04/13/2020: COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

 
April 13, 2020
 
Aloha,
 
I hope your Easter weekend was safe and restful! As we enter this new week, I wanted to give you a few quick updates.
 
Tomorrow (Tuesday) at 2:00 p.m., I will be joining a webinar with the Small Business Administration’s Hawai‘i District Director, Jane Sawyer. If you’d like to join us, you can register online here.
 
On Wednesday at 4:00 p.m., I will be hosting my next tele-town hall meeting and invite you to join me. I will be joined by the commanders of the military bases here in Hawai‘i who will discuss how the military is responding to the coronavirus crisis, working with Hawai‘i officials to confront the pandemic, and answer questions. I will also provide an update on the latest news from Congress including our efforts to get emergency funds and support to communities here at home.
 
If you would like to join the event, you can sign up on my website by Tuesday night. Or you can listen to it live online at gabbard.house.gov/live.
 
Also, here’s a link to my COVID-19 resources webpage where you can see updates and new information.
 
If you have any questions or if you are in need of assistance, please call me at (808) 541-1986 or email me at TulsiOffice@mail.house.gov.
 
Mahalo and be well,
Tulsi Gabbard
Member of Congress (HI-02)
 

Tele-Town Hall on Wednesday, April 15 at 4:00 p.m. HT

 
My next tele-town hall will take place this Wednesday. In addition to covering the latest developments, including how Congressional emergency funds are supporting Hawai‘i, I will be joined by military commanders to address challenges faced by military families.
 
If you would like to join the event, please sign up by visiting my website by Tuesday night.
 
You can also listen to the event live online by going to gabbard.house.gov/live.
 
Telephone Town Hall | COVID-19 Update # 5
Wednesday, April 15 at 4:00 p.m. Hawai‘i Time
 

VA Sees Increased Use of Online Mental Health Resources

 
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) staff data shows a dramatic jump in virtual mental health care services in March. VA Video Connect allows Veterans to consult with their healthcare provider via their computer, tablet or phone. The Department has updated its mental health resources webpage with advice geared towards veterans coping with this coronavirus crisis.
 

HHS Tips for Mental Health Stress of the Pandemic

 
The Department of Health and Human Services called on Dr. Joshua Gordon, Ph.D., M.D. who is the Director of the National Institute of Mental Health, to provide some tips on mental health tips. You can watch the YouTube video here.
 
  • Try to avoid using alcohol or other drugs as coping mechanisms.
  • Maintain routines for meals, exercise, and sleep. Try to stay active.
  • Explore wellness programs, like meditation, yoga, muscle relaxation, or breathing exercises.
  • Stay connected with others virtually and in ways that maintain a 6-ft distance.
  • Seek help right away if you have trouble coping or feel overwhelmed.
 

And remember...

 
The federal income tax filing and payment deadline has been postponed until July 15, 2020. Learn more about what the IRS is doing during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
 

COVID-19 Hawai‘i News

 
Testing in Hawai‘iTo date, there are 504 individuals in Hawai‘i who have tested positive for COVID-19. There were 39 new cases since Friday. Of the 504 cases, 44 remain hospitalized and 315 have been released from isolation.
 
Legal Aid Society of Hawai‘i Announces Telephone and Online Resources — The Legal Aid Intake Hotline will be available at its normal hours, Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.  Those needing legal help or have a legal issue due to the impact of COVID-19 should call (808) 536-4302 [Oahu] and 1 (800) 499-4302 [Neighbor Islands]. They have also launched an online webpage with COVID-19 related resources.
 
HDOA Reviewing Applications for COVID-19 Emergency Farmer Relief Program — The Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture (HDOA) is currently reviewing requests for assistance under the COVID-19 Emergency Farmer Relief Program, which offers some financial assistance to qualified farmers, ranchers and producers who have experienced damage to their operations due to COVID-19. The program received applications for over $1.2 million. The application period closed on March 27 and applications are being reviewed and prioritized for distributions.

Protect Yourself and Loved Ones from Coronavirus Scams — While it is heartwarming to see many expressions of aloha during this time of crisis — from our friends and first responders to frontline healthcare workers and the folks that help keep our government services running, we also need to be aware of the few bad apples who are trying to take advantage of this crisis to scam people — with our kūpuna being particularly vulnerable. An overview of the problem, what to look out for, and what you can do can be found on the HI Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs website.

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