COVID-19 Updates

From Our School District Nurse

GUIDELINES/PROCEDURES

Updated COVID-19 Guidelines

Updated March 12, 2022

Effective March 12th, the WA DOH has released new guidance for schools. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Masks are no longer required for students and staff, except when in the health room with a symptomatic student.
  • We will continue to send out notification letters if we learn of a positive case that was contagious to others while at a school sponsored activity.
  • ‘Test to Stay’ will be offered to anyone who is considered a close contact and is not vaccinated or was exposed in a high risk environment (such as an indoor sports practice or singing event).
  • Students and staff who test positive for COVID-19 are required to isolate for a full 5 days at home. If symptoms are dramatically improved and there is no fever for 24 hours, they may return to school on Day 6 with a negative test result, or by continuing to wear a well-fitting mask from days 6-10. If these criteria can not be met, they will isolate at home until a negative test or day 10 of isolation is completed.
  • All students and staff will have the choice to wear a mask at school with the expectation that others’ choices will be respected.

What does the WA DOH suggest we do to help keep transmission rates low?

  • Anyone with any symptoms of illness should stay home and be advised to test for COVID-19.
  • Encourage frequent hand washing and hand gel use at school, home, and in public places.
  • Clean/disinfect high touch surfaces daily.
  • Increase time spent outdoors.
  • Improve airflow and filtration of indoor spaces.
  • If eligible, get vaccinated and boosted for COVID-19.

Free, rapid COVID-19 Testing remains available on school mornings for students and staff at the District Office.
Call the COVID Liaison at (509) 724-0151 or your school’s front desk can notify the COVID Liaison that you would like a test.

If you have any questions, concerns, or need further assistance, please contact MVSD COVID-19 Liaison, Annelisa Tornberg or MVSD School Nurse, Adriana Vanbianchi.

 


MVSD COVID Procedures

 

TEST TO STAY

Updated January 18, 2022

What if me, or a family member has tested positive for COVID-19?

If you have COVID, please help us by notifying your close contacts. View/download Testing Information for Close Contacts.

What if me, or a family member is a Close Contact of someone with COVID?

If you are an unvaccinated Student of Staff member of the school, you may continue to go to work/school under the ‘Test to Stay’ quarantine program. View/download MVSD ‘Test to Stay’ program information.

If you are a fully vaccinated (including booster) Student or Staff member of the school, you may continue to go to schoolwork as long as you remain symptom-free. If symptoms develop, please get tested at MVSD.

 
Other COVID-19 Concerns?
Contact the WA State COVID-19 Information Hotline: (800) 525-0127, then press #. (Language assistance available.) Monday, 6 a.m. – 10 p.m. and Tuesday – Sunday, observed state holidays, 6 a.m. – 6 p.m.

 

TESTING/VACCINES

Updated March 12, 2022

Order FREE COVID-19 At-Home Testing Kits

NOTE: Washington residents may order COVID-19 testing kits from both programs.

United States Postal Service Program
Residential households in the U.S. are eligible for TWO orders of 4 free at-home tests on USPS.com. Here’s what you need to know about your order:

  • Limit of 2 orders per residential address.
  • Each order includes 4 individual rapid antigen COVID-19 tests.
  • Orders will ship free as tests are received from manufacturers.

Orders will usually ship in 7-12 days via USPS. Order yours today!
 

Say Yes! Covid Test – WA State Department of Health Program
This program is a cooperative effort between the State of Washington, the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Rapid COVID-19 test kits are delivered directly to your home by Amazon.

  • Limit of TWO orders per household/residential address PER MONTH.
  • Each order includes 5 individual rapid antigen COVID-19 tests.
  • Orders will ship free as tests are received from manufacturers.

To order testing kits (English/Spanish) visit Say Yes! COVID Test. For more information about testing (English/Spanish) visit WA DOH or call 1-833-784-2588.

 


Methow Valley School District (Staff & Students Only)

A Consent Form is required for all students unaccompanied by a parent or guardian.

Online Consent Form for Rapid COVID-19 Testing → Download Consent Form for Rapid COVID-19 Testing →

Free, rapid COVID-19 Testing remains available on school mornings for students and staff at the District Office.
Call the COVID Liaison at (509) 724-0151 or your school’s front desk can notify the COVID Liaison that you would like a test.

Liberty Bell Athletes

WA DOH • Update to Testing Requirements for High Contact Sports – January 26th, 2022
In support of our goal to support in-person learning and in order to maximize constrained COVID testing supplies for symptomatic students and staff, as well as close contacts participating in Test-to-Stay or returning from quarantine, DOH is changing the testing frequency for high-contact sports (at our school basketball and wrestling) and cheer. 

Schools/districts will now be required to:

  • Test high contact sport athletes the day of competition only and exclude those who test positive. Testing of asymptomatic athletes three times a week is no longer required. By way of reminder, a student athlete does not need to test if they have tested positive and recovered from COVID in the last 90 days.
  • Ensure universal masking of all athletes during all practices/training for these high-risk sports. Coaches, trainers and staff will not be required to be tested but MUST wear masks in all practices/training AND competitions.

If you have concerns, please contact Annelisa Tornberg, COVID Liaison.


Local COVID-19 Testing & Vaccines

This information changes regularly, so please confirm with organization before arriving for testing or vaccination.

Aero Methow Rescue Service • (509) 997-4013
TAKE HOME ANTIGEN TEST KITS ONLY (No travel testing.)
When: Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Where: Pick up kits at the office.
Cost: Free

Confluence Clinic, Winthrop • (509) 996-8180
TESTING
When: Monday – Friday, 8:15 a.m. and 12 p.m. by appointment only.
Cost: Free for some insurance plans.
Call ahead? Yes, call (509)-663-8711 option 1 to order your COVID-19 test. PCR and Rapid Antigen Tests are available.

VACCINES
Covid-19: Pfizer for adults. Monday – Friday, 9:30 a.m. by appointment only.
Flu: Flu vaccine available by appointment
Other: As always, all routine childhood immunizations available by appointment.

Family Health Center, Twisp • (509) 997-2011
TESTING
When: Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. by appointment.
Cost: Free for some insurance plans.
Call ahead? Yes, call (509) 997-2011 to order your COVID-19 test. PCR and Rapid Antigen Tests are available.

VACCINES
Covid-19: Monday – Thursday by appointment only.
Vaccine Schedule: Moderna is available Mondays & Wednesdays • Pfizer is available Tuesdays for children and Thursdays for adults.

Ulrich’s, Twisp • (509) 997-2191
TESTING
For sale over the counter when available.

VACCINES
Covid-19: Moderna, make an appointment through healthmartcovidvaccine.com
Flu: Flu shots available until June no appointment needed.

Cost: Free for some insurance plans.
Call ahead? Yes, call (509)-663-8711 option 1 to order your COVID-19 test. PCR and Rapid Antigen Tests are available.

For Other Days & Times

TESTING
View a complete list of testing sites throughout Okanogan County.
Okanogan COVID-19 Testing

VACCINES
Okanogan County Vaccine Clinics

For Questions About Local Testing or Other COVID-19 Concerns

 

QUARANTINE

Q: What’s the difference between quarantine and isolation?

A: Quarantine is…

  • What you do if you have been exposed to COVID-19.
  • Quarantine means you stay home and away from others in case you are infected and are contagious.
  • Quarantine becomes isolation if you later test positive for COVID-19 or develop symptoms.

A: Isolation is…

  • What you do if you have COVID-19 or have tested positive.
  • Isolation means you stay home and away from others (including household members) for AT LEAST 10 DAYS to avoid spreading illness. As much as possible, stay in a specific room away from other people and use a separate bathroom if available. Limit contact with pets and other animals.
  • Do not go to work, school, or public areas. Stay home except to get medical care.

Q: How long do I need to quarantine if I’ve been exposed to COVID-19?

A: It depends…

  • Students and staff who come into close contact with someone with COVID-19 should quarantine for at least 5 days (day 0 through day 5) after their last close contact with a person who has COVID-19 if they are in one of the following groups:
    • Ages 18 or older and completed the primary series of recommended vaccine but have not received a recommended booster shot when eligible.
    • Those who have received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine (completing the primary series) over 2 months ago and have not received a recommended booster shot.
    • Those who are not vaccinated or have not completed a primary vaccine series.
  • Option of a “Test to Stay” quarantine is available to MVSD staff and students.

Q: How long do I need to isolate if I test positive for COVID-19?

A: If you are sick AND have confirmed COVID-19, you can stop your home isolation when…

  • You’ve been fever-free for at least 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication AND
  • Your symptoms have gotten better AND
  • At least 5 days have gone by since your symptoms first appeared AND you have recieved a negative antigen test through MVSD COVID testing on Day 6.

A: If you tested positive for COVID-19, but are not sick, you can stop your home isolation when…

  • At least 5 days have gone by since your symptoms first appeared AND you have recieved a negative antigen test through MVSD COVID testing on Day 6.

Q: When Am I “Fully Vaccinated”?

A: You are fully vaccinated…

  • 2 weeks after your second dose in a 2-dose series for Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or
  • 2 weeks after a single-dose J&J vaccine.
  • If it has been less than 2 weeks since your final dose, or if you still need to get your second dose, you are NOT fully protected. Keep taking all prevention measures until you are “fully vaccinated”.

Q: Does a Person’s race/ethnicity or nationality, itself, put them at greater risk of COVID-19?

A: No, however…

  • Data are revealing that communities of color are being disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. This is due to the effects of racism, and in particular, structural racism, that leaves some groups with fewer opportunities to protect themselves and their communities.
  • Stigma will not help to fight the illness.
  • Share only accurate information to keep rumors and misinformation from spreading.

 

ATHLETICS

Updated January 26, 2022

Testing Requirements for High Contact Sports • January 26th, 2022

WA DOH Update
In support of our goal to support in-person learning and in order to maximize constrained COVID testing supplies for symptomatic students and staff, as well as close contacts participating in Test-to-Stay or returning from quarantine, DOH is changing the testing frequency for high-contact sports (at our school basketball and wrestling) and cheer.

Schools/districts will now be required to:

  • Test high contact sport athletes the day of competition only and exclude those who test positive. Testing of asymptomatic athletes three times a week is no longer required. By way of reminder, a student athlete does not need to test if they have tested positive and recovered from COVID in the last 90 days.
  • Ensure universal masking of all athletes during all practices/training for these high-risk sports. Coaches, trainers and staff will not be required to be tested but MUST wear masks in all practices/training AND competitions.

If you have concerns, please contact Annelisa Tornberg, COVID Liaison.

Region 7 Athletics Update • Health Office Order • January 5, 2022

We have confirmed cases of the COVID-19 Omicron variant in north central Washington and can attribute the majority of new cases that are rapidly increasing due to this new variant. We know that Omicron spreads faster than the Delta variant, is more contagious and will likely affect more people than previous variants in a shorter period of time. After observing Omicron’s impact on other countries, regions in the United States and counties in Washington over the past month, we anticipate that the rapid rise in cases will overwhelm our healthcare system, schools, businesses, and essential services throughout our region…

Read more about the Health Office Order [pdf]

K-12 COVID-19 Requirements for the 2021-2022 School Year

(Excerpted from: K-12 COVID-19 Requirements for Summer 2021 and the 2021-2022 School Year)

K-12 sporting activities must follow the requirements listed below, regardless of any supplemental guidance referenced. In this document, universal masking means that face coverings are required for all participants, regardless of vaccination status. Physical Education (PE) classes are curricular classes and are not considered sporting activities.

Students and staff must all wear masks indoors during PE classes. Masks are not required outdoors. The use of cohorts within the team limits the potential for team-wide transmission in the event of an exposure or outbreak and should be considered for practices, warm-ups, and when traveling.

Travel trips must follow CDC’s order for all riders and drivers to wear a mask on buses or other public transportation, regardless of vaccination status. Seat cohorts together on the bus and separate the cohorts by at least 3 feet to the degree possible. Increase ventilation by opening windows as weather permits.

Athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and other support personnel should maintain at least 6 feet to the degree possible when not playing (e.g., on the bench, in the dugout, on the sideline, in 18 locker rooms and other similar situations).

Screening Testing for Sporting Activities

  • To ensure safe participation in athletics, schools must institute screening testing protocols for unvaccinated athletes, coaches, trainers, and other personnel who work with athletes in high-risk indoor sports.
  • Screening testing is required for all athletes. Testing must be conducted three times a week and within 24 hours of all competitive events. If a molecular test is performed, the athlete does not need to quarantine while awaiting screening test results; unless they are exhibiting symptoms then they must isolate.
  • Unvaccinated athletes participating in indoor low or moderate contact sports are recommended, but not required, to participate in screening testing once or twice weekly. This is especially important when community transmission is substantial or high. Please see the CDC’s matrix (Table 1) for definitions of the levels of community transmission.
  • Any athlete with a positive test must be excluded from the event and removed from the venue. See Responding to Cases or Suspected Cases of COVID-19 for more information. Positive test results must be reported to the local health jurisdiction as outlined in the Reporting Cases and Outbreaks and Working with Public Health section. Contact tracing should be performed per guidance in the What to Do if Someone is a Close Contact of Someone with COVID-19 section. The team should work with local public health to determine how to approach isolation, quarantine, and further testing.
  • Unvaccinated athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and other support personnel identified as close contacts should quarantine immediately, even if they recently had a negative test. Unvaccinated close contacts are recommended to get tested immediately and at 5-7 days post-exposure while they quarantine.
  • Fully vaccinated athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and other support personnel identified as close contacts do not need to quarantine but should be tested 3-5 days following a known exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and wear a mask for 14 days or until they receive a negative test result. They should isolate and follow appropriate guidance if they test positive.
  • If they develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19, they should isolate themselves from others, be clinically evaluated for COVID-19, and tested for SARS-CoV-2 if indicated. The symptomatic fully vaccinated person should inform their health care provider of their vaccination status at the time of presentation to care.
  • All point of care test results should be reported to the DOH in accordance with guidance available at the Reporting COVID-19 Test Results for Point-of-Care Testing Facilities site.

Mask Requirements for Sporting Activities

  • Universal masking is required by all athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and support personnel when in weight rooms, regardless of vaccination status. Weight rooms are high-risk indoor settings. They are often poorly ventilated, crowded and used by athletes from sports of multiple contact levels, as well as PE students. Practice physical distancing to the degree possible.
  • Masks are not required for athletes while practicing or competing in low-risk or moderate-risk sports indoors, regardless of vaccination status. While not required, masks are strongly encouraged when practicing indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Universal masking is required indoors at all times when not actively practicing or competing. Risk levels for individual sports are referenced in DOH’s Guidance for Sports and Fitness Activities.
  • Masks are not required for fully vaccinated athletes practicing or competing in highrisk indoor sports. Masks are not required for unvaccinated athletes practicing or competing in high-risk indoor sports when they participate in screening testing. While not required, masks are strongly encouraged when practicing indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Universal masking is required indoors at all times when not actively practicing or competing. Contact risk levels for individual sports are referenced in DOH’s Guidance for Sports and Fitness Activities. o Indoor basketball, wrestling, and water polo are high-risk sports and require screening testing of unvaccinated individuals in order to participate. Cheer is a high aerosol-generating activity and require screening testing of unvaccinated individuals in order to participate. See the section on Screening Testing for Sporting Activities below. High-risk indoor athletes who are engaging in practices off-season must either:
    • Practice universal masking at all times, regardless of vaccination status; or
    • Initiate the screening testing protocol of unvaccinated athletes to allow the removal of masks by all athletes, vaccinated and unvaccinated, while practicing. Masks must be worn at all other times when not practicing, regardless of vaccination status.
  • Masks are not required for outdoor sports of any risk level but are recommended in settings where unvaccinated athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and/or support personnel are in close proximity, such as standing on the sidelines, in a huddle, or sitting in a dugout.
  • All coaches, athletic trainers, and other support personnel involved with sporting activities must wear face coverings indoors in K-12 settings, regardless of vaccination status.
  • Officials who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear face coverings indoors when actively officiating and running (e.g., basketball). When they are not running, masks are required (e.g., talking with coaches, between quarters). Unvaccinated referees must wear face coverings at all times when they are officiating, unless they participate in screening testing.
  • Masking is required universally for all spectators attending indoor K-12 sporting activities, regardless of vaccination status. Audience members should be seated in “family units” and those small groups should be spaced at least 6 feet apart.
  • Masking is required outdoors for all spectators if there are 500 or more people present at the event.

 

BIO

Adriana Vanbianchi, MVSD School Nurse

Adriana Vanbianchi, MVSD School NurseAdriana Vanbianchi has worked across numerous healthcare settings including as a paramedic, swiftwater rescue swimmer, emergency room nurse, and primary care nurse before her current job as MVSD school nurse. She is passionate about delivering equitable and empathetic health care. She believes in the power of teamwork to solve any problem, but especially those encountered in healthcare. Healthcare is a family affair for Adriana as she is married to a nurse and has two kids who are both tired of hearing about medical procedures and pathology over the dinner table.

“The days are a challenge but the support of my colleagues is what sustains me. No matter what our school staff’s personal opinions, we all come together with a common goal: the health, safety, and happiness of our school.”

“Schools Don’t Keep Schools Open. Communities Keep Schools Open.”

MVSD has gone above and beyond to integrate with local health care and public health systems, coming together to not just keep its schools open and keep our kids healthy, but to lead in the promotion of health and safety of the entire community. Thank you all for collaborating with healthcare, businesses and broad community groups around us that keep us open and keep us all safe.
~ James Wallace, MD, MPH, Chief Health Officer

"Vaccinated" by Zelley