Derry Township eNews, March 27, 2020
Current News
Penn State Health accepts drop-off donations of key supplies during COVID-19 outbreak
As of Thursday, March 26, Penn State Health will have the ability to accept drop-off donations of key supplies from the community at large.

“As we face an unprecedented and challenging time, not just in our community but across the world, I have been encouraged by the kindness, generosity and collaboration that demonstrate our shared commitment to putting the needs of others ahead of our own," said Steve Massini, Penn State Health CEO.

"Many businesses, civic organizations and individual members of the community have asked if they can donate personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies to help us respond to COVID-19,” Massini said. “While Penn State Health currently has what we need to protect our health care workers and care for our patients, events are changing rapidly and we know we could experience shortage issues in the future. We are pleased to announce that we have begun accepting drop-off donations of critical supplies from the community. We would like to thank everyone for their tremendous support during this evolving outbreak.”

Penn State Health has plans in place to manage patients with special illnesses while safeguarding patients, hospital visitors, health care workers and the community at large.

To ensure doctors, nurses and other staff treating COVID-19 patients remain safe and healthy, Penn State Health has distributed PPE and patient hygiene kits to all clinic and practice sites. In addition, Penn State Health continues to adopt best practices in its ongoing commitment to safety and high-quality care for its communities.

“We expect the number of coronavirus patients needing hospitalization to increase over the coming weeks, and we are calling on the public to help us keep our health care workers safe,’’ Massini said. “Protecting everyone on the frontlines of patient care is crucial to maintaining the health of our community.’’

While Penn State Health appreciates the community support, residents are reminded to follow the changing guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Pennsylvania Governor’s Office about leaving their homes for nonessential travel. Individuals are encouraged to consolidate their essential trips with drop-off activities.

For information about what, when and where to donate, visit Penn State Health's Community page .
PPL Programs To Assist Customers In Paying Bills
PPL Electric Utilities wants to help ease some of the concern’s residents may be having during these difficult times. PPL will not cut service to any customers for unpaid bills until further notice and will waive all late payment fees, effective March 16, 2020. PPL offers several programs available to help customers who are having a hard time paying their bills. Please see below the options offered.

OnTrack offers a lower, fixed monthly bill and debt forgiveness for customers who make 150 percent of the poverty level or less.

Operation HELP is funded by our company, employees and customers, and can assist customers who make 200 percent of the federal poverty level or less. Grants help pay customer electric and heating bills, including for oil or gas heat. PPL Foundation recently donated an extra $500,000 to Operation HELP. To apply for either Operation HELP or OnTrack visit www.pplelectric.com/billhelp or call 1-800-342-5775 .

CARES can help customers who are experiencing a temporary hardship. Learn more or apply by calling 1-800-358-6623.

No matter what the situation is, if you’re having trouble paying your bill contact PPL and they will see what can be done to help. 
Gov. Wolf's Shutdown Order
In accordance with Gov. Wolf's March 19th shutdown order the Township of Derry's Administration Building's Lobby will be closed to the public. Township Staff will be available for contact via phone or email. A staff directory is available on the website.

It should also be noted that the Township's Recycling Drop-Off Center will be closed until this order is lifted. Curbside recycling will still be collected.
Help for Senior Citizens
In an effort to protect our most vulnerable population from the spread of the virus, the Mohler Center and People Mover have teamed up and mobilized volunteers to help senior citizen remain safely in their homes. They are offering assistance with obtaining groceries, pharmacy runs, and general errands.  

The Mohler Center will be open for phone calls (717-533-2002) from 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM Monday through Friday to offer problem solving and social contact as well. In addition to office hours, staff will be checking voicemail messages throughout the day. All messages will be returned within 24 hours.  

The Mohler Center is committed to assisting the area senior citizens. Give them a call and let them know how they can help!
Local Businesses Offer Modified Services
The Downtown Hershey Association has compiled a list of local restaurants and businesses offering takeout and/or delivery options during this time of limited contact through social distancing. Please be sure to consid er supporting your local eateries and other shops by clicking on the image below. Thanks to resident Christy Ricker for volunteering to design the list. A n updated list will also be kept on their website:  https://downtownhershey.com/open-for-business/
Events
Join Us at The Library
A Message From Library Director Laura O'Grady
Laura O'Grady, Director of Library Services, sends her greetings from home. Even though the library is closed at least until April 6, there are services open to the public, like e-books and databases. Please watch to find out more. You may view her video message at this link: https://youtu.be/qiUAtqpxHGo
Program And Service Changes
Due to Covid-19, the Hershey Public Library will remain closed at least until April 6, and the library unable to answer the phone until further notice. You may e-mail a question to: library@derrytownship.org or through “Ask a Librarian” on the library's website at www.hersheylibrary.org

We kindly ask that you refrain from using the outside dropbox to return books, magazines and media. This includes interlibrary loan items. Just keep them until the library opens again. Don’t worry about borrowed items being late—fines will be waived. Any item you placed on hold before March 14 will be waiting for you to pick up when the library re-opens. Book donations are suspended.

All library programs have been canceled in April due to Covid-19. We will post information on the library's website at www.hersheylibrary.org and on social media about re-scheduling programs at a future date.

CANCELED PROGRAMS:
  • Swimming With Sharks - Sunday, April 5
  • Second Saturday - April 11
  • Guest Author: Lisa Wingate - Sunday, April 19
  • Local Author Festival - Saturday, April 25
  • Arabiqa! Drums and Dancing from the Arab World - Sunday, April 26
Virtual Library Card (eCard)
Derry Township Residents (with a ZIP code of 17033 and 17036) may apply online for a virtual library card to access the e-Library for Hoopla, OverDrive, and others. Access hundreds of free online resources 24/7 including e-books, audiobooks, streaming movies and TV shows, music and comics. And, use the eCard to access the library's E-resources, aka. databases for learning and research. 
To get a virtual library card (eCard), please e-mail “Ask a Librarian” (on the left side of the library's Home page at www.hersheylibrary.org ). Ask about being issued a virtual card. Please include the
required information in your message:

  • Your name
  • Your birth date
  • Your full home address with zip code
  • Your e-mail address
Services
Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center Drive-thru Testing for COVID-19
We understand that these are uncertain times for many people as the coronavirus pandemic
evolves and cases in our region continue to grow. We understand our decision to establish
drive-thru testing on our Milton S. Hershey Medical Center campus for possible COVID-19
patients has raised questions or concerns from local residents. We hope the information in this
letter helps to address those concerns.

As a university hospital that has been caring for the sickest patients in our region for the past
half-century, Hershey Medical Center has an obligation to provide safe and effective care for
our community during this unprecedented situation.

The express purpose of Penn State Health’s drive-thru COVID-19 testing clinics is to test
symptomatic patients in a controlled environment. Patients do not leave their personal vehicles
during the testing process and their individual samples are handled according to strict infection
control protocols. The staff doing the testing are dressed in personal protective equipment to
guard against transmission. The drive-thru testing clinics are located well beyond safe distances
to resident housing areas and should not pose a threat to residents, according to CDC
guidelines.

Penn State Health is taking every precaution to isolate people with symptoms to prevent the
spread of illness. Our drive thru clinics are essential to keeping symptomatic patients out of
medical practices, emergency rooms, and the community as a whole, to decrease the risk of
transmission.

Since Penn State Health has opened its two drive thru testing clinics in Hershey and Reading,
we have no knowledge of incidents in which patients have left their cars or ventured onto
private property.

We hope this answers the questions your community members may have about our drive thru
COVID-19 testing clinics.
Summer Day Camp Registration
With the evolving situation of COVID-19 virus, Summer Day Camp registration has been postponed until further notice. The new registration dates will be posted on Derry Township’s website and an email will be sent out to existing families in the ProCare program.
Library and Recycling Center Hours and Addresses
Recycling Center Hours   - 650 Clearwater Road 
Hershey Public Library Hours  - 701 Cocoa Avenue
Community News and Events
Bulk Waste Announcement
Waste Management is working to ensure that they can continue to serve our community safely and with the least disruption reasonably possible in the face of the many challenges created by the COVID-19 virus. In order for Waste Management to maintain its focus on municipal solid waste collection and disposal,  effective Monday, March 30, 2020, Waste Management is temporarily suspending bulk collection, such as furniture, carpet, mattresses, appliances, etc. until further notice.

For more information check out the Service Alerts on their website:   http://www.wm.com/alerts
Hershey Food Bank Status
The Hershey Food Bank has modified operations to insure safety for our clients and volunteers, but is following normal distribution scheduled. We have sufficient volunteers at the current time and are trying to minimize people on site to reduce unnecessary interactions. Our greatest needs right now are (1) funds to procure food due to temporary reductions in local donations and (2) donations of hard-to-obtain and high demand items that our clients need: Tuna, canned meats, baked beans, canned peas, peanut butter, Hunts canned pasta sauce, laundry detergent, bars of soap, toilet paper, paper towels, and sanitizing wipes. For more information about drop off locations for any extra items you might have to donate, and for a link to make a monetary donation, please visit our webpage: hersheyfoodbank.com and check the “Food Bank News” page for updated information. We appreciate all the community support at this challenging time! 
DTCC To Suspend TNR Operations
Derry Township Community Cats will follow Governor Wolf's order closing all non-life sustaining businesses. All TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return) clinics are canceled for the immediate future.
 
If you have community cats in need of TNR services, please leave a message (address, number of cats) on our 'cat phone' (717) 592-8087, and we will contact you when surgery dates are available.
 
Thank you, be safe, hug a cat (if cat allows you to)!
AFF Postpones April Gala
As the Association of Faculty and Friends of the Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, we want to do our part in keeping people healthy and safe during our nation’s current public health crisis. We have decided to postpone the 2020 AFF Gala until Friday, October 23.
 
Here are few ways you can still help to support the mission of AFF to promote medical education, research, clinical care and scholarships and to serve the needs of our Hershey Medical Center and College of Medicine community:
 

  • If you’re unable to participate in the auction but would still like to support AFF, please visit giveto.psu.edu/HersheyAFFThank you for your continued investment in our research and healthcare teams and their vital work.
 
If you have already purchased tickets for the Gala, your tickets will be honored on October 23.
Township Publications
Derry Township Newsletters
Sign up to receive the library's monthly newsletter directly here .
Board of Supervisors Meeting Minutes  
If you have a community news event that you would like to share in the township eNews, email it to eNews@derrytownship.org

Please note that listings should be related to local events. Submissions should be no more than a few sentences and include a link to a website with more information. Events determined to be discriminatory, controversial, negative, or offensive to other persons or organizations, or which promote organizations engaging in such conduct will not be included.