COVID-19 Update
May 14, 2021
CDC Issues Updated Guidance for Fully Vaccinated Individuals
Yesterday, the CDC issued a updated guidance that fully vaccinated people can "resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance." This includes dropping the requirement to get tested before or after domestic travel, or to self-quarantine after travel (unless a specific destination otherwise requires it). In addition, fully vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine if they are around someone with COVID-19 or get tested, unless they have symptoms. Fully vaccinated is defined as 2 weeks after receipt of the second dose in a 2-dose series, or 2 weeks from the single dose Johnson &Johnson vaccine. It is important to note that these new recommendations are not intended to apply to healthcare settings.

As of the date of this update, neither NYS nor OPWDD has updated its guidance. Chapters should continue to follow state and local requirements. 

NYS Memo Regarding 2021-22 School Year COVID-19 Snow Day Pilot Program
The New York State Education Department (NYSED) issued a memo indicating that school districts will continue to be allowed to pivot to remote instruction on what would otherwise be a day of school closure due to weather and non-weather emergencies, including but not limited to snow, floods, tornadoes, and building fires.
Each district can opt-in to this, or not. A day of instruction will only be counted as such if the district provides remote instruction to all enrolled students, including those who may have been scheduled to attend in person instruction on that day. Such remote instruction must be of the same quality and rigor as instruction provided on a typical day and consistent with district instructional plans.

OPWDD shared data regarding the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19, and deaths due to COVID-19 within the service system. 
As of May 12, 2021:
  • 10,607 people supported have been confirmed to have COVID-19.
  • 7,120 of these people reside in a certified residential facility. 
  • There have been 667 deaths relating to COVID-19.
  • 15,016 staff have been confirmed to have COVID-19.

The peak of COVID-19 cases occurred the week of January 3, 2021 with over 700 positive cases reported. By comparison, 39 new cases were reported the week of May 2. Peak hospitalizations occurred the week of March 29, 2020, with over 300 new admissions. Nine 9 new hospital admissions were reported the week of May 2. Peak fatalities occurred the week of April 5, 2020, with over 100 deaths reported. No new deaths were reported for the week of May 2.

OPWDD has begun publishing statewide data regarding COVID-19, which is regularly updated and can be viewed here. As a reminder, New York state maintains data on cases by county here.

This and all related updates will be cataloged on The Arc New York COVID-19 Resource Page for future reference. Please contact us if you have questions regarding any of this information.

CONTACT: Josh Christiana, Director for Quality, Compliance & Chapter Relations
This email was sent to:
  • President Jack Kowalczyk 
  • Board of Governors 
  • Chapter Presidents
  • Executive Directors 
  • Chief Operating Officers
  • Chief Financial Officers  
  • HR Directors 
  • PR Directors 
  • Quality & Compliance Staff 
  • Residential Directors
  • Joint Committee on Quality & Compliance 
  • Guardianship Coordinators 
  • State Office Staff