This page is a central COVID-19 resource for the residents of the Woodside Fire Protection District, including the towns of Woodside, Portola Valley, and surrounding unincorporated areas of San Mateo County.
Below you will find links to resources at the local, county, national, and international level. These links are only the authoritative sources of information and guidance. You can use any search engine to search for "coronavirus," and get an overwhelming amount of speculation and editorial commentary.
There has been an amazing amount of community support during this healthcare crisis. We want to thank you for being the kind of neighbors you are. We hope that the worst is behind us, but we are prepared to do all we can to keep this community healthy and strong for as long as it takes.
If you have NEEDS, or want to VOLUNTEER...
There are several programs that have appeared in our area, focused on identifying people with extra needs, and local volunteers who can help those neighbors. People over age 65, or with existing immune system problems or certain other pre-existing conditions are particularly at risk from COVID-19. During the current shelter-in-place phase of this event, these neighbors should be especially careful to avoid exposure as much as possible. You can help support these neighbors by joining one or more of the volunteer-based support services below.
Here at WPV-Ready, we have a sign-up for volunteers and for residents with needs. We are working to integrate this information with the PV Cares app, to provide a unified volunteer system throughout the WPV-Ready area.
Sign up for the "WPV HELP" system below.
If you want to sign up as a volunteer, and help us support our neighbors with extra needs, go to this page...
If you have extra needs, or are in a high-risk group, we need you to stay isolated from infection. Please sign up as a resident, even if you don't need help today. It helps us organize our volunteers! And come back any time you have a specific need. Just go to this page...
The County of San Mateo is signing up volunteers here...
The town of Portola Valley has a support system built on their community discussion platform, "PVForum." If you live in Portola Valley and are not already registered with PVForum, you can get there with following link.
This link will take you to PVForum.
Resources at San Mateo County
The primary authority on local "shelter in place" conditions is San Mateo County (SMC).
The San Mateo County Health, the SMC Healthcare Services organization, has a page dedicated to COVID-19.
The SMC site has a good shelter-in-place FAQ here.
The SMC Emergency Operations Center has been activated to support the COVID-19 event since March 2. They have a lot of good updates, posted regularly.
Resources in Our Towns
The towns of Portola Valley and Woodside post updates relevant to their residents on their own websites.
California State Resources
The California Department of Public Health has good information.
They have a page with COVID-19 specific updates too.
And the State of California has information about the state-level response.
Resources at the Federal Level
At the national level, the best information seems to be coming from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Of course, the US Federal Government has a page of resources as well.
The CDC has a whole site devoted to the COVID-19 event.
At the global level, the best information seems to be coming from the World Health Organization (WHO).
And if you want to dive deeper into just how viruses get named, there is the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses.
Getting Tested for COVID-19
There is a COVID-19 testing program available to some residents in our area. Learn more here.
You can give blood with complete safety. And many organizations have had to cancel blood drives as resources shift and medical staff are needed elsewhere. So there is a developing blood shortage crisis. Please visit this page to learn more, and consider giving blood soon.
COVID-19 Tip Sheet
The California Volunteers organization that coordinates state-wide CERT and LISTOS programs has published a good tip sheet in English and Spanish.
Food and Other Shopping Needs
Most grocery and other stores are still open during this crisis. You just need to know how to use them safely. Many of them will deliver to you. And you can use the WPV-HELP volunteer team to get essential items from stores that are not delivering (see the information at the top of this page). Just be sure to carefully disinfect things when they are delivered. If you don't have a good household disinfectant, have some delivered! Here is some CDC guidance on how to disinfect things that might be contaminated with coronavirus. Luckily, the virus is pretty easy to kill until it actually infects someone. Note that the following page is actually intended to help disinfect an environment where there is already a known or suspected infection, so it should be more than adequate for disinfecting a shopping delivery.
If You Get Sick
Remember that it is still flu season, and you never know when you might catch a cold or other relatively minor disease. (I, your webmaster, have been battling a "stomach bug" for several days, but feel great today.) If you feel ill, DON'T PANIC. Call your doctor and get their advice. Even if you do contract COVID-19, you will almost certainly live to tell stories about it. In the midst of this crisis, it is important to keep in mind that most illnesses people experience will be something other than COVID-19. But even if you just catch a cold, we don't want our high-risk neighbors going out to get cold-and-flu meds. Give us a call and we will get the meds to you.
Public Education Officer/Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Woodside Fire Protection District
808 Portola Road
Portola Valley, CA 94028