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San Diego Coronavirus Testing Ramps Up, Distance Learning Starts, Mental Health Wellness During Outbreak And During Pandemics People Turn To Dog Fostering

 April 7, 2020 at 12:22 PM PDT

Speaker 1: 00:00 California develops guidelines to combat stress brought on by coven 19 anxiety and UC San Diego increases coven 19 testing. I'm Maureen Kavanaugh and I'm Mark sour. This is KPBS midday edition. Speaker 2: 00:23 It's Tuesday, April 7th Speaker 1: 00:27 in his daily coven 19 update governor Gavin Newsome focused on the stress of living through this pandemic and the kind of physical and emotional toll it can take. Newsome says California surgeon general dr Nadine Burke Harris has developed a program to help Californians keep healthy. Speaker 3: 00:45 I've tasked the uh, surgeon general of the state of California to put together a strategy and a protocol to help support you and to support caregivers that need that peer to peer support Speaker 1: 00:57 more coming up on emotional support through this crisis later in our show. Meanwhile, the fight against the virus continues in labs around the state. Testing is the key to learning so much about the spread of coven 19 so the lack of testing supplies and the rationing of tests to people who fit only a specific criteria has been one of the most frustrating aspects of the outbreak. But there are signs. The testing log jam may be loosening up. Testing for covert 19 in San Diego County now has the capacity to conduct roughly 1200 tests a day. Over the weekend, governor Newsome announced a new task for us, including UC San Diego to work with different vendors and create several testing hubs throughout the state. Joining me is Dr. David pride and infectious disease specialist and microbiology lab director at UC San Diego Health's center for advanced laboratory medicine and dr. Pride. Welcome to the program testing has been described by one of your colleagues as quote a weapon to reverse the pandemic. Remind us why testing is key to address the COBIT 19 outbreak? Speaker 4: 02:07 Well, I think in any pandemic, regardless of whether it's called at 19 or another virus, knowing who has it is really the key to stopping it spread. Um, so if you look at what's happened say in, in other countries who have managed to develop testing really quickly, they've actually managed to limit the spread of the virus quite well. Because if you can identify who has the disease, you can quarantine those individuals so that they cannot spread it. Speaker 1: 02:37 Now you expect UC San Diego's testing capacity to go from about 700 tests a day to up to 1500 per day by mid April. How are you doing this? Speaker 4: 02:48 So, uh, one of the strategies that we've used to, uh, increase our testing capacity has been to diversify what we're doing. So there's a large of limitation in what a lot of manufacturers can provide. So what we've done is we've started to utilize multiple different manufacturers. This is something that most laboratories, including our own wouldn't do in normal times, but we've got such large patient demand for testing that we felt like if we diversified early, then we would be able to manage to obtain the materials that we needed to meet our patient's demands. Speaker 1: 03:28 So if testing capacity is growing, does that mean the shortage of tests is about to be over? Speaker 4: 03:34 It's really tough to say. Um, testing capacity has a ramped up at several sites really across our state. And, uh, I think a lot of us feel like we're able to manage, uh, uh, those testing shortages right now. But there's a lot of places still around the state and across the country that, uh, cannot meet their current testing demands. So I think one of the big issues is how can we distribute testing capacity around so that everyone who needs a test can actually obtain a test. Speaker 1: 04:08 And one of the reasons that I've heard why testing has been slow is a shortage of reagents used to conduct the test. Do those shortages still persist? Speaker 4: 04:17 Those shortages do persist. They have gotten better since we first started, when we first started being interested in developing our own tests was about the time, uh, when the FDA released their guidance on February 29th and at that time trying to obtain access to testing materials was extraordinarily difficult. It's still difficult, but a lot of that backlog has been relieved over time as manufacturers have ramped up their production of testing, uh, consumables. Speaker 1: 04:49 And what about the current turnaround time for test results? What does that look like? Speaker 4: 04:53 So that's a problem at some places and not a problem at other places. For example, at our institution, we're running multiple different platforms to perform this test. And what we're able to provide is really a maximum of about 12 hour turnaround times for most of the patients. Uh, they'll get better than 12 hour turnaround times, which means that, you know, if you show up, you, uh, we can tell you whether or not you have the virus within 12 hours, and that really helps health care workers so that they're not potentially exposed, uh, to other people. Uh, it helps the patients because they know whether they, whether they get admitted to the hospital or not, they need to be quarantine. So, uh, being able to test and give an answer relatively quickly is really important. At other places, they have to send their testing out to reference laboratories. And, uh, just with the shipping of the specimens to those places and the large backlogs that you still see it, some reference laboratories, it's taking days to get results rather than hours. Speaker 1: 05:57 Isn't there a new point of care, rapid coven test machine from the avid company? What is that used for? Speaker 4: 06:05 It depends on the institution. Um, the best use is for critically ill patients knowing whether or not they have the disease. Uh, really quickly, but the benefit of a test such as the app it is that it can be placed in multiple different locations so that now even, uh, you know, your doctor's office, which might be, you know, located in a remote area, uh, could potentially have access to testing at UC San Diego. We are bringing this test online shortly Speaker 1: 06:35 and that delivers a positive test in five minutes. Speaker 4: 06:38 It can deliver a positive test and as little as five minutes, uh, and a negative test and as little as 15 minutes so that you can tell your patients fairly quickly whether or not they have the disease and what particular precautions if any they need to take. Speaker 1: 06:56 Now, dr pride up until now, testing has been reserved for people who fit strict guidelines for age and health, et cetera. With more testing coming online, do you expect the guidelines will begin to loosen Speaker 4: 07:09 and a lot of those guidelines that you've mentioned are really institution specific? When we started off on March the 10th with our Cova testing. In fact, we had very strict guidelines as to who could be testing. And those guidelines were really based on the number of tests that we could perform and the number of materials to perform the test that we had since then, that's sort of backlog has improved significantly. So at our institution, we've been, uh, sort of, uh, uh, very adding different groups of patients that can be tested to the point where we're testing. Um, most all of our population, uh, who, uh, would, would qualify under relaxed criteria to be tested at other institutions, uh, who don't have the testing capacity that we have. They're still having to limit testing, uh, to those more severely ill populations Speaker 1: 08:03 over the weekend, the governor and announced UC San Diego along with UC Davis as part of a new statewide task force. Can you tell us more about this partnership? Speaker 4: 08:13 Uh, well, uh, I think, you know, my sort of perspective on it is that since this began, uh, UC San Diego has, has really been on a mission, uh, to increase our testing capacity because, uh, not only do we want to be able to test our patients, but we would like to be able to test the broader San Diego and the broader California community. Uh, so the governor, uh, has been in contact with folks at here at UC San Diego, folks at UC Davis and some other institutions trying to sort of bring us all together to meet the demands of the state of California. And we're happy to do whatever we can. Uh, and at UC San Diego to help meet those demands. Speaker 1: 09:01 The governor said something about that partnership creating testing hubs. What do you know about them? Speaker 4: 09:07 Yeah, so, uh, you know, as, as sort of outline, he outlined, uh, uh, UC San Diego as one of those, uh, potential testing hubs. And as I sort of mentioned earlier, we do have a pretty good testing capacity right now and we're happy to utilize some of that testing capacity, uh, to extend to other institutions for testing as well. And we're really in the process of trying to figure out who those partners might be that we can sort of help out, uh, to meet the California testing demands. Speaker 1: 09:42 What can we expect moving forward? What does current modeling show about where we're headed with the virus? Speaker 4: 09:48 It's, it's tough to say, uh, you know, because I think we've all seen the sort of same models, uh, and, and predicted what the mortality is going to be. Uh, but, uh, one of the things that I think we're starting to see in places like California and other parts of the country is that the sort of social distancing really seems to be having an impact. And I think as we sort of have, uh, developed, uh, our testing platform so that we can run up to a thousand tests a day. We were expecting demand to be maybe a little bit greater than it is right now, but the social distinct thing has had such a great impact that we're not necessarily on the same trajectory that we projected we would be, uh, even a week or two ago. So I don't know what the sort of estimated mortality's going to be in California or even the broader, uh, United States. Uh, and, and in part just because we've taken measures to try to, uh, basically alter those curves. Speaker 1: 10:54 I've been speaking with Dr. David pride with UC San Diego health center for advanced laboratory medicine. Dr pride. Thank you so much. Speaker 4: 11:02 My pleasure. Speaker 5: 11:09 [inaudible] Speaker 1: 11:11 school is once again in session at San Diego's largest school district, but the classrooms look a lot like your living room. The district has begun what they call a soft launch of its distance learning program. The plan is to keep up classes during the covet 19 shutdown through the internet. Journey me is KPBS education reporter Joe hung and Joe, welcome to the program. This is a soft launch. What does that mean? Speaker 6: 11:38 So the key point right now is that no assignments are graded and this will be the case for the next three weeks until April 27th when the formal distance learning program will be rolled out by the district and teachers will start grading assignments and, um, really keeping students accountable at that point. Speaker 1: 11:58 And what is the district doing about students who don't have laptop computers or wifi? Speaker 6: 12:04 So that's the, that's a big part of the, the soft launch. Uh, they're distributing laptop computers to the students who need them. Uh, there's a bunch of locations where students can pick them up for the next three weeks. And for wifi, uh, the school district recommends going through Cox internet, um, which is offering two months of free internet connection to low income families. So the next three weeks we'll sort of give students a chance to sort of get all the technology they need for the formal rollout. Speaker 1: 12:37 What are some of the problems the district knows that students will encounter trying to attend classes from home? Speaker 6: 12:45 So one big thing is, uh, is childcare and a lot of parents are working and a lot of older kids maybe in high school are watching their younger siblings while also trying to learn some students are uh, are themselves working. So they sort of need that flexibility. And um, I talked to a Kesha Borbon the president of the teacher's union and it seems like the district has given teachers sort of the flexibility to adapt to this new learning environment. And I have a clip from an interview with her yesterday Speaker 7: 13:19 because we know that some of our older students are now caring for their younger siblings and people are sharing computers or trying to share the wifi in their homes. And so everyone can't be on their computers at the same time. Speaker 6: 13:36 So yeah, the teachers there, they're not required to teach their classes live like on a zoom meeting or anything like that. They could record lectures, send them out to their students and the students can just watch, watch them on their own time, complete their assignments on their own time. Deadlines are a little more flexible. So both students and teachers are given that, that flexibility. Speaker 1: 13:58 So we know that some students will have some encounter, some problems with the distance learning. What did you find out about how teachers feel about distance learning? Speaker 6: 14:09 Well, I think it's sort of a, a mixed bag right now. Some teachers are using technology in the classroom already, uh, before the Corona virus was shutting down schools. But for some, uh, for some teachers, especially some, some veteran teachers, uh, it's going to be a learning curve for them too. And, uh, that's, that's a big part of the soft launch as well. Getting teachers on the same page, getting them used to using, uh, things like Google classroom and sort of these online platforms. Speaker 1: 14:40 Now despite distance learning and the disruptions to the school calendar, will the district keep to that calendar when it comes to the end of the school year? Speaker 6: 14:50 So it seems like they will, uh, Kesha Borden, the, the teacher's union president you just heard from, she was very clear that the district and, uh, the bargaining unit have not discussed extending the school year at this point. Speaker 1: 15:05 So, okay. So and, and once again, that grading starts in about three weeks. Speaker 6: 15:10 Three weeks from yesterday. April 27th yeah. Speaker 1: 15:13 Okay. I've been speaking with KPBS education reporter, Joe Hong and Joe, thank you so much. Thanks for joining me now is San Diego school board vice president Richard Barrera and Richard, welcome to the program. Speaker 8: 15:27 Thanks Maureen. Speaker 1: 15:29 So with these distance learning classes, is the idea that teachers will be interactive with students in real time or are they just sort of canned material? Speaker 8: 15:41 No, no. The goal is when we get to our full implementation in three weeks on April 27th that all teachers will be trained and be able to connect, you know, to their students virtually. And that means virtual classes and it also means connecting to students for individual support and small group support. Obviously we're beginning with teachers at different levels of an ability to connect with students online. Some teachers have been doing this for years and have already been doing this with their students over the last several weeks. Some teachers, including of course veteran teachers. This is brand new, a four, but by the time we get to the full launch on April 27th, all teachers should be able to connect with their students in real time. Speaker 1: 16:33 Okay. Now there are still a tremendous number of San Diego unified students who need laptops. I about 40,000. How is the district accommodating those kids? Speaker 8: 16:44 Yeah, so we began yesterday with, uh, distributing laptops. And the way that we're doing it is first of all, principals are aware of which students at their schools need laptops. And so we've set up times for, for instance, in elementary school we'll have a specific time that students can come to their neighborhood high school. So we're distributing all of the computers at the neighborhood high schools and a students according to which school they're at. We'll have a time, a and a and a high school locations that come and pick up their laptops, get instructions, uh, for how to log on. And then we're also determining which students need internet access in addition to their laptops. And we'll be getting those students, uh, internet access as well. Yesterday, I, we issued over 1600 computers and we believe that we're well on track to get to that 40,000 number of Marine, uh, by, uh, April 24th. Speaker 1: 17:49 How about students who have difficulty with transportation actually getting to the school to pick up the computer? Speaker 8: 17:56 Yeah, so we've got, um, action teams, uh, that consists of, uh, principals, counselors, uh, basically everybody in our district who's not directly delivering online instruction to students or part of our food distribution. Every other, uh, uh, person in our district is part of our team to figure out how to problem solve and get those computers and internet access to those students. So, you know, we anticipate that we're going to have everything from principals, uh, picking computers up and delivering them, uh, to students' homes, uh, to, you know, uh, different efforts where we may have neighborhood locations, um, where, you know, we'll, we'll, uh, ask students to come in and pick up computers. But we do, it's a good question. We do anticipate that not every student is going to be able to get to one of the neighborhood high schools. Uh, but we'll make sure that they get their computers. Speaker 1: 18:57 And you mentioned something too that I wanted to make sure to ask you. Will the meal pickup still continue while distance learning is an effect? Speaker 8: 19:04 Oh, absolutely. And we'll expand, you know, so we're currently at 16 locations. We served a 20,000 students yesterday and we will continue to, to not only, uh, uh, keep that distribution going in those locations, but we will expand those over the course of the next three weeks as well. Speaker 1: 19:25 Now, even with this concerted effort by the district, there's no arguing. The fact that the school shut down is a massive disruption to students. Do you expect, if, do you expect some kids will simply not participate in distance learning and you may lose them? Speaker 8: 19:42 Yes, and we're very concerned about it. Uh, you know, again, it's, it's the job of several, you know, adults in our system to, to go out and find those students and get them connected. But students are in so many different situations with their families. Um, even, you know, if a student picks up their computer or gets internet access, just their ability to have a space at home, you know, to do the work, uh, you know, it's going to be a challenge for a lot of our students. We've got about 6,000 homeless students in our district. So we are, uh, very clear and we've already begun our advocacy at the state and the federal level that we believe that we should have a dramatically expanded summer school program because we do believe that there will be many students who are left behind even if we execute our distance learning, you know, as well as we hope to hope to do so. Speaker 1: 20:40 Now in terms of dollars, what is this effort to keep school going costing the district? Speaker 8: 20:45 So there's three different costs. Number one, in order to move to full distance learning, uh, through the end of this school year and to continue with our food distribution, we are projecting that we're going to spend at San Diego unified, somewhere between 10 and $15 million above. You know, what, uh, what has been budgeted for the year. So that's about a hundred to $150 per student in our district. Second, in order to have an expanded summer school program, or simply extension of the school year, we anticipate in our district that's going to cost 50 to $60 million. And then third, the issue that we're very concerned about is what happens if local, if we're fortunate enough to be through, you know, the worst of the public health crisis where we can open our schools up in the fall. But when we anticipate a dramatic decline in state revenue and state revenue accounts, we're about 80% of high school districts budgets. Speaker 8: 21:49 What's going to happen at that point are we gonna see huge cuts to schools in the fall, right? As we're needing to reopen. And especially at a time that students will need support to catch up. And we're not just talking about in San Diego unified, we're talking about all over the state and all over the nation. And so it's very important. And we've already begun our advocacy with our members of Congress that as the federal government talks about a upcoming stimulus packages that significant, uh, our, uh, funding for schools, uh, rises right to the top of that priority list. We know that this is a situation that will affect us in a few months. It's not a situation that is happening now and sometimes I think it's difficult for Congress, uh, to anticipate things and, and in the future. But we know from the last recession, schools lost about 20% of our budgets and if something like that were to occur or, or even something worse, uh, in the fall, we would see devastation to schools. So we need the federal government to include schools as a top priority and upcoming stimulus packages. I've been speaking with San Diego school board, vice president Richard Barrera, and thank you so much. Thank you Maureen. Speaker 9: 23:16 Suddenly across California, our social lives have become entirely virtual. So can we learn a thing or two from teenagers about how to adjust reporter Holly gray checked in with California's virtual social experts, high school girls. Speaker 10: 23:35 Hi, I'm Uma and so I'm 17 and I'm a senior at El Segundo high school. How are you feeling? How are you doing today? Today was pretty boring. Like I just did a of homework and I like took a nap. I fell asleep again. Yeah, I've been talking to my friends like mostly online, like we were setting up FaceTimes for like we're going to do face masks together and just talk and stuff like that. Hi, my name is [inaudible]. I'm 15 years old. I'm in ninth grade and I go to Oakland high school. Speaker 11: 24:11 What's your social media diet and what are you aware of the apps that you like? Speaker 10: 24:14 So I'm like kind of addicted as many people are to tickets, Speaker 12: 24:18 talk, tick, talk for those at home is a relatively new social media app. People, especially teens post short videos of themselves usually set to music or to a really short clip from a movie or a TV show. The videos range from hilarious viral sensations to the utterly mundane. Here's what Ooma posted of herself, brushing her teeth, RAF ma suitor Magii is also a senior at El Segundo high school. She says some of her friends are posting how much time they've spent on their phone each day. For some it's 12 hours. Speaker 10: 25:01 I think it's definitely tech talk that takes so much time out of my day. Like I can just watch so many. So probably tick-tock and FaceTime and then like Instagram Speaker 12: 25:10 and Snapchat too. Sending videos of herself to her close friends. Speaker 10: 25:14 Welcome to day nine. I think of quarantine and I am unable bike ride. Thankfully there's no one really on the streets so I won't have to um, you know, like purposely be six year old. Speaker 12: 25:36 So what do the rest of us have to learn from this? Speaker 10: 25:39 So it's like really fun to like see what other people are up to too. Speaker 12: 25:42 That actually made sense to me. It's just nice to see your friends. If you can't bump into them in the hallway like you used to, you can still kind of bump into them on your feed and just see that they're okay and maybe have a laugh. Maybe the rest of us can actually take a hint from teenage girls. Speaker 10: 26:00 My advice to the elders living through this pandemic crisis is to try to stay in as much contact with loved ones digitally. Speaker 12: 26:11 These everyday moments might not seem like they're worth sharing, but for these girls it makes them feel less alone. Ooma told me she FaceTimes with her friends. Even when they're not talking to each other. Speaker 11: 26:24 It's kind of like having a TV on in the background. It's just kind of white noise, but it's more than that too cause there's a connection. So just like seeing other people no matter what that means, Speaker 12: 26:35 she added that maybe parents can help their teens by dare I say it, just letting them have the screen time. Speaker 11: 26:43 Let them connect Speaker 13: 26:44 with their friends because that's pretty much all they have right now. [inaudible] I want to introduce you to one more young adult. My usual hall. I go to Oakland tech. I'm a junior. I asked her, Nisha, what do you feel like you're missing when you can't see your friends in person? Um, physical contact. I'm used to like being able to like hug them. She kind of reminded me that we probably all could use a hug right now. Teens included, no matter how content they may seem glued to their phones. And Haley. Great. Speaker 9: 27:33 The fear of getting sick, financial pressures due to job loss or decreased hours, social isolation resulting from stay at home orders, distress from all the disruption and uncertainty brought by the coven. 19 crisis impacts each of us joining me to discuss ways to cope is dr Luke Bergman, director of San Diego County behavioral health services. Welcome to midday. Thanks so much for having me. First I want to ask you about the $25 million behavioral impact fund. The board of supervisors approved this morning. What will that fund be used for? Speaker 14: 28:05 It comes from money that was sort of locked up in litigation. So it's, it's one time funding. The idea will be that it will help to fund primarily capital projects for providers of behavioral health services. So mental health and substance use disorder treatment services. I think members of the board of supervisors today, we're unanimous. I think in noting that it's an important moment, um, to be making these kinds of funds available to, um, in particular community based programs that um, of course are, you know, facing their own challenges, uh, that you know, their own sort of bottom line and, and cashflow challenges and, and that those services will be, we anticipate especially critical in light of what's going on right now with covert 19, uh, given that we, we know from, from study of other population level natural disasters that while, you know, while a natural disaster or in this case a pandemic has a certain kind of epidemic or pandemic arc, what's going on with the economy will have a certain sort of trend line arc. A lagging arc will be that describing increases in, uh, mental health distress that will result in, uh, almost certainly increased rates of depression, uh, increased, uh, heightened anxiety. We anticipate seeing higher incidence of, of suicidality, um, higher incidence of, of drug overdose Speaker 9: 29:35 regarding the mental health impacts of the pandemic. A trauma is a powerful word associated with veterans or shooting victims for example. But you've said, we are all experiencing that right now. What's the nature of the trauma that we're going through now? Speaker 14: 29:49 The trauma that we are experiencing now results from a combination of things. The fact of being disconnected from people socially to the extent that we have to be under current public health, uh, orders and guidance is itself extremely disruptive to our sense of normal. And so there is something about that that is, that is traumatizing and, and of itself that coupled with the uncertainty and fear and fear that folks have about what this, um, what this virus is, what the associated disease covered 19 is what it can do, how it can be dangerous. There's so much uncertainty about that particularly. Uh, I think in light of the fact that folks who are asymptomatic or presymptomatic, I think there's, there's broadening understanding for, um, for the, you know, significant amount of, uh, community, uh, disease transmission that is happening between folks without symptoms. So there's increased uncertainty, fear associated with that. Speaker 14: 30:49 And then of course we, you know, we always see you where whenever there are significant economic downturns, we see significant increases in mental health distress resulting in increased suicidality, increased substance use, and those kinds of things. And so fear about what's going on economically is also traumatizing for, for folks. And for some people, of course, they are already experiencing the impacts of what's happened with the, you know, this sort of categorical shutdown on the economy. So many people are without employment that they never would have anticipated even two months ago. A change. That's that abrupt is traumatic. Speaker 9: 31:27 Yeah. So the suddenness that's hit all of us here in what you're saying is it's really on two fronts. You're, you're afraid of getting sick or someone you love is getting sick and caring for that person or yourself. And then of course the financial aspect. How should people work through addressing this trauma? Speaker 14: 31:42 So what's really important is that people are very observant of their own experience. Though it's been abrupt for lots of folks, but circumstances surrounding what they're going through right now are kind of mundane. You know, if you're in your home, certainly spent a lot of time in your home before. So it's, it's, you know, the way in which creeping anxiety and, and sort of steadily accruing, uh, depression can impact folks is maybe not something that people would recognize immediately. And it's really important that folks therefore keen observers of what they're experiencing and that they acknowledge that this is really difficult. That it's, that, you know, normal under these certain circumstances will be an experience of heightened anxiety, will be an experience of some depression. And it's incredibly important that folks observe that, that they acknowledge it. And then that they talk about it. And this is a point I want to elaborate on a little pet. Speaker 14: 32:42 I think that you know, that when, when you hear somebody from behavioral health say, you know, talk about it, there might be a, you know, sort of shrug of shoulders or um, or scoffing even. Cause of course that's what behavioral health is going to recommend. Um, the neuroscience though supporting how talking interrupts States of anxiety and stress by moving our response from the amygdala into the frontal cortex is really strong. This really works. Um, and so just as a, as a very, you know, a practical piece of advice, we recommend that this combination of observe what it is that you're going through. Think about it in the context of an acknowledgement that you're going through trauma and then talk about it. And if you don't feel like you have somebody to talk to, it's really important that you then reach out to some of the resources that the County is supporting and that have been longstanding, uh, and excellent within the County of San Diego. Primary among them is the, the access and crisis line that we are encouraging people to call. That number is eight, eight eight seven two four seven two four zero. It's a service that is open 24, seven. You will talk with a licensed counselor immediately. Um, they can help you with your immediate concern. Uh, I'll, I'll add in 150 different languages and they'll also help get you connected to ongoing care if that's something that you are interested in. And that's something that, uh, that you end up feeling would be appropriate for you. Speaker 9: 34:16 Now in the press conference on Sunday, you said we will see higher rates of depression, substance abuse, suicide attempts, drug overdoses. We started to see that yet, Speaker 14: 34:25 you know, interestingly, part of what we're seeing right now is a diminishment actually in presentations with behavioral health crises at our hospitals, including the San Diego County psych hospital. And this is a dynamic that we are in the midst of exploring my suspicion. I think, you know, a lot of folks in the field suspect that that what that reflects is fewer people getting access to care in the midst of this kind of heightened sense of crisis. And that's, that is part of what is, is contributing to this lagging indicator. So people are holding back from care now that is only gonna exacerbate their behavioral health conditions and it's only going to heighten need for care that they will have, uh, in the upcoming months. Speaker 9: 35:12 So the Corona virus epidemic and the economic fallout, the resulting impacts us unequally, which people are most susceptible to severe mental health impacts during this pen? Devic Speaker 14: 35:22 well, it, it certainly, um, is important to note that it is impacting all of us. So that's the first thing I would say is that everyone is experiencing some sort of distress as a result of this. That is the, that's the normal right now. It will disproportionately impact folks who have, um, behavioral health conditions already. Folks who are already going through depression, mood disorder, people with, um, with other psychiatric illnesses or people with substance use disorder. Those conditions will be exacerbated by it, by the current moment. So they will suffer disproportionately. And then it's also really important to note that that covert 19, while it is a, um, you know, a collective experience in, in lots of ways, uh, it also is, is impacting our community in terms of behavioral health unequally people who are more impoverished, uh, people who have a harder time navigating the current public health orders and also navigating the job system in the, in the context of all of these constraints are more vulnerable in lots of ways, you know, to the virus itself. And then following on that more vulnerable to uh, downstream behavioral health consequences. Speaker 9: 36:40 Few quick questions to end here. What advice do you have for parents and talking to their kids about the impact on them? Speaker 14: 36:46 Be direct with your children. That's what's really important. Don't be roundabout your, your, your kids want to know what's going on. Talk to them in a straightforward way. Encourage them just as you should. Be observant of your own feelings. Encourage them also to be observant of their own feelings. Speaker 9: 37:02 And if someone we know mentioned suicide or you feel suicidal yourself, what should we do? Speaker 14: 37:08 It's really important if somebody you know, or in contact with is expressing any suicidal ideation or suicidality to talk directly with them about it. If you hear them say something that raises alarms for you, tell them that you, that the alarms have been raised, that you, um, hear what they're saying, um, and that you are concerned about them and that you want to talk with them about that directly. Speaker 9: 37:32 And you also have a warning for those who use illegal drugs. Speaker 14: 37:36 You know, part of what's happening right now is that the whole street market is, uh, for uh, substances of use and abuse, uh, is very disrupted. And so we are hearing that there's a lot of dangerous product on the street right now. We would really encourage people that if ever there was a good time, uh, to engage in care, now is the time to engage in care. You can get that through the access and crisis line that I mentioned earlier. You can get medication assisted treatment if you've got an opioid use disorder. Also, if you're struggling with alcohol use disorder, now is the best time to seek care. Speaker 9: 38:12 And that access and crisis phone number again, Speaker 14: 38:15 it is (888) 724-7240 (888) 724-7240 Speaker 9: 38:22 I've been speaking with dr Luke Bergman, director of San Diego County behavioral health services. Thanks very much. Speaker 14: 38:28 Thanks so much for having me. Marcus Speaker 15: 38:32 [inaudible] Speaker 1: 38:36 like most other things right now, local animal shelters are closed to visitors. KPBS reporter Claire chaga, sir says this means shelter dogs aren't getting much attention right now, but many locals are stepping up to help by fostering dogs on a temporary basis. Speaker 16: 38:53 This is petunia. That's just my not [inaudible]. Speaker 12: 38:57 Just like most of us. Melanie Murnin is spending a lot of time at home these days, but she has some extra company Speaker 16: 39:05 and then my foster dog, Charlie is down below here. Charlie, can you say hi? He's looking for a home, Speaker 12: 39:13 but wait, there's one more. Speaker 16: 39:15 Even when you come out and say hi Speaker 12: 39:17 her second foster dog, third dog total baby girl hops out of her crate and goes straight from her name's [inaudible]. Speaker 16: 39:25 Straight out. Oh, nurture giving me kisses on chicks. He is. We'll find you a home walk. We Speaker 12: 39:32 Moraine has long worked with a dog rescue organization that takes dogs from local shelters and puts them temporarily in foster homes Speaker 16: 39:41 and then promote them on social media. Either find a home for them, find a longterm foster or, or if nothing is found they go back to the shelter but with all sorts of notes on how great they are in a home and whether they can live with a cat or a dog or children. Speaker 12: 39:59 Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, she's had a lot of company, lots of people are wanting to foster dogs. The San Diego humane society recently asked for foster volunteers and got more than 400 applications in the first few days. About half the animals in local shelters are now in foster homes. On March 11th before the stay at home orders 156 of the San Diego humane society animals were in foster homes. Now there are 332 Speaker 16: 40:32 and there was a dog that I had interacted with um, briefly when I was volunteering at the shelter and he was available. Speaker 12: 40:39 Mary, Mick. Andrew is one of those new foster volunteers. Speaker 16: 40:43 He was just a perfect match for me to take home. Speaker 12: 40:46 She volunteers at an animal shelter but hadn't brought a foster dog home before. She says the new reality brought on by the Corona virus made it the right time to start. Speaker 16: 40:58 We're home anyway. Um, especially for seniors. I mean, they can't see the grandkids. They can't go to yoga classes. There's so many things that can't do, but just spending time with the dog is, is just really, it's fun and it's stimulating. Speaker 12: 41:14 So Mick, Andrew and her husband fostered a German shepherd named Maverick. Speaker 16: 41:18 We've been out walking every day. We've explored parts of our neighborhood that we had never seen before. We've been greeting or neighbors that we've never met before who are out on the porch and from the can chat with them like distance were meeting other people's pets. Um, it's just been, it's gotten us not to think about what we can't do, but what we can do. Speaker 12: 41:41 Then Maverick was adopted, make. Andrew says she and her husband are already looking for another foster dog to bring home. Even though you can't visit their shelters, you can adopt through rescue organizations or the San Diego humane society. Spokeswoman Mina Thompson says their shelters are doing virtual adoptions. Speaker 16: 42:02 You would have a really in depth consultation about the pet that you're interested in before you ever even come down. She says, Speaker 12: 42:11 well, camp browse animals at the shelters. Adoptions haven't lagged significantly. Speaker 16: 42:16 We've had more animals going out than we've had coming in. Speaker 12: 42:22 Get Melanie Marine's house. She's working to get foster dogs, Charlie boy and baby girl ready for forever homes. Speaker 16: 42:30 She's 85 pounds overweight by about at least 20 pounds. So we're taking her for a short box each day working on her weight loss. Speaker 12: 42:41 She says there are other dogs available for adoption to a mass diff named big Mac and an older boxer named DeNiro. Claire triglyceride KPBS news. Speaker 1: 42:53 Well, you can adopt dogs from the humane society shelters run by San Diego county's department of animal services have suspended adoptions and don't need any more foster volunteers. A spokesman for the County didn't return requests for comment about why.

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UC San Diego will double its coronavirus testing capacity by mid-April. The university is part of a statewide task force to increase testing five-fold. As of this week, most San Diego Unified students are able to attend classes from home. How will distance learning work for parents, teachers and students? Also, because of the pandemic, animal shelters are closed but many people are stepping up to foster furry friends for the time being. And, the financial pressure, job loss and social distancing from COVID-19 is affecting some people’s mental health. Some resources on how to take care of your mental well-being.