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Tennessee Governor Bill Lee’s COVID-19 Bulletin #9

Tennessee State GovernmentNashville, TN – Today, Tuesday, March 31st, 2020, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee provided an update on Tennessee’s efforts regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) relief.

Governor Lee’s daily press conferences can be viewed live each day this week at 3:00pm CT here. Governor Lee has also established a website specific to Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates which can be found here.

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee
Tennessee Governor Bill Lee

Key Updates

Statewide Safe at Home Order

Tonight at 11:59pm the statewide safer at home order begins which restricts businesses that cannot possibly safely operate during Coronavirus (COVID-19). Businesses like barber shops, salons, recreational and entertainment outfits are to remain closed until April 14th, 2020 at 11:59pm. The order, at the same time, provides for the continuation of essential businesses throughout every county.

More information regarding essential businesses is available here. Tennesseans in non-essential roles are urged to stay at home during this time.

PPE Procurement and Distribution

25 companies and universities have made significant donations of personal protective equipment (PPE) to the State of Tennessee to assist health care workers and those on the front lines.

These donations, in conjunction with the aggressive supply procurement of Unified-Command has enabled the administration to connect with all 95 counties, assess needs and mobilize supplies. 

Companies and non-profits who are ready to help with supplies and other innovations are urged to contact Launch Tennessee. Since the announcement yesterday, COVID-19 Unified Command’s partnership with Launch Tennessee has already netted 100 companies who are willing to get to work in fighting this pandemic.

Data Communication

COVID-19 Unified Command in conjunction with the Tennessee Department of Health will be releasing three new numbers in the daily reporting: negative results by county, projected number of patients who have recovered from Coronavirus (COVID-19) and deaths identified by county. This information is available here.

Administration Actions

Mental Health Support

To serve individuals who need professional behavioral health help during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Tennessee’s behavioral health providers and the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services have been working closely over recent weeks to ensure seamless delivery of services.

These groups have been working to expand telehealth services, implement daily conference calls to address needs as they arise, and increase collaboration to procure necessary PPE for front-line mental health workers who continue to interface with patients.

The United States Department of Health and Human Services has awarded Tennessee a grant to provide mobile behavioral health care units for rural counties in East and West Tennessee. These mobile units will expand services Tennessee provides through partnerships with non-profits. 

Tennessee’s front-line crisis services system is well-equipped to meet the needs of Tennesseans. Available resources include a 24-7 crisis phone line (855.CRISIS.1 or 855.274.7471), mobile crisis for both adults and children and youth, crisis walk-in centers, crisis stabilization units, and crisis respite.

To meet the ongoing/non-emergency mental health needs of Tennesseans who are uninsured and have no means to pay, the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services and 15 community behavioral health providers offer the Behavioral Health Safety Net which meets the essential mental health needs of Tennesseans 18 years of age and older who are at or below 138% Federal Poverty Level.  These vital services are available in all 95 counties.

Current Department of Health Testing Results (as of 2 p.m. 3/31)

Laboratory Type Positive Test Negative Tests Total
State PH Lab 242 1,590 1,832
Non-State PH Lab 1,997 23,531 25,528
Total 2,239 25,121 27,360


For more information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Tennessee, please visit the Tennessee Department of Health’s website here.


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