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Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Apr 3, 2020

Accurate and current information about the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) can be found on these websites:

1. WA State Department of Health (DOH)

For a full list of resources, a summary of the risk to the general public, and regularly updated DOH news releases, visit the website for the WA State Department of Health (DOH).

2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Visit the website for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to learn about symptoms, how COVID-19 is spread, and prevention tips.

3. WA State Local Health Departments and Districts

Find the latest news updates from your county's health department at the website for the WA State Department of Health by clicking on your county.

NEWS UPDATES & RESOURCES

April 3, 2020

COVID-19 Drive-Thru Testing Site Accessibility

The Northwest ADA Center has provided guidance for accessibility needs when utilizing a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site. Read the guidelines at their website.

Free Cell Phones Through Lifeline

During the COVID-19 emergency, the Health Care Authority is offering free cell phones and minutes to low income individuals through a federal program called Lifeline. For information on the phone services and carriers click here. To apply, go to the free government cell phones website.

March 27, 2020

Graphics Communication Card for Coronavirus

Effective communication with caregivers and medical professionals is crucial. For a graphics communication card with useful terms related to seeking medical care, preventing virus transmission, symptoms, and more can be found and printed here.

March 23, 2020

FDA Alerts Consumers About Unauthorized, Fraudulent Coronavirus Test Kits

The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) is beginning to see unauthorized, fraudulent test kits that are being marketed to test for COVID-19 in the home.  THESE TEST KITS BEING SOLD DOOR TO DOOR OR ONLINE ARE A SCAM.  At this time, the FDA has not authorized any test that is available to purchase for testing at home for COVID-19.

Fraudulent health claims, tests, and products can pose serious health risks. They may keep some patients from seeking care or delay necessary medical treatment. The FDA will take appropriate action to protect consumers from bad actors who take advantage of a crisis to deceive the public by marketing tests that pose risks to patient health.

For more information, visit FDA's website.

March 20, 2020

Caring for Someone at Home

Care at home can help stop the spread of COVID-19 and help protect people who are at risk for getting seriously ill. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) offers tips about monitoring symptoms, knowing emergency warning signs, preventing the spread of germs at home, and more at their website.

Seven Strategies to Support Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) through Uncertain Times

  1. Support understanding
  2. Offer opportunities for expression
  3. Prioritize coping and calming skills
  4. Maintain routines
  5. Build new routines
  6. Foster connections (from a distance)
  7. Be aware of changing behaviors

Learn more about these strategies here. Scroll down to the bottom of the page for a detailed PDF information sheet.

Important Questions to Ask Your Home-Care Provider Prior to Them Entering Your House

To protect yourself and your family/roommates from exposure to COVID-19, consider asking anyone that enters your house some questions about their health and their activity. The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) developed a list of questions for case managers to ask their clients, and these questions are also important and relevant for clients to ask their care providers. Visit DDA's website.

What Do Older Adults and People with Disabilities Need to Know

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) offers helpful facts to consider, from explaining why older adults and some people with disabilities should take precautions to protect themselves, to tips to prevent illness. Visit the ACL website.

March 12, 2020

On Wednesday, March 11, Governor Inslee imposed emergency restrictions on large gatherings in Pierce, King, and Snohomish counties through March 31 to limit the spread of COVID-19.

We are asked to cancel public gatherings of 250 or more people for social, spiritual and recreational activities including, but not limited to community, civic, sporting events, parades, concerts, fundraisers, and other similar activities.

March 9, 2020

WA Insurance Commissioner Waives Copays for COVID-19 Testing

Great news! The WA State Insurance Commissioner has issued an emergency order to all WA State health insurers requiring them to waive copays and deductibles for any consumer requiring testing for coronavirus (COVID-19). Read more here.

Guidance for In-Home Care Providers

The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) has developed a guide for In-Home Care providers to assist the delivery of services. For information on their recommendations, click here.

WA State Department of Health Coronavirus Fact Sheet in 11 Languages

For a quick, printable PDF fact sheet available in 11 languages, click here.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Beware of Phishing Emails and Scams Related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Whenever an emergency or disaster situation of any kind arises, be aware that malicious people often try to manipulate our fears for their gain.

News reports indicate that threat actors are taking advantage of the Coronavirus outbreak in new phishing email campaigns using public fear to increase the likelihood that users will click on a link or open an attachment.

In one campaign, the phishing email reportedly impersonates the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, warning of new infections and promising to provide a list of active infections in the surrounding area if users click on a link.

Other phishing emails ask recipients to open an attachment to view safety measures regarding the spread of the virus. Cyber attacks often begin with phishing campaigns that try to trick you into downloading malware or providing account credentials.