A scene from the first floor of the USC Hotel on April 27, 20202 where USC medical staff are allowed to self-quarantine after working in high-risk hospital. Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/Getty Images

  • I discovered the hotel program after testing positive for COVID-19 and researching places to safely quarantine.

  • The program is open to all New Yorkers and tourists who have tested positive, but few people know about it.

  • As the Delta variant spreads, programs like this are a great way to limit transmission.

  • Catherine Morrison is a writer and recent graduate from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

  • This is an opinion column. The thoughts expressed are those of the author.

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Dani and his mother Gloria hadn’t planned to stay in New York City for long. Traveling from Paraguay, they arrived in New York on June 28. They came to get a vaccination for Dani, 20, an electrical engineering student who is not yet eligible for the COVID vaccine in their home country.

The day before they were scheduled to board their flight home, Dani and Gloria found themselves staying in a hotel with scheduled meals, nurses visits, and outdoor breaks. They had tested positive for COVID-19, and the city recommended a stay at a COVID-19 isolation hotel. I met them because I had checked in, too.

NYC Health and Hospitals initially implemented the Isolation Hotel Program in April 2020. While the program provides a safe, affordable space for local residents and…

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