The Alameda County Public Health Department sends out Health Alerts, Advisories, and Updates regarding communicable disease outbreaks, immunization updates, and other public health concerns to Alameda County clinicians and other partners. See recent releases below.

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Health Care Provider AC Alert Registration Form: Health Updates, Advisories, and Alerts, as well as other pertinent information, are sent out to healthcare providers and other relevant contacts in Alameda County through a Public Health-specific subscription in AC Alert. Healthcare providers can register to receive these communications.

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Health Alerts

ALERT conveys the highest level of importance; warrants immediate action or attention.
ADVISORY provides important information for a specific incident or situation; may not require immediate action.
UPDATE provides updated information regarding an incident or situation; unlikely to require immediate action.

May 20, 2020

Advisory

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) Associated with Coronavirus Disease 2019

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) associated with COVID-19 is now reportable to Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD). Report cases meeting CDC’s case definition for Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) within 24 hours to the Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) at (510) 267-3250, Mon-Fri 8:30 am to 5 pm. After hours and on weekends, call Alameda County Fire Dispatch at (925) 422- 7595 and ask to speak to the Public Health Duty Officer on call. Laboratory results must be reported by Electronic Laboratory Reporting (ELR), fax or secure email within 24 hours.  Please make sure to report as completely as possible, including race and ethnicity information.

May 13, 2020

Advisory

Resumption of Non-Urgent Health Care Services in Alameda County

As Alameda County continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, providers and facilities are encouraged to gradually resume full scope of services when possible and safe to do so, based on California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) guidance.

May 12, 2020

Advisory

Updated COVID-19 Testing Guidance for Alameda County

The following updated guidance for COVID-19 laboratory testing is intended to inform Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) efforts to control the epidemic and aid decision-making by clinicians and other testing providers. The guidance sets out groups that should be prioritized for testing but it is not a requirement to test in these groups. Testing decisions and policies must be flexible to account for ongoing limitations in testing resources and protective equipment. Clinical judgment should be used to guide testing of symptomatic persons. ACPHD typically issues additional testing guidance for certain settings and situations, including outbreaks.

April 08, 2020

Advisory

New COVID-19 Healthcare Provider Reporting Requirements for Alameda County

As of April 7, 2020, a total of 602 COVID-19 cases and 15 deaths have been reported among Alameda County residents, excluding the City of Berkeley. Although the Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) continues to conduct individual COVID-19 case and contact investigations, we are prioritizing public health resources towards investigations in settings (e.g., long-term care facilities) or among persons (e.g., healthcare providers or first responders) where there is concern for ongoing transmission.

To ensure that ACPHD prioritizes resources for public health investigations, effective April 8, 2020 we have modified our County’s COVID-19 reporting requirements for healthcare providers as summarized in tjhis Health Advisory.

For more information on testing specifics, please see the full ACPHD Health Advisory:

April 03, 2020

Advisory

Health Care Providers to Disseminate ACPHD Isolation and Quarantine Orders to Patients with Suspected COVID-19

The Alameda County Health Officer issued blanket isolation orders that will apply to all persons diagnosed with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and blanket quarantine orders that will apply to close contacts of cases.  Effective 4/3/20, Alameda County Public Health Department directs Alameda County health care partners to disseminate blanket orders to all patients being tested for COVID-19 or who are presumptively diagnosed with COVID-19 without testing BEFORE they leave the health care facility.

Alameda County healthcare providers should use the procedure described in the Update to request COVID-19 testing by our Public Health Lab (ACPHL). Please limit testing requests by phone to the hours 9am-5pm, 7 days per week.

For more information on testing specifics, please see the full ACPHD Health Advisory:

March 06, 2020

Update

COVID-19 Testing Changes

Alameda County healthcare providers should direct COVID-19 testing to commercial laboratories and other non-public health laboratories now offering COVID-19 testing. Providers may determine which patients are suspect COVID-19 cases using clinical judgement but should alert Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) regarding the priority cases listed below. ACPHD approval is no longer needed for testing.

Alameda County healthcare providers should use the procedure described in the Update to request COVID-19 testing by our Public Health Lab (ACPHL). Please limit testing requests by phone to the hours 9am-5pm, 7 days per week.

For more information on testing specifics, please see the full ACPHD Health Update:

March 06, 2020

Advisory

COVID-19 Testing Recommended for Symptomatic Persons Who Were Aboard the Grand Princess Cruise

Cases of COVID-19 have been detected among persons on the Grand Princess Cruise that departed San Francisco February 11 and returned on February 21.

The Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) is advising County residents who were aboard the Grand Princess Cruise who have been symptomatic with fever, new cough or difficulty breathing since the cruise to be tested for COVID-19 by their healthcare provider. Testing is recommended even if symptoms resolved. Commercial testing is now available for COVID-19 without ACPHD approval. General updated COVID-19 testing guidance will be posted shortly.

For more information, including Actions Requested of Clinicians, please see the full ACPHD Health Advisory:

March 03, 2020

Update

COVID-19 Update and Interim Guidance

presumptive case of COVID-19 was detected in an Alameda County resident who had contact to a case in another jurisdiction. The Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) is taking appropriate action. Cases of COVID-19 without travel history or links to known cases have been reported in our region and across the United States. These cases of COVID-19 in the Bay Area indicate local community transmission, and warrant public health and healthcare providers in Alameda County to continue preparing for increasing numbers of identified cases and a surge of patients.

On February 27, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated guidance for evaluating persons under investigation (PUI) for COVID-19. For more information, please see the full ACPHD Health Update:

February 19, 2020

Update

Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

The disease caused by the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) has now been officially named COVID-19 by the World Health Organization. No COVID-19 cases have been identified in Alameda County.

On February 12, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated guidance for evaluating possible persons under investigation (PUI) for 2019-nCoV in the following categories:

• Severely ill patients for whom a known source of exposure has not been identified
• Persons with fever and lower respiratory tract symptoms and travel to China within 14 days that are being regularly monitored by local health departments or referred for evaluation from border screening

For more information, please see the full ACPHD Health Update:

February 05, 2020

Update

Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)

The emerging 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is now circulating in mainland China and cases have been reported in the United States and other countries. On January 31st, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated criteria for persons under investigation (PUI) for 2019-nCoV and the U.S. government declared a Public Health Emergency. The declaration included restrictions for travelers entering the country from China, effective February 3.

For more information, please see the full ACPHD Health Update:

January 22, 2020

Alert

Novel Corona Virus 2019 – Wuhan Pneumonia Outbreak

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a health update on January 17, 2020 about the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCov). This CDC HAN Update provides a situational update and guidance that supersedes the January 8, 2020 HAN. It adds guidance for evaluation of patients under investigation (PUI) for 2019-nCoV, prevention and infection control guidance, including the addition of a recommendation for eye protection, and additional information on specimen collection and testing.

The first confirmed case of 2019-nCoV in the United States is a healthy male in his 30s in Washington State, who arrived at Seattle-Tacoma Airport on January 15, 2020 after traveling to Wuhan.

Local suspect cases should be reported immediately by phone to Public Health. Resources for providers, including travel alert posters and a checklist for clinicians managing patients who may have 2019-nCoV, are available online from the CDC.

Reporting

Alameda County Acute Communicable Disease Control:

  • Weekdays 8:30am–5pm Phone: (510) 267-3250
  • After hours Phone: (925) 422-7595 and ask for the public health duty officer on call.

Berkeley Public Health Division:

  • Weekdays 8am-5pm Phone: (510) 981-5292
  • After hours: Phone: (510) 981-5911 and ask for the Health Officer on call.

For more information, please see the full CDC Heatlh Update and Alameda County Guidance Checklist:

January 03, 2020

Advisory

Fentanyl Overdose

The increased availability of illicitly-produced fentanyl, fentanyl-compounds, and fake pills is an emerging and ongoing threat to public health and safety. In 2019, 51 opioid-related deaths were reported in Alameda County from January 1, 2019 to December 16, 2019.

Many fentanyl overdoses occur among persons who may be aware that they are using fentanyl or a related substance. However, there have been recent anecdotal reports in Alameda County of an increasing number of suspected fentanyl overdoses among persons without a history of opioid use, such as cocaine and methamphetamine users. Many persons who choose to use stimulants are unaware of the emergence of fentanyl laced compound drugs in the overall Bay Area drug supply, and the powerful potency of fentanyl. In addition, many opioid pills, which are made to look like real prescription medications, are now made by counterfeiting organizations and may contain fentanyl.

Death from fentanyl toxicity can be more rapid than from other opioids, and overdoses may require more naloxone for reversal than other opioids – prompt peer response is essential. In addition, there are concerns regarding the increase in synthetic opioid and fentanyl derivatives that may be longer-acting, and may not be detected in routine urine toxicology screens. This alert provides awareness and actions for all health care providers in Alameda County to take when presented with a suspected or confirmed opioid overdose case at their facility.

Please see the full Health Advisory for more information, including actions requested of clinicians.

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