources before going to a doctor’s office, walk-in clinic or emergency department can help lessen the possible spread of the virus. The hotline is also available for clinicians to address patient care inquiries and laboratory testing questions.

If you become sick, call 1-877-PA-HEALTH (1-877-724-3258), and call the doctor’s office or emergency room before visiting. Precautionary measures include washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. Cover coughs or sneezes. Clean surfaces frequently. If you are sick, stay home until you feel better. Click here for more information.

To help area businesses stay afloat during these tough times, and to save yourself some money, head to SaveYourTown.com.

Mike Watson has four area businesses taking part in the SaveYourTown.com program, where you can save 25% on gift certificates to each: Gus’s Pizza, The Corner Vault, Boulevard Takeout and Mike’s Landscaping & Excavating. Listen in to this brief interview with Heather Kallander, the full-time bartender at the Vault who has been doing other duties until things get back to normal. Heather tells us how all three businesses have adapted to the COVID-19 restrictions and how they continue to serve their customers as best they can.

Sharon Byler owns The Whitehall Store in Belleville. You’ve heard of their legendary hoagies. In addition to those, the Whitehall Store also has a wonderful grocery department, allowing them to remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic. Listen to our brief interview with Sharon on how the store is doing during these crazy times (you might be surprised) and how important it is, now more than ever, for us to shop local and support our neighbors, friends and businesses. Also, be sure to save 25% on Whitehall Store gift certificates via SaveYourTown.com. And follow Whitehall on Facebook!

Jeff Foltz owns Joe’s OIP, right up the hill from Walmart in Lewistown. Not a surprise, but Jeff and the gang at Joe’s have to alter to alter the business model greatly in order to serve its customers and pay the bills. Believe it or not, Joe’s was able to bring back some employees, only having to lay off one. Incredible! Listen below to our exclusive interview with Jeff about how Joe’s OIP is trying to do you right. Also, make sure to pick up your Joe’s OIP gift certificates at a 25% savings at SaveYourTown.com.

Bree Zannino owns Your Vision Rentals, a wedding and event planner, including set-up and tear-down for all of your events. Your Vision Rentals rents everything from antiques, and wine barrels to entryways and jumbo games to keep your guests entertained for hours. Obviously, the pandemic has hurt the business but Bree is ready for you when you are ready to get your event planned. Listen below as Bree talks about what she can do for you, as well as how the COVID-19 restrictions have affected her business. Your Vision Rentals is also a participating sponsor of SaveYourTown.com, where you can save 25% on gift certificates to many of your favorite area businesses.

Sarah’s Primitives opened their doors in February. They held their Grand Opening on March 7. Ten days later, the COVID-19 pandemic forced them to close up shop and find an entirely new way to do business. Keesha Hoar‘s mother and father-in-law own the business, while she works there and runs the store’s Facebook page. Listen to how Sarah’s Primitives is staying alive during lockdown. Also, remember to get your Sarah’s Primitives gift certificates at 25% off at SaveYourTown.com.

The latest news and notes for Mifflin & Juniata counties:

May 28: The next meeting of the Mifflin County Planning Commission, originally scheduled for Thursday afternoon, May 28, 2020 at 3:30 p.m., has been canceled.  These arrangements have been made due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation and the desire postpone
business items if possible.

The next public meeting for the Mifflin County Planning Commission is scheduled for Thursday, June 25, 2020 at 3:30 p.m. in the Mifflin County Courthouse, meeting room A.

May 11: Juniata River Valley Independence Day Fireworks Cancelled Due to COVID-19

May 1: Gov Wolf keeps Mifflin and Juniata counties ‘red,’ while Centre County moves to ‘yellow’ in re-opening plan.

April 29: In a continued effort to create an even safer environment, Geisinger will begin COVID-19 testing for all pregnant mothers before delivery. All mothers admitted in labor or for a scheduled delivery will receive a two-hour rapid COVID-19 test.

April 28: If you’ve had COVID-19 and recovered, you can donate your blood plasma, which has unique antibodies that may help others to fight the illness.

Who is eligible?

  • You are eligible to donate plasma if you were diagnosed with COVID-19 and have been symptom-free for 28 days.
  • You are eligible if you were diagnosed with COVID-19 have been symptom-free for 14 days and had a negative follow-up test for COVID-19.

The simple donation process takes only 45 minutes of a donor’s time. Click here to watch Dr. Patrick Konitzer, a COVID-19 plasma donor, go through the process at the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville.

Call your doctor or message them through myGeisinger and complete the attestation form that will make sure you are eligible to donate. When you have the completed form from your doctor, call our regional blood bank, Miller-Keystone, at 800-B-A-DONOR and make an appointment to give convalescent plasma.

If you have trouble getting your doctor to complete the form, contact Dr. Gustaaf de Ridder at gderidder@geisinger.edu or 919-452-8976. If you have any other questions, please email dwiest@GiveAPint.org or tbacon@GiveAPint.org. You can also call or text 484-225-8351 or 610-691-5850, ext. 1279

April 27: The Mifflin County Solid Waste Authority (dump) will re-open to the general public and will open also be open on Saturdays again effective 5/2/2020 with the following restrictions:

MCSWA Staff will be directing vehicles into the bays at the building to unload. Please wear mask in transfer station when exiting to unload. Only persons unloading trash should exit vehicle. Please bring your patience with you and we will get you in and out as quick as we can.

Steffanie Guenther manages the Sticky Bun Cafe in Yeagertown. Like many other area businesses, the Sticky Bun Cafe has had to alter the way they do business. Now, they are take out only from 6am to 3pm. Phone your orders in: (717) 248-1103. We chatted with Steffanie recently about the challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has placed on her business. Make sure to buy your Sticky Bun Cafe gift certificates for 25% at SaveYourTown.com.  Check out her interview below.

Aaron Amspacker own’s JP Edwards Grill and Bar. Like virtually every other business, JP’s had to adapt to the restrictions imposed by the onset of COVID-19. We spoke with Aaron about the way his restaurant is navigating the new normal, as well as the Save Your Town program, since JP Edwards is a top-seller of discounted certificates.

Michael Bailey is the owner of the Burnham OIP. Like many other businesses, he is trying to stay above water, paying the bills and his employees, operating a very different business model than pre-COVID-19. Michael spent a couple minutes with us recently to discuss how he is navigating things, plus the importance of the SaveYourTown.com campaign.

John Pannizzo is the owner of the Downtown OIP & Grille. We recently caught up with him to talk a bit about how he has managing his business, given the COVID-19 restrictions that are in place. We also discussed the day he learned his restaurant had to shut its sit-down business down and the SaveYourTown.com program.

Glenda Fultz is the Executive Director of the Juniata County Food Pantry. We spent a few minutes with her to learn about how the pantry continues to serve the hungry in Juniata County, despite a number of COVID-19 restrictions.

Amy Hancock, owner and CEO of Advantage Home Health Services, joined us to talk about her company’s Make a Mask campaign. The initiative is to make sure her employees have masks to protect themselves and the clients they serve. If you would like to donate supplies or your time, please email info@feeltheadvantage.com or follow the Feel the Advantage Facebook page.

Lance Blose owns Lance’s Auto Sales & Notary in Mifflintown. Lance spent a few minutes with us talking about how he is navigating the restrictions set in place by the pandemic. In addition to the 25% savings when you buy a gift certificate through SaveYourTown.com, Lance is offering additional savings to military, first responders and more.  Listen in for all the details.

Local business owner Rhonda Gibbons of Harshbarger’s Sub ‘n Malt talked about how her restaurant is navigating the coronavirus restrictions, the Save Your Town program and the importance of shopping local.

Father John Harwood of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Lewistown, talks about Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard’s mission of feeding those in need, as well as how the pantry is navigating accepting and handing out donations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19, it’s critical to be staying home and practicing self-quarantine if you feel sick. To help bolster this important information, Geisinger has compiled resources you can use to help share information.

Please spend a moment watching this video from Dr. Stanley Martin in which she discusses the importance of self-quarantine.

Geisinger Update: (April 3):  To help stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities, Geisinger is making changes to its masking policy beginning this weekend. Starting Saturday, all employees, patients and visitors will be required to wear a mask while inside a Geisinger facility.

Geisinger will provide the appropriate level of mask to all employees, patients and visitors. At minimum, each employee will receive one Level 1 mask weekly. A Level 1 mask is most commonly seen at a doctor’s office. The usually paper-type masks help stop low levels of fluid droplets, like from a cough or sneeze, from spraying forward. A common way COVID-19 is transmitted is through droplets in the air immediately around an individual.

Geisinger doctor Amit Mehta recently gave us the lowdown on all things coronavirus. Symptoms, how to keep you and your family healthy and safe, pretty much everything you need to know. Dr. Mehta is a board-certified physician specializing in family medicine. He is the community practice department director for Geisinger in Centre County. Dr. Mehta is certified by the American Board of  Family Medicine.

 

Check out this interview with Dr. Anthony Fauci. He serves on the National Institute of Health branch of Allergy and Infectious Disease and has advised six presidents.He breaks down everything we need to know about COVID-19.

Connor Reed, a British man who works at a school in Wuhan, explains how it felt to have the Covid-19 coronavirus, discusses what life is like after 40 days in lockdown and how he thinks people in the UK would cope in similar circumstances.

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