COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Updates

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is currently facing a crisis in healthcare due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) epidemic. We face this health crisis together and we are not alone. Please be sure to check this page frequently for updates regarding the impact of COVID-19 on different areas of healthcare, daily life, financial matters, and more.

This page was last updated on April 3, 2020.

How The Arc Is Addressing The COVID-19 Crisis

  • March 30, 2020: The Arc team will be hosting weekly, half-hour webinars and Q&A sessions where we provide you with up to the minute updates on federal and local policies and programs, valuable resources and information, and more.
  • March 25, 2020: The House Committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities reviewed the urgent needs of our disability community including the viability of agencies which provide essential services and the situation of persons with disabilities and families who require additional in-home assistance. Also raised was the lack of personal protective equipment to prevent transmission of the COVID-19 virus. Thank you to Chair Khan and Vice Chair Cutler!
  • March 24, 2020: The Arc of Massachusetts joins the Special Needs Advocacy Network and Federation for Children with Special Needs in a letter to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) on the lack of special education services in the Commonwealth. Thank you to SPAN and FCSN for their work on the letter. We will be working together (and with others) to advance the best outcomes. Stay tuned for more news!
  • March 24, 2020: The Arc releases their community outreach survey in Spanish. Further translations will be released in the coming days.
  • March 19, 2020: The Arc releases a community outreach survey to gauge the needs of our community during the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis.

Important Resources on COVID-19

  • Medical:
    • Call your primary care physician or urgent care.
  • Personal Protective Equipment:
    • Use local resources section to check on personal protective equipment. This is in short supply and we are advocating nationally for increasing production to make sure our community has supplies.
  • Medications:
    • If you have a service provider, contact it for assistance with pick-up and delivery of medications (RX).
    • If you are concerned about medical care or paying for RX, approval for MassHealth is expedited.
  • Food:
  • MassHealth Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) Provider Frequently Asked Questions
  • On March 16, the Commissioner of Insurance issued an emergency measures order to all health insurance carriers and HMOs in regard to use of telehealth (telephone and video). This means that all private carriers and MassHealth will allow payment for telehealth (and co-pays have been temporarily removed for patients).  We previously shared that MassHealth now allows telehealth including for certain long-term supports services such as adult family or foster care (AFC).  Medical groups have begun to inform patients that this is how regular appointments will be kept
  • MassHealth has approved 90-day medication refills (as long as you have approval for at least 1 refill); this isn’t extending to all medications and we are advocating for full extension.
  • MassHealth General Member Updates.
  • Providers are offering shopping and delivery services to assist individuals/families.

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