Northam, VB mayoral candidate Wagner join local healthcare officials for COVID-19 roundtable

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Gov. Ralph Northam and Virginia Beach mayoral candidate Jody Wagner held a roundtable discussion Thursday evening regarding the impacts of COVID-19 on the Virginia Beach community.

Healthcare workers from around the city joined the roundtable to share experiences during the pandemic and offer suggestions on the path forward to prevent the spread while keeping families safe.

“Hear what’s really going on out there on the ground with our physicians our providers who are really taking care of individuals especially during — especially during — COVID-19. This has been a really challenging time,” Northam said.

Many of the participants offered up personal experiences and concerns as families continue to operate in this new normal.

The group representing different health sectors spoke on new collaborations they’ve created and things like the need for more doctors to take Medicare patients at this time.

Elleni Kapoor, who’s a children’s dentist in the area, says she’s seeing the overwhelming effects the pandemic has had on children’s oral health.

“I’ve noticed that a lot of parents’ households have been high stress lately and that wears the kids down a lot and because of the high stress they’re neglecting their children with their oral health. Oral health is so important. As dentists we worry because a lot of diseases start with oral health,” said Kapoor.

Wagner says she believes there’s a gap in local leadership to help improve issues like Kapoor’s. She says broader community outreach is important, and something she prepares to tackle if elected.

“One thing we’ve been hearing from individuals, physicians and businesses is they aren’t getting enough guidance from the city. That there’s no central communication. Nobody they can go to and get an answer, so one thing we’re going to have to do is address that problem,” said Wagner.

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