An additional three positive COVID-19 test results have been received at the Samuel L. Jones Hall Homeless Shelter as of January 6, 2021, resulting in 14 positive test results at the shelter since mid-December 2020. Testing was prompted after an individual experienced a potential COVID-19 exposure, which was confirmed to be negative, and is part of a larger effort to provide on-going testing at the shelter in partnership with St. Joseph’s Health. Individuals with positive test results have been placed in the newly completed Emergency Shelter Annex on the City’s SJH property, a hotel room, and the Sonoma County Alternate Care Site (ACS), as space is available.
Catholic Charities, the City's primary homeless services provider, is working closely with Sonoma County Public Health to best manage the situation at SJH, including the following steps:
- Screening/Isolation – Catholic Charities and St. Joseph’s Health is conducting daily symptom and temperature checks of all shelter clients and staff. The new Emergency Shelter has been made available as space to isolate symptomatic individuals until testing and alternate shelter can be arranged. Additionally, any individuals known to have been in close contact with a COVID-19 positive individual have been isolated in a separate, smaller dorm area within the Emergency Shelter Annex.
- Testing – St. Joseph’s Health will be on-site twice weekly to conduct testing. This will continue until the shelter reaches two consecutive weeks with no positive cases.
- Education – Clients are being provided with information on transmission and prevention, their risk and what Catholic Charities and Public Health are planning to do to mitigate their risk.
- Other Precautions – New intakes to the shelter as well as exits are on hold until the shelter reaches the two-week benchmark. Catholic Charities has also provided masks for all staff and clients.