[Skip to Content]

Upstate’s COVID-19 Hotline Opens

Upstate COVID-19 hotline in March 2020

Inside look at March 2020 hotline headquarters

On March 14, 2020 Upstate Medical University launched the COVID-19 Hotline in response to the overwhelming community need for guidance around issues related to the virus.

This start-up is a joint effort of the Upstate New York Poison Center and The Upstate Triage and Transfer Center.

The essential function of the hotline is to answer questions from the general public about: testing and symptoms; precautions to reduce the risk of spread and contact; community resources on transportation to testing sites and food accessibility.

Additionally, the line aims to help reduce unnecessary emergency department and physician office visits to ease the pressure on our health care system and to provide support to the county departments of health.

To date, Upstate’s COVID-19 hotline has managed more than 16,000 calls since inception, averaging 300 calls per day. Although most calls are from Onondaga county, calls have been logged from almost all of our 54-county coverage area of New York State. The line also acts as a resource on the services offered in surrounding counties.

The line is staffed primarily by registered nurses employed by Upstate with health educators and other support staff also on board.

AUGUST 2020 UPDATE: The hotline continues and the new hours are Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. and is open to the public.


In the case of a poisoning or for information purposes, call the Upstate New York Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222. We are open 24/7, 365 days a year. Each year our center manages more than 50,000 calls from health care providers, 911 operators, hospitals, industry, schools, and the general public in our 54-county service area.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date with the latest information.

About Upstate New York Poison Center

Housed inside Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY, the Upstate New York Poison Center is dedicated to reducing the number, cost and severity of poisonings within its designated 54-county service area as mandated by New York State Law. The Center is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to both health professionals and the general public at 1-800-222-1222.

About Upstate Medical University

SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY, is the only academic medical center in Central New York. It is also the region's largest employer with 9,460 employees. Affiliated with the State University of New York, Upstate's mission is to improve the health of the community through education, biomedical research and health care.

Top