TX NAHRO Coronavirus Resource Page
As North Texans are ordered to shelter in place, will police stop residents to see where they’re going?
Mental health and coping during the COVID-19 crisis
The current coronavirus outbreak is causing anxiety for many people. Below are links to resources with helpful tips and strategies to help those who are struggling with anxiety around the coronavirus.
OSHA: Hazard recognition
OSHA: Control and prevention
To report a safety or health hazard, call our 24-hour, toll-free number, 800-452-9595, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Calls are taken in English and Spanish.
Need help with a claim? Call 800-252-7031, option 1.
Q: What do I do if I think I’ve contracted the coronavirus?
A: Contact your doctor and tell them you think you’ve contracted the coronavirus. They should let you know what to do, and if they need you to come into an office. If you need immediate care, contact a hospital and let them know. They can make sure they’re ready for your arrival and let you know where to go.
Q: I am sick and may not be able to go to my Benefit Review Conference or Contested Case Hearing. What do I do?
A: If you are not able to attend a scheduled Benefit Review Conference or Contested Case Hearing please call us at 512-804-4010.
Q: Does workers’ compensation cover coronavirus-related exposure or illness?
A: Workers’ compensation is an insurance program that pays for medical bills and some lost-time income for employees who have a work-related injury or illness. To qualify, an employer must have workers’ compensation insurance, and an employee must have been injured or contracted an occupational disease as a result of their employment. Whether a workers’ compensation claim is compensable or not is a case by case determination by the insurance carrier. If there is a dispute over a claim and you are not able to resolve the dispute with the insurance carrier, then you may ask for dispute resolution by contacting DWC.
Q: I work in the service industry. The city & the county just closed us down until further notice. How do I apply for benefits?
A: The Division of Workers’ Compensation regulates the workers’ compensation industry which pays benefits to employees who are injured on the job. If you are laid off or lose hours due to the coronavirus, you may be able to file for unemployment benefits. You can apply for those benefits with the Texas Workforce Commission online by using Unemployment Benefits Services or by calling TWC’s Tele-Center at 800-939-6631 from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., Central Time, Monday through Friday. You should also contact your employer since individual employers have made certain exceptions to their leave and pay policies during this time.
What to Do If You Are Sick
Symptoms of COVID‑19 may show up 2‑14 days after exposure. The steps you should take if you think you are sick with COVID‑19 depend on whether you have a higher risk of developing severe illness.
- Older adults (65 years and older)
- Heart Disease
- High Blood Pressure
- Weakened Immune Systems
- People 65 years or older, and/or people with medical issues, like heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, or a weakened immune system, are at a higher risk for getting very sick from COVID‑19.
- If you are a high-risk individual and you develop fever or symptoms, call your doctor.
- If you are not sick enough to be hospitalized, you can recover at home. Follow your doctor’s instructions and refer to CDC recommendations for how to take care of yourself at home.
- If you are in generally good health and have mild symptoms, stay home and take care of yourself like you would for a cold or the flu.
- If symptoms worsen, call your doctor.
If you need help finding a doctor or accessing medical care, call 2‑1‑1 and they can direct you to low- or no-cost providers in your area.
See the CDC website for more information on how to take care of yourself at home if you are sick:
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE SICK (CDC)
Information on disinfecting your home if someone is sick can also be found on the CDC website:
DISINFECTING YOUR HOME (CDC)
Your doctor will help make the decision if you should get tested for COVID‑19.
If you do not have health insurance, you can still get tested for COVID‑19 if your doctor or healthcare provider recommends it.
For information about testing, you just need to call your doctor and/or access care the way you usually do. If you need help finding a doctor or accessing medical care, call 2‑1‑1 and they can direct you to low- or no-cost providers in your area.
Symptoms of COVID-19
Patients with COVID‑19 have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness. Symptoms can include: Fever Cough Shortness of Breath
Learn more about COVID‑19 symptoms on the CDC website.
Prevention of COVID-19
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID‑19. The best way to prevent infection is to take steps to avoid exposure to this virus, which are similar to the steps you take to avoid the flu.
Wash hands with soap and water.
Use hand sanitizer as backup.
Cover coughs and sneezes.
Avoid touching face.
Disinfect often touched surfaces.
Avoid close contact.
DSHS recommends these everyday actions to help prevent the spread of any respiratory virus, including COVID‑19:
- Wash hands often for 20 seconds and encourage others to do the same.
- If no soap and water are available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue away.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Disinfect surfaces, buttons, handles, knobs, and other places touched often.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
DSHS also recommends that you start practicing social distancing. Social distancing involves staying away from other people to avoid catching or spreading illness. It’s a fancy term for avoiding crowds and minimizing physical contact. This could mean avoiding concerts or weddings, skipping the handshake, and/or staying at least six feet away from others.
See the CDC website for more information on what you can do at home to prevent the spread of COVID‑19:
GET YOUR HOUSEHOLD READY FOR COVID‑19 (CDC)
How COVID-19 Spreads
Current understanding about how the virus that causes COVID‑19 spreads is largely based on what is known about similar coronaviruses.
The virus is thought to spread mainly from person to person:
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest). Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
Download the Stop the Spread of Germs flyer.
To learn key facts and help stop the spread of rumors, see the Share Facts, Not Fear page on the CDC’s COVID‑19 website.
For more in-depth information on COVID‑19, see the CDC’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).
How to talk to kids about the novel coronavirus, Seattle Times
Supporting Students’ Emotional Wellbeing
As more information is shared about the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), you may notice your child experiencing a wider range of emotions such as worry and fear. In addition, with the closure of schools and not being able to interact with friends, school staff, and other caring adults on a regular basis, some children might also experience sadness and frustration. There are many steps you can take to support your child during these uncertain times.
Here are some ideas for families:
- Reassure your child that all feelings are normal
- Make time to talk with your child about their feelings and questions
- Limit screen time and access to social media
- Pay attention to what your child is watching and reading and for how long
- Model positive self-care strategies, your child is learning how to manage their emotions from the caring adults in their life
- Provide honest information that is age appropriate and avoid sharing assumptions about who is sick with COVID-19
- Work with your child to develop a consistent “new” daily routine, samples will be provided later this week.
A few helpful resources:
- Talking with children about Coronavirus Disease 2019: Messages for parents, school staff, and others working with children
- Tips for Caregivers, Parents, and Teachers During Infectious Disease Outbreaks
- Just For Kids: A Comic Exploring The New Coronavirus
- Talking to Kids About COVID-19
We recognize this is a very challenging time. The magnitude of change and uncertainty can take a toll on your personal wellbeing while you are also supporting the wellbeing of your family. Please take care of yourself. We will continue to provide updates later this week as more information becomes available.
If you have been laid off or your job has been cut back in any way due to the coronavirus you have support available click here
Emergency Relief Funds:
United Way COVID-19 Community Economic Relief Fund. They will help with bills, rent and food. You can call 1-866-211-9966 and provide zip code and will be given a list of local agencies to provide assistance.
FUN Things to do while Stuck at Home
KIDS: Fun and Free Ways to learn from home
Abilene Housing Authority’s Plan to Prevent the spread of COVID-19
During this unprecedented time, the Abilene Housing Authority’s (AHA’s) primary concern is for the health and safety of our community, residents and staff. As the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to impact Texas and the rest of the world, AHA is taking extra precautionary measures to limit in-person interactions as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and asking partners to call, email or mail inquiries rather than visit our offices.
AHA staff will continue to work, at this time, while we are closed to the public. We encourage the community to visit our website for important operational updates and changes.
Below, AHA outlines how we will operate our Public Housing and Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) programs until further notice:
IMPLEMENTED ACTIONS FOR PUBLIC HOUSING PROGRAM/RESIDENTS
Effective Thursday, March 19, 2020, and until further notice, AHA will implement the following precautions to protect its residents:
- Suspension of notices to vacate
- Suspension of evictions for non-criminal activity
- Suspension of transfers, move-ins & move-outs
- Suspension of routine work orders
- Suspension of housekeeping inspections
- Suspension of late fees
- Suspension of all resident activities
- Closure of all property management offices and community rooms; residents should email or call
- Emergency work orders will require additional troubleshooting via phone call
- Existing repayment agreements will be extended
- Recertification deadlines will be extended
- Rent payments should be made by mail
- Visitors for social purposes, especially at elderly properties, are discouraged; medically-related visitors and caregivers may continue to visit residents
- Pest control services will be conducted on the exterior of buildings and common areas (pest control services will be temporarily suspended in resident units)
Residents are encouraged to call AHA during regular work hours with questions or email questions to our email@example.com email address and continue to watch the website (www.abileneha.org) for updates on this rapidly changing situation.
IMPLEMENTED ACTIONS FOR HOUSING CHOICE VOUCHER (HCV) PROGRAM/PARTICIPANTS
Effective Thursday, March 19, 2020, and until further notice, AHA will implement the following precautions to protect its participants:
- Recertification deadlines will be extended
- Closure of HCV lobby; clients should email or call
- Suspension of inspections
- Suspension of terminations for non-criminal activity
- Suspension of voucher issuance for current and new clients
- Suspension of moves and ports
- Landlord payments will continue to be processed, although, delays may occur
HCV Participants are encouraged to call AHA during regular work hours with questions or email questions directly to your caseworker or to our firstname.lastname@example.org email address and continue to watch the website (www.abileneha.org) for updates on this rapidly changing situation.
AHA ENCOURAGES THE COMMUNITY TO STAY INFORMED OF COVID-19
Below are some information resources on COVID-19 that AHA currently uses to stay informed about the situation and that the community can use to get information:
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) – www.CDC.gov
City of Abilene Health Department – www.abilenetx.gov/Health
2-1-1 Texas A Call for Help/United Way – www.acallforhelp.info/cms/
Texas Health and Human Services – dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/
This is a fluid situation that is changing daily, we thank you in advance for your continued patience, understanding and flexibility. Please continue to watch our website for updates.
AHA has implemented these items to ensure the safety of the communities we serve, its residents and its employees.
Abilene Housing Authority, CEO