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A quality home is the foundation of society & community

Slide "Getting vaccinated is the best way to avoid getting seriously sick or dying from COVID-19." - CDC Slide “Safety begins with team work” Slide “A healthy outside starts from the inside.” Slide “Helping you through COVID-19”

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The Rockford Housing Authority believes that an informed person
has power to
make knowledgeable decisions.”

Laura Snyder,
RHA Chief Executive Officer

Pritzker Issues Executive Order Recommending Masks for All Illinoisans

On Friday, oct. 14, 2022, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced that he is recommending masks for all residents, citing guidance from the CDC. As we are seeing COVID-19 cases dropping around Illinois for the past several months, any guidance about wearing a mask, except for those who have compromised health conditions has been kept to a minimum.

Pritzker issued an executive order on Friday recommending that all Illinoisans wear face coverings, which is expected to run through November 12th, 2022. The reasoning for the order is because the “expected continued spread of COVID-19 and the ongoing health and economic impacts that will be felt over the coming month by people across the state.” The recommendation is not a requirement, officials said, but this marks the first time in several months since Pritzker has issued an executive order having to do with face coverings.

The order said that based on the “epidemic emergency and public health”, Pritzker felt it necessary to reissue the mask recommendation. With the winter months approaching, and mixed with the other viruses we tend to see during the holiday season, masks are just as important now as they were in 2021.

The Illinois Department of Health said on Friday that elderly or immunocompromised residents who live in counties where the COVID-19 community level is at medium are recommended to wear masks in indoor settings. You can check your community levels below:

Frequently Asked Questions About Updated COVID-19 Vaccines

The COVID-19 vaccines continue to work very well at preventing severe illness, hospitalization, and death. The updated vaccines now available from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna help protect against the Omicron variant, which is causing most new COVID infections.

Every vaccinated person 5 or older should get an updated vaccine.

It’s especially important for the following people to get an updated vaccine because they are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID:

No matter which COVID vaccine you got (Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Novavax, Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen) for your primary vaccination series or how many boosters you’ve already gotten, you should get your updated COVID vaccine 2 months after your last dose.

If you recently had COVID, you should wait 3 months from when you got sick to get your updated vaccine.

Yes. Just like other vaccinations, your arm might feel sore after you get your shot. You might also experience flu-like symptoms, such as fever, headaches, body aches, and tiredness.

These are normal signs that your immune system is responding to the vaccine. Although these side effects may be unpleasant, you’re not actually sick. And they last a few days at most.

Serious side effects from any vaccine, including the COVID-19 vaccines, are very rare.

Vaccines are available from pharmacies, doctors’ offices, community health centers, and many more locations. Most people live within 5 miles of a vaccination site.

You have 3 ways to find free vaccines near you:

  • Go to vaccines.gov
  • Text your ZIP code to 438829
  • Call 1-800-232-0233

Remember to bring your CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record card when you go for your updated vaccine.

You’re best protected when you’re up to date with your COVID vaccines. That means you’ve gotten all recommended doses for people your age.

To maximize protection from highly contagious variants and prevent possibly spreading COVID to others, both vaccinated and unvaccinated people should wear a mask inside public places when the COVID risk to your community is high.

Vaccinated and unvaccinated people must also follow federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial laws, rules, and regulations. That includes safety precautions for:

  • Public transportation
  • Airports and airplanes
  • Local businesses

Workplaces

For more information about COVID-19, including the safety and effectiveness of the vaccines, see our Facts About COVID-19 and the Vaccines.

Downloadable COVID-19 PDFS

New COVID-19 Variant Could Emerge

“We should anticipate that we very well may get another variant that would emerge, that would elude the immune response that we’ve gotten from infection and/or from vaccination,” Fauci said at an event with the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism this week.

Dr. Anthony Fauci warned Americans to “not be surprised” if a new, more dangerous COVID-19 variant emerges this winter. Looking at numbers, the hospitalization and deaths are currently down nationwide at a seven-day moving average in the US of 323. Comparing it to February and March of this year when the U.S was at 1,00 to 2,500 according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Fauci explained to Americans that they shouldn’t have their guard down just yet because of the winter season and its wave of illness. “It looks like we’re going in the right direction,” he said, adding: “However, I think it would be a bit cavalier to all of a sudden say, ‘We’re completely through with [the pandemic].’”

“We’re encouraging people, particularly as we’re now in the fall season, to get that particular updated vaccine, which fortunately for us is directed at the major circulating variant,” Fauci said.

Hospitals Get Ready for The Season of Viruses

Hospitals across the nation are bracing themselves for the season of viruses. According to the CDC the yearly Flu Cases are already rising in parts of the U.S. and while COVID-19 is still impacting the world. “If you go around the nation and ask hospitals how busy they are, every single one of them will tell you: They’re busy,” said Dr. Carlos del Rio, an executive associate dean at the Emory University School of Medicine and Grady Health System in Atlanta.

Despite the shortages in the healthcare system like capacity, staffing, and supplies, hospital leaders are saying morale is “actually pretty good,” McDeavitt said. “We’ve moved on from early in the pandemic, wondering if we were going to get sick and potentially die.”

“I think those worries are alleviated,” McDeavitt said. “We know how to handle it now.”

During the winter season, The CDC recommends an annual flu shot for everyone aged 6 months and older. Children younger than age 9 who have never had a flu vaccine, the CDC said, should get two this year, at least four weeks apart and of course getting the COVID-19 vaccine and booster shots.

COVID BOOSTER SHOTS ARE RECOMMENDED

ACCORDING TO A TIME MAGAZINE ARTICLE BY ALICE PARK JULY 13, 2022 9:35 AM EDT

Given the nation’s diminished immunity and current BA.5 surge, more people are wondering whether they should get a booster (or second booster) now, or if they should wait until the fall when a new shot will likely be available. Here’s what to know.

 

“If you get a booster now, it does reduce your risk of getting infected [with BA.5],” said Dr. Ashish Jha, the White House COVID-19 response coordinator, during the briefing. “It does not drive it to zero, but it reduces that risk. And the data are very clear that if you are over 50, that extra booster dramatically lowers the risk of getting into the hospital, going to the ICU, or dying. There are very few things we do in medicine that have the kind of benefit we see from that extra shot.”

 

 

Who should get a booster?

Currently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend one booster shot for everyone ages 5 and older who are five months out from their last COVID-19 vaccine dose, and second booster doses for people ages 50 and older at least four months after their first booster. (Additional boosters are recommended for people with weakened immune systems).

 

Should people wait for the Omicron booster in the fall?

On June 30, the FDA decided that the next COVID-19 booster needs to target the Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5 specifically, because such a booster would likely increase people’s protection from getting infected with Omicron, and hopefully extend that protection to longer than a few months.

 

“The threat to you [from BA.5] is now,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the White House’s chief COVID-19 medical officer, in a briefing on July 12. “If you are not vaccinated to the fullest—namely, not gotten boosters according to the recommendations—you are putting yourself at increased risk.”

 

Getting boosted now “does not preclude you from also getting an [Omicron-specific] booster in the fall,” he added. “If the risk is now, address the current risk.”

 

You can read the full article here:

https://time.com/6196326/covid-19-booster-get-now-or-fall-omicron/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=sfmc&utm_campaign=newsletter+brief+default+ac&utm_content=+++20220715+++body&et_rid=206756569&lctg=206756569

 

ILLINOIS COVID UPDATE

What We Know

Viruses constantly change through mutation, and new variants of a virus are expected to occur over time. Sometimes new variants emerge and disappear. Other times, new variants emerge and persist. Multiple variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 have been documented in the United States and globally during this pandemic.

The virus that causes COVID-19 is a type of coronavirus, a large family of viruses. Coronaviruses are named for the crown-like spikes on their surfaces. Scientists monitor changes in the virus, including changes to the spikes on the surface of the virus. These studies, including genetic analyses of the virus, are helping scientists understand how changes to the virus might affect how it spreads and what happens to people who are infected with it.

Multiple variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 are circulating globally:

The B.1.617.2 and B.1.1.529 variants circulating in the United States are classified as variants of concern.

These variants seem to spread more easily and quickly than other variants, which may lead to more cases of COVID-19. An increase in the number of cases will put more strain on health care resources, lead to more hospitalizations, and potentially more deaths.

So far, studies suggest that antibodies generated through vaccination with currently authorized vaccines recognize these variants. This is being closely investigated and more studies are underway.

Rigorous and increased compliance with public health mitigation strategies, such as vaccination, physical distancing, use of masks, hand hygiene, and isolation and quarantine, is essential to limit the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19 and protect public health.

For more information please visit: https://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/data/variants

What are the most common symptoms of COVID-19?

Fatigue may be more closely associated with Omicron infections currently, but it’s still a hallmark clue for any COVID-19 infection — and should be discussed with your healthcare provider since it may be mistaken for a common cold or occasions like suffering through a hangover.

CDC officers have told Americans that more data are needed to know if “Omicron infections… cause more severe illness or death than infection with other variants.” The most common symptoms for COVID-19 infections, including those caused by Omicron, as listed by CDC officials are below:

Any of these symptoms — in any order — may appear within two to 14 days after being exposed to SARS-CoV-2. They may be all equally severe or present different severities depending on the symptom.

The best way to protect yourself against COVID-19 (including an Omicron-induced infection!) and severe symptoms or death remains receiving a full vaccination. Those who have been vaccinated earlier in 2021 are likely now qualified to receive a booster dose now, which is proving to be a crucial defense, according to early research. Additional doses of the COVID-19 vaccine is reported to provide enough antibodies to block even Omicron variants, according to a Washington Post report on data released by Pfizer and BioNTech.

What are some symptoms of the new Omicron COVID-19 variant?

To be clear, all health officials are in universal agreement — the potential list of symptoms for those affected by an Omicron SARS-CoV-2 infection remains largely the same. Janice Johnston, M.D., co-founder and chief medical officer at Redirect Health, says that the Omicron variant may infect individuals differently, but that it’s not uncommon for subsequent symptoms to be the same as those we’ve seen earlier in the pandemic. “We’ve seen this for years with the influenza virus; every patient is not the same in terms of holistic health, immunity level and ability to fight the virus,” she adds.

While the list of potential symptoms related to Omicron infections is the same, limited data suggests that a few symptoms — chiefly fatigue, feeling overtired or exhausted and pain across multiple muscle groups on the body — are much more common than breathlessness or a loss of taste and smell associated with previous strains of the coronavirus.

But most of the research being presented currently is limited and comes from anecdotes from healthcare providers on the ground in South Africa, explains Nicholas Kman, M.D., an emergency medicine physician at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

QUESTIONS ABOUT VACCINE SAFETY AND THE SPEED OF VACCINE DEVELOPMENT

Both this disease and the vaccine are new. We do not know how long protection lasts for those who get infected or those who are vaccinated. Experts are working to learn more about both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity. CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

· The potential serious risk COVID-19 infection poses to them and their loved ones if they get the illness or spread it to others. Remind them of the potential for long-term health issues after recovery from COVID-19 disease.

· Scientists are still learning more about the virus that causes COVID-19. And it is not known whether getting COVID-19 disease will protect everyone against getting it again, or, if it does, how long that protection might last.

· The vaccine was tested in large clinical trials and what is currently known about its safety and effectiveness.

· The vaccine is not a perfect fix. You will still need to practice other precautions like wearing a mask, social distancing, handwashing, and other hygiene measures until public health officials say otherwise.

COVID-19 vaccines were tested in large clinical trials to make sure they meet safety standards. Many people were recruited to participate in these trials to see how the vaccines offers protection to people of different ages, races, and ethnicities, as well as those with different medical conditions.

· The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) carefully reviews all safety data from clinical trials and an authorizes emergency vaccine use only when the expected benefits outweigh potential risks.

· The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) reviews all safety data before recommending any COVID-19 vaccine for use.

· FDA and CDC will continue to monitor the safety of COVID-19 vaccines, to make sure even very rare side effects are identified.

According to the CDC, the COVID-19 vaccine will be given to U.S. citizens at no cost, Yacoub confirms. Some vaccine providers may decide to charge an additional fee for administering the shot, but this fee can be reimbursed by recipients’ insurance, or, if uninsured, the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Provider Relief Fund

Most people do not have serious problems after being vaccinated. We will understand more about mild side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine before we start to use it. However, your arm may be sore, red, or warm to the touch. These symptoms usually go away on their own within a week. Some people report getting a headache or fever when getting a vaccine. These side effects are a sign that your immune system is doing exactly what it is supposed to do. It is working and building up protection to disease.

· A fever is a potential side effect and when they should seek medical care.

· Symptoms typically go away on their own within a week. Also let them know when they should seek medical care if their symptoms don’t go away.

· The vaccine cannot give someone COVID-19.

· The side effects are a sign that the immune system is working.

COVID-19 vaccines are being tested in large clinical trials to assess their safety. However, it does take time, and more people getting vaccinated before we learn about very rare or long-term side effects. That is why safety monitoring will continue. CDC has an independent group of experts that reviews all the safety data as it comes in and provides regular safety updates. If a safety issue is detected, immediate action will take place to determine if the issue is related to the COVID-19 vaccine and determine the best course of action.

· The FDA and CDC are continuing to monitor safety, to make sure even long-term side effects are identified.

· COVID-19 vaccines will be continuously monitored for safety after authorization, and ACIP will take action to address any safety problems detected.

All but one of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in phase 3 clinical trials use two shots. The same vaccine brand must be used for both shots.

· Nearly all COVID-19 vaccines being studied in the United States require two shots. The first shot starts building protection, but everyone has to come back a few weeks later for the second one to get the most protection the vaccine can offer.

· Two shots are generally needed to provide the best protection against COVID-19 and that the shots are given several weeks apart. The first shot primes the immune system, helping it recognize the virus, and the second shot strengthens the immune response.

The two COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States do not contain eggs, preservatives, or latex.

For a full list of ingredients, please see each vaccine’s,

Fact Sheet for Recipients & Caregivers:

· Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccineexternal

· Moderna COVID-19 vaccineexternal

Notable Differences:

· Age minimum: The vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech is approved for people age 16 and older, and the vaccine developed by Moderna is approved for people age 18 and older

· Storage requirements: Moderna does not require ultra-cold storage [like Pfizer doses do], making it easier to store while the Moderna vaccine can be stored in a freezer or refrigerator, the Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored in a special container in very cold temperatures. This discrepancy won’t affect you directly but is more the concern of healthcare facilities.

Serious problems from vaccination can happen, but they are rare. CDC has learned of reports that some people have experienced severe allergic reactions—also known as anaphylaxis—after getting a COVID-19 vaccine. As an example, an allergic reaction is considered severe when a person needs to be treated with epinephrine or EpiPen© or if they must go to the hospital.

Learn more about COVID-19 vaccines and allergies.

To protect yourself, follow these recommendations:

· Wear a mask over your nose and mouth.

· Stay at least 6 feet away from others.

· Avoid crowds.

· Avoid poorly ventilated spaces.

· Wash your hands often.

Get more information about these and other steps you can take to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.

Yes. Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that reinfection with COVID-19 is possible, you should be vaccinated regardless of whether you already had COVID-19 infection. If you were treated for COVID-19 symptoms with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you should wait 90 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Talk to your doctor if you are unsure what treatments you received or if you have more questions about getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

· Experts do not yet know how long someone is protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. The immunity someone gains from having an infection, called “natural immunity,” varies from person to person. It is rare for someone who has had COVID-19 to get infected again. It also is uncommon for people who do get COVID-19 again to get it within 90 days of when they recovered from their first infection. We won’t know how long immunity produced by vaccination lasts until we have more data on how well the vaccines work.

· Both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are working to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

People who are pregnant and part of a group recommended to receive the COVID-19 vaccine may choose to be vaccinated. If you have questions about getting vaccinated, talking with a healthcare provider may might help you make an informed decision. While breastfeeding is an important consideration, it is rarely a safety concern with vaccines.

· No data are available yet on the safety of COVID-19 vaccines in lactating women or on the effects of mRNA vaccines on breastfed infants or on milk production/excretion. mRNA vaccines are not thought to be a risk to breastfeeding infants. People who are breastfeeding and are part of a group recommended to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, such as healthcare personnel, may choose to be vaccinated.

· To make sure that more information is gathered regarding the safety of these vaccines when administered during pregnancy, pregnant people are encouraged to enroll in v-safe, CDC’s new smartphone-based tool being used to check-in on people’s health after they receive a COVID-19 vaccine. If pregnant people report health events through v-safe after vaccination, someone from CDC may call to check on them and get more information. Additionally, pregnant people enrolled in v-safe will be contacted by CDC and asked to participate in a pregnancy registry that will monitor them through pregnancy and the first 3 months of infancy. Learn more about COVID-19 vaccination considerations for people who are pregnant or breastfeeding

People with underlying medical conditions can receive the FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines provided they have not had an immediate or severe allergic reaction to a COVID-19 vaccine or to any of the ingredients in the vaccine. ·

Learn more about vaccination considerations for persons with underlying medical conditions. Vaccination is an important consideration for adults of any age with certain underlying medical conditions because they are at increased risk for severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19.

If you get a COVID-19 vaccine and you think you might be having a severe allergic reaction after leaving the vaccination site, seek immediate medical care by calling 911.

You can report side effects and reactions using either v-safe or the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS.)

· V-safe is a new smartphone-based, after-vaccination health checker for people who receive COVID-19 vaccines. V-safe uses text messaging and web surveys from CDC to check in with vaccine recipients following COVID-19 vaccination. V-safe also provides second vaccine dose reminders if needed, and telephone follow up to anyone who reports medically significant (important) adverse events.

· Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS)external icon is the national system that collects reports from healthcare professionals, vaccine manufacturers, and the public of adverse events that happen after vaccination; reports of adverse events that are unexpected, appear to happen more often than expected, or have unusual patterns are followed up with specific studies. Reports to VAERS help CDC monitor the safety of vaccines. If experts detect an unexpected adverse event, they quickly study it further to assess whether it is a true safety concern. Experts then decide whether changes are needed in U.S. vaccine recommendations. This monitoring is critical to help ensure that the benefits continue to outweigh the risks for people who receive vaccines.

As soon as the first vaccine was approved and administered, internet scams taking advantage of the moment started to surface. Unfortunately, there have been reports of fraudulent scams due to the demand of the COVID vaccine, The FBI recently issued a public warning to be on the lookout for such schemes, including ones offering access to early vaccination in exchange for a fee, requests to put your name on a vaccine waiting list, and vaccine ads via social media, email, phone calls, or other sketchy sources.

· Best practice is to check your state’s health department website for up-to-date info on authorized vaccine distribution channels and then only obtain a vaccine through those channels.

· You can also always check the FDA and CDC websites or contact your doctor directly.

What You Need to Know

  • COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective.
  • For the best protection, everyone 5 years and older is recommended to stay up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Search vaccines.gov, text your zip code to 438829, or call 1-800-232-0233 to find COVID-19 vaccine locations near you.

Please contact your state health department for more information your for COVID-19 vaccination.

For COVID-19 Vaccination Updates visit: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/faq.html

For more FAQs visit this link: https://getvaccineanswers.org/

THREE FAQ’s, COVID-19 and Masks

A properly fitted mask can provide some added protection over a poorly fitting mask for both the wearer and other people. The primary intent of mask use is to suppress the spread of virus from the wearer to other people. Because COVID-19 can be spread by people who display characteristic symptoms and by those who do not exhibit any symptoms, broad mask use is encouraged to minimize the spread from those who are sick (or potentially sick) to others.

The mask, if worn properly and consistently, also helps protect healthy people from catching the disease when they are in close proximity to people who are sick. It may also provide protection to the wearer from aerosols that persist in poorly ventilated environments, such as an elevator.

Information about how long virus-carrying droplets can persist in the air is being updated regularly. Some research suggests that droplets can remain airborne for multiple hours. So do your part to protect yourself and others by wearing well-fitting, protective masks. 

The simple answer is NO. Wearing a mask, in part, is meant to protect your respiratory system (your lungs, throat, and sinuses) from direct exposure to airborne droplets and particles that may contain the virus.

To do this, one must protect the primary entry points to your lungs and throat—your nose and mouth. Therefore, leaving your nose exposed will provide an easy pathway for airborne particles to enter your system (by inhaling through your nose) or for droplets to exit your system (by exhaling, sneezing, etc.), potentially endangering those around you. 

Absolutely. Even with a mask, you should still make every effort to stay at least 6 feet away from people who don’t live with you. Masking is only one layer of protection, and it’s an imperfect one. Social distancing isn’t foolproof, either, but the more layers of protection you can employ, the safer you’ll make yourself and everyone else around you. 

Recent Updates

Venues and meeting spaces can resume. Multiple groups are permitted given facilities have space to appropriately social distance and can limit interaction between groups. This includes activities such as conferences and weddings

Revised guidelines to allow select indoor recreation facilities (e.g., bowling alleys, skating rinks), as well as clubhouses to reopen. Concessions permitted with restrictions.

Indoor dining can reopen with groups of 10 or less, with tables spaced 6-feet apart in seated areas and with standing areas at no more than 25% of capacity.

Can reopen with no more than 25% occupancy, and with interactive exhibits and rides closed; guided tours should be limited to 50 people or fewer per group; museums should have a plan to limit congregation via advance ticket sales and timed ticketing; concessions permitted with restrictions.

Can reopen with no more than 25% occupancy, and with interactive exhibits, indoor exhibits, and rides closed; guided tours should be limited to 50 people or fewer per group; zoos should have a plan to limit congregation via advance ticket sales and timed ticketing; concessions permitted with restrictions.

Indoor seated theaters, cinemas, and performing arts centers to allow admission of the lesser of up to 50 guests OR 50% of overall theater or performance space capacity (applies to each screening room); outdoor capacity limited to 20% of overall theater or performance space capacity; concessions permitted with restrictions.

Outdoor spectator sports can resume with no more than 20% of seating capacity; concessions permitted with restrictions.

Allow no more than 50% of sound stage or filming location capacity; crowd scenes should be limited to 50 people or fewer.

Revised guidelines allow competitive gameplay and tournaments; youth and recreational sports venues can operate at 50% of facility capacity, 20% seating capacity for spectators, and group sizes up to 50 with multiple groups permitted during practice and competitive games given venues have space to appropriately social distance and can limit interaction between groups; concessions permitted with restrictions.

Revised guidelines allow gyms to open at 50% capacity and allow group fitness classes of up to 50 people with new safety guidelines for indoors, with multiple groups permitted given facilities have space to appropriately social distance and can limit interaction between groups.

Water-based activities permitted in accordance with IDPH guidelines; no more than 50% of facility capacity with group size of no more than 15 participants in a group, unless participants changing weekly.

Updates

This outbreak has had far-reaching effects, including the public at large as well as on travel, supply chains, and economies locally as well as globally.

Protect Your Family Members

Some people in your family may need to take more steps to be better protected from COVID-19, including

  • Anyone not up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines
  • Children under 5 years who cannot be vaccinated yet
  • People with weakened immune systems or underlying medical conditions
Protect Your Family

Illinois officials say a state helpline has been set up to provide emotional support and quick answers to questions about the coronavirus pandemic. Illinoisans can text “TALK” to 55-2020 (or “HABLAR” for Spanish), and within 24 hours, they will receive a call from a counselor. Residents can also text keywords such aS “UNEMPLOYMENT,” “FOOD,” or “SHELTER,” to the same number to receive additional information about those topics

What You Need to Know

  • COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective.
  • For the best protection, everyone 5 years and older is recommended to stay up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Search vaccines.gov, text your zip code to 438829, or call 1-800-232-0233 to find COVID-19 vaccine locations near you.

What You Need to Know

Three COVID-19 vaccines are authorized or approved for use in the United States to prevent COVID-19. Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna (COVID-19 mRNA vaccines) are preferred. You may get Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen COVID-19 vaccine in some situations.

COVID-19 by County: COVID-19 Community Levels are a new tool to help you and communities decide what prevention steps to take based on hospitalizations and cases.
Check your community level.

Guidance for COVID-19 Prevention

Strategies to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and maintain safe operations in schools, child care programs, and institutions of higher education.

For Our RHA Residents

Yes, our sites and main office are staffed. However, masks are stil required in RHA deveopments and offices

We ask that residents contact their Property Manager, Specialist or Caseworker via phone or email.

If an appointment is needed one will be scheduled.

NOTE— General Line: 815-489-8500

Yes, rent is due the 1st of each month and should be paid by the 5th in order to avoid late fees or future legal action.

Be sure to contact your Property Manager, Specialist or Caseworker. Provide documentation and/or information regarding the change in income per RHA staff instructions. Staff will then take the necessary actions to complete the rent adjustment.

Currently all inspections outside of initials and health/safety are currently on hold.

RHA will mail you an inspection appointment letter once inspections resume. Our pest control contractor has stated that they will continue to treat units as scheduled. As always, please report any issues to your property management office as soon as possible.

Yes, please continue to report any/all issues to your property management office. “Emergency and Health & Safety” issues are our priority.

NOTE: During normal working hours (M-F 8AM-5PM) contact management office. After hour issues, be sure to call 815-489-8585.

For RHA Residents & Community Neighbors

It’s your hands, anytime you enter your home from outside, after using the bathroom, and after sneezing, coughing, or blowing your nose, wash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Your next priority should be your phone. “At my house, we clean phones first because after you wash your hands you don’t want to be grabbing a dirty phone. Most phones can withstand a quick swipe with isopropyl alcohol or some kind of rubbing alcohol — the 70% alcohol you can get at the drugstore.”

Paul Pottinger, MD, an infectious disease specialist in the department of medicine at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Wear disposable gloves to clean and disinfect. Clean the area or item with soap and water or another detergent if it is dirty. Then, use a household disinfectant. The virus dies with the application of one of many products approved by the EPA and good old-fashioned elbow grease to make sure that product gets into every little crack.

Here are links for information of the List N: Disinfectants for Use Against SARS-CoV-2 Other COVID-19 Resources

This list includes products that meet EPA’s criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes the disease COVID-19.

If you’re feeling emotionally overwhelmed, reach out to the Crisis Text Line. They will help guide you to create a plan to stay safe and healthy. Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a Crisis Counselor. They are here to help you and are available 24/7. You’ll receive an automated text asking you what your crisis is. Within minutes, a live trained crisis counselor will answer your text. They will help you out of your moment of crisis and work with you to create a plan to continue to feel better. This for any painful emotion for which you need support.

The coronavirus outbreak is rapidly evolving. To stay informed, check the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as our local health department for updates. Please see the many additional resources below.

The enemy we are facing is very good at what it does; we are not failing. We need everyone to hold the line as the epidemic inevitably gets worse with social distancing. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials are suggesting to limit a person’s risk of exposure or of spreading the virus, which the CDC states that it is transmitted through droplets from coughs and sneezes between people who are up to six feet apart from one another —This is “social distancing.”

Regarding Questions on COVID-19 Testing:

“If an individual is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, shortness of breath and cough, they call their healthcare provider.

The healthcare provider will consider these symptoms, travel history, possible exposure to a known case, and any underlying health conditions specific to that patient when evaluating the need for testing for COVID-19. If COVID-19 testing is needed, healthcare providers collect the specimens that are then sent to a State or private lab for testing.

The healthcare provider will determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19 and may recommend that you stay home and provide self-care if you have mild symptoms. Those individuals who have no symptoms, do not need to be tested.

The positive cases of COVID-19 reported by the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Winnebago County Health Department include all positive tests that were submitted to the state or private lab for testing.”

Source: Winnebago County Health Department

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For All Information & Concerns

For Administrative needs, you may phone 815-489-8500.

You can also reach out via the RHA WEBSITE.

For any questions or concerns regarding the above practices, please call your program manager or Director.

For Emergency Service

In case of criminal or life-threatening emergency Please Dial 911

If you have any information or concerns to share with
security please call:

Confidential Hotline: 815-489-8549

Rockford Non-Emergency: 815-966-2900

For Rockford Housing Authority Employees

DOING OUR BEST TO NAVIGATE THE UNCHARTED TERRITORY

As with all other agencies throughout our country, we are doing our best to navigate the uncharted territory of COVID-19. Your executive team continues to monitor this crisis and adjust our policies and practices where needed. Amid today’s challenges, our employee’s safety, health, and the well-being of our residents remain a top priority. As this situation evolves, we will continue to update you, and we encourage you to use all available resources to stay well educated on practical measures you can take to limit your exposure to this virus.

The majority of the population that we serve is one that is the most vulnerable to this virus. Therefore, we must remain in operation and be vigilant in our practices to maintain a safe and sanitary environment. We will continue to follow the methods that were put in place recently until further notice.

Detailed Advice From Doctors and Health Policy Experts in the
Rockford Community, The State Of Illinois, and at The National Level

The Links below are compiled resources on how to prevent spreading the disease, help for vulnerable populations, and the most current information you may find useful.

Please view the Rock Valley Social Services Resources downloadable PDF Here:

View the downloadable PDF "Facts about COVID-19 vaccines" by clicking the image below:

VIEW ARCHIVED COVID-19 RESOURCES

MARCH 2020- APRIL 2022