Officials in Philadelphia announce new resources for parents, seniors amid COVID-19

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Wednesday, April 15, 2020
Officials in Philadelphia announce new resources for parents, seniors amid COVID-19
Officials in Philadelphia announced new resources for parent and seniors on Wednesday.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Officials in Philadelphia announced additional resources for residents amid the coronavirus pandemic, including free meals for seniors and help for new parents and babies.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said any pregnant woman or any resident caring for an infant or toddler can get free support or supplies by visiting their website.

The city and Philadelphia Corporation for Aging are working together to make sure that seniors have access to free and nutritious food in spite of the challenges caused by COVID-19. Free grab-and-go meals are available at locations throughout the city.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney announces support for parents of babies, senior citizens amid the COVID-19 pandemic on April 15, 2020.

In addition to seniors, any Philadelphia resident impacted by the COVID-19 crisis can pick up a free box of food for their household at several locations throughout the city. Students can pick up free meals from more than 80 locations while schools are closed.

Kenney also said the city has set up two additional quarantine/isolation sites in Philadelphia. The sites are for first responders who cannot quarantine or isolate at home.

The Holiday Inn in Center City currently has 40 occupants and is used for anyone who cannot quarantine or isolate at home, including first responders and those experiencing homelessness.

Wednesday's numbers show a stabilizing in daily case count of the coronavirus, but city leaders say it is cautious optimism.

The city reported 7,441 cases of the coronavirus, including 311 new cases. Officials said 778 people are currently in city hospitals with COVID-19.

Dr. Farley provides update on COVID-19 in Philadelphia.

Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said the number of new cases for Wednesday could be low, due to some labs not updating their counts.

Farley also said the city is seeing an increase of people in the hospital with COVID-19.

SEPTA is now providing masks at certain mass transit stops, but there is still a concern about lack of protective gear for healthcare and front-line workers.

"If the federal government had done a better job of stockpiling and distributing PPE (personal protective equipment), it would have been distributed uniformly and we wouldn't have this mad race to try and find the stuff," Kenney said.

City leaders say they will only consider reopening the city when it is safe to do so.

"The virus is still circulating. So, if we go back to the way we were before, the virus will surge and the hospitals will have a hard time dealing with people who are sick," Farley said.