The City of Ames has been preparing to meet the COVID-19 challenge on a variety of fronts. First, City officials have been in regular communication with partners from Mary Greeley Medical Center, Iowa State University, local school districts, and other key stakeholders. We are continuing to keep each other apprised of our response efforts and anticipated next steps, and are identifying ways we can assist each other as this situation develops.
In addition to encouraging our residents and businesses to utilize trusted sources of public health information, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Iowa Department of Public Health, and Mary Greeley Medical Center, we are preparing for how COVID-19 may impact City employees and services.
We have increased the basic precautions taken by employees throughout the City organization, such as increased handwashing, sanitizing of surfaces, and staying home if sick. We are also continuing to develop and implement ways we can help residents do their City business while reducing interpersonal contact -- more information and services are being added to the City's website each day, so residents can skip the trip to City Hall. Unfortunately, some services are being suspended that create unnecessary physical contact. An up-to-date list of changes to City services can be found here: Updates Regarding City Services
A key area of focus for the City is to plan for how we will continue to provide essential services in the event COVID-19 has a greater impact on the Ames community. We are working to cross-train our staff on different functions, reviewing our mutual aid agreements with neighboring service providers, and identifying additional measures we can take to protect the health and safety of employees and the community.
City staff has a great deal of training, experience, and resources to handle emergencies of many different types. We will continue to evaluate the best ways possible to provide essential City services and protect the health of City employees as this situation develops.