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Palm Beach County Convention Center 'open for business' amidst coronavirus concerns

Posted at 4:51 PM, Mar 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-09 18:41:32-04

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — The Palm Beach County Convention Center is taking action after a person who attended a convention there was diagnosed with coronavirus.

On Monday, Palm Beach County tourism leaders held a private meeting with attractions and hotels to address coronavirus concerns.

MORE: Latest news on coronavirus

"We are open for business," said Glenn Jergensen with the Tourist Development Council.

That’s the message from tourism leaders in Palm Beach County. On Monday afternoon, Discover the Palm Beaches teamed up with Dr. Alina Alonso from the Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County to hold a coronavirus question and answer session.

"We want to keep the public calm, answer their questions and at the same time alleviate some of the fears that they have," said Dr. Alonso.

The private meeting comes after an announcement that a Pennsylvania man who tested positive for coronavirus previously attended a Feb. 28 conference held at the Palm Beach County Convention Center.

"So in this situation, the individual was in our building for one day on Feb. 28 and they actually had showed no signs of the virus they were tested in another state," said Dave Anderson, General Manager of the Palm Beach County Convention Center "So, they gave us notice that this individual happened to be here."

Anderson said that ever since the notification, they’ve been increasing their daily cleaning to focus on what he calls common touch points.

"So you’re talking door handles, bathroom doors, escalator handles," said Anderson.

Anderson said they haven’t had any cancellations, but added they are reaching out to their clients to address concerns.

"It’s winter time, it’s season, so we certainly want to make sure everybody comes down and pays us a visit and stay in the hotels and go to the attractions," said Jergensen. "We understand that it’s a concern but it’s an individual decision if somebody with travel or not."

As of now, upcoming events like the Palm Beach International Boat Show and SunFest are scheduled to go on as normal.

County tourism leaders said it's up the organizer of each event to determine what's best for them.