UNICOI COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Unicoi County residents who are “high risk” for COVID-19 complications can get some help from the sheriff’s office.
Sheriff Mike Hensley announced Tuesday that his department is setting aside two deputies to pick up essential medicine and groceries for citizens who would be most vulnerable to COVID-19.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, older adults, people who have serious chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes and lung disease are at a higher risk of severe illness from the novel coronavirus.
Hensley said the service will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. beginning March 18 until further notice. Participating businesses and pharmacies include Clinchfield Drug, Roller Pharmacy, Walgreens, Food Lion, Food City and Walmart in Unicoi County.
The service will include deliveries only and deputies will not be able to offer rides, Hensley said, and deputies can only pick up items in Unicoi County.
Those who require assistance can call the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Office at 423-743-7864 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to request a delivery. Citizens should pay for the items in advance and alert pharmacies that a deputy will pick up the items.
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COVID-19 is the disease caused by a novel coronavirus first detected in humans in Wuhan, China, in late 2019.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the first symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, cough and shortness of breath 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.
Severe symptoms that require immediate medical attention include difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to arouse and bluish lips or face.