NOTE: This message was written at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday March 5, 2020. Specific circumstances may have changed by the time this message is read, however the websites provided should all be updated on a regular basis.
Dear Chamber Investors –
As I write this week’s note to you on Thursday afternoon, I’m simultaneously listening online to a press conference for Governor Abbott announcing that cities can test for coronavirus and updating the state on the status of the handful of identified cases in Texas (article here).
Both on the national scale and in Texas, we have all been advised by the CDC to prepare for potential disruptions to business and, normal daily life, as the illness spreads globally. My intent in writing this week’s note is to inform and provide awareness of several resources for information. With that said, I’m neither an epidemiologist nor a physician – so please seek the advice of your medical professionals or the recommended steps from the resources below.
Advisors and experts at all levels of government, and in the private sector, have all been consistent in their messaging on two levels: don’t panic, but do take precautions. Further universally repeated advice from all can be summarized as follows:
- Be extra diligent in hand washing and the use of hand sanitizer
- Avoid touching your face (eyes, nose, and mouth in particular)
- Avoid contact with those who are sick, and stay at home if you become sick
To assist businesses and citizens in general, many very useful sites and resources have been established by credible and informed professionals.
At the local level, the City of Round Rock has published the following website, referring people to the Williamson County and Texas Department of State Health services: City Coronavirus Information Website.
Both Williamson County and the State of Texas are directing people to this site provided by the Texas Division of Emergency Management and Texas Department of State Health Services.
At the national level there are some additional excellent resources, many of which are customized for business needs specifically. Those include:
- The Center for Disease Control’s “Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), February 2020”
- The main Center for Disease Control page
- The U.S. Chamber of Commerce site for business coronavirus response
- The Harvard Business Review’s “8 Questions Employers Should Ask About Coronavirus”
Our globalized economy, trade relationships, and logistics systems have provided our modern society great benefit. Unfortunately, those same systems and international travel methods are also a great way for a new virus to spread quickly.
Please prepare your business, your employees, and yourself for disruption. And please be sure to use reliable information resources.