May 17, 2020 Update

Columbia County Department of Health Update

As of 2 PM on May 17, 2020:

-Columbia County has had 26 residents that have passed away from COVID-19.
-344 positive cases of COVID-19
-156 of the 344 cases have recovered from COVID-19
– 17 of the positive cases are hospitalized, 1 of those hospitalized are in the ICU
-We have received 3,111 test results completed for Columbia County residents
-153 residents are under mandatory quarantine and 5 under precautionary quarantine…/coronavirus-covid…/

Columbia County Update

FROM: Chairman Matt Murell


The Columbia County Department of Health has set a new testing clinic date for Sunday, June 10th, at the Columbia County Fairgrounds in Chatham, Director Jack Mabb said Sunday. Further details will be announced.

Previously, the DOH announced a pair of clinics set for the John L. Edwards Elementary School in Hudson, the first on Wednesday, May 27, and the second on Tuesday, June 2. Times are 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“I would like to stress that although we are looking for individuals who are symptomatic for the Edwards clinics, or who have experienced symptoms in the recent past, we will gladly accept any essential worker who would like to be tested regardless of whether or not they have symptoms,” said Director Mabb. “The Chatham clinic will be open to everyone.”

Signup instructions and further instructions regarding the John L. Edwards clinics can be found on the Health Department’s webpage on the Columbia County website, or by calling 518-828-3358.


County Board of Supervisors Chairman Matt Murell has been meeting daily with the chief elected officials of the Capital Region with an eye on what needs to be accomplished in order to begin getting the economy re-started, he said on Sunday.

The Capital Region is composed of Albany, Schenectady, Rensselaer, Washington, Warren, Columbia, and Greene counties.

“We’ve been working hard to achieve the metrics the state is requiring us to reach before beginning to re-open the economy under the four-phase plan. Everyone is focused on how to make that happen as quickly as possible,” said Chairman Murell. “I’m happy to say that as of today, it appears that the Capital Region will be able to begin reopening under Phase One of the plan this week as long as we meet the required number of contact tracers.” Information on the metrics used to determine when a region is eligible to resume business activities can be found at

Columbia Comeback, the committee appointed by Chairman Murell to serve as a resource for local businesses, recently held its first meeting. Currently, Columbia Comeback’s Business Recovery Planning Survey is being conducted at

Matt B. Murell Chairman Kelly S. Baccaro Clerk Ronald L. Knott Deputy Chairman James J. Guzzi Deputy Chairman Chairman Murell said that in its initial phases, Columbia Comeback will look to guide the implementation of the Governor’s Guidelines for the Phased Re-Opening, facilitate communication to ensure the safe reopening of businesses, and provide resources, guidance, and assistance to businesses as they work to ramp up to full operation.

A separate committee of county leaders, chaired by Austerlitz Town Supervisor Rob Lagonia, is examining the needs of county workers and buildings when the time comes to re-open the county. “When we are given the okay by the state, we want to be immediately prepared to open up the county for business.

We are aggressively pursuing what we need to have in place when that day comes. Our plan is to establish countywide protocols that address all the issues that make for a safe environment for both county employees and those who use their services,” Lagonia said.


As of Sunday morning, said Columbia County Director of Emergency Management David W. Harrison, Jr., New York State reported that 1,378,717 tests for COVID-19 had been administered statewide. Of that number, 348,242 yielded a positive result. There are currently 6,220 individuals hospitalized, with 400 newly hospitalized. At this time, statewide 22,478 have died from the virus.



Monetary: Monetary donations intended for the purchase of coronavirus testing kits and much-needed equipment for emergency responders, medical personnel, and others on the front lines of the coronavirus fight are advised to send a check in care of Columbia County, with coronavirus noted in the memo field. The check Matt B. Murell Chairman Kelly S. Baccaro Clerk Ronald L. Knott Deputy Chairman James J. Guzzi Deputy Chairman should be sent to the Columbia County Controller’s Office, 401 State Street, Hudson, NY 12534. All money received is being placed in a dedicated account.

PPE: Those wishing to make donations of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as N95 masks, face shields, and gowns, are advised to contact the Emergency Management Office at 518-828-1212. If no one answers, leave a message and someone will return the call.

Food: Donations should be directed to the county Office for the Aging (518-828-4258) and local food pantries.

Masks: Those interested in donating masks should contact Austerlitz Town Supervisor and county Health and Human Services Committee Chairman Rob Lagonia at [email protected] “It doesn’t matter whether it’s five or 100, we need every one,” said Lagonia, who recommends that those wishing to help out with mask donations consult CDC guidelines at

Currently, Ocean State Job Lot stores are offering free fabric for use in the construction of masks in a “Mask Fabric For Free” campaign. Visit any Ocean State location for the fabric, which is said to be of a high-quality cotton/polyester blend available in two sizes. Further information is available on the Ocean State Job Lot website. Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts is offering free mask kits. Those seeking to acquire a kit are advised to order online for curbside pickup. The Greenport store telephone number is 518-828-2621. Current store hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.


Family Assistance Network: As part of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, Columbia County Emergency Management has asked leaders in the human services and spiritual areas of our community for help, Director of Emergency Management David W. Harrison, Jr., said Saturday. The individuals were asked to form a Family Assistance Network to provide information to assist county residents who may be dealing with someone close to them who passed away as a result of the COVID-19 virus. Information on where someone can reach out for help is posted on various websites, including the Columbia County website and Emergency Management Facebook page. Hotline for Elderly and Vulnerable: Columbia County Sheriff David Bartlett has established a hotline for the elderly and vulnerable in our county, including those with medical conditions or are disabled, who would welcome a deputy checking on their well-being on a daily basis. The number for the hotline is 518-828-0601, extension 1400.


Columbia County Board of Supervisors Chairman Matt Murell continues to urge anyone migrating from outside Columbia County to self-quarantine for 14 days upon their arrival. “Everyone should consider they are a carrier of the coronavirus,” said Murell.


It is the county’s intention to issue accurate information regarding the coronavirus situation under conditions that can change by the minute. For the most up-to-date, accurate information, visit the County Department of Health’s website at or their Facebook page @: The state’s coronavirus website, with up-to-the-minute information, can be located at The county will issue a daily press release on the coronavirus situation every afternoon at 4. The releases can be found on the Columbia County website and the Facebook pages of the Sheriff’s Office, the Department of Health, and the Emergency Management Office.

Post a Comment