Austin American-Statesman: City chooses hotels as isolation sites to house homeless coronavirus patients

April 14, 2020

AUTHORITY: Austin American-Statesman

DATE PRODUCED: March 31, 2020

TYPE: Community Sample

THE QUESTIONS IT ANSWERS:

  • How are communities using telehealth to provide needed services?

SHORT DESCRIPTION:

As the coronavirus pandemic deepens, city and Travis County leaders are identifying quarantine and isolation sites for Austin’s homeless people who become infected with COVID-19. The hotels are one prong of a city response plan that includes hygiene education; mobile shower and restroom facilities; and hand-washing stations scattered throughout known homeless encampments, highway underpasses and gathering areas across the city.

Integral Care’s Mobile Crisis Outreach Team and Psychiatric Emergency Services provide urgent and mental health crisis care, but it switched to telemedicine services Tuesday. Face-to-face visits would be made by appointment only as needed.


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