Harlem United’s Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic

UPDATED 8/31/2020

Like so many of you, Harlem United has spent the last several months learning about the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19), processing what this pandemic means for our staff, clients, and communities. Many of our colleagues, clients, neighbors, and friends are more vulnerable to Covid-19 because of underlying chronic conditions, homelessness, undocumented or uninsured statuses. Our communities need more care in the face of this pandemic and depend on our extra help. At Harlem United, this means changing the way we work to keep our communities safer and healthier. We’re all in this together, and we are committed to keeping essential services open to provide for those most in need.

Therefore, Harlem United will suspend some services and change the hours of other services until further notice. These timings are dependent on any necessary extensions to comply with potential government orders.

This page is up to date with our latest timings, resource links, and emergency protocols, as events unfold through September 30, 2020.

OUR CURRENT ON-SITE HOURS OF OPERATION

Health Services:
The Nest Community Health Center (169 W. 133rd Street, NY, NY) – The clinic is open Monday – Friday from 8:30 am – 5:00 pm. There are no primary care appointments on Saturdays, however, the Wellness Center is open from 9:00 am – 2:00 pm. Beginning September 14, primary care will be open until 8:30 pm on Mondays, and the Wellness Center will be open until 7:30 pm. 

We continue to conduct telehealth visits and we are seeing people on-site for high need, urgent follow-up care. We are also welcoming new patients, however, patients are encouraged to call the clinic first before coming.

Anyone entering the building must wear a face mask. If you do not have a face mask, one will be provided. If a patient requires an escort, the patient should have their escort bring them to the clinic and wait for the patient outside. All visitors and patients will have their temperature taken upon arrival and be screened for Covid-19 risk factors before checking in. All patients are encouraged to maintain social distance while in the facility.

Dental  – Open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday – Friday for all dental care. 

Specialty Services – Gynecology services are provided at The Nest three days per week.  Podiatry is available at The Nest on the first and third Monday of the month and cardiology is providing both telehealth and on-site services at The Nest on Thursdays.

Appointment Protocols – If a patient has any symptoms identified by the CDC as linked to Covid-19, they will be given an appointment after the provider has contacted them. They should not walk in. Patients that do not have fever, cough, or shortness of breath and have another urgent medical issue should contact the call center (646-762-4950).

Telehealth visits – Telehealth visits are being offered to patients to avoid large patient gatherings in waiting areas and ensure continuity of care for patients who require medication refills.

Housing:
Housing services continue via telehealth and Covid-19 Wellness checks for scattered-site clients. Staff also continue to provide onsite coverage at New Broadway and the Congregate sites.

Prevention: Certain prevention department operations such as groups continue to be suspended until further notice.  Staff will be in contact with clients by phone and therapy will be provided remotely. Some case management and patient navigation services may resume in September. Mobile testing services will resume on September 15th: Tuesdays and Wednesdays outside 290 Malcolm X Blvd from 10am-2pm. Staff will provide rapid HIV and HCV testing, and linkages to PrEP/PEP.

Mobile Syringe Exchange – The mobile unit is now operating Monday through Friday: East Tremont in the Bronx on Mondays and Fridays, 10:00 am – 3:00 pm; outside of 290 Malcolm X Blvd on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm; and Coney Island on Thursdays, 11:00 am – 3:00 pm.

In addition, you may call the main number (212-803-2850), which will have an ongoing message with updates.

Supportive Services:
Willis Green Jr. Community Health Center and ADHC
(123-125 W. 124th Street, NY, NY) – ADHC has temporarily suspended regular services as directed by the State Department of Health, AIDS Institute. Willis Green is open from 8:00 am – 11:00 am for distribution of “Grab and Go” breakfast and lunch. In addition, a nurse will be on-site during these hours to provide a 30-day supply of DOT medication for those clients in need. Primary care will be provided at Willis Green on Mondays, 8:30 am – 12:00 pm, and Tuesday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm.

Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) – FNS continues services in a limited capacity to ensure coverage of meal distribution. Effective March 30th, FNS provides pantry bags one day a week on Thursdays at Willis Green from 11:15 am – 2:30 pm. Pantry bags include nonperishable food to cover 5 meals. Assessments, reassessments and individual counseling take place by telephone.

Health Home – Health Home is operating via telehealth, providing Covid-19 Wellness checks and ongoing health assessments for clients.

WHAT HARLEM UNITED IS DOING

Though face-to-face meetings have been suspended, we are still working with our clients to make sure they get what they need. From Housing to Health Home, our programs are continuing to operate remotely, connecting clients to care, stability and health.

Also, we are stepping up on all facility cleaning efforts, working to ensure that our essential services can go on without interruption, while additionally considering the safety and security of our staff, clients, and other community members. Though Harlem United services may need to be temporarily altered considering the City’s (and nation’s) recent declarations of a State of Emergency, we pledge to take care of our clients in the best way possible, with compassion.

WHAT WE CAN ALL DO

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Stay home if you are sick or if you have been around those who are sick. Consider working remotely, if possible.

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Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. 
Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer when water and soap are not available.

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Cover your mouth when you cough/ sneeze with a tissue or do so into your elbow.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily

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Avoid going to places with large groups of people. Practice social distancing when possible.

We encourage you to take this opportunity to reach out to neighbors, family, and friends, checking in to see who might be in need of additional care in this difficult time. See how you can help, offer to pick up groceries for someone who cannot leave their home or stay in contact with community members who may be isolated.

We are strongest when we act as a community, together.