NCWLIFE Evening News March 20th, 2020

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Good evening and welcome to the NCWLIFE Evening News. I’m Grant Olson. Before we get to today’s top news stories, let’s take a quick look outside our weather window:

And now, a few of the stories we’re following for you tonight, Recent coronavirus cases were discovered through drive-through community testing, put in place by Confluence Health, but, now they’re shut down. Like Other healthcare facilities statewide, Cascade Medical Center in Leavenworth is suspending some important but medically non-essential services. East Wenatchee City Hall is the latest and possibly the last local public building to close its doors this week as part of the COVID-19 response, and, There have been more than 177 blood drives cancelled in Washington and Oregon since the coronavirus outbreak, creating what the Washington Department of Health calls a significant public health risk.   

But first, we begin tonight. . .

A third patient in Chelan County has tested positive for the novel coronavirus infection. The Chelan-Douglas Health District reported the finding this morning, but medical authorities wouldn’t release information about the patient’s identity or medical status. Confluence Health spokesman Andrew Canning said the patient was tested by Confluence staff, and the result came back from the University of Washington health laboratories Thursday night.

He said the Health District asked Confluence not to disclose further information about COVID-19 patients, aside from county of residence. Two other patients identified this week are isolated after their diagnosis. One other patient, a Grant County resident, died two weeks ago of COVID-19 complications while hospitalized in Wenatchee. The discovery of new cases is not unexpected, the district said. Continued social-distancing practices and rigorous hand-washing are still encouraged. The case becomes one of 1,376 detected in Washington so far, with 74 deaths from the virus.

Recent coronavirus cases were discovered through drive-through community testing, put in place by Confluence Health. In a press conference Thursday with local leaders, CEO Peter Rutherford said it’s a good idea for the Wenatchee Valley. But, he explained supply problems led to the end of quick testing, just four days after it began.

You view the full press conference from Thursday on our website, ncwlife.com.

Like Other healthcare facilities statewide, Cascade Medical Center in Leavenworth is suspending some important but medically non-essential services.

Those include mammography, rehabilitation and physical therapy. Staff in those areas will move to other duties. Hospital CEO Diane Blake says the practice keeps Cascade workers and the public more safe from the spread of coronavirus.

East Wenatchee City Hall is the latest and possibly the last local public building to close its doors this week as part of the COVID-19 response.

Mayor Jerrilea Crawford announced the closure Thursday evening. Like other government agencies, including county offices and the city of Wenatchee, East Wenatchee wants residents to use its online or telephone services instead of using the offices in person. City staff remain available 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday by phone. The city’s website for services is east-wenatchee.com.

There have been more than 177 blood drives cancelled in Washington and Oregon since the coronavirus outbreak, creating what the Washington Department of Health calls a QUOTE, significant public health risk, UNQUOTE. Betsy Robertson, a communications manager with the Northwest Region of the American Red Cross said there have been 4,886 fewer donations in the region. . .

Robertson said communities can still arrange blood drives. . .

Coming up next, The Wenatchee School District has expanded its meal services by designating drop-off spots. A former Quincy city employee who was sexually harassed on the job cannot sue the city for her disability claim. Current indicators reveal a mixed-bag of economic news for the Wenatchee metropolitan statistical area for January of this year.  I’m Grant Olson and you’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News.

Welcome back, and in other news. . .

The Wenatchee School District has expanded its meal services by designating drop-off spots.

Even though school was cancelled as of last Tuesday, the district has continued to provide pick-up meals at most of its schools. The district went a step further Thursday with mobile deliveries. The meals are available from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Friday. A complete list of the drop-off sites can be found on the district’s website at Wenatchee schools dot org.

A former Quincy city employee who was sexually harassed on the job cannot sue the city for her disability claim.

That’s the finding of the state Court of Appeals. The woman was working as an administrative assistant in 2014 when a male coworker harassed her, to the point of exposing himself in the office. The male staffer was fired and the woman took leave for treatment of PTSD, but nine months later the city fired her too, for failing to return to work. The appeals court says a Grant County judge was right to throw out her lawsuit against the city, because she never asked for a reasonable accommodation for her disability.

Current indicators reveal a mixed-bag of economic news for the Wenatchee metropolitan statistical area for January of this year.

On the positive side, preliminary nonfarm employment estimates indicate that job growth rates in the Wenatchee MSA have increased in each of the past three months, encouraging economic news.

Also, the local Civilian Labor Force (CLF) has expanded, year over year, in 30 of the past 31 months (July 2017 through January 2020) indicating that Chelan and Douglas counties residents are still entering the labor force. On the negative side, nonfarm job growth in the Wenatchee MSA was less than stellar in 2019, especially when one considers that Washington’s nonfarm market expanded at a 2.0-percent pace last year.

You’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News. Coming up next, tonight’s feature story and your complete local weather forecast. That and much more still to come on the NCWLIFE Evening News, stay with us.

Welcome back to the NCWLIFE Evening News. . .

Just like everybody else in the House of Representatives, Congresswoman Kim Schrier is trying to stay healthy while she does the nation’s business … including emergency legislation on coronavirus. In tonight’s feature story, The 8th District Democrat took a break today to talk by Skype with NCWLIFE’s Jefferson Robbins. . .

And that is a look at your local weather forecast, coming up next, tonight’s sports report with Eric Granstrom and more as the NCWLIFE Evening News continues right after this.

WARNING!  This sportscast is going to make you miss sports even more!  OK, you’ve been warned!

If you’re like us and REALLY miss any kind of sports whatsoever, especially LOCAL, high school sports, the NCWLIFE Channel has you covered!

Tune in tonight at 7 o’clock for both ends of a Big-9 baseball doubleheader from a season ago between the Wenatchee Panthers and the West Valley Rams.  Game 1 went Wenatchee’s way as Joel Norman had the call here on the NCWLIFE Channel…

Wenatchee went on to win the game 10-nothing in 5-innings and then won the nightcap 6-zip.  Watch all the action tonight, starting at 7 here on NCWLIFE.

Then, if that’s no enough, we have two great soccer matches tomorrow afternoon and evening on NCWLIFE.  First at 2 o’clock, it’s Wenatchee and Eastmont from March 26th in a snowy Lee Bofto Field at the Apple Bowl.  The Panthers and Wildcats would notch yet another classic in the series as Sebastian Moraga and Matt Wisen had the call here on the NCWLIFE Channel…

Then tomorrow night at 7, it’s Wenatchee hosting another Big-9 tilt against the Moses Lake Chiefs from April 2nd last year. 

See, we told you this sportscast was going to make you REALLY miss sports!  And now, the item that will put you over the top, my continuing series… “No Sports – No Problem!”…

Thanks Eric.

And that’s going to do it for our newscast tonight. For more on these stories and other news from around North Central Washington, you can find us on Facebook or our website at ncwlife.com. And, remember, if you see news happening we’d like to hear from you.  You can send us an email at news@ncwlife.com, or give us a call 888-NCWL (6295). I’m Grant Olson, thanks for joining us and have a great weekend.