IAHD’s Update to CoronaVirus COVID-19
March 30, 2020
These past few weeks have been tumultuous, to say the least. The CoronaVirus outbreak has changed life as we all know it and it’s certainly changed the way we do business at IAHD.
Like the rest of the world, we have individuals we support and staff who have been diagnosed with COVID-19. We are doing all that we can to keep people healthy and to help those who have tested positive recover as quickly as possible. Thankfully, all individuals and staff who’ve tested positive are recovering.
We have been able to convert our Day Programs into isolation/quarantine sites, which have helped us to minimize the spread of infection. As people test positive or show signs consistent with COVID-19, we are able to isolate them in place or move them to an isolation/quarantine site. This has proven to be an effective way to minimize the spread of infection.
Currently, only staff who are working directly with people who’ve tested positive are required by OPWDD (per DOH guidance) to wear masks and other PPE. However, IAHD is working diligently to ensure EVERY staff working directly with people we support have masks, whether people have tested positive or not.
We ensure staff do not become complacent and continue to make use of UNIVERSAL PRECAUTIONS a priority. We know this is THE best defense against the spread of infection.
SOME GOOD NEWS!
- Governor Cuomo announced that The Department of Health (DOH) has developed a less intrusive saliva and short nasal swab test that can be self administered in the presence of health care workers.
- Tests will likely be available beginning next week.
The governor has also highlighted anticipation of a surge of positive cases in the next 2-3 weeks.
IAHD is taking aggressive measures to prepare and prevent that surge by:
1. Securing adequate PPE for staff
2. Continuing to educate staff and people we support
3. Ramping up our already rigorous sanitizing efforts
4. Isolating/quarantining people as warranted to prevent spread
All of us at IAHD are committed to be there for the people we support and their families.
I am truly grateful to the staff who sacrifice so much each day in commitment to our mission. Our thoughts and prayers are with all who have been impacted by this pandemic around the world.