May 4, 2021
Dear Parent/Legal Guardian/ Treatment Ally:
On behalf of the entire team at New Hope, we are grateful for the opportunity to serve your child and family during these difficult times. We hope this letter finds you and your family well. In consultation with our Medical Services Team, I would like to again update you on the current status of Covid-19 at New Hope Carolinas.
We began offering outdoor visitation on April 1. Unfortunately, we were forced to suspend this opportunity for several weeks in April due to the local percent positive rate, which has been well above the 5% recommended threshold now for several weeks. Unfortunately, we are once again suspending this at least until May 10. We are reviewing the data weekly and every Monday we are informing Case Managers and Therapist if this option is available. While we are pleased to finally be able to offer this important opportunity for you and your child, please understand that we have an obligation to do so safely, and that we reserve the right to suspend this process at any time, based on weather conditions or local/internal infection rates. I’m attaching our guidelines for your convenience. If you are interested in outdoor visitation, please check with your therapist after noon on the preceding Monday.
Due to the current trending of infection rates, coupled with clear guidance from the CDC, we DO NOT support any therapeutic home visits (THTs) or any inside visitation over the upcoming weeks. Remember, “through the glass” or video conferencing continues to be available. Please schedule all visitation through your therapist.
I am very pleased to again report that we do not have ANY positive cases in our resident population!
The CDC recently gave emergency authorization for the Pfizer vaccine to be administered for any over age 16. Our Case Managers are actively seeking approval from legal guardians to allow us to facilitate administration of the vaccine for all eligible residents. Nine residents have already received their first shot.
We continue to require testing of all residents and encourage the testing of all employees on a weekly basis. In addition to weekly testing, we are also requesting a negative test for any new admission and we continue to monitor all residents daily for symptoms. We are also continuing to test and quarantine any new admissions or current residents who are away from our building for any reason, as a precaution. If we see any hint of an influx on any unit, we will test and quarantine the entire unit and stop all admissions to that program. If any youth tests positive for Covid-19, we will notify the parent/Legally Responsible Person (LRP) and encourage his/her parent/LRP to take the youth to their permanent residence for quarantine. When that is not feasible, we will quarantine the youth here.
Our employees continue the vaccination process and we continue our educational and incentive-based campaign in an effort to increase employee participation. We are also continuing our entry screening and other detailed processes in place designed to track and monitor the wellness of our employees and further limit the spread of Covid-19 in our building.
The CDC continues to warn all Americans to continue to remain vigilant in all mitigation strategies. Simple mitigation strategies like masks and distancing continue to be necessary to ensure the safety of our residents and employees. Your patience, understanding and continued cooperation and adherence to these necessary restrictions are appreciated.
Thank you again for allowing us to care for your child.
Sam E. Phifer, LCSW