Virus Outbreak France

Laboratory technician Emmanuelle Zelmat prepares the machine to process the coronavirus analysis in a French medical biology laboratory, in Lisses, south of Paris, Saturday, March 21, 2020. For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms. For some it can cause more severe illness.

Delaware officials continued Tuesday to make adjustments to the resources available to the response of the novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. 

Delaware 211, a service that connects residents to things like employment, job training, financial and public assistance, social services, mental health counseling, emergency housing, and food and transportation, is expanding its hours of operation. 

The service will now be available seven days a week, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the weekends. Those who may need assistance should call 211 or 1,800.560.3372, or visit Delaware211.org

Additionally, along with Nemours and the Governor Bacon Health Center, DEMA officials announced Kent and Sussex counties would receive an additional alternate care site to accommodate overflow patients during the anticipated pandemic surge. 

It will be a mobile field hospital site able to handle 50 to 60 patients who are not positive for COVID-19, created by county and state officials collaborating with Bayhealth, Nanticoke, and Beebe health care systems. The location will be based on where a surge is located on hospital grounds, the Delaware Emergency Management Agency said after talking with health care professionals from all the hospitals, they decided to move away from a sole plan for a facility at Milford Memorial Hospital.

"We want them to tell us where it's going to be most impactful, where they have those nurses, doctors, and that staff to help it, and then we're going to support it with the National Guard, Medical Reserve Corps, or however else we have to lean on our partners to do so," said A.J. Schall, director of DEMA.

Officials said the site was previously used during a 2016 Delaware National Guard exercise. 

"Having something that has the services right across the street is a lot better than right down the road, so we have that function available. We're ready to deploy it," Schall said.