We are here to help you.
We are committed to serving you during this time of uncertainty surrounding the spread of the coronavirus, and will do all that we can to help you.
Here’s what you need to know about CIDNY:
- We are continuing to work with our consumers, but via telephone only. You can reach our Manhattan office at 212-674-2300 and our Queens office at 646-442-1520. If we are unable to speak with you when you call, we will return all messages as soon as we are able.*** ASL-speaking consumers can call our Manhattan office VP line at 646-350-2681 or our Queens VP line at 347-561-4883. (Scroll down to see our video message below.)
- All walk-in hours, in-person meetings, counseling sessions, and workshops are canceled until further notice. We will resume all of these as soon as we are able.
- Future announcements will be posted on this page and will be shared via email on our mailing list. If you would like to receive our newsletters and announcements via email, sign up here.
You may have noticed that public spaces such as museums, libraries, and many nonprofits are closing or no longer offering face-to-face counseling, workshops, or other gatherings. If you can, we encourage you to avoid large gatherings and places where there are many people at higher risk, limit close contact with others, wash your hands frequently, and follow other precautions. As NYC and the surrounding area begins a phased opening it is important to maintain precautions such as social distancing and face coverings if possible.
Please reach out if you are having difficulty following preventive measures such as having enough food to remain at home. Please also let us know if you are having interruptions in medical care or community-based services and we will try and help.
Advice for People at Increased Risk
CIDNY has received guidance that we wanted to share with you from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene for people who may have an increased risk for contracting a severe form of the coronavirus disease.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) classifies people with disabilities as having an increased risk. You can learn more about their precaution recommendations at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/people-with-disabilities.html.
Are you feeling okay?
If you are experiencing fever, cough or shortness of breath and traveled to an area where COVID-19 is spreading, or you have had close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, call your health care provider. Your provider will work with the Health Department to determine if you need testing. If you need help finding a health care provider, call 311.
Facts About 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Vaccine
1. What are coronaviruses?
Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that are common throughout the world. They cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to more serious illnesses like pneumonia. A novel (new) coronavirus is a type of coronavirus that has not been previously seen in humans.
2. What is 2019 novel coronavirus?
2019 novel coronavirus is a new type of coronavirus identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness (which affects breathing) called COVID-19 that was first detected in Wuhan, China. It is reported in countries all across the globe, including the U.S.
The virus is not being spread by people of any particular race, ethnicity, national origin, or religion. It is important that people understand this and do not discriminate.
3. How serious is this virus and what are the range of symptoms?
Reported symptoms due to infection with the virus that causes COVID-19 have ranged from mild to severe. Symptoms can include fever, cough or shortness of breath.
4. Who is at higher risk for severe illness?
People who are older or may have underlying disabilities or medical conditions (such as diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease, immunosuppression, or cancer) or are over 60 years of age appear to have a higher risk of severe COVID-19. Children and young adults can be in the higher risk category if they have one of these conditions.
5. How does this virus spread?
Person-to-person spread is thought to occur mainly via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how the flu and other respiratory illnesses spread.
6. How long before symptoms of the virus appear?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) believes at this time that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear between two and 14 days after exposure.
7. How can I find a COVID-19 testing location?
To find a free testing location near you, text ‘COVID TEST’ to 855-48 or go to http://nyc.gov/covidtest.
8. How can I request a free at-home COVID-19 test?
Homes in the U.S. may be eligible to order four free at-home COVID-19 tests. Orders will usually ship in 7-12 days. To order your free COVID-19 at-home test go to https://www.covidtests.gov/.
9. How can I find out more about a COVID-19 vaccine?
For more information on COVID-19 vaccines go to https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-vaccines.page.
10. How can I find out if I’m eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine?
All New Yorkers age 5+ are now eligible for vaccination. The vaccine has recently been authorized by the FDA for children 6 months through 4 years of age.
11. What documentation or proof of eligibility do you need to provide for the COVID-19 vaccine?
You may need to provide documentation certifying your eligibility prior to or at your vaccination appointment. This may include a copy of your vaccine appointment registration and form of ID with your address on it such as an NYS Driver License of NYC ID card.
IMPORTANT: You may need to complete the NYS COVID-19 Vaccine Form in order to get vaccinated. NYS requires the provider administering the vaccine to check that you completed the form. You can complete the form at https://forms.ny.gov/s3/vaccine. You may want to print or save this page for your records.
12. Where can I find a vaccine location and/or schedule an appointment?
You can visit https://vaccinefinder.nyc.gov/ to find a COVID-19 vaccination location. Put in your address to find a location near you and then click “Schedule appointment” to schedule your vaccine.
13. Do I need a second dose of the vaccine? When should I get it?
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses. According to CDC guidelines, you should schedule your second dose 21 to 42 days (Pfizer) or 28 to 42 days (Moderna) after the first dose. If you are unable to do so, get your second dose as soon as possible after that.
14. Do I need a third dose of the vaccine? When should I get it? Is it the same as a booster?
Currently, only individuals who are moderately to severely immunocompromised are eligible for a third dose. The third dose is not the same as a booster. A third dose is for individuals who may not have had the same immune response as someone who is not immunocompromised. This third dose will help provide them sufficient protection. The CDC recommends a third dose for anyone who is:
– Been receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
– Received an organ transplant and are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
– Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
– Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
– Advanced or untreated HIV infection
– Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress your immune response
15. How can I get the COVID-19 vaccine if I am unable to leave my home?
NYC is currently offering the COVID-19 vaccine to people age 12+ who are homebound or unable to leave their home. You can sign up at https://forms.cityofnewyork.us/f/home, but know that signing up does not guarantee a vaccine. If you need assistance with this or requesting an accommodation, please let us know.
16. Are masks and vaccines required at public businesses?
Masks are still highly recommended. As of 03/07/2022 restaurants and indoor venues are no longer have to require proof of vaccination. Mask mandates are still in effect for public mass transit. Broadway shows will require a mask through at least 06/30/2022. Health care facilities including nursing homes, correctional facilities, shelters, and individuals businesses may choose to have their own mask mandates. Masks will be optional for public school students ages 5 and up. The rule mandating employee vaccinations remains in effect.
17. Who can I contact for help with the vaccine or other COVID-19 related needs.
For COVID-19 related assistance such as vaccine appointment help, questions about the vaccine, transportation needs, and other benefits you can reach out to a COVID-19 Liaison (through NY Connects at CIDNY) at 917-810-2565.
Frequently Asked Questions About Coronavirus/COVID-19
Below are a few questions and answers we hope can help you at this time. We will be updating these as we receive new information.
Is there any information about a COVID-19 booster shot/vaccine?
The booster shot is for individuals who received both doses of their Covid-19 vaccine. It is meant to increase protection from Covid-19 as the protection from the initial two doses may be waning.
Once a booster is approved, the CDC recommends that individuals get a booster shot 8 months after their second dose.
Are buses and subway service still running?
Yes, but there are still a few changes and people should practice social distancing.
*Masks are still required at indoor train stations and on board subways, commuter rail, buses, and paratransit vehicles.
Please check the MTA website (https://new.mta.info/coronavirus) for the latest updates.
Is Access-A-Ride still running?
Access-A-Ride is still running and collecting fares. This includes shared rides.
Participants in the on-demand pilot can continue to use the service for essential travel as usual. No new riders will be added.
Can I still sign up/schedule an assessment for Access-A-Ride?
Some Access-A-Ride assessment centers may be closed. More information about Access-A-Ride and paratransit can be found here: https://new.mta.info/accessibility/paratransit.
Can I shop for groceries online with my SNAP Benefits?
Yes, you can! You can now use your Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to shop online for groceries. Use your EBT card to shop securely for fresh produce and groceries at these participating stores in the NYC area (links below are clickable):
Note: SNAP benefits cannot be used to pay delivery fees. Make sure an online store delivers to your home address. You should confirm that SNAP is accepted before placing an order. For the most up to date information on SNAP Benefits please visit: https://otda.ny.gov/SNAP-COVID-19/.
Where can I get information about schools and potential remote learning?
For up-to-date information from the NYC Department of Education please visit: https://www.schools.nyc.gov/coronavirus.
What do I do if I can’t pay my rent and/or face eviction?
The eviction moratorium has expired. If you need help with rent or face eviction, please contact us to ask about your options.
I have another question that isn’t answered here. Who do I talk to?
If you have a question or concern that isn’t addressed here, please contact us at email@example.com and we will do our best to put you in touch with someone who can help you.