Question: How do I know if I have COVID-19?

Answer:  According to the NYC Health Department COVID-19-like illness (CLI) includes any of these symptoms: 

  • Feeling feverish or having a fever (greater than or equal to 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit) 
  • A new (within the last seven days) cough 
  • New shortness of breath 
  • New sore throat 

Most people with COVID-19 first have CLI.  People with CLI should be considered contagious. 

Most people with COVID-19 can tolerate the illness without medical intervention, as long as they are supported with all of their immediate needs. People who develop more severe disease requiring medical intervention, including hospitalization, have often been older adults, people with underlying medical conditions (such as chronic lung disease, heart disease, diabetes or a weakened immune system), or people with disabilities. Symptoms usually appear between 2 to 5 days after exposure

Question: Where can I get tested?

Answer: If you are an 1199 member, the union has arranged for a 30-day One Medical membership to help you get tested if you are experiencing fever, dry cough, and shortness of breath.  

Download the One Medical app for iPhone or Android and follow the prompts to create an account using the code 1199CARE30.  You can also sign up at

Provide One Medical with your insurance information.
If you need assistance, call (888) ONEMED1 (663-6331).  Remember: The code 1199CARE30 gives you priority service as an 1199SEIU member.

Once you have created an account, tap “COVID-19 Symptoms?” and answer a few questions.

If you do  not have health coverage, your Benefit Fund has partnered with BeneStream to help you find coverage that is right for you. Call 877-461-9328 or visit

Question:  What should I do if I feel sick before going to work?

Answer: Take your temperature and if greater than 100 F or you are experiencing, symptoms such as cough, sore throat, shortness of breath or other respiratory symptoms, stay at home. Contact your supervisor immediately and inform them of your status. Call your doctor or 311 hotline for further guidance. 

Question:  What should I do if I start to feel sick while I am work?

Answer: Stop your work and do a health check.  If you have a temperature greater than 100° F and/ or are experiencing symptoms such as a cough, sore throat shortness of breath, or other respiratory symptoms call your supervisor.  You will be sent home immediately. Call your doctor or 311 hotline for further guidance. 

Question:  If someone test positive for COVID 19 in the residence what should I do?

Answer: Speak with your supervisor and Nurse Case Manager/RN and follow the protocols for infection control that has been established for the residence.  Follow Universal Precautions.  Wash your hands thoroughly and often.  Make sure all hard surfaces are cleaned regularly with alcohol-based cleaning supplies.  Make sure you wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment when providing care and assistance to individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19.  Monitor your health status.  If you begin to feel sick while at work then report to your manager and go home.  If you feel sick prior to coming to work report this to your supervisor and stay home. 


Question: When will CP pay for sick leave?

Answer: When you receive a doctor’s note indicating that you must quarantine or isolate for 14 days, you will be paid sick leave for that period, without deductions to your accrued sick time. Provide your doctor’s note to your supervisor. If you need to be out longer than 14 days, you may use your accrued sick time or any available benefit time that you have accrued. If you do not have accrued benefit time, then the time off from work will be unpaid. 

When Management has advised you that you should quarantine for 7 days based on "high risk" contact while on duty with a staff member or individual who has tested positive.

Absent a doctor’s order to quarantine, employees who have "high risk" direct contact and are asymptomatic (no symptoms) may continue to work.  While at work the employee must undergo temperature monitoring and symptom checks upon arrival to work and at least every 12 hours while at work. 

Question: When does the 14 days paid leave start? 

Answer: The 14 days sick leave pay starts on the first date your physician advises you to self-isolate or quarantine.  The 14 days includes Saturdays and Sundays.

Question: Where should I send my doctor’s note?

Answer: All doctor’s notes must be sent directly to your supervisor/manager.

Question:  If I was exposed to a family member who tested positive for COVID-19 and my doctor told me to self-quarantine for 14 days, will CP pay my sick time?  

Answer:  If your doctor advised you to self-quarantine, you will be paid by CP for the specified time, up to 14 days, as long as you are provided with a dated note from your doctor specifying the time you are to self-quarantine.  You must provide your doctor’s note to your supervisor.  If during the quarantine period you develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19, contact your doctor. If you need to be out longer than 14 days, you may use your accrued sick time or any other available benefit time.  If you do not have accrued benefit time then the time off from work will be unpaid.   

Question: When is an employee considered “high risk”?  

Answer: Employees who have been exposed to another person (individual or staff member), while on duty, who has tested positive for COVID-19 may be at high risk if direct contact includes: Standing within 6 feet proximity, to the person who was tested positive, for half an hour or more, especially if engaged in conversation. 
Question: What are the steps to follow if I believe I had “high risk” direct contact while on duty?
Answer: Contact your manager ... CP Unlimited management will make an independent decision, at its discretion, based on the circumstances, whether you will be required to quarantine for 7 days. Absent a doctor’s order to quarantine, employees who are asymptomatic (no symptoms) may continue to work but must undergo temperature monitoring and symptom checks upon arrival to work and at least every 12 hours while at work. While at home employees will need to self-monitor for any symptoms and take their temperature twice a day.  

While at work employees should wear a facemask for 14 days following the last exposure. 

If you develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (e.g. fever, cough, or shortness of breath), you should immediately stop work and isolate at home. You should alert your manager and contact your physician, who will decide as to whether you should be tested. Employees who return to work should maintain self-quarantine when not at work. 

If you had contact with a person that tested positive and have other risk factors (i.e. age, or underlying health conditions, contact your physician or call 311 for further advice). 

Please Note: All other persons not meeting the direct exposure criteria above are considered at low risk of getting infection and will be expected to come to work.  If the person does not come to work, then their benefit time will be utilized for the time off.   
Question: If I had a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 when can I return to work? 

Answer: You can return to work when ALL of the following conditions are met:  

  • Working from home is not feasible for the completion of work responsibilities. 
  • Employees maintained isolation for at least 7 days after illness onset (i.e. symptoms first appeared) and have not had a fever for at least 72 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medications, and with other symptoms improving. 
  • Employees who are recovering from COVID-19 according to the above condition, must wear a facemask for 14 days following onset of illness. 
  • Employees who return to work under these conditions should maintain self-isolation when not at work. 
  • It is recommended that after completion of the quarantine period for employees to obtain a medical appointment with their primary care physician for medical clearance within one week of returning to work date.

Question:  I am hearing that there is some incentive money to be paid to staff who are working longer hours than they are scheduled.  Can you tell me about this additional pay and how much?

Answer: If you work 60 hours (regular hrs. only) but less than 75, you will receive an additional $150 for that pay period.

If you work 75-80 hours (regular hrs. only) you will receive an additional $200 in that pay period.

If you work more than 80 hours (regular hrs. only) you will receive an additional $250 in that pay period.

You will be paid an additional $500 on top of the amount you earned if you are working at a residence caring for individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 or were symptomatic and hospitalized (regardless of test result) and were discharged from hospital stay and returned to a CP home or facility to be cared for.   You must be working full time hours at the site.

Note: Benefit hours (vacation sick, etc.) for the pay period will not be included in the total hours work for the pay period for purposes of calculating "full time hours"

Question: If I am quarantined because I have recently returned from traveling to another country, am I entitled to paid sick leave? 

Answer: No.  You are not eligible for sick (quarantine) leave if you are subject to a quarantine because you voluntarily traveled to another country with level two or three health notice from the CDC.  You should have been aware of the restricted travel.

Question: I’m able to work from home, but I’m under a mandatory or precautionary quarantine.  Am I eligible for quarantine leave? 

Answer: No.  If you are not showing symptoms and are physically able to work through remote access or similar means, you are not eligible for quarantine (sick) leave.

Question: I am scared of contracting COVID-19 and/or my family is recommending that I do not come to work and I am self-isolating.  Would I get paid for the self-isolation?

Answer: No.  You may use your vacation and personal accrued time.  Otherwise, you may apply for a personal unpaid leave of absence.  Personal unpaid leave of absence is subject for approval by your department manager/director and based on the needs of your position and department.  Employees are required to give a start 
Question: I am a part time employee, do I still qualify for the sick leave pay?

Answer: Yes, your sick pay will be pro-rated based on the average hours worked over the past three (3) months.

Question: What are the qualifications to work from home?

Answer: Please note all CP Unlimited employees are Essential Home Care Workers and many of our employees are needed to work on site.  However, telecommuting will depend on your job, the departmental needs, and whether all or some duties can be performed at home.  Your director will review and make that determination.  It may be possible that only part-time work can be approved to be done from home.  If that is the case, you will be offered a part-time assignment for the duration of this emergency.  You will be paid for the hours worked and there will be no gap in your health insurance coverage.


Question:  I'm beginning to feel overwhelmed and stressed out with all I hear on the news about COVID -19(or a family member is feeling depressed) and I don't know what to do). Who can I call to help?

Answer:  There are many people feeling the same way that you do.  You can call your EAP (Employee Assistance Program) or you can contact NYC Well to speak to a counselor by phone, text or chat 24/7 365 days.  There are more than 200 languages available.   You can find the information about NYC Well on the CP Unlimited website which is on the desktop and chrome book at your residence. If you have a pen and paper available, you can write down this number 1-888-NYC-Well.

Question: What is EAP?

Answer: EAP provides extra support when dealing with changes and challenges, especially during a time of crisis.
Question: How does this service work?

Answer: This service is confidential.  Employees and anyone living in your household are eligible for up to three (3) free 30 minute sessions with a board certified EAP clinician.
Question: What services are provided?

Answer: Legal, financial, child care, senior care, and much more.
CP Unlimited EAP is administered through CIGNA by calling 877-622-4327.  Additional resources are available by visiting
1199 Employees may call the Member Assistance Program at 646-473-6900


Question: I am experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, am I entitled to be paid for my time away from work?

Answer: If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, it is advised that you contact your physician.  If your physician provides you with a note to self-isolate or quarantine, you will be paid up to 14 days.  If you are still experiencing symptoms after 14 days, then you may apply for short-term disability benefit.  If you are out ill, for any other reason, you may use your accrued sick leave.
Question: I have underlying conditions that prohibit me from coming to work, am I entitled to be paid for this time?

Answer: If you seek medical treatment and received a physician note advising you to self-isolate or quarantine, you will be paid up to 14 days.  Otherwise, you can use your sick time or available benefit time. You may apply for FMLA or PLF leave.

Question: My child is home due to school closures because of COVID-19 and I need to stay home to take care of my child.  Am I entitled to be paid while home taking care of my child?

Answer: You are NOT entitled to be paid for this time UNLESS you are subject to a mandatory or precautionary quarantine order.   Under New York Sick Paid Leave, you may use up to five (5) sick days, otherwise, you would need to use your available vacation and personal time, or you can be placed on unpaid leave of absence.
Please note, you are eligible to apply for day care services through NYC Regional Day Care offered through the Board of Education.  Employee may enroll by visiting:
Question: I need to stay home to take care of a sick family member who has COVID-19 and was issued a mandatory quarantine order, am I entitled to paid sick leave?

Answer: You may use up to five (5) sick days to care for a sick family member.  You will need to use your other available benefit time, such as vacation and personal time.  You may be eligible for FMLA or PFL leave.  You may apply for FMLA leave by calling Sedgwick at 888-436=9530 or contact the Benefit Department for the PFL forms.
and end date for leave of absence.
Question: I have been quarantined due to COVID-19, can I cake Paid Family leave/disability benefits quarantine leave for myself?

Answer: Yes, but only if you are under a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation issued by the State, the Department of Health, Local Board of Health, other government entity, or your physician.  If not, you may use your own sick time.  If sick time is not available, you can use any accrued benefit time.
Question: What if I independently decide to quarantine, can I take COVID-19 quarantine leave?

Answer: If you do not have the Order to Quarantine and decide to do so anyway, then you can use your accrued vacation time.  Sick time will not be approved for employees who have independently decided to quarantine.  You should also apply for a personal leave of absence if you are not able to work.

Question: Which employees are eligible to take FMLA leave? 

Answer: Employees are eligible to take FMLA leave if they work for a covered employer and:

  • Have worked for their employer for at least 12 months
  • Have worked at least 1,250 hours over the previous 12 months; and
  • Work at a location where at least 50 employees are employed by the employer within 75 miles

Question: My child’s school is closed, can I apply for FMLA leave?

Answer: No.  FMLA leave is designed to provide job protected leave to care for yourself, the birth or adoption of a child, or to care for a sick family member, such as your spouse, child, or parents, due to a serious illness.

Question: My child is home from school and I cannot come to work because I cannot find a babysitter.  Can I use FMLA leave? 

Answer: No. FMLA cannot be used for babysitting your child.

Note: FMLA is a medical leave and requires medical certification.

Question: Am I eligible for PFL leave?

Answer: Under the temporary expansion of PFL, you may be qualified to care for yourself or a minor dependent due to COVID-19 isolation or quarantine.

Question: What information is needed to apply for PFL?

Answer: You must complete the “Request for COVID-19 Quarantine PFL – Self or Child” Form. Fax the completed form to the Benefits Department at 855-477-5356. Attach mandatory or precautionary order to self-isolate or quarantine


Question:  Can a family member visit?

Answer:  Unfortunately, the answer is no.  All visitation has been suspended for everyone's safety and wellbeing.  You can encourage the family member to stay connected using video calls to help support the emotional and social needs of the person.
Question:  What does social distancing mean?

Answer:  In order to help stop the spread of the virus, social distancing (keeping a distance of 6 feet away from another person) is a practice we all need to follow.  It is important to practice this when: you are using public transportation, going grocery shopping, to the pharmacy or when you go out for a walk.  The experts say that social distancing will help to slow down the spread of the virus.
Question:  What does close contact/prolonged exposure mean?

Answer:  What this means is standing within 6ft to a person who has tested positive for half an hour or more, especially if engaged in conversation or providing care. 
Question: What is the Employee Screening Process in the residence?

Answer: Every employee who comes to the residence must receive a health check before entering.  Staff who are currently on shift will take the temperature of the employee seeking access to the residence.  Temperatures will be taken.  If the employee has a temperature 100 F or above, they will not be granted access.  The employee will need to notify their supervisor.  The person seeking access will also be asked if they have had any symptoms (cough, sore throat, difficulty breathing).  If the employee answers yes, then they will not be given access to the residence.  
Question: Are all employees of CP Unlimited considered “An Essential Worker”?

Answer: Yes, all employees are essential workers.
Question: What do I tell an individual if they want to go out?

Answer: If an individual doesn't show any signs of being sick and is not on quarantine or on isolation precautions, you can go outside for some fresh air and walk around the property.  Make sure to maintain social distancing of at least 6 ft. away from others.  Make sure the individual does not touch contact surfaces and immediately washes their hands upon return.
Question: Can you tell me about the Recovery Centers that are in place and what their purpose is?

Answer: The agency opened a Recovery Center, also known as a step-down center, in the West Farms Day Program setting.  This center opened March 27th for individuals that were ready to be discharged from the hospital but not ready to return to their residence.  The Recovery Center will be utilized for individuals that continue to recover from symptoms related to COVID-19 but are not needing hospital type treatment. 

The Recovery Center has direct care and nursing personnel that is on shift 24 hours a day.  Station MD is utilized for when an individual may be experiencing symptoms that require reporting to a physician.  Once a person is not exhibiting symptoms and are asymptomatic for three days are more they are transitioned back into their home.  The Recovery Center will also be utilized for individuals who have been presumed to have COVID-19 and are not able to safely be isolated in their home.  

Other Recovery Centers are being set up now and will be operational soon.  Linda Buch Gherardi (LBG) in Brooklyn and Cora Hoffman Center (CHC) in Staten Island will be utilized as Recovery Centers.


Question: What do I do when my mask becomes dirty?

Answer:  If your mask becomes soiled, saturated or damaged remove it according to instructions and throw it away in a red infectious waste bag or if this is not available throw away in a sealed plastic bag.  Wash your hands thoroughly after removal and ask for a replacement mask.
Question:  What do I do if the residence I work in is out of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supplies?

Answer:  Immediately contact your supervisor and report that the supply is low or there is no PPEs in the residence. Every effort will be made to get supplies to you as soon as possible. The shortage of supplies is a nationwide problem.  

Question: What is the agency's procedure for ordering and maintaining supplies for the residences?

Answer:  The agency has a centralized monitoring system for all PPE supplies.  Ordering of new supplies occurs through this monitoring system.  A daily inventory is maintained at each residence.  This information utilized to update the centralized inventory tracking system and new orders are created based on this system.  When supplies are running low for a residence CPT drivers are deployed to pick up the needed supplies and deliver to the site in need.  Any issues or concerns that a staff member has concerning the supply within the residence should be directed to management personnel.  

Question: What is the agency’s procedure for cleaning and disinfecting the residence?

Answer: When a confirmed case of COVID-19 is identified in a residence management alert CP Unlimited Engineering Department in order for the residence to be cleaned and sanitized.  In most cases these cleanings are completed by our outside vendors (I.e. Martinez cleaning).  Work order system is utilized to notify the Engineering Department.  Cleanings are scheduled as soon as possible, most cases, within 24 hours of the confirmed case.  If you have any questions or concerns about the cleaning of the residence please reach out to your manager.  

Question: How long can COVID 19 live on surfaces?

Answer: Per the New England Journal of Medicine, coronavirus-19 can survive: 

  • up to 4 hours on copper;
  • up to 24 hours on cardboard.  
  • up to 3 days (72 hours hours) on hard surfaces such as plastic, stainless steel; doorknobs, light switches, phones, faucets, sinks, toilets, computer keyboards, countertops, tables, pots, pans, utensils, dishes.
  • up to 3 hours as droplets in the air.

Question: How often should I be washing my hands? 

Answer: Everyone should wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60 to 95% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry. Soap and water should be used preferably if hands are visibly dirty 
Wash your hands: 

  • before and after contact with individuals, 
  • after contact with contaminated surfaces or equipment, and 
  • after removal of PPEs 

Questions:  How do I clean the bedroom of someone who is in isolation? 

Answer:  If there is a dedicated bedroom and bathroom for the person who is sick, consider reducing cleaning frequency to as needed for soiled items and surfaces to limit unnecessary contact with the person. As much as possible, the person should stay in a specific room and away from others in their residence.  This may be difficult to manage as they may want to get up and come out.  Do your best to encourage them to stay in their room.  Find programs they like to watch or music they like to listen to. 

Make sure you clean all the high contact surfaces, including nightstand, remote for TV, any handheld games the person may use to pass the time away.   

If a separate bathroom is not available, the shared bathroom being used should be cleaned and disinfected after each use by the person who is sick. If this is not possible, you should wait as long as practical after use by the person who is sick to clean and disinfect the high-touch surfaces.
Cleaning refers to the removal of germs and dirt from surfaces. Cleaning does not kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and the risk of spreading infection. 

Disinfecting refers to using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection 

Use a cleaning product and/or soap and water that would be appropriate for the surface you are cleaning. Once the surface is cleaned, then use an approved disinfectant product to wipe over the surface you just cleaned. If there is a window in the bedroom and bathroom be sure to crack open for ventilation.  Wear disposable gloves when you are cleaning and promptly wash and dry your hands after glove removal. 

Always make certain to follow the manufacturer's instructions for application and proper ventilation. Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleaning product.
Question:  Should I be doing laundry differently? 

Answer: No.  Wear disposable gloves when handling dirty laundry. Launder items as appropriate according to label instructions. Launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely.  Clean and disinfect clothes hampers according the same way you do for other surfaces. If possible, consider placing a bag liner that is either disposable (can be thrown away) or can be laundered. After glove removal, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water
Question: How often should we clean? 

Answer: At the start of the shift and throughout the shift.  Each time that you touch any surface (door knobs, timeclock, light switches, computer keyboards, phones, keys, etc.). Staff ending their shift should dispose of all garbage at the end of their shift.  Any items contaminated by bodily fluids must be red-bagged.  

Cleaning and Disinfection - Each shift should perform targeted cleaning and disinfection of frequently touched hard, non-porous surfaces, such as counters, appliance surfaces, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, remote controls, bedside tables, and any other surfaces that are visibly soiled. 

  • Always clean surfaces prior to use of disinfectants. Dirt and other materials on surfaces can reduce the effectiveness of disinfectants. 
  • Clean surfaces using water and soap or detergent to reduce soil and remove germs. For combination products that can both clean and disinfect, always follow the instructions on the specific product label to ensure effective use. 
  • Wash all bedding/linens. Wash and dry with the warmest temperatures recommended on the fabric label and follow detergent label and instructions for use. 
  • Staff do not need to wear respiratory protection while cleaning. Staff should wear disposable gloves while handling potentially soiled items/bedding and while cleaning and disinfecting surfaces. Place all used gloves and other disposable contaminated items in a bag that can be tied closed before disposing of them with other waste. 
  • Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds immediately after removing gloves or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. Soap and water should be used if hands are visibly soiled. 
  • Ensure waste baskets are available and visible. Make sure wastebaskets are emptied on a regular basis. Persons emptying waste baskets should wear gloves to do so and dispose of the gloves immediately. 
  • Soap and paper towels are always to be available in bathrooms. 
  • Eating utensils, cups, and dishes belonging to those who are sick do not need to be cleaned separately in the dishwasher, but it is important to note that these items should not be shared without washing thoroughly first. Eating utensils should be washed either in a dishwasher or by hand with hot water and soap. When available, it is best to utilize paper cups, dishes and plastic silverware for individuals who have positive case of COVID 19.   

Question: What is the proper use of PPEs? 

Answer: Given the limited availability of personal protective equipment the following conditions should be considered:

  • Monitor distribution of masks.
  • The face-mask should be removed and discarded if soiled, damaged, or hard to breathe through.
  • Face-masks should be carefully folded so that the outer surface is held inward and against itself to reduce contact with the outer surface during storage. 
  • The folded mask can be stored between uses in a clean sealable paper bag or breathable container.

Prioritize facemasks for selected activities such as:

  • For provision of essential procedures
  • During care activities where splashes and sprays are anticipated
  • During activities where prolonged face-to-face or close contact with a potentially infectious individual is unavoidable
  • For performing aerosol generating procedures, in particular, procedures that are likely to induce coughing (e.g., sputum induction, open suctioning of airways) should be performed cautiously and avoided if possible.

N95 Respirators

  • Your N95 Respirator can be reused as long as it remains functional.  When reusing your N95 Respirator, a face-mask should be worn over it.  Avoid touching the inside of your N95 Respirator and always use clean gloves when you put it on.  Between uses, store in a clean paper bag. 

Question: What if I am pregnant, how can I protect myself from getting COVID-19?

Answer: Do the same thing as everyone else is doing to avoid getting the virus clean your hands thoroughly and frequently throughout the day with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Cover your cough with a tissue or sneeze into your elbow and avoid people who are sick. According to the CDC, they do not currently know if pregnant women have a greater chance of getting sick from COVID-19 than the general public. It is always important for pregnant women to protect themselves from illness. Call your OB-GYN with your concerns.

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Constructive Partnerships Unlimited (Formerly Cerebral Palsy Association of New York State)

40 Rector Street, 15th Floor New York, NY 10006

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