COVID-19 Update 5.19.20
Dear Rimland Community,
As hospitals adapt to the influx of COVID-19 patients and associated health risks, they have developed policies intended to protect patients and care providers. One of the main policies hospitals have implemented is a “No Visitors” policy, in order to reduce the number of people entering/exiting a hospital, and therefore curb transmission of COVID-19. While this policy is well intentioned, and highly effective in many cases, it poses a unique challenge to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). People with IDD rely on their families and caretakers to communicate with hospital staff about topics such as consent, healthcare, treatment options, and more. The “No Visitor” policy prevents individuals with IDD from receiving the same level of care as an individual without IDD, and can result in dangerous outcomes for the patients. For this reason, Rimland signed the American Academy of Developmental Medicine & Dentistry (AADMD) petition that recommends hospitals provide reasonable accommodations, aligned with the Americans with Disabilities Act, for individuals who require support from their caretakers (family members, DSPs, etc.) to receive equitable care. More details on the petition can be found here, and we encourage the Rimland community to sign the petition which can be found here.
As for updates within the Rimland community, we have been working with the Smart911 program to better secure the safety of our individuals. The Smart911 program partners with local 911 centers to provide additional information on the individual in need. For example, if a DSP calls 911 for a medical emergency at one of our homes, a pre-filled profile on the individual in need is automatically provided to the 911 dispatcher. This enables them to coordinate with the emergency response provider for a better outcome because they have more detailed information on the individual in need. This program is currently available at many of our location and expanding. If you would like to learn more about how this program works, please click here.
Rimland’s response to the COVID-19 crisis has been highly effective so far and we could not do it without the dedication of our employees and greater community. Thank you for your continued support as we navigate this difficult time.