COMHAR’s Coronavirus Planning
This is to provide you with an update on the Agency actions and preparations to address the coronavirus situation. Importantly, I want to emphasize that we are using our “Mission Driven. People First” mantra as our North Star to guide the action plans. Since my last communication, the number of cases and geographic expansion have continued to grow. Specifically, there has been 1 reported case in Philadelphia, 16 cases within Pennsylvania, and 1,000+ cases across the U.S. The current risk level within Philadelphia is Low…but that is subject to change at a moment’s notice.
The COMHAR Crisis Response Team (CRT) has been continually meeting to set up plans, procedures and policies to deal with potential coronavirus scenarios.
At this point in time, we are continuing all agency operations, but are implementing some new policies to minimize the risk of coronavirus to our consumers, staff and other community members:
CLEAN – This week we began enhanced cleaning activities to wipe down surfaces with anti-bacterial cleansers:
Cleaning Service – Our cleaning services have received training and have implemented extra wipe-down activities as part of their daily cleaning protocol
Staff Cleaning – We have asked staff to pitch in and conduct on-going wiping down of common areas (doors, handles, reception areas, sinks, etc.) throughout the day.
ACTION REQUESTED: You can help by taking care to wipe down any surfaces that you touch during the course of your workday
SCREEN – To maximize the protection of all individuals, we will begin screening for individuals who may have been exposed to coronavirus and are potentially contagious. We will be conducting a short questionnaire at the entrance of our facilities to all individuals before entering the facility.
If we believe an individual has symptoms associated with coronavirus, we will take the following action:
Consumer – We will ask the individual to reschedule and come back when they are feeling better
Staff Members – We will ask staff members to take a sick day, go home and check with their medical professional. Once they receive written clearance from the medical professional, they can return to work
Others – We will ask them to not enter our facility until they are symptom-free.
ACTION REQUEST: We ask for your patience and compliance with the screening policy.
HYGIENE - Finally, we want to remind you to continue the hygiene practices that we distributed last week and you see posted across our facilities:
Hands should be washed often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
When coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth and nose using your elbow (not in your hands) and then dispose tissues immediately and wash your hands thoroughly.
Avoid contact with anyone exhibiting cold-like symptoms.
If you have children and/or others in your care, you should consider making a personal emergency preparedness plan.
ACTION REQUEST: Please be vigilant in your hand washing and remind others to do the same
Note that these CLEAN, SCREEN AND HYGIENE policies are being put in place to protect the health and welfare of you and everybody across the COMHAR community. Should there be a need to make additional changes in the agency’s operations, we will communicate it to you.
In the interim, we ask that you also make preparedness plans for your individual situation. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your supervisor or COMHAR at (215) 203-3000.
Chief Executive Officer
Additional Coronavirus Resources and Information from the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html