Knox County Health Department Issues 'Safer at Home' Order

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
[email protected]
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

Last item for navigation
  • Share on Facebook
  • Share on Twitter
  • Share via Email

Knox County Health Department Issues 'Safer at Home' Order

Posted: 03/23/2020
Today the Knox County Public Health Officer Dr. Martha Buchanan issued an order closing non-essential businesses and encouraging residents throughout Knox County to stay home when possible and avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people for non-essential purposes.

Until further notice, all businesses not performing essential services have been ordered closed for 14 days beginning at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, March 24. A copy of the order and a complete list of essential service categories can be found at

This new public health measure is an extension of actions the City and County have already taken to reduce public gatherings and contact and is issued in support of our local health care partners to help ‘flatten the curve.’ These new measures are being taken to reduce the risk of COVID-19 to the general public and impact in Knox County and surrounding areas. Knox Countians are urged to continue to exercise caution, adhere to social distancing guidelines and maintain good hygiene practices.

“We understand the significant and, in many cases, devastating impact this will have on our families and local businesses, but we are hopeful this action will help save lives,” said Knox County Health Department Senior Director and Public Health Officer Dr. Martha Buchanan. “Now is a time for our community to come together and support each other in several ways: protecting those most at risk of serious illness and finding creative ways to support individuals and businesses most affected by this order.”

Residents with questions about their health should contact their primary care physicians. Those without a primary care physician, may call KCHD public information line at 865-215-5555 or toll-free at 888-288-6022. The information line is available from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday. Call volume is expected to be high. Callers are urged to be patient if they receive a busy signal and try their call at a later time.

In addition, the Tennessee Department of Health has a public information line, 877-857-2945, that is available 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. EST (10 a.m. - 10 p.m. Central time), seven days a week.

For more information on COVID-19, visit:

Knox County Health Department
Tennessee Department of Health
Centers for Disease Control: Updated Information and Guidance

About Knox County Health Department: 

The first health department in Tennessee to achieve national voluntary accreditation by the Public Health Accreditation Board, the Knox County Health Department (KCHD) is dedicated to ensuring the conditions in which every resident can be healthy. As a chief health strategist for the community and with more than 260 employees, KCHD’s broad scope of work includes convening partners to improve community health, identifying community health threats, investigating disease outbreaks, conducting extensive outreach and education, preparing for public health emergencies, providing and connecting the public with medical care, enforcing food safety and air quality laws, and more. For more information, visit