News/Press Releases April 6-12, 2020


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April 10, 2020

4/10 VA Gov Northam COVID-19 Update

Governor’s message – Fix the health crisis first, then fix the economy. While the curve may be flattening, NOW IS NOT THE TIME to reduce social distancing restrictions. Cannot let our guard down – especially this weekend. The Governor’s team is working every day to ensure that the planned response is based upon data and the best possible information. In addition to the concerns about fighting the pandemic, the Administration is also working on plans to jump start the economy when the time is right.

Of the 35,459 people tested, Virginia has 4509 positive cases, 772 hospitalizations, and 121 deaths. Governor encourages people to wear face masks/coverings, but not mandating it.

NEW Task Force aimed to help fight the virus in Nursing and Long Term Care Facilities –
Of the 82 outbreaks across Virginia, 45 are in nursing/long term care facilities. Virginia has a special obligation to protect those who live in nursing homes and long term care facilities. These residents are at a high risk due to underlying health conditions plus the structure of the facilities make social distancing very challenging. Additionally, many nursing homes staffers work at multiple facilities, making it harder to stop transmission. Today, the Governor is giving Dr. Forlano, VDH Deputy Commissioner, increased authority and charging her to lead a Task Force 1) work with Sec of Finance to make sure facilities have resources, 2) work with the facilities to strengthen staffing, infection prevention, and ensure facilities have PPE, 3) ensure the public and facilities are getting the information and data they need. Task force will track data like positive cases, deaths, outbreak tracking.

Curve/Peak Modeling –
The Governor’s team watches the data daily. There are a number of models that they are following. They are bringing in the data specialists who develop the models and having them available to answer questions for the media.

Volunteer Medical Reserve Corp –
To date, the Volunteer Medical Reserve Corp has 13,000 volunteers. The Administration is reaching out to medical programs and schools in search of more healthcare based volunteers. Additionally, they are working on ways to get training for those with medical experience who want/need additional skills to help fight the pandemic. Virginia also need non-medical volunteers to help with logistics, technology, communications, and other areas. Anyone interested can get more information at

Early Release for Inmates –
Governor is proposing an amendment to the state budget to allow DOC to release those who have less than 1 year on their sentence. This is an emergency action and will go into effect upon passage and remain in effect for the remainder of the State of Emergency. Eligible inmates are those who pose no threat to the public. DOC will immediately start re-entry planning for those eligible for the early release and their planning will include a place to live and needed medications. This will impact approximately 2000 inmates. Work release programs have stopped.

Juvenile Justice Facility –
The facility at Bon Air has several positive tests. Following CDC guidelines and isolating those who have tested positive.

ICE Facilities –
Virginia has no control over the facilities. When complaints are received, the Administration reached out to the Dept of Homeland Security and the VA Congressional Delegation.

Unemployment –
Currently unemployment claims are greater than the last 3 years combined. Next week, VEC will begin issuing the additional $600/week covered by the CARES Act. VEC will be updating its application, website, and call centers to meet the increased demand. Additionally, the Agency will and reach out to those previously denied but now eligible for unemployment insurance.

Reconvened Session –
Today the Governor announced that he has signed gun legislation and bills impacting women’s reproductive rights. All other measures will be addressed by the deadline of midnight on April 11th.

Enforcement –
The Administration is in daily contact with law enforcement. To date, law enforcement report that “reminders” have been given to citizens but the Governor knows of no citations being issued.

April 9, 2020

Sparx Hockey Now Manufacturing Protective Face Shields

Dear VFDA Members:

The Association has been in conversations with Sparx Hockey today and I wanted to pass on to you that the company recently began re-purposing their normal manufacturing facility to now make medical face masks. Since they began taking orders, they have seen several funeral homes reach out looking to buy the shields. Sparx is manufacturing 10,000-15,000 shields a week and will have them available in small quantities (boxes of 10). If you are interested, please see the information below.

Sparx Hockey Now Manufacturing Protective Face Shields
Company Repurposes Massachusetts Manufacturing Facility to Produce Needed Medical Supplies

Sparx Hockey, inventor of the revolutionary Sparx Skate Sharpener, has announced it will begin manufacturing protective face shields to assist the medical community in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. The company recently completed the design and development process and will begin manufacturing the shields this week in its Massachusetts facility.

“We currently have unused capacity in our manufacturing facility and after talking to colleagues at other companies and learning of efforts to make protective face shields, we realized that we too could repurpose a portion of our manufacturing facility to make protective shields and help the medical community,” said Sparx Hockey Founder & CEO Russ Layton. “We immediately began prototyping, sourcing materials and we will begin building as many units as we can this week.”

The company expects to produce approximately 10,000-15,000 face shields a week and is currently taking orders via its website at According to Layton, who worked for over a decade as a mechanical engineer in the medical device industry prior to starting Sparx Hockey, the company will prioritize orders for medical personnel on the front lines of the Coronavirus battle and will ship orders as soon as the product is available.

“We are facing unprecedented times and while hockey is paused throughout the world, it only made sense to help support the fight against COVID-19,” Layton said. “I’m so proud of the incredible team here at Sparx Hockey for turning the idea of a Sparx Protective Face Shield into an actual product in the matter of just a few days. We are also grateful to our colleagues at Cascade Lacrosse and Bauer Hockey for sharing their face shield information, which allowed us to quickly get into production.”

For more information about the Sparx Protective Face Shield, including the ordering process, visit

About Sparx Hockey
Sparx Hockey is a privately held corporation located in Acton, Massachusetts. Sparx Hockey is a developer and manufacturer of skate sharpening equipment and related accessories for ice hockey, figure skating and sled hockey. Sparx Hockey products are currently being used by thousands of players and skaters from youth to professional levels. The company is focused on building a leadership position in skate sharpening by providing customers with the most advanced, accurate and easy to use skate sharpening equipment on the planet. For more information, please visit

Steve Jones
VP, Marketing & Customer Acquisition, Sparx Hockey, Inc | 30 Sudbury Rd, Acton, MA 01720

April 9, 2020
Now Is Not The Time To Tap the Brakes on Preneed
NFDA Business Journal, April 2020


April 9, 2020

SURGICAL MASKS & KN95 (CDC Approved alternative to N95) – Due to ship next week!

3M (makers of N95) – Comparison Chart

Please allow me an opportunity to introduce you to TNG Worldwide/The Industry Source. During this trying time, our company, one of the country’s largest suppliers of spa and beauty operational supplies and in business for 35 years, has refocused from its core business selling to spas and salons to help those most in need. We have been working 24/7 to be able to provide medical facilities with and assortment of KN95 masks and other pertinent items. If you are in need or know someone looking for sources, please feel free to pass on this information about our company. My contact info is below. We are ONLY selling to the medical/first responder community at this time.

As of last week, we are now able to provide the medical field these much needed items. For expediency of getting items to you quickly, we can accept credit cards or ACH (electronic checks) for payment. We cannot offer term payments. Shipment is from our New Hudson, Michigan corporate headquarters and shipping lead times will be dependent on your location. We generally ship via Fed Ex Ground (on orders which weigh less than 300#). Images available upon request.

#110332 3 Ply Medical Masks – $29.99/box of 50
Offers maximum comfort, protection and ease of use. Medical quality with a bacterial filtration efficiency (BFE) of greater than 99%. 3-Ply construction with soft, fluid resistant nonwoven outer layers and highly absorbent inner layer. Fiberglass and latex free. Hypoallergenic. Blue (ETA is the 2nd week of April )

#110350 ForPro KN95 Face Mask – ($32.50/box of 10 OR $28 when you purchase 50 boxes or more): ForPro KN95 Face Mask is an industry standard and filters 95% of particle with a mass median diameter of 0.3 micrometers. This provides protections from PM10, PM2.5 and even smaller particles. CDC Approved alternative. Individually-wrapped. Pre-order now for guaranteed delivery as soon as they become available (ETA is the 2nd week of April ).

#110351 Advanced Hand Sanitizer – 4.0 Oz ($4.00 each): ForPro Hand Sanitizer helps to reduce bacteria on skin, kills most germs that may cause illness and leaves hands feeling soft. Contains 60% ethyl alcohol. Meets FDA healthcare personnel hand-washing requirements. Made in Italy. 4 oz. Available late April – Pre order now (minimum 13 bottles)

#111027 ForPro Alcohol-Free Foam Hand Sanitizer – 18oz ($10.99 each) ForPro Alcohol-Free Foaming Instant Hand Sanitizer kills 99.99% of many common harmful germs and bacteria in as little as 15 seconds. Made with Benzalkonium Chloride (BAK) and contains conditioners to soothe and moisturize hands. Extra-large, 18-ounce size is economical compared to non-foaming products. Alcohol, dye and fragrance free (limit 12 – larger quantities upon approval) (ETA Today 4/2)

#110352 New ForPro Hand Sanitizer Spray, FDA approved formula – 8 oz. ($6.99) Isopropyl Alcohol 75% Topical Solution (ETA is the 2nd week of April) Gallons will be available for $89.99

#111028 ForPro Multi-Cide Hospital Grade Disinfectant – 1 gallon (makes 128 gallons of disinfectant – $39.99 each): ForPro MULTI-CIDE Hospital Grade Sanitizer & Disinfectant is a bactericidal, fungicide, and virucidal cleaner. It is EPA registered and effective against athlete’s foot fungus, Aspergillus niger, Hepatitis B & C, HIV-1 and other viruses. The anti-rust formulation prevents corrosion of implements and hard surfaces. Dilution is 1-ounce per gallon. (IN STOCK)

#111024 ForPro Citrus-Cide Hospital Grade Disinfectant Cleaner – 1 gallon ($21.99 each): Citrus-Cide cleans and deodorizes in one easy step. Works on all hard, non-porous surfaces as a disinfectant, bactericide, virucide, and fungicide cleaner EPA Registered. (ETA 4/3)

#140258 ForPro 99% Alcohol – 32 oz ($15.99 each): 99% Alcohol is recommended for medical, beauty and general use as recommended by a manufacturer to use 99% isopropyl alcohol by volume. Cools, cleanses, and dehydrates. No inert ingredients. Unscented. Note: This product can be shipped via ground only. 32 oz. Available for immediate shipment.

#193132 – Barbicide Wipes – 160 ct. ($13.99) – 12 maximum -Barbicide Wipes Disinfectant are for all non-porous surfaces. EPA-registered and proven effective against TB, MRSA, HIV-1, and Hepatitis B. Proven effective against HIV-1, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Staphylococcus, Pseudomonas, Salmonella, Clostridium Difficile, MRSA, Vancomycin Resistant Enterococcus (VRE), Herpes, Influenza (including H1N1), “Athletes Foot” (Tinea Pedis) and Mycobacterium Tuberculosis -• Complies with OSHA’s blood borne pathogens standard-• U.S. EPA-registered hospital-grade, broad-spectrum disinfectant (IN STOCK)

#800024 –Gym Wipes Antibacterial – 700ct $44.99 GymWipes Antibacterial Wipes 2XL-101 Refill are EPA registered and antimicrobial. Eliminates bacteria in 4 minutes while disinfecting and deodorizing with a fresh scent. Bleach-free, Alcohol-free, Phenol-free (this bag does not re-seal)

#800022- Gym Wipes Advantage – 3600ct $119.99- GymWipes Advantage Wipes 2XL-36 are FDA registered and antimicrobial. Cleans and sanitizes in one easy step. Non-Alcohol based that cleans dirt, sweat, body oils from all surfaces and neutralizes odors. 900-ct. Case of 4. (this bag does not re-seal)

As a reminder there is a limit of 10 boxes per glove SKU.


Cheryl Hartsough,RD
Account Representative
The Industry Source
p: 631-324-5612
P: 800-362-6245 ext 2511
Fax: 248-347-0986

April 9, 2020

The COVID Medical Supplies Project has supplies of masks: Learn More

Our Mission:

A COVID Medical Supplies Project PPE is serving the temporary PPE Gear needs of this pandemic, attempting to deliver as much help as quickly as we are able to. Our price reflects our cost and, to the extent possible, we are working to operate at cost with no markup.

To keep our phones lines unclogged, please connect with us at or

April 8, 2020


The Department of Forensic Science (DFS) received notification today that a contract employee who works in the Northern Laboratory has tested positive for COVID-19. The individual was last in the Northern Laboratory on March 27th. Additionally, a second contract employee, who worked with the initial positive contract employee, was sent home immediately today after reporting that he/she was not feeling well. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) and DFS leadership have made appropriate notifications to its employees.

The OCME and DFS are co-located at 10850 Pyramid Place, Manassas, Virginia. As a precautionary measure, the Northern District of The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) will close immediately (April 8, 2020) and remain closed until a thorough disinfection has been conducted. It is anticipated that the OCME will reopen on Friday, April 10. During this time, OCME will not be diverting staff or cases to another OCME district office. For additional information, please contact the OCME Northern District Office at (703) 530-2600.

The OCME appreciates your understanding at this time as it seeks to protect the health of its employees, customers and citizens of the Commonwealth. Any questions should be directed to the Administrative Deputy, Arkuie Williams, at (804) 786-1015.

April 8, 2020

4/8 VA Gov Northam COVID-19 Update

To date, Virginia has 3,645 confirmed COVID-19 cases (312 case increase in 24 hours) out of 30,645 tests. Additionally, Virginia has 75 deaths (12 additional deaths in last 24 hours) and 615 hospitalizations. Additionally, all families are notified if a deceased family member has passed from COVID-19. All cases that come before the Medical Examiner are tested for COVID-19.

Race and Ethnicity Health Data –
Administration receives information from a variety of sources and it is difficult for everyone to record the same types of data. Other jurisdictions across the country are seeing racial and ethnic disparities related to COVID-19 cases. Virginia wants to measure race and ethnicity for all COVID-19 positive individuals. It is important for the Commonwealth to know this information to protect these populations now and to make needed changes going forward. VA Department of Health website now has weekly reports with information on each case reported and is trying to ensure that race and ethnicity data is captured and, in some instances, the state will have to back fill information. Lack of access to healthcare leads to underlying health conditions, putting minority communities at a greater risk for contracting COVID-19. Health Equity workgroup is part of the State’s organized response to the outbreak and they working on a campaign directed specifically at vulnerable and minority communities.

PPE Distributions –
Administration continues to distribute PPE across the state. Sending masks, face shields, gloves, and coveralls to hospitals, nursing homes, and other medical care facilities. We are constantly working to purchase more supplies. To date, no Virginia hospital has run out of PPEs but many jurisdictions are complaining about shortages for their first responders (law enforcement, fire, rescue). The state is working to address these shortages as well. The Governor feels strongly that the limited direction from the federal government has led to much of the confusion and unnecessary competition for PPEs and ventilators.

Upcoming Election Change –
Virginia has two upcoming elections, one in May for local elections and a second in June for congressional primaries. Governor doesn’t want anyone to have to choose between their health and voting. Governor is recommending that the May elections be moved until November. This change requires General Assembly action when legislators return to Richmond for the Reconvened Session on April 22. Any absentee ballot cast for the May election will be discarded. In addition, the Governor has the authority to move a primary election and has chosen to move the upcoming June 9 primary to June 23.

Help to VA Restaurants –
ABC will allow restaurants and distilleries to sell mixed beverages through take-out and delivery, effective midnight on Thursday. ABC will also be deferring licensing fees until June.

Employee Concerns –
Some employees are concerned that coworkers are testing positive and businesses/management are not alerting staff that they may have been exposed. Governor’s office encourages employees to complain to VA Dept. of Labor. The Governor’s office believes employers and management teams need to be proactive and let employees know of any possible exposure.

Reconvened Session –
Governor’s office is working on signing, amending, or vetoing legislation ahead of their deadline on April 11th at midnight. The biggest changes will be to the Budget to reflect the recession Virginia faces. To date, the Governor has acted on over 800 pieces of legislation.

Long Term Care Facilities –
Populations are at a very high risk for contracting and passing from COVID-19. The local health departments are working diligently with communities in their regions to better surveil populations, increase testing, and protect against spread. Some facilities share employees and, when an employee is exposed, the state notifies all of their employers. If a healthcare working is positive but asymptomatic, they are allowed to work as long as they monitor their symptoms and wear protective gear.

April 7, 2020

PPE Supplies

The Association is being contacted by suppliers that state they have PPE available and are able to ship within the week. The VFDA is not endorsing these companies, but feel we should pass them on to you if you are interested in contact the supplier.

My name is Josh Kenyon. I am currently acting as a channel partner for a company called Brandnexity. They are one of the companies that switched production when this pandemic started and they are just now ready for market. Most of the items can be shipped this week. They currently have the following products:

  • KN95 Mask with CE certs and EU standards documentation – 50,000 Available now 450,000 in the supply chain – $5
  • Hand Sanitizer 250ml/8.45oz – Available now – $8
  • Hand Sanitizer 500ml/16.8oz Available now – $14
  • Dettol Liquid 1000ml – Available now, this is a cleaning product that is used overseas a lot. – $24.95
  • N95 Masks with NIOSH – Available soon – $7.25
  • N95 Masks without NIOSH – Available soon-$6

Josh Kenyon

April 6, 2020

4/6 VA Gov Northam COVID-19 Update

As of this morning there are 2,878 positive cases (241 new cases in the last 24 hours), 54 deaths (3 new deaths in the last 24 hours), 497 hospitalizations, 24,521 people tested.

Virginia doesn’t have the recovery numbers to report as it isn’t collected by the Health Department. Virginia has many people who have COVID-19 who haven’t been tested that may or may not have symptoms. The hospitalization numbers come from the Virginia Health Information website that tracks hospitals claims. The hospitals and their association have a more accurate census on patients.

Surge modeling has changed in the last week. Originally estimated that Virginia’s surge would be late May, some models saying late April.

State Lab –
Using genetic technology to help health professionals use knowledge from the positive tests to learn more about fighting the virus, how it spreads and changes.

Long Term Care Facilities –
The VA Dept. of Health has 35 districts with local health departments. The locals are working very closely with the long term care facilities in their area. Once a case is found at a facility, the local department works to isolate and protect the rest of the facility from the virus.

Alternative Care Sites –
The three sites are Dulles Expo Center, Hampton Roads Convention Center, and Richmond Convention Center – finalizing those contracts and buildout will begin this week. Virginia is looking at other areas should more sites be necessary. Will monitor the data as it comes in.

PPEs –
The Governor is working every angle to buy more PPE. Virginia has received a fraction of what was requested of the National Stockpile. Administration executed a $27m contract with VA based company, Northfield, to get PPEs and a contract with Estes Trucking to get the new PPEs to those who need it. These are the first of many purchases that will be made to ensure Virginia has the needed amounts of PPE.

Testing –
Virginia does not have the volume of needed testing materials. Some hospitals are doing in-house testing to help speed up the process. The State is working on getting new rapid testing materials so that the testing time is cut down to a 15/20min turnaround. Private companies and some hospitals are still running at a longer time frame than the state lab.

Construction –
Road and building construction is allowed to operate as long as they adhere to the rules of gatherings, social distancing, and increased cleaning. To date, the Governor has not heard of any problems with companies adhering to the guidelines and his Administration continues to monitor the situation.

Dept of Corrections –
Outbreak in two facilities, including inmates and staff. Of the 30,000 people incarcerated, very few are eligible for parole and, of those, most were convicted of violent crimes. For those that are eligible, the Governor’s office is working through the protocols when it comes to parole for them. Governor does not plan on signing an EO to allow for broad clemency. For those that cannot be released, the Dep of Corrections is diligently abiding by CDC guidelines to include face masks, additional soap rations, spacing, and increased cleaning of all surfaces.

Stay at Home Order (no changes)–
Virginians are heeding the warning. In the weeks to come Virginians cannot relax their vigilance. The virus knows no boundaries so all parts of Virginia must abide by social distancing, handwashing, masks, and only leaving the home for essential reasons. For non-essential businesses that are operating under the current guidelines, no need to close down. If they cannot abide by the guidelines, they must close.

National Public Health Week –
COVID-19 has shown Virginia how vital our public health personnel are to all of us, year round. Health Community is working to care for all Virginians during this trying time.

April 6, 2020

Update: COVID-19 & Embalming – CDC Stands By its Recommendations

Important Advisories:

·Your local and/or state public health officials may be making recommendations that are more stringent than what the CDC has recommended. In these cases, you should defer to your state and/or local public health officials.

·The CDC guidance represents the minimum precautions a funeral professional should take while caring for the body of someone who died of confirmed or suspected COVID-19. You should use your best professional judgement to determine whether you should take additional precautions beyond what is recommended by the CDC.

On April 1, NFDA shared information regarding alternate guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO) on embalming individuals who died of confirmed or suspected COVID-19. NFDA immediately reached out to the CDC to clarify what guidance funeral professionals in the United States should follow.

Today, NFDA learned the CDC stands by its recommendation that pandemic victims can be safely embalmed so long as the funeral professional follows proper safety protocols.

Read more information about the CDC’s specific recommendations

April 6, 2020

NFDA Calls For Volunteers To Work In COVID-19 Hot Spots

Brookfield, Wis. – The National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) is asking for volunteers who can travel to COVID-19 “hot spots” experiencing high death rates in order to lend on-the-ground assistance.

Given the likelihood that the COVID-19 pandemic will get worse before it gets better, NFDA is asking for members and other funeral service professionals who can assist in areas where infections and deaths are rapidly climbing. NFDA plans to maintain a list of volunteers who can mobilize quickly should it receive federal, state and/or local requests for assistance.

Funeral service professionals willing to volunteer can click here to fill out a form. The form asks potential volunteers to be as specific as possible with the kind of assistance and expertise they can offer. (Funeral service professionals who have already volunteered on the NFDA website do not need to provide their information again.)

NFDA anticipates providing volunteers deployment information sometime within the next few weeks, if not sooner. Specific information on locations, licensure reciprocity, expense reimbursement and travel will be provided prior to volunteer deployment.

“NFDA wants to thank all funeral professionals for being on the front lines during this pandemic,” says Christine Pepper, CAE, chief executive officer. “Please know that NFDA stands ready to support funeral directors everywhere – NFDA member or not – so funeral service professionals can carry out their mission. In the words of statesman William Ewart Gladstone, ‘Show me the manner in which a nation or a community cares for its dead. I will measure exactly the sympathies of its people, their respect for the laws of the land, and their loyalty to high ideals.’”

NFDA is the world’s leading and largest funeral service association, serving more than 20,000 individual members who represent nearly 11,000 funeral homes in the United States and 49 countries around the world. NFDA is the trusted leader, beacon for ethics and the strongest advocate for the profession. NFDA is the association of choice because it offers funeral professionals comprehensive educational resources, tools to manage successful businesses, guidance to become pillars in their communities and the expertise to foster future generations of funeral professionals. NFDA is headquartered in Brookfield, Wis., and has an office in Washington, D.C. For more information, visit

National Funeral Directors Association
13625 Bishop’s Drive Brookfield, WI 53005
Main: 800.228.6332
Fax: 262.789.6977

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