June 16th, 2022- In 2020, Richmond and Henrico Health Districts (RHHD) launched the COVID-19 call center and hotline number 804-205-3501 to be a resource to individuals requesting information about COVID-19. The newly named RHHD contact center is expanding the topics staff are trained on to expand its services beyond COVID-19.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the contact center has been a valuable resource to community members and has provided an array of information as it has become available. For example, the contact center provided information on mitigation and prevention guidance, registered individuals for COVID-19 vaccination appointments, connected individuals to testing opportunities, and so much more.
“The contact center has been particularly helpful for our community members who prefer to speak with a person rather than to navigate a website,” explains Amy Popovich, Nurse Manager at RHHD. “It also is one of several ways we get to connect with community members one on one, which is so important to us to build trust and rapport with our communities while delivering information with compassion.”
As of today, the contact center is expanding beyond answering COVID-19 questions to include other public health topics. Specifically, contact center staff have been trained on assisting immigrants and refugees on staying up to date on immunizations and getting screened for communicable diseases. Also, contact center staff have been trained to answer general questions on Monkeypox and how to connect individuals to epidemiological or clinical resources if needed.
“I’ve always been proud of our staff’s ability to serve our communities in creative and innovative ways,” explains Dr. Melissa Viray. “RHHD experienced so much growth throughout the pandemic and created new systems and programming to better serve our communities. We’ve taken a step back to see which of those services make sense to start incorporating into our everyday work and the contact center was an obvious choice.”
Individuals with questions on anything related to COVID-19, Monkeypox, or refugee/immigrant health services are welcome to call 804-205-3501.