Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people.
COVID-19 is a specific illness related to the current epidemic. The acronym stands for "coronavirus disease 2019," referring to the year the virus was first detected. The name of the virus is SARS-CoV-2.
Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, an infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death. Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include:
- Seek early medical attention if there are signs of fever, cough and difficulty breathing
- regular hand washing
- practicing respiratory hygiene - covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing (with a bent elbow or tissue)
- avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth – entry points to your body
- avoid close contact (at least 3 ft) with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing
- thoroughly cooking meat and eggs
The church’s role is to encourage and facilitate its members to protect themselves at all times. HBCTCI encourages its members to pray, encourage and use this time to share Jesus.
POLICY: General Guidelines
HBC encourages its members/attendees to:
- Follow the advice of the WHO and local health authority on COVID-19. The church Elders will be guided by the local health authority advisories.
- Seek early medical care if you show signs of infection. Call the Emergency numbers provided by the Ministry of Health – 649-333-0911 or 649-232-9444. You will be instructed accordingly. DO NOT go to the doctor’s office, pharmacy or hospital.
- If you have shown signs of infection and have been guided by a health care provider, follow precisely, the instructions given you. If you have been asked to self-quarantine, please do so; you can follow our sermons online in the week following the service. DO NOT attempt to curtail the instructions given to you.
- Consider attending the 11:15 am service to reduce the crowd size at the 9:00 am service.
- Equip yourself with hand sanitizers and antibacterial wipes; use generously when there is no access to soap and water.
- Equip yourself and your children with tissues to catch coughs and sneezes. Immediately dispose of used tissues in a bin; wash hands thoroughly.
- Wash hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. Wash or sanitize hands:
- After coughing or sneezing
- After toilet use
- When visibly dirty
- Touching door handles and knobs
8. Provide children with hand sanitizers, wipes and/or tissue for use during HK sessions.
9. Avoid attending church activities including Sunday worship, DGroup meetings, Harvest Kids or Harvest Students if:
a. You have had flu-like symptoms in the past 14 days or have been in close contact with someone with these types of symptoms: fever, cough, vomiting or shortness of breath.
b. You have traveled domestically or internationally from an area in the past 14 days with confirmed cases of the COVID-19 virus or if you suspect you may have been exposed to it in some way. (This includes places like China, Iran, Italy, etc. or any other country that is currently listed as a level 2 or 3 alerts as defined by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention).
POLICY: HBCTCI Specific Guidelines
- HBCTCI will seek to provide an environment that is safe and comfortable for all concerned and as such commits to the regular sanitization of the church building (Worship Center, HK classrooms, toys and equipment, Bathroom and meeting areas).
- Providing soap in restrooms for hand-washing and sanitizers (as long as these are available) for use in the sanctuary, HK classrooms, and meeting rooms.
- DGroup meetings will be suspended in the home where an occupant has displayed symptoms of the Corona-Virus. DGroup leaders are responsible for informing the elders accordingly. A suspension would run until the person has been declared well and the property sanitized. The Elders will give the green light.
- If there is an outbreak on the Island the Elders will provide guidance on all church activities. This may include suspending physical meetings and events and utilizing online meetings and communication options.
- Should someone display COVID-19 symptoms while attending a church event, the individual will be asked to immediately seek medical attention. In cases where they are awaiting a ride, they will be asked to wait on one of the benches on the outside.
- Parents of children who are coughing or sneezing are asked to keep them at home on that weekend, or until those symptoms pass. This measure is important as it is much harder for children to practice effective respiratory hygiene.
- Any member who contracts the virus is asked to contact their DGroup leader. Relevant care would be done primarily through DGroups. For persons who are not a member of a DGroup, or for parents of children from HK and Harvest Students, please inform the church office (649-333-2009).