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COVID-19 in Virginia
VaNews
June 1, 2020
Top of the News

Police sweep Richmond streets on third night of protests

By CAT MODLIN-JACKSON, Virginia Mercury

The third night of protests in Richmond brought arrests, armored vehicles and more tear gas to city streets. From east to west on Broad Street, protesters ran from police enforcing an 8 p.m. curfew imposed by Gov. Ralph Northam and Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney.


In the wreckage of Richmond, one small miracle — and anticipation of more protests

Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

A kind of miracle happened here Sunday at Waller & Company Jewelers, just hours after the historic black-owned business was looted during protests that gripped cities across the country over police killings of unarmed African Americans. As word got out that the 120-year-old jeweler had been hit, some of its most loyal customers began showing up to help.


Black Lawmakers Call for More Oversight of Police

By BEN PAVIOUR, WCVE

Black lawmakers in Virginia’s General Assembly are calling for strengthened oversight of police in the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd. They say Floyd’s death struck a nerve, but may have also created an opening for overdue changes. That includes instituting civilian review boards — panels with ordinary people who can look into reports of misconduct.


Republican Party of Virginia Calls for resignation of Delegate Lee Carter, claims he abused power

By GIANNA JIRAK, Potomac Local (Subscription Required)

The Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) has called for the immediate resignation of Delegate Lee Carter (D-Manassas, Bristow) for ‘abusing his power as an elected official in Virginia to bully and intimidate law enforcement officers and threaten to cut police budgets.’


Despite Northam’s public health credentials, some Virginians question his leadership during pandemic

By GREGORY S. SCHNEIDER AND LAURA VOZZELLA, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

The nation's only physician-governor was in a jam. Before he could announce that he was ordering Virginians to wear face coverings in public buildings against the spread of the novel coronavirus, Ralph Northam had to explain why he was photographed greeting people in Virginia Beach over the weekend without wearing a mask.


Hospital testing sheds some light on extent of asymptomatic COVID-19 in Virginia

By KATE MASTERS, Virginia Mercury

In the weeks since Virginia’s hospitals have reopened for non-life-threatening procedures, many have implemented wider COVID-19 testing protocols to protect patients and staff from the virus. In some cases, the results have been illuminating.


After a year of fighting, a man who lost his wife in the Virginia Beach mass shooting takes a day to remember

By PETER COUTU, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

Jason Nixon stood in front of Building 2 again — his life on Sunday unrecognizable from a year ago. At the same time in 2019, stuck outside that building, he paced around for more than half an hour, worrying about his wife, Kate Nixon. She had been shot near her second-floor office and gunfire continued to hammer away.

The Full Report
54 articles, 24 publications

FROM VPAP

From VPAP Maps, Timeline of COVID-19 in Virginia

The Virginia Public Access Project

VPAP has redesigned its COVID-19 dashboard to include timeline showing tests performed and charts with statewide hospital capacity. Also includes a timeline of COVID-19 cases, a statewide map showing the number of cases per 100,000 people and an exclusive per-capita ZIP Code map. Updated each morning around 10:00 am.

EXECUTIVE BRANCH

Virginia declares state of emergency over protests

By JUSTINE COLEMAN, The Hill

Virginia declared a state of emergency on Sunday due to the protests over George Floyd’s death. Gov. Ralph Northam (D) signed an emergency declaration that allows resources like the Virginia National Guard to become available to localities addressing demonstrations across the state.


Northam to decide if Virginia is ready to relax more restrictions

By LUANNE RIFE, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 18 articles a month)

For two weeks, Virginians have gotten haircuts, dined al fresco and worshiped in church, while Gov. Ralph Northam has continued to report that the state’s COVID-19 data looks encouraging. Testing has improved. The number of daily tests hovers at his 10,000 target. The rate of positive results to the number of tests given is trending downward. Hospitals continue to report as much capacity as before the state entered Phase 1 of reopening. None are short on personal protective equipment. But the Virginia Department of Health’s website also tells other stories.

FEDERAL ELECTIONS

Federal judge denies complaint against Virginia officials over absentee voting rules

By JUSTIN MATTINGLY, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

A federal judge has denied a request from six Northern Virginia voters challenging Virginia election officials over the loosening of absentee voting restrictions. Judge Rossie D. Alston Jr. in the Eastern District of Virginia issued the ruling Friday, saying that while the voters’ complaint “may be well-founded, the court is constrained at this time from remedying these constitutional grievances.”

STATE GOVERNMENT

Annual report shows Va. homicides, hate crimes increased in 2019

By MICHELLE BASCH, WTOP

Homicides and reported hate crimes increased in Virginia last year. That’s according to a comprehensive annual report released by the Virginia State Police that details crime in counties, cities and towns all around the Commonwealth. Homicides were up 9.5% in Virginia last year, even though violent crime overall increased only slightly at 2.4%.

ECONOMY/BUSINESS

Food City Distribution Center works to keep up with orders

By JOE TENNIS, Bristol Herald Courier (Metered Paywall - 15 articles a month)

Aaron Haywood takes off on the mid-morning rush hour for Food City. He’s a product selector, driving a forklift inside the dry warehouse of the K-VA-T Food Stores Food City Distribution Center on the north end of Abingdon. With a headset giving him cues, Haywood fields orders for cases of canned goods, paper products and household cleaners.

TRANSPORTATION

Washington region’s airports are reeling

By LORI ARATANI, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

The presentation to the board that runs Dulles International and Reagan National airports was a grim summary of an average travel day in May vs. a year ago: Takeoffs and landings down 75 percent. Concessions sales down 90 percent. Passengers screened by the TSA down 95 percent. Parking revenue down 97 percent. The list went on, each figure another sobering reminder of the economic impact the coronavirus pandemic has had on the nation’s airports.

HIGHER EDUCATION

'A significant hit': Small colleges in Virginia rely on close-knit community to weather COVID-19

By JUSTIN MATTINGLY, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

As colleges across Virginia face the economic impact of COVID-19, giving refunds to students and losing the revenue normally associated with a full campus, one class of institutions is especially facing the brunt of the pandemic: private, liberal arts schools.


Virginia Tech takes step toward tuition freeze; furloughs and pay cuts remain possible

By HENRI GENDREAU, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 18 articles a month)

Virginia Tech President Tim Sands could soon have the power to impose furloughs or pay cuts of up to 20% if the university deems such actions are needed amid the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the objection of faculty, a finance committee of the school’s board of visitors unanimously adopted a resolution Friday giving such authority to the president through June 2021. The full board is scheduled to vote Tuesday.

CORONAVIRUS

Death counts jump as state adds 'probable' COVID-19 deaths

By MICHAEL MARTZ, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

A sudden surge in deaths from COVID-19 in Virginia this week wasn’t what it seemed. Coronavirus deaths have jumped by 187 statewide since Sunday, with the biggest increase on Thursday, when fatalities rose by 57. Virginia’s deaths were 1,358 as of Friday. Health officials say the numbers rose as the state added to the count deaths probably caused by COVID-19.


What It Looks Like As D.C. And Northern Virginia Begin To Reopen

By RACHEL KURZIUS, DANIELLA CHESLOW, MIKAELA LEFRAK AND ELLIOT C. WILLIAMS, DCist

Since March, Aba Kwawu says she has been deeply tempted by the prospect of “risking it all to get an underground haircut” during the stay-at-home order. And on Friday, the day D.C. and Northern Virginia start a phased reopening, she can score an above-board appointment. “Now, we actually can do those things, and here I am, frozen,” she says. “I’m of two minds.”


McGuire VA workers worry their health isn't taken as seriously as patients'

By JOHN RAMSEY, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

The man working in the prosthetics lab at McGuire VA Medical Center was sweating, struggling, coughing. He pulled the mask from his face to catch his breath, and the coughing continued, said another worker who witnessed it on May 20. Nearly a week later, an email from the chief of prosthetics would confirm that an employee had tested positive for COVID-19.


Down by 69 workers during COVID-19 crisis, Canterbury showed way on testing, staffing

By MICHAEL MARTZ RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

Canterbury Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center already had a staffing crisis before Henrico County public health officials tested every resident and employee in the skilled nursing facility for COVID-19 at the end of March. Staffing agencies pulled temporary nurses from the center after the facility’s first positive coronavirus case became public on March 18, Canterbury officials said.


Monogram Snacks in Henry County shuts down and tests all 642 employees in one day

By BILL WYATT, Martinsville Bulletin (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Monogram Snacks set a record Friday. Henry County’s second-largest employer tested every one of its employees for COVID-19, immediately sent everyone home and then shut down the plant for three days as a series of deep-cleaning initiatives began.


Richmond-area residents mask up, with some grumbling, as statewide mask rule takes effect

By C. SUAREZ ROJAS, JESS NOCERA, JOHN REID BLACKWELL AND HOLLY PRESTIDGE, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

A state mandate that launched Friday requiring people to wear masks in shops and restaurants drew mixed reactions across the Richmond region, with some business owners expressing concerns about having to police their customers.


We counted shoppers at stores in Fredericksburg. Here's how many were wearing masks.

By STAFF REPORT, Free Lance-Star (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Judy Mayfield and two of her friends decided to drive into downtown Fredericksburg Friday afternoon after exploring the gardens at historic Chatham Manor just across the Rappahannock River. They were wearing masks when they stopped first at Hyperion Espresso on William Street to get something to drink, and then as they strolled Caroline Street to get some exercise and do a little retail therapy.


Group protests outside Lynchburg restaurant for its support of Jerry Falwell’s mask tweet

WSLS

A group of protesters showed up to a Lynchburg restaurant on Sunday. This protest wasn’t related to the recent ones across the country regarding the police treatment of African Americans, but a tweet made by the restaurant. . . . The restaurant supported Falwell’s tweet using the blackface photo from Northam’s medical school yearbook on a face covering, asking if it could have them for its employees.


Thousands of June Evictions Will Flood Courts

By YASMINE JUMAA, WCVE

As of Friday, Richmond’s General District Court has nearly 1200 evictions scheduled for the month of June. Although the city has an eviction diversion program meant to help people stay in their homes, housing advocates say COVID-19 will limit its reach. Attorneys with the Greater Richmond Bar Foundation volunteer as mediators with the eviction diversion program. They work with both landlords and tenants to help them establish payment plans to get caught up on rent.


“Signs of the Times.” The Library of Virginia wants the public to help it document COVID-related signage

By DENISE M. WATSON, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

A huge sign draped in front of a Richmond bar reads: “I assure you we’re sort of open! Some days.” Another in Colonial Williamsburg has George Washington wearing a face mask. The message board outside of the Hampton Coliseum flashes: “This is just an intermission.” These are signs of COVID-19 times and the Library of Virginia wants them.


A Virginia Church Pivots to Drive-In

By ANNALISE PASZTOR, The Atlantic

On Sunday morning in Sandy Level, Virginia, about an hour southeast of Roanoke, upbeat gospel music blares from speakers as cars pull past the sign that advertises the drive-in church. Churchgoers tune into 87.9 FM and honk their horns in greeting. This isn’t a usual weekend, but Sandy Level Baptist Church is no stranger to unconventional forms of worship.


Singing in Worship During Pandemic a Health Concern

By JEFF BOSSERT, WVTF

As places of worship begin to reopen in the Commonwealth, a Virginia Tech professor says social distancing may not be enough for those wanting to sing with their congregation. A number of churches, temples and synagogues in Virginia have reopened their doors, but are operating at 50% capacity and cleaning the sanctuary between services.


An Acclaimed Blues Musician is Serenading Ballston Every Friday Night

ArlNow

He’s performed at the Kennedy Center, at the Columbia Pike Blues Festival, and overseas for the troops. And now — in lieu of his usual concerts and club gigs — Chester Chandler, better known as Memphis Gold, is performing from his apartment balcony in Ballston every Friday night from 8-9 p.m.


Virus adds new concerns to cities as hurricane season begins

By BEN FINLEY, Associated Press

As hurricane season begins and the pandemic continues, Virginia’s largest city is facing the prospect of having fewer resources to respond to a major storm. Plummeting tax revenues are raising questions in Virginia Beach about how much funding would be available. Money would be needed for everything from running generators at pump stations to approving contracts to remove downed trees.

VIRGINIA OTHER

States Warn That Virus May Doom Climate Projects

By CHRISTOPHER FLAVELLE, New York Times (Metered Paywall - 1 to 2 articles a month)

Connecticut is preparing to build a first-of-its-kind underground flood wall. Virginia has planned an intricate system of berms, pump stations and raised roads to keep the flood-prone city of Norfolk dry. Louisiana has broken ground on a new community for people forced to flee a village on its sinking coast, the country’s first government-resettled climate migrants. Projects in 13 cities and states, which were part of the Obama administration’s push to protect Americans from climate change after the devastation from Hurricane Sandy, are now in jeopardy because of the coronavirus pandemic, state and local officials warn. And they need Republicans in Congress to save those projects.


Approximately 2 dozen demonstrators detained after 9 p.m. Sunday night in Richmond

By JUSTIN MATTINGLY, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

A third night of protesting in Richmond – and the first with a state-ordered curfew – unfolded without the destruction that took place previously, but police arrested dozens for staying out past 8 p.m. Roughly two dozen people had been detained by police as of 9:45 p.m., with others not yet reported as police and the National Guard, activated by Gov. Ralph Northam earlier in the day, swept downtown streets.


Richmond Curfew Extended, Virginia Declares State of Emergency

WCVE

In response to incident between VPM's reporting staff and police officers, VPM's CEO Jayme Swain released the following statement. "We are aware that two of our journalists were involved in a confrontation with law enforcement officers while covering Sunday night’s protests in downtown Richmond. After identifying themselves as members of the press, they and several journalists from other outlets were pepper sprayed, and our reporter was pushed to the ground. . . . "


'What is the world coming to?' Broad Street business owners, residents clean up damage from protests.

By JESS NOCERA, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

Early Sunday, Abbas Jahangiri got a call from ADT telling him that the glass at his restaurant near the Virginia Commonwealth University campus had been broken. He immediately made his way downtown, discovering once he got there that protesters had vandalized his shop, where he has sold sandwiches since 2003. Cash in the store was gone. So were some drinks and food.


Big crowd turns out in Leesburg for peaceful demonstration, protest

By JOHN BATTISTON, Loudoun Times

The streets and sidewalks of historic downtown Leesburg were clogged Sunday afternoon with more than 1,500 people exercising their right to peacefully protest in honor of George Floyd, a black man who died at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer earlier this week. Protesters of all ages and nationalities wrapped around the block comprising King, Loudoun, Wirt and Market streets beginning at roughly 3 p.m. Most wore personal face masks — in keeping with Gov. Ralph Northam’s (D) recommendations for “Phase 1” reopening in northern Virginia — and many carried signs.


Demonstrators gather across Hampton Roads for 3rd day of protesting following George Floyd’s death

By JOSH REYES, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

Phillip Hawkins Jr. hoped the energy he saw Sunday in downtown Norfolk continues into the future. “We have to organize,” he said near the Martin Luther King Memorial. “We have to do this right to make systemic change so we’re not here again.” Sunday marked the third day of protests and rallies in Hampton Roads in response to the death of George Floyd, who pleaded for help as a police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes.


Virginia Beach police deploy tear gas during protest at Oceanfront

By PETER COUTU, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

After a weekend of peaceful protests throughout Hampton Roads, tension escalated at the Oceanfront in Virginia Beach Sunday night as hundreds marched following the death of George Floyd, a black man who pleaded for help as a police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes in Minneapolis last week. Police lined Atlantic Avenue in riot gear and appeared to deploy tear gas. Several Oceanfront businesses were damaged, according to social media posts.


Portsmouth protesters demand police department changes in response to George Floyd’s death

By JOSH REYES, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

Demonstrators marched through Portsmouth and onto Interstate 264 Saturday night as they chanted, “I can’t breathe” and “No justice, no peace,” joining similar efforts across the country in the wake of the death of George Floyd. Floyd, a black and unarmed man, died after a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck for close to nine minutes.


Peaceful rallies in Fredericksburg region give way to confrontation, arrests

By JAMES SCOTT BARON, Free Lance-Star (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

Text missing


Black Lives Matter protest draws “all walks of life”

By DON DEL ROSSO, Fauquier Now

More than 200 people Sunday afternoon attended a Black Lives Matter demonstration outside of the old courthouse in downtown Warrenton. “We just wanted to bring peace and awareness to recent events,” most immediately the brutal May 25 killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, said Arleena Allen of Warrenton who organized the gathering through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Protesters in some cities target Confederate monuments

By SARAH RANKIN, Associated Press

Protesters demonstrating against the death of George Floyd, a black man who pleaded for air as a white police officer pressed his knee on his neck, targeted Confederate monuments in multiple cities. As tense protests swelled across the country Saturday into Sunday morning, monuments in Virginia, the Carolinas, Tennessee and Mississippi were defaced.

LOCAL

Police Chief: ACPD Committed to Training, Accountability

ArlNow

In the wake of the death of George Floyd at the hands of four since-fired Minneapolis police officers, and the fiery protests that have followed, Arlington’s police chief has released a letter to the community. The letter seeks to reassure residents that Arlington police are well-trained, use force judiciously, and are thoroughly investigated when they do.


A year later, Virginia Beach is still healing from mass shooting

By PETER COUTU AND ALISSA SKELTON, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

Bullets flew into Bob Montague’s office a year ago. He was so immersed in his work he didn’t realize what was happening at first, he said. It took a chunk of drywall hitting Virginia Beach’s Public Utilities director for it to click. Sitting there, he could only wait and see if the gunman opened his door and took aim.


A year later, motive of Virginia mass shooting still unclear

By BEN FINLEY, Associated Press

The rampage at a Virginia Beach city government building was the latest in a string of high-profile mass shootings nationwide, between the high school killings in Parkland, Florida, and the Walmart massacre in El Paso, Texas. As the tragedy nears its one-year anniversary Sunday, some victims’ family members feel it has effectively been forgotten after the national spotlight moved on to other mass killings, and more recently has been all but eclipsed by the coronavirus pandemic.


It’s been a year since the Virginia Beach mass shooting. But the pandemic has overwhelmed us.

By JOANNE KIMBERLIN, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

On the nation’s list of deadliest mass shootings, 22 communities have suffered at least as many deaths as Virginia Beach. But on Sunday, May 31, we become the first on that terrible roll to reach a one-year benchmark during the pandemic — a new crisis to dominate our thoughts and fears.


Rouse ends campaign to be Virginia Beach mayor

By JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE, Princess Anne Independent News

City Councilmember Aaron Rouse is ending his campaign for mayor of Virginia Beach. Rouse today made the announcement in a social media statement that initially caused some confusion about whether he was dropping out. The Independent News this afternoon confirmed with the campaign that Rouse is leaving the race.


Virginia Beach church congregants set sail to worship the gospel on the water

By JULIO AVILA, WTKR

Church worshipers set sail Sunday morning with a new kind of church -- The Boat Church. There were no pews or altars, just sand, boats and water. The sun shone on Sunday over the inlet connecting Broad Bay and Linkhorn Bay at First Landing State Park. Over a dozen boats gathered on the inlet, while others who preferred to stay on land lined up along the sand at the boat launch off 64th Street.


Local courts to resume operations next week with attendance limits, other precautions

By TYLER HAMMEL, Daily Progress (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

As Virginia’s judicial emergency order nears expiration, local courts will resume some operations next week, albeit with limits to the number of people allowed in a courtroom. In May, the Supreme Court of Virginia extended its judicial emergency through June 7, continuing all civil and non-emergency criminal hearings beyond that date. Jury trials have been extended “until further notice,” with no date given.


Virus dinged Christiansburg revenues, but not as much as feared

By TONIA MOXLEY, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 18 articles a month)

Christiansburg tax revenues took a hit in March with the economic shutdown due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, but it wasn’t as bad as expected. Finance Director Valerie Tweedie told town council at its Tuesday meeting that she had projected up to 50% losses in lodging and meals tax revenues for March.


Name from hat decides election in Scottsburg

By MIRANDA BAINES, Gazette Virginian

In a town with only 82 registered voters, town residents may think that landing a spot on the town council would be simple. But the May 19 town council election in the town of Scottsburg turned out to be more complicated than expected.

 

EDITORIALS

Defining what’s essential during pandemic

Free Lance-Star Editorial (Metered Paywall - 10 articles a month)

In trying to combat a new, contagious and deadly strain of coronavirus from China, governors across the nation have had to make some quick decisions that severely curtailed Americans’ freedom to work, gather, move about and attend religious services. Gov. Ralph Northam was no exception. But some of his hastily-made decisions are now under scrutiny.


Veterans at risk due to virus upheaval

Virginian-Pilot Editorial (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

The coronavirus pandemic has sent most of us reeling. All of a sudden, it seemed, “normal life” disappeared. People are out of work, stuck at home with few places to go, fearful of getting infected. Bills mount. Parents find themselves adding on the role of teacher. Grocery shelves have gaping bare spots, week after week. The news is always grim.


Violence is not the answer

Richmond Times-Dispatch Editorial (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

The rioting, looting and violence that ravaged downtown Richmond this weekend isn’t the solution to anger over the death of George Floyd, the African American who died in police custody in Minneapolis last Monday.


One year since shooting, we remember

Virginian-Pilot Editorial (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

In times of tragedy — when we need to heal — we find strength in one another. A shoulder to cry on, a squeeze of the hand, a knowing look — all of these give us comfort and reassurance that we are not alone. That’s what we need more than anything as we today mark one year since the shooting at the Virginia Beach Municipal Center.


Prince William County is finally getting a public defender’s office

Washington Post Editorial (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

“If you could change anything about the criminal justice system, if you had a magic wand, where would you start?” Community organizers in Prince William County posed that question to hundreds of prison inmates, ex-offenders and their families. Most said the same thing: They would start with legal representation.

COLUMNISTS

Casey: Roanoke church's sign links Virginia's governor to the Antichrist

By DAN CASEY, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 18 articles a month)

Perhaps you’ve recently noticed in the news or on social media some self-styled mask rebels who have refused to don pandemic-related face coverings in public. Some of them are COVID-19 shutdown protesters. A few are politicians. Usually such people portray themselves as proud patriots, standing up for freedom and liberty. As in, nobody’s going to herd them like sheep into wearing a sissy mask, all because of some silly panic and societal overreaction.

OP-ED

Burraway: The perils of time: endless waiting in the age of COVID-19

By JOSHUA BURRAWAY, published in Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

In the age of COVID-19, our innate need to be close to one another has been turned against us. Rules on social distancing, the unmet need for personal protective equipment (PPE), urban population density, the closure of businesses, the collapse of the travel industry — all these things speak to the perils of space.

Burraway is a research fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia.


Kapadia: Every second counts

By SHAIVAL KAPADIA, published in Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 25 articles a month)

During my 24 years practicing cardiology in Richmond, infection safety, while always a top priority for hospitals, has been a challenging metric. But now, by building on practices we began implementing several years ago, seismic shifts in hospital infection safety practices have taken place post-COVID-19.

Shaival Kapadia, M.D., is a cardiologist at Bon Secours St. Francis Medical Center and a member of the Richmond Academy of Medicine.


Morse: Southwest Virginia remains a region in need

By GORDON C. MORSE, published in Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, from his home in Richmond last week, conducted a series of on-line discussions on COVID-19, including a session with the organization Feeding Southwest Virginia. Feeding Southwest Virginia. Think about that. It’s not exactly what you want to see in print. How bad will this get? Of course, in Southwest Virginia, the situation wasn’t good prior to the pandemic. It has been seriously un-good for a long time.

After writing editorials for The Daily Press and The Virginian-Pilot in the 1980s, Gordon C. Morse wrote speeches for Gov. Gerald L. Baliles, then spent nearly three decades working on behalf of corporate and philanthropic organizations.


Hare, Andrews and Hackler: Long-term care workers fighting to save lives

By KEITH HARE, MELISSA ANDREWS AND JUDY HACKLER, published in Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

Heroes work here. The signs have been popping up all over communities across Virginia. Where is “here?” It’s Virginia’s long-term care facilities — our nursing homes and assisted living facilities — that are staffed by unsung heroes who care for tens of thousands of Virginia’s seniors.

Hare is president and CEO of the Virginia Health Care Association-Virginia Center for Assisted Living. Andrews is president and CEO of LeadingAge Virginia. Hackler is executive director of the Virginia Assisted Living Association.


Gavin: Virginia must look out for its refugees during the coronavirus crisis

By HANNAH GAVIN, published in Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

The novel coronavirus crisis disproportionately affects already vulnerable populations — and Virginia’s refugees are no exception. Refugees experience higher rates of trauma than the rest of the U.S. population related to their journeys escaping violence and persecution and having to start anew in a different country.

Hannah Gavin recently finished her master’s degree in public policy at the University of Virginia.