The Office of Special Needs Assistance Programs (SNAPS) released the message below regarding infectious disease preparedness among homeless assistance providers. Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS (HOPWA) grantees and project sponsors should access the resources highlighted in the message for more information on preventative measures to keep staff and program participants safe from influenza and coronavirus. Please direct any questions you may have to HOPWA@hud.gov.
There are currently 5 confirmed cases of a respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus in the United States that was first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. People experiencing unstable housing or homelessness have not been identified as being at higher risk for acquiring the coronavirus at this time. Risk factors include respiratory illness and recent travel to Wuhan City, China.
Influenza (flu), however, continues to be a serious threat for those living in sheltered and unsheltered situations. HUD strongly encourages Continuums of Care (CoCs) to reach out to their local public health department to ensure they are taking all preventative measures to keep staff and program participants safe from infectious disease, especially the flu. CoCs can take steps now to develop preparedness and response plans to protect against infection. HUD is also available to provide technical assistance to our homeless assistance providers who need support in preventing or responding to the spread of infectious disease.