Guilford County government has declared a State of Emergency due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Chairman of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners Jeff Phillips issued the order late Friday, March 13, effective immediately.

A press release announcing the declaration stated that the decision was made “due to the severity of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) currently affecting the United States and the world as a whole.”

The county’s decision follows a decision earlier this week by NC Gov. Roy Cooper to declare a State of Emergency for North Carolina.

The county’s March 13 declaration allows its emergency planners to take some actions swiftly that would otherwise require red tape and a lengthier process. The county’s press release, sent out after the close of business hours on Friday, stated that this action would “streamline administrative processes” and prepare the county to receive state and federal assistance.

The statement also encouraged all county residents to follow “any and all directives and recommendations set forth by the North Carolina Governor’s Office, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, and the Guilford County Department of Public Health.”

It notes that the declaration is “one of many administrative steps in a very long process.”

Phillips said in a prepared written statement that the future is uncertain but Guilford County is ready.

“While no one can clearly predict how this situation will continue to evolve,” Phillips stated, “I am confident about our emergency preparedness plans and our staff and community stakeholders are doing their best to protect our citizens.”

The declaration also instructed residents where they can find the latest information on the outbreak. Those with smartphones can download the “Ready NC” mobile app, and others can visit the Guilford County government’s social media accounts and Ready Guilford accounts ( or Guilford County’s main website