Thursday September 23, 2021

A local hospital recently released an update related to the pandemic. Hendry Regional Medical Center will resume elective surgeries on Monday, September 27, with safety guidelines in place, after suspending the procedures on August 30. Elective procedures were placed on hold just under a month ago, so staff could attend to the front lines and battle the COVID19 pandemic within the community. Patients seeking elective general surgery require a negative COVID19 test, prior to the surgery date. Hendry Regional will continue to monitor COVID prevalence in Hendry County and reevaluate accordingly. Visit Hendry Regional Medical Center on Facebook for updates.

Governor Ron DeSantis, announced that the Florida Department of Health issued a new rule, that gives families the authority, to decide whether their child should be taken out of school after an exposure to COVID. According to the Governor’s Office, the rule prevents the exclusion of healthy students from in-person schooling; safeguards the rights of parents and legal guardians and their children; provides health protocols for symptomatic or COVID-19 positive students; and lets parents and legal guardians, choose which protocols to implement, when their student has had direct contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19. It is effective as of yesterday, September 22. Under the new rule, the only children required to quarantine are those that either test positive for COVID or who are symptomatic.

Glades County Public Safety confirmed Wednesday, a stretch of State Road 29 between Hendry and Glades counties was shut down due to flooding. According to public safety’s Facebook post, the road was closed from SR-78 and CR-74, between LaBelle and Palmdale. National Weather Service says a flood advisory will remain in effect into today for that area. According to a local resident, as of 6:30 this morning, the road was still closed. Please avoid that area. We’ll continue to provide updates, as they come in.

The Palm Beach County School Board is expected to vote on a new policy, aimed at prioritizing mental health in the district’s schools. Part of this new policy makes changes when it comes to the information on student identification cards. As part of a new state law that passed earlier this year, ID cards for students in grades 6 through 12 will now be required to include telephone numbers for national or statewide crisis and suicide prevention hotlines and text lines. Keith Oswald is the Chief of Equity and Wellness for the district. He says the new ID cards are part of an even bigger mission within the district that aims to make sure students and staff have the resources they need to handle a mental health crisis. The Student Mental Health Crisis Response Policy features several other elements to it like voting to add more training for students and staff on things like crisis de-escalation, prevention, and intervention. The training will focus on behavioral and mental health.

September is Suicide Prevention Month. Veterans Affairs is teaming up with Healthier Glades, to host a drive-up event on September 27. All veterans and their family members are invited to a drive-up event at First United Methodist Church in Pahokee. The drive-up event will take place from 10am to noon. Attendees will get a free canvas bag filled with products and resources. The giveaway will include a gun lock to keep firearms safe.