COVID-19 ACW Updates & Resources

To all community service providers, partners and stakeholders,

The impact of COVID-19 continues to develop across our country, our province and most recently we have begun to see the shift to community spread in our region with cases rapidly increasing in our catchment area. As we continue to support “flattening the curve” through physical distancing and as we continue to monitor all levels of the evidence in our area, we will continue to modify the action plan for maintaining essential services in our region and to support prevention of transmission of HIV, HCV & COVID19 through our existing programming.

Please note effective Monday April 6th until June 30th, 2020 our agency continues to operate in the Pandemic Phase of our continuity plan with scaled back services and remote accessibility to align with community response and reduce the potential for transmission. We continue to monitor all levels of government and public health evidence and assess on-going communications to determine when we will move into a post-pandemic phase for the organization. For now are projections for levels of disruption will be the next 13 weeks.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our office at 519-973-0222 or send us an email at mbrennan@aidswindsor.org.

Regards,
Michael Brennan
Executive Director

The HIV Care Program

The HIV Care Program wants to let individuals know that their pharmacy will be delivering patients’ medications at this time. This will ensure that patients receive their medications while continuing to observe self-isolation and social distancing protocols. Please call the pharmacy at 519-254-6115 if you have any questions or concerns about this process, or to place your medication order.

“Yellow Umbrella” Harm Reduction Services

Windsor-Essex Locations:

  • The ACW continues to operate our Needle Exchange Program (NSP) at 511 Pelissier Street, Windsor, ON–  Our NSP has returned to regular distribution within a more permanently modified space providing enhanced protection to service users and staff.
  • Women centred harm reduction is offered at the Welcome Shelter for Women at 263 Bridge Ave, per their COVID-19 policies.
  • The OATC has reduced their NSP services as a result of COVID-19 protocols.

Chatham-Kent Locations:

  • The Chatham-Kent NSP sites: Chatham-Kent Public Health Unit, W.I.S.H Centre located at 177 King Street East, Shoppers Drug Mart at 30 McNaughton Avenue in Wallaceburg and McIntrye I.D.A. in Blenhein all continue to provide harm reduction services aligned with their COVID-19 protocols.

Mobile Outreach:

  • Mobile outreach direct to service users and deliveries to all sites throughout Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent is avialable. All deliveries will be contactless.

Harm Reduction Education:

Our existing education & outreach services and the “Label Me Person Anti-Stigma Campaign” is unavailable for face to face community engagement activities. However our staff will continue to monitor calls and emails around Harm Reduction education requests, People Who use Substances (PUDs) & COVID-19. Please also see in this section a downloadable pdf from the Windsor-Essex Community Opioid Substance Strategy for “Safer Drug Use to help prevent against COVID 19”

Support Services

“COVID-19 is a serious virus and all people living with HIV should take recommended preventive measures to minimize exposure to prevent infection. It’s important to underline that there is currently no strong evidence that people living with HIV are at an especially increased risk of contracting COVID-19 or if they do contract it they will experience a worse outcome. This does not mean that people living with HIV should take COVID-19 lightly and should take all precautions to protect themselves. As in the general population, older people living with HIV or people living with HIV with heart or lung problems may be at a higher risk of becoming infected with the virus and of suffering more serious symptoms.” UNAIDS .

The ACW continues to provide services to people living with HIV through food security package drop-offs and by telephone, emails and video-conferencing to perform wellness checks. All in-person activities such as the Red Ribbon Café, Peer Support Groups, community activities, conferences, TTOA meetings are postponed until further notice.

Education & Outreach

Our Education & Outreach team will be unavailable for face to face community engagement activities. However they will continue to monitor calls and emails around HIV educational requests and respond accordingly. LGBTQ+ youth groups (Prism Space, Young & Proud and Inside Out) facilitators are available for support and learning via phone and email. Groups occur same days and times but have transitioned to an online format until further notice. More information coming soon regarding our other online education platforms.

General Operations

  • Volunteer and Fund Development services will be suspended until further notice.
  • Financial Management/Operations will continue to operate as normal.

Health Care Access

A map has been designed to indicate where area residents can still receive patient care including but not limited to doctor/NP offices, walk-in-clinics, diagnostic imaging (x-rays, etc) and lab blood draw clinics.  Developed by Essex County Medical Society President, Dr. Jennifer Bondy, and colleagues, the map can be found at:

https://ecms.org/covid-19-updates-public/

 

Mental Health & Addictions Urgent Care:

In an effort to respond to the mental health and addiction needs of our community especially given the anxiety, fear and uncertainty associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Canadian Mental Health Association Windsor-Essex County Branch (CMHA WECB) and Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare (HDGH) will be collaborating on a new initiative – the opening of a Mental Health and Addictions Urgent Care Centre (MHAUCC). For more information on the centre and its services see:

www.hdgh.org/mhaucc

People who use substances have specific needs and may be at an increased risk of COVID-19 due to a number of physical, social and environmental reasons. Please visit the Windsor Essex Community Opioid & Substance Strategy link below for content to support people who use substances based on the best current evidence.

https://www.wecoss.ca/covid-19-intersection-substance-use

 

RAAM Clinics:

Rapid access addiction medicine (RAAM) clinic is a low barrier, walk-in clinic that patients can attend to get help for a substance use disorder without an appointment or formal referral . RAAM clinics provide time-limited medical addiction care (including pharmacotherapy, brief counselling, and referrals to community services. For the nearest RAAM clinic near you – please see:

https://www.metaphi.ca/raam-clinics/

 

Counselling Support Line:

The Windsor Essex COVID Care Coalition is launching the Windsor-Essex Counselling Support Line (WECSL) to help people in the community access professional counselling support services. The Support Line is available to the community starting Wednesday, April 15. The Windsor Essex Counselling Support Line offers professional counsellors who are members of the Ontario College of Social Workers and who are experienced in providing personal counselling services. The WECSL will operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. To access the helpline, people can call 519-946-3277 or 1-877-451-1055.

 

Seniors Call Assurance Program:

The Windsor-Essex COVID Care Coalition is launching the Windsor-Essex Seniors Call Assurance program (WESCAP) to provide outreach and social support to seniors in isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Seniors can sign up for the program by calling (877) 771-2677 from Monday to Friday from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. WESCAP will be available to seniors who are 55 or older starting Monday, April 20.

Food Security Access

Food Helpline:

The Windsor-Essex Food Helpline 1-888-488-1578.  Call this number for information regarding food banks and hubs, or to request grocery gift cards, food hampers, or prepared meals to be safely delivered to your home.  This call centre is open from Monday to Friday, from 8:30am to 8:30pm.

Homelessness Resources

Day Program:

The City of Windsor, in partnership with a variety of community agencies, has opened a day program at the former Windsor Water World location. The day program provides those experiencing homelessness in Windsor with access to a safe space during the day. Onsite support staff include CommUnity Partnership, a Pathway to Potential partner, as well as the Canadian Mental Health Association and the Family Services Windsor-Essex Street Outreach Team.  Light refreshments and activities will also be offered, while respecting physical distancing requirements. Location: 400 Wyandotte Street East. Operating Hours: Daily 9:00am – 7:00pm

COVID-19 Information Resources

In order to promote an evidence-based response, supported by the most current scientific information available, we remind you of some key resources available to you.

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