News

IAHD’s response to COVID-19

Chemistry lab equipment, periodic table and compound elements

March 23, 2020:

While we are responding to Executive Orders from the Governor and OPWDD guidance, IAHD’s highest priority continues to be the health and safety of individuals, families and staff as well as the community at large. We continue to be in touch with OPWDD, the NYC and State Departments of Health (DOH) and the CDC and are following their recommendations. As previously stated, we continue to use infection control procedures to minimize the potential for the spread of infection.

It is important to note that while many of us have likely been exposed to the virus and may not know it, many that contract the virus will have mild to moderate symptoms that will resolve in a week or two. A much smaller number of people will need access to appropriate treatment from medical professionals.

Not surprisingly, we have three individuals we provide supports to who tested positive for COVID-19 at IAHD, whom are currently hospitalized. One staff has also tested positive. The affected individuals are receiving excellent care and the staff is at home recovering and doing well.

Programs:

  • SUSPENDED AS OF MARCH 18: IAHD Site-Based Day Habilitation programs, without walls and prevocational programs began temporary suspension effective March 18th.
  • People who live in IAHD residences are being provided with extra activities in the residence and have Day Hab staff working in the residences to support those individuals.
  • For people that reside in the community with their families, IAHD staff will be contacting every family to review their needs and to assess our ability to provide supports.
  • VISITATIONS
  • We continue to follow the guidance from OPWDD in that only essential IAHD staff will be permitted into our programs. Families, vendors and others will not be permitted to enter until further notice.
  • Any staff entering into the programs will have their temperature checked and be checked for other COVID-19 related symptoms (cough, shortness or breath, fever) and will not enter the program until tested by a healthcare provider and/or when symptoms subside.

EXECUTIVE ORDERS

The Governor has issued an Executive Order designating people working at OPWDD related organizations as essential personnel. We have worked on providing eligible staff with staggered schedules to minimize physical contact while ensuring the people we support obtain the essential services and resources needed for care. We are also offering the ability for staff to work from home when possible.

For questions about health and personal issues, call your doctor and/or contact the Department of Health at 888-364-3065 or at https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/coronavirus/

This continues to be and will likely be a challenging time for us for several months. While we are asked to maintain “social distancing,” I urge us to practice spatial distancing, but to maintain social closeness. It is now that we should practice random acts of kindness and find time to reach out & call loved ones, friends or others we know who live alone. If ever there was a time for us to band together as a community, now is the time!

We will continue to keep you updated as changes occur.

Sincerely,
Omayra Andino
CEO

For Additional Information, please visit the following:

NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH (DOH)
Department of Health 24/7 Hotline: 1-888-364-3065
General Information and Updates

THE CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION (CDC)
General Information and Updates
Informational Videos
How to Protect Yourself

WESTCHESTER COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
Hotline Number 211
Information about Coronavirus (COVID-19)