JIC #113: DOL unemployment benefit and economic impact payment updates

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DOL Unemployment Benefit Update

The Guam Department of Labor’s (DOL) implementation plan for unemployment assistance during the COVID-19 Pandemic has been received by the regional federal labor department.

The U.S. Department of Labor is also reviewing Guam DOL’s budget request for Pandemic
Unemployment Assistance and Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation.

While Guam awaits for USDOL to approve the budget request and the implementation plan,
GDOL urges employers to register on hireguam.com and input data on employees affected by COVID-19.

Employers and business owners who have displaced workers due to COVID-19 are advised to register and email their business or contractor’s license to [email protected] for verification purposes on the department’s virtual one-stop system, hireguam.com . For DOL inquiries, contact Hannah Cho, Special Projects Coordinator at [email protected] or call 300-4600.

Economic Impact Payments (EIP) Update 

On Wednesday, the Leon Guerrero-Tenorio Administration received $107.8 million of the
approved amount of $134.8 million, from the U.S. Department of Treasury for Economic
Impact Payments (EIP) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES)
Act. An additional amount of approximately $27 million is expected to be received as payments are made.

With the arrival of these funds, the Department of Revenue and Taxation anticipates
stimulus checks could be released early next week.

FAQs on the EIP program were released today.

DRT’s call center numbers are 635-1840/41/42/57 and 635-7603/04/06. Due to

Disaster Relief Program – Prugråman Salåppe’ Ayudon I Taotao 

All program recipients who are currently eligible and receiving benefits and those who have
submitted an application, but have not yet been processed under any of the public assistance programs: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP); Medicaid; MIP; Cash Assistance Programs (CAP); and Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) Block Grant, will not need to submit a new application form to receive the Disaster Relief Program cash assistance.

DPHSS will provide a listing of all enrolled households to the Department of Administration
(DOA). DOA will mail checks to the Head of the Household.

If you are not receiving benefits from one of the above programs that you must apply to receive the $one time $300 check.

How to Apply: 

  1. Download and complete the “ Disaster Relief Cash Assistance Program Application”
    available on the Department of Public Health and Social Services website
    (dphss.guam.gov).
  2. Send the signed application by email to [email protected] or submit it
    to the Drop Box located at Castle Mall in Mangilao, Room 16 between the hours of 8
    a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.

Eligibility Criteria:
1. Total household’s gross monthly income must be equal to Federal Poverty Level
2. Head of Household must be 18 years old and above

SNAP, CAP & CCDF Certification End-of-Date for June 2020 Extended up to December 2020 

DPHSS advises the community that block grant recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Cash Assistance Programs (CAP), and Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) will have their certification end-date for June 2020 extend up to December 2020.

Medicaid and Medically Indigent Program recipients will still need to renew their cases or the case will be terminated. Recipients can submit their renewal applications at the Drop Boxes located in front of the Northern Region Health Center, Southern Region Health Center, and Castle Mall Building in Mangilao, or send an email to  [email protected].

Information sent to the email will be kept confidential.

For any questions or concerns, please call the DPHSS Bureau of Economic Security of the
Division of Public Welfare:

● BES North (Dededo): (671) 635-7488, (671) 635-7484, (671) 635-7439, (671)
635-7396, (671) 635-7429
● BES South (Inarajan): (671) 828-7542, (671) 828-7534, (671) 828-7524
● BES Central (Castle Mall, Inarajan): (671) 735-7340, (671) 735-7519, (671) 735-7256,
(671) 735-7344, (671) 735-7373

Attention Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Recipients 

DPHSS advises individuals/families who are needing assistance in budgeting their food dollars to make their Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits last during this State of Public Health Emergency due to COVID-19.

The University of Guam Community Nutrition Education Programs (CNEP) can assist SNAP recipients in managing food resources and for shopping and cooking healthily while on a budget. To access CNEP resources and virtual workshops at no cost, send an email to [email protected] or visit https://www.facebook.com/UOGCNEP/

GRMC COVID-19 Drive-thru Testing Available

Guam Regional Medical City (GRMC) has begun conducting onsite drive-thru testing for
COVID-19. This service is available to everyone including GRMC patients and the public, who will need a referral from their doctor to qualify to have the COVID-19 test performed at GRMC. A patient’s primary doctor will be the one to contact GRMC’s Specialty Clinic to ensure the necessary paperwork has been received via email and if so, to book the testing
appointment for their patient. Specialty Clinic will contact the patient with the details of their testing appointment.

The drive-thru testing area is staged outside of GRMC’s Emergency Department, on the east side of the building. GRMC asks that patients arrive ten (10) minutes prior to their appointment.

All test kits will be processed at GRMC’s in-house laboratory using BD MAX™ System
technology. This test uses a real-time PCR method to detect SARS-CoV-2 virus and confirm the diagnosis of COVID-19 infection.

There is a fee involved. Payments may be made by cash, check, or credit card payment.

The drive-thru testing sites will be open from 9 am to 12 pm, Monday through Thursday for the general public. The sites will be open for GRMC staff and patients, including Pre-Op patients, also from 9 am to 12 pm, Monday through Friday. For more information, please call GRMC’s Specialty Clinic at 969-4895.

If you are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19, please call your health care
provider. If a patient does not have a regular health care provider, they can call any of the
Community Health Centers or the DPHSS Medical Triage Hotline Phone Numbers listed below to report symptoms and obtain guidance from clinicians, or call 311.

● (671) 480-7859
● (671) 480-6760/3
● (671) 480-7883
● (671) 687-6170 (ADA Dedicated Number)

Watch for COVID-19 Symptoms: Loss of Smell, Taste, Fever, Breathing Difficulty 

If you think you have a known or unknown exposure to COVID-19 and develop loss of smell
and taste, or fever and other symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your health care provider or the DPHSS medical triage hotline at 311. Stay home and isolate yourself from other members of your household, and alert your employer.

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed COVID-19 cases.

The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure. Common symptoms of COVID-19 include:

●Fever on exam
●Fever-subjective
●Cough
●Shortness of breath
●Loss of smell and taste
●Loss of appetite
●Nausea, vomiting
●Diarrhea
●Abdominal pain
●Myalgias (muscle aches)
●Chills
●Chest pain
●Sore throat
●Runny nose
●Fatigue/weakness
●Headache
●Congestion

To date, there have been 151 cases confirmed through COVID-19 testing provided with 5
deaths and 123 released from isolation. As this is an evolving situation, information is subject to change with little to no notice.

The Department of Public Health and Social Services (DPHSS) uses CDC’s test-based criteria for releasing patients from isolation. This requires COVID-19 patients to have two consecutive negative tests at least 24 hours apart before being released from isolation.

Some cases that were previously released from isolation have returned to active isolation status after re-testing positive for COVID-19 through follow-up testing. To date, no additional cases have been linked to people released from isolation.

COVID-19 test results are reported from multiple labs at varying times of the day.

Cumulative test results are provided every evening once all tests from that day are finalized.

For updated information on COVID-19 cases on Guam, visit the COVID-19 Dashboard at
http://dphss.guam.gov/covid-19/ .