Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

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CITY SERVICES               BUSINESS RESOURCES                FOOD RESOURCES                MEDICAL INFORMATION   
CLOSURES               BEST PRACTICES             SCAMS             HOW YOU CAN HELP

Siouxland District Health is working with the Iowa Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to minimize the impacts of COVID-19 in our community. Social distancing and frequent hand washing is encouraged to slow the spread of the virus.

It’s important to:

  1. Avoid crowds where there are more than 10 people and practice good hygiene by washing your hands frequently
  2. Support your local businesses
  3. Wear a mask when social distancing is a challenge

GOVERNOR PROCLAMATION CHART - easy to read chart with restricted activities and associated dates in Iowa.

RE-OPENINGS 

As of May 15, 2020, Governor Reynolds has reopened the following businesses across the state of Iowa. All of these businesses must adhere to capacity limits and other social distancing and hygiene measures:

  • Restaurants
  • Malls
  • Retail establishments
  • Campgrounds
  • Racetracks
  • Drive-in theaters
  • Farmers' markets (food vendors only, no entertainment)
  • Museums
  • Aquariums
  • Zoos
  • Movie theaters
  • Wedding reception venues
  • Swimming pools (for lap swims and lessons)
  • Wineries, breweries, distilleries and alcohol-related establishments
  • Outdoor performance venues
  • Casinos and gaming facilities
  • Amusement parks, bowling alleys and arcades
  • Skating rinks and skate parks
  • Outdoor playgrounds

Gatherings of more than 10 people are allowed as of June 1, 2020, but social distancing must be followed.

Check websites and social media pages for the business you are interested in visiting for hours and requirements.


CITY SERVICES

City services are fully operational with social distancing requirements in place. Customers are encouraged to wear a face covering, follow social distance guidelines of at least 6 feet, pay attention to signs and floor markings, cover sneezes and coughs and to not enter a building if you or a member of your household feels ill.

Residents are encouraged to use online services available at www.sioux-city.org or contact staff by phone when possible. You may also make an appointment to meet with City staff by contacting them directly. STAFF DIRECTORY


CITY TRANSIT

Routes are running normally. In an effort to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, Sioux City Transit passengers will now enter and exit through the back door of the bus. Only passengers in a mobility device (wheelchair/scooter) will be allowed to enter or exit through the front door. Face masks are encouraged.

Bus use should be limited to essential rides only, such as trips to the grocery store, work or for medical needs. Hand sanitizer is available and buses are being sanitized regularly.


CUSTOMER SERVICE
Residents are encouraged to pay utility bills and parking tickets online, by phone at 279-6132, Option 1 or by using the utility billing drop box located on 6th Street on the north side of the Library parking lot. The Customer Service Center in City Hall reopened to the public on June 22 and is available to the public with social distancing measures in place.


GARBAGE/RECYCLING
Garbage, recycling and yard waste collection continues as normal.


WATER
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports that the COVID-19 virus has not been detected in drinking water supplies. Based on current evidence, the risk to water supplies is low. Iowans can continue to use and drink water from their tap as usual.  The Iowa DNR recommends obtaining your potable water from your tap as much as possible to conserve bottled water for emergency situations if needed.  


SEWER
Don’t flush anything down your toilet except toilet paper to avoid a clog in your home and the city’s sewer system. “Flushable” wipes are not safe for the sewer system and — like fats, oils, and grease — can cause build up and clog pipes.
The toilet is NOT a trash can.
Please DO NOT flush:
- Baby wipes
- Paper towels
- Kleenex
- Feminine hygiene products
- Kitchen cleaning wipes

 

LIBRARY
As of July 6, the Morningside Branch (4005 Morningside Ave.) is open to the public. New hours for the branch location are Monday-Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Library goers are encouraged to wear masks and practice social distancing. Contactless curbside pickup at the Library's Perry Creek Branch (2912 Hamilton Blvd.) is available for those who prefer that method of Library service. The Aalfs Downtown location (529 Pierce St.) remains closed, but the book return is open. Perry Creek and Morningside's returns remain closed at this time. 

 

MUSEUM
As of July 7, the Sioux City Public Museum is open to the public. The facility has normal operating hours, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and Sundays 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Visitors are strongly encouraged to maintain social distancing and wear masks.

 

ART CENTER
As of July 7, The Sioux City Art Center is open to the public. The Art Center will be open during its usual times: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.; and Sunday from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Increased cleaning, social distancing and only first-floor galleries will be open. All hands-on galleries remain closed. Masks are strongly encouraged. 

 

PARKS
Social distancing measures should be taken when visiting local parks and trails. City parks and trails remain open. Playgrounds, basketball courts and restrooms reopened June 19. Park shelters, Anderson Dance Pavilion and Cone Park Lodge rentals reopened June 26. 

The Bacon Creek Dog Park, Cook Park Skate Park, all public tennis courts and Athletic League Fields reopened Monday, June 1.

Cabins are open in Little Sioux Park, Southwood Conservation Area and Snyder Bend Park in Woodbury County, Iowa. Restrooms and shower facilities, enclosed shelters, playgrounds, offices and the Nature Center remain closed. Trails at the Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center are open.


POOLS & SPLASH PADS  

Sioux City splash pads will be closed for the summer due to the high amount of frequent touch points and no controls over social distancing.

Pools are open for limited capacity open swim operations, swim lessons, fitness classes and lap swim from June 22 - August 2 (closed July 4).  Check www.siouxcityparksandrecreation.com for more information.


ANIMALS
The Sioux City Animal Adoption & Rescue Center is open from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday - Friday with limited office staff. 


AIRPORT
The Sioux Gateway Airport is operating on a flight-by flight basis at this time. American Airlines is providing updates regarding customer service and reservation assistance on their website and social media pages. The Iowa Department of Transportation has extended the REAL ID Gold Star deadline to October 1, 2021 for id to fly or enter a federal building.


UTILITY SERVICE
MidAmerican Energy operations are fully functional. They are suspending late payment fees and are not disconnecting for non-payments.


BUSINESS RESOURCES
Find COVID-19 resources for Sioux City businesses on the Sioux City Economic Development website.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) to eligible small businesses. 

Paycheck Protection Program - a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers -on the payroll.

Paid Leave for Workers - the U.S. Treasury Department, Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Department of Labor announced that small and midsize employers can begin taking advantage of two new refundable payroll tax credits, designed to immediately and fully reimburse them, dollar-for-dollar, for the cost of providing Coronavirus-related leave to their employees.

The Siouxland Recovery Fund has been activated to aid in recover efforts for those impacted by COVID-19. Donations are currently being accepted. 

A note to businesses from Siouxland District Health

 

FOOD RESOURCES
Plan your meals for the week and only visit the grocery store once per week to avoid repeated contact with others.

The Siouxland Local Eats-To-Go Facebook Group offers information about local restaurants and bars that are offering pick-up and delivery options.

Local Food Pantries – Community Action Agency, Food Bank of Siouxland, Hope Center, Salvation Army – remain open with drive through pantry events. A calendar is available www.siouxlandfoodbank.org. Healthy volunteers are welcome – in groups of less than 10 - and financial assistance is appreciated.

Local grocery stores have special hours in place to accommodate those with an increased susceptibility to serious illness, those who are 65 years and older, and expecting mothers. Check their Facebook pages.

The School City Community School District is offering free breakfast and lunch sacks at more than 25 locations and available to children ages 1-18 years old.

Community Action Agency of Siouxland is open and helping people by phone with food, rental, energy and emergency assistance. Call 712-274-1610 for more information. 


MEDICAL ASSISTANCE

Sioux City hospitals, MercyOne and UnityPoint-St. Luke’s, have restrictions in place and no visitors are allowed.

Mercy One and UnityPoint St. Luke's are accepting personal protective equipment (PPE) including factory-made N95 masks, gowns and face shields.

Iowa Department of Health homemade mask design guidance:
- Press Release     
- Specs


TESTING

A testing site is available through Siouxland Community Health Center.  Contact your primary healthcare provider to discuss your symptoms and they will determine your need for a test.

 

MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES
Pressures of everyday life coupled with recent added stress can be overwhelming. Talking with someone if you are struggling can help. 
- Catholic Charities, 712-252-4547. Provides assistance to anyone regardless of age or religious preference. Telehealth services available.
- Boys and Girls Home and Family Services, 712-293-4700. Mental health services to individuals of all ages and backgrounds. Telehealth services available.
- Heartland Counseling Services, Inc., 402-494-3337. Provides a wide range of services to anyone, has multilingual services available, and offers Telehealth therapy.
- Siouxland Mental Health Center, 712-252-3871. Offering Psychiatry, Therapy and Community Support services to all, regardless of ability to pay.
- The Salvation Army has a Chaplain Support Line for anyone who needs emotional or spiritual care. Call 1-888-651-7294 9am-9pm CST.
- Seasons Center for Behavioral Health, 800-242-5101. Provides outpatient therapy and specialized trauma services for children and families. We also offer a 24/7 Crisis/Talk Line when you dial 844-345-4569. Located at  5722 Sunnybrook Drive in Sioux City.
Turner Therapy & Consulting, 712-222-1459. Offering mental health services in 3 locations to all individuals and ages including, but not limited to, EMDR and PCIT. Telehealth available during COVID-19. 

 

SCHOOLS 
A Return to Learn Plan for Sioux City Community Schools has been submitted to the Iowa Department of Education.

 

TRAVEL
Use travel resources available on the CDC website.   
The four official Iowa Welcome Centers are closed indefinitely. All 38 interstate rest areas and facilities are currently open 24 hours a day, every day. Overnight parking is allowed. Iowa DOT staff has increased cleaning and sanitization procedures in each location, with extra attention on high-touch areas. Visit the Iowa DOT's website for more information.


BEST PRACTICES 
Don’t congregate in large groups. Keep it to less than 10 people. Maintain a social distance of six (6) feet.

Wear a cloth face covering. The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission. Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2 or others unable to remove the mask without assistance. Learn how to make a face covering.

Don’t hoard things (ie. toilet paper, cleaning products, etc.)

If you are feeling ill and have a fever, stay home and isolate until you are fever free for 72 hours, regardless of whether you’ve been tested for COVID-19 or not.


SCAMS
There are reports of phishing scams that attempt to steal personal information or to infect your devices with malware, and ads that peddle false information or scam products. The simple practice of navigating your email, texts and social media apps with caution is a great way to avoid becoming a victim. Avoid clicking links in emails and text messages from sources you don't know. The Federal Trade Commission is a trusted resource to learn more. 


VOLUNTEERING

Volunteer Siouxland offers tips, resources and links on their website

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

- Food Bank of Siouxland volunteers - pack and distribute family food boxes - call 712-255-9741 to volunteer **Please DO NOT hold food drives for Food Bank of Siouxland - if you want to help you can provide a monetary donation.

- Purchase baby items such as formula, diapers and wipes and donate them to agencies including: Community Action Agency, Crittenton Center, and Lutheran Services in Iowa.

- Donate cleaning supplies to nonprofits providing one-on-one services

- Donate blood by going to LifeServe Blood Center

Donate to United Way of Siouxland as we forsee needs increasing as the situation progresses. 

 

TRUSTED INFORMATION SOURCES

The state of Iowa has a comprehensive website available for people to learn more about COVID-19 at www.coronavirus.iowa.gov. The site is intended to be a 1-stop shop for Iowans looking for any type of information regarding coronavirus mitigation and response efforts in our state.

Iowans may call 2-1-1 for information about COVID-19. 

The Iowa Department of Public Health - Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) page provides up-to-date information regarding this virus as well as guidance for businesses, schools, healthcare, long-term care, general public, and travelers.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) page has a  summary of the virus, including symptoms, risk assessment, and preventative measures.   

 

WHAT IS KNOWN

The virus causing COVID-19 is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified, and causes a respiratory illness ranging from a mild cold-like illness to severe respiratory disease.

Similar to influenza, the people who are most likely to have severe disease and complications from COVID-19 are believed to be the very old, very young and those with other chronic or underlying medical conditions.

No vaccine or treatment is currently available for COVID-19, so prevention is very important.

COVID-19 SYMPTOMS
If you suspect you are infected with COVID-19, call ahead before visiting a medical facility so they can prepare. Do not go to an emergency room with mild symptoms. The symptoms of COVID-19 are:

  • fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath

Call your doctor right away if you experience these symptoms and have:

  • been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, or
  • recently traveled from an area with ongoing community spread

The CDC has a fact sheet with more information about what to do if you are sick with COVID-19.

HOW THE VIRUS SPREADS
COVID-19 is believed to spread primarily the same way the common cold or flu spreads—through respiratory droplets that are produced when someone coughs or sneezes.

People who are most at risk of becoming infected with COVID-19 are those who have been in close contact (within about 6 feet) with someone who has the disease. 

People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).

WHAT YOU CAN DO NOW

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. 
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow/inside of arm.
  • Stay home if you are sick and do not go out in public until you are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° C] or greater using an oral thermometer) or have signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 72 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. Tylenol, ibuprofen, cough suppressants), and at least 7 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.

The Iowa Department of Health offers detailed cleaning and disinfection guidance.