COVID-19 Updates

4/3/20 Weekly Update from LADD CEO Susan Brownknight
 
To LADD families and loved ones,    
 
The past few weeks have brought unparalleled challenges and an overwhelming sense of uncertainty across our nation. As we enter the month of April and continue to navigate uncharted territory, I want to be clear: we are resolute in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and protecting your loved one.  
 
I continue to be inspired by the incredible sense of duty we all feel toward this mission. I’m also uplifted each time I see our community come together in creative ways. Small acts – from neighbors offering to make grocery runs, to your loved one lighting up when they see their friend virtually on LADD Live (see below for information on how you too can participate) – remind me that our shared humanity in these trying times prevails.   
 
Please find this week’s COVID-19 update below. 
 
Updates as of April 3, 2020: 
 
  • As of Friday, April 3, there are 3,312 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio, with 220 confirmed cases in Hamilton County. Our peer agencies have three confirmed cases. There are currently none at LADD.  

 

  • Health and safety supplies: This afternoon, we delivered 100 safety kits with cloth masks, surgical masks and additional hand sanitizer to our direct support professionals. The CDC is expected to issue recommendations in the coming days that all Americans wear cloth masks or other face coverings in public.
    • At this time, masks are voluntary. However, if guidance is issued and masks become recommended, we will instruct employees and inform you of changes. 
    • Experts caution that while masks may be a tool to slow the spread, they do not protect people exclusively from getting infected and cannot replace social distancing guidelines. This includes Ohio’s Stay At Home Order and critical prevention measures, such as proper handwashing. We will continue to require these measures.  
    • Our COVID-19 first responders also have full personal protective equipment outfits, including N95 masks, to use if someone is believed to have COVID-19. 
 
  • Ohio Stay At Home Order extended: Ohio’s Stay At Home Order has been extended through May 1. Find more information here
 
  • Major disaster declaration: President Trump has declared Ohio a major disaster area. The designation qualifies the state to receive emergency federal funding to supplement response and recovery efforts. We are hopeful this will give essential service nonprofits like LADD access to additional resources as well. 
 
  • SNAP changes: The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) is launching a “Click and Collect” program for SNAP recipients to shop online, pick up groceries and pay for food with their EBT card from their vehicles.  
    • ODJFS also announced SNAP recipients will get the maximum benefit possible for March and April and it has extended the recertification eligibility period from March, April and May by another six months.  
    • How the “Click and Collect” program works online varies by vendor.  
 
  • Opportunities to connect: Maintaining connection and communication between members of our entire community is critically important right now. Whether your loved one is currently at home with you or in a LADD residence, we want to stay engaged with you all.
    • “Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution” Netflix Party at 7 p.m. this Saturday. More information is available here.
    • LADD Live at 2 p.m. every weekday on Zoom (instructions below).
    • Fit For Life exercise classes at 4 p.m. every Tuesday and Thursday on Zoom.
    • Independent Resident Council meetings at 5 p.m. every Wednesday on Zoom.
    • Full Zoom calendar is available here.  
 
  • Mental health resources: We are ensuring mental health resources are available for those we support who may be worried or feel isolated.
    • Envision, an agency that currently provides mental health services for people we support, will work with individuals to continue therapy sessions through phone or video. 
    • For those who don’t have a therapist but experience a crisis related to COVID-19, Envision will work to provide remote services to those individuals as well. 
    • If you have questions about this, please talk to program staff or email staysafe@laddinc.org.   
 
  • Community Connections Program: The majority of facility-based day programs across the region have closed. Although we could continue to operate our Community Connections Program because the groups are small enough, we have decided to stringently follow Ohio’s social distancing recommendations. Therefore, for the safety of your loved one, LADD is currently conducting home-based programming and is no longer traveling or bringing groups together from different residences. 
 
  • Visitor Policy: We are not allowing visitors in any of our residential locations at this time. Please work with staff to coordinate communication with your loved one. This is critical for your mental health and we strongly encourage regular communication.      
 
  • Prevention measures in place
    • Using sanitizing techniques, including disinfecting commonly touched surfaces throughout the day and asking employees to wash their hands before arriving at work, once they arrive at work, and throughout the day.  
    • Monitoring supply levels of necessary supplies such as hand sanitizer, thermometers and disinfectant at each of our locations to ensure we are well stocked in case of shortages. 
    • Additional hand sanitizer and infrared thermometers were delivered Friday. Given the shortage of supplies, we are prioritizing sites with our most vulnerable individuals to receive infrared thermometers first. We expect additional thermometers to arrive soon. 
    • Every staff member has been given access to a quick action protocol established if COVID-19 symptoms are exhibited. 
    • We have asked every staff member to take their temperature before reporting to work and call off if they are experiencing symptoms or call off if a loved one they live with is experiencing symptoms. If they have a temperature or are exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms, they must stay home. 
    • Preparedness kits have been delivered to every direct support professional. These include additional sanitizing and health supplies. 
    • Daily education with staff on:
      • Performing preventative measures such as CDC-directed hand washing methods and teaching people we serve those same methods.
      • Identifying symptoms of infection and activating LADD’s quick action protocol if infection is suspected.
    • Preparing advanced levels of support with nurses and supervisors should it be needed. 
    • Aligning local, county and state resources to be ready if we have a confirmed case. 
 
Stay informed  
 
Sign up for additional communications from LADD, such as text or voice message updates  here.  
 
View our  Frequently Asked Questions at  laddinc.org/covid-19-faq.  
 
View past updates at  laddinc.org/covid-19-announcement.  
 
Email  staysafe@laddinc.org  if you have additional questions or concerns related to LADD’s  plans and preparedness for COVID-19.  
 
Follow us at  www.facebook.com/LADDInc.  
  
 
Join LADD Live on Zoom 
  
Join LADD Live on Zoom by clicking this link: https://zoom.us/j/110907018  
 
Meeting ID: 110 907 018 
 
Or you can dial by phone: 
877 853 5257 US Toll-free 
888 475 4499 US Toll-free 
Meeting ID: 110 907 018 
 
 
Full Zoom schedule: laddinc.org/calendar 
 
  
Centers for Disease Control  and Ohio Department of Health  Resources  
 
CDC Information about  Coronavirus  (available in Spanish and English)  
  
 
Thank you for your attention to these important issues. Our entire LADD team is solely focused on the health, safety and well-being of your loved one. Please email  staysafe@laddinc.org  if you have any questions or concerns. 
  
Sincerely,  
Susan Brownknight  
CEO, LADD 
To LADD families and loved ones,   
 
First and foremost, there are currently no cases or suspected cases of COVID-19 at LADD. However, another week has gone by and we continue to face an unparalleled threat to our public health. At the same time, I have seen more resilience, compassion and dedication throughout our community than ever before. You are part of that – thank you for your continued commitment to LADD. 
 
Below is this week’s COVID-19 update. 
 
Updates as of March 27, 2020: 
 
  • As of Friday, March 27, there are 1,137 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio, with 63 confirmed cases in Hamilton County.
 
  • Under Ohio’s Stay At Home Order, LADD services and employees are considered essential. LADD is continuing its work through the order’s duration. More information is available at laddinc.org/covid-19-announcement
 
  • We are committed to facilitating connection and communication between members of our entire community. Whether your loved one is currently at home with you or in a LADD residence, we want to maintain engagement with you all.
    • Fit For Life classes and Independent Resident Council (IRC) meetings will now be hosted on Zoom. Instructions to access Zoom are below.
      • Fit For Life – Every Tuesday and Thursday at 4 p.m. starting March 31
      • IRC meetings – Every Wednesday at 5 p.m. starting April 1
    • LADD Live – Monday-Friday at 2 p.m. on Zoom.
      • This week we hosted laughter yoga, pour painting, movie reviews, news updates, smoothie making and collage crafting.
      • Check out next week’s schedule at laddinc.org/calendar.
    • Another avenue is to video chat one-on-one with your loved one. If they are currently at home, we suggest they video chat with staff who support them and with friends.
      • You can do this via Zoom, FaceTime, Skype, Facebook Messenger and other applications.
 
  • We are ensuring mental health resources are available for those we support who may be worried or feel isolated.
    • Envision, an agency that currently provides mental health services for people we support, will work with individuals to continue therapy sessions through phone or video.
    • For those who don’t have a therapist but experience a crisis related to COVID-19, Envision will work to provide remote services to those individuals as well.
    • If you have questions about this, please talk to program staff or email staysafe@laddinc.org
 
  • The majority of facility-based day programs across the region have closed. Although we could continue to operate our Community Connections Program because the groups are small enough, we have decided to stringently follow Ohio’s social distancing recommendations. Therefore, for the safety of your loved one, LADD is currently conducting home-based programming and is no longer traveling or bringing groups together from different residences.
 
  • We are not allowing visitors in any of our residential locations at this time.
    • Please work with staff to coordinate communication with your loved one. This is critical for mental health and we strongly encourage regular communication.     
 
  • We are continuing our advanced precautions:
    • Using sanitizing techniques, including disinfecting commonly touched surfaces throughout the day. 
    • Monitoring supply levels of necessary supplies such as hand sanitizer, thermometers and disinfectant at each of our locations to ensure we are well stocked in case of shortages.  
    • Every staff member has been given access to a quick action protocol established if COVID-19 symptoms are exhibited.  
    • We have asked every staff member to take their temperature before reporting to work and call off if they are experiencing symptoms or call off if a loved one they live with is experiencing symptoms. If they are exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms, they must stay home. 
    • We are expecting high tech thermometers to arrive soon. Given the shortage of supplies, we are prioritizing sites with our most vulnerable individuals to receive these thermometers.   
    • Preparedness kits have been delivered to every direct support professional. These include additional sanitizing and health supplies. 
    • Daily education with staff on:
      • Performing preventative measures such as CDC-directed hand washing methods and teaching people we serve those same methods. 
      • Identifying symptoms of infection and activating LADD’s quick action protocol if infection is suspected.  
    • Preparing advanced levels of support with nurses and supervisors should it be needed. 
    • Aligning local, county and state resources to be ready if we have a confirmed case. 
 
 
Stay informed 
 
Sign up for additional communications from LADD, such as text or voice message updates here.  
 
View our Frequently Asked Questions at laddinc.org/covid-19-faq.   
 
View past updates at laddinc.org/covid-19-announcement.  
 
Email staysafe@laddinc.org if you have additional questions or concerns related to LADD’s plans and preparedness for COVID-19.  
 
Follow us at www.facebook.com/LADDInc
 
 
Join LADD Live, IRC and Fit For Life on Zoom
 
Join LADD on Zoom by clicking this link: https://zoom.us/j/110907018
 
Meeting ID: 110 907 018
 
Or you can dial by phone:
 
877 853 5257 US Toll-free
888 475 4499 US Toll-free
 
Meeting ID: 110 907 018
 
View the virtual events schedule at laddinc.org/calendar.
 
 
Centers for Disease Control and Ohio Department of Health Resources 
 
CDC Information about Coronavirus (available in Spanish and English) 
 
We remain uncompromising in our commitment to the safety, health and well-being of your loved one. Please email staysafe@laddinc.org if you have any questions or concerns.
 
Sincerely, 
Susan Brownknight 
CEO, LADD
To our LADD families and loved ones,  
 
As you know, the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic is evolving quickly. Today, Governor DeWine and Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Acton issued an order for all residents to stay at home or their place of residence to fight this pandemic, beginning 11:59 p.m. Monday, March 23.
 
To be clear, LADD services are considered essential operations and LADD employees are considered essential workers under this order. We will continue to do our work and protect the people we support with no interruption. 
 
We will work even harder to not only ensure the health and safety of those we support, but to also provide some source of normalcy and comfort during this anxious time. Rest assured, we are taking every step possible to limit exposure and provide layers support to your loved ones as well as our employees.   
 
Here’s what the order means for us, as a provider of essential services: 
 
  • Each of our direct support professionals (DSPs) and program employees have a letter authorized by the Department of Developmental Disabilities stating their essential employee status. They will keep this letter on them at all times, as well as a digital copy on their mobile devices. 
 
  • We will continue to provide exceptional direct support to everyone we serve in the safest way possible.
    • Employees who do not provide direct support will continue to work remotely.  
    • Direct support professionals will continue to report to work and operate under the advanced precautions previously established.  
    • We have made it clear to employees they must stay at home if sick, use cough and sneeze etiquette and practice hand hygiene. They have been provided additional resources and details on those measures.  
 
  • We will further implement social distancing measures.
    • All people LADD supports are asked to respect the shelter-in-place order. 
    • We will work to ensure that those we support do not share personal items and maintain, as best they can, a six-foot distance from their neighbors or roommates. 
    • All employees and people we serve have been directed to wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds as frequently as possible or use hand sanitizer as a backup. Soap and water, when used properly, has shown to be MORE effective than hand sanitizer.   
    • All employees and people we serve have been asked to cover coughs or sneezes (into sleeve or elbow – not hands) and refrain from shaking hands and/or touching. 
    • We will continue regularly disinfecting high-touch surfaces in all facilities.  
 
  • It is important to note we have already put into place many precautions needed to operate under a stay-at-home order. We are prepared for this.
    • We have ensured all programs are stocked with food and medicines.
    • We are well stocked with critical supplies and are continuing to stock up with additional supplies with the expectation that this goes on for some time. 
    • We will also have designated grocery and supply runners to limit travel and exposure.
  
  • We are working diligently to ensure that every person’s mental health in this time of social isolation is monitored.
    • Although social distancing is our highest priority in limiting the spread of COVID-19, we are concerned about the mental stress this pandemic may cause.
    • As such we are preemptively reaching out to counselors to set up virtual visits.
    • We are also creating virtual chat rooms for families and residents through Zoom to see and talk to each other. Details about this channel, called “LADD Live,” are below.
 
Join LADD Live on Zoom:
 
Read the entire Director’s Stay at Home Order here.  
 
Thank you for your continued commitment to LADD. We are a resilient community and we will get through these trying times together. If you have questions or concerns, please email staysafe@laddinc.org and visit laddinc.org/covid-19-announcement for past announcements.  
 
Sincerely, 
Susan Brownknight,  
CEO, LADD 

To LADD families and loved ones,   

COVID-19, or coronavirus, has proven to be an unprecedented crisis that is impacting every corner of our society. While experts predict the trajectory of the virus will continue to climb, the team at LADD is moving quickly, but thoughtfully to fight this pandemic and protect our people.  

As we pledged to you in our last email, we will continue to keep you informed with this weekly update and other communications as needed.  

Updates as of March 20, 2020: 

  • As of Friday afternoon, March 20, there are 169 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio, with 14 confirmed cases in the Greater Cincinnati Region. 
  • Mike DeWine asks all of us to remain home. As such, we arenot allowing visitors in any facilities at this time.  
  • Please work with staff to coordinate communication with your loved one. LADD is utilizing Zoom software to assist in face-to-face updates.   
  • Every staff member has been given access to a quick action protocol established if COVID-19 symptoms are exhibited.  
  • We are asking every staff member reporting to any facilities to take their temperature before coming to work. If they have a temperature or are exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms, they must stay home. We are placing high-tech thermometers at sites starting next week. Given the shortage of supplies, we are prioritizing sites with our most vulnerable people to receive these thermometers.   
  • Preparedness kits have been delivered to every direct support professional. These include additional sanitizing and health supplies. 
  • We will soon be implementing text message updates and voice message updates (via an automatic phone call), in addition to these weekly email updates. Sign up for text or voice message updates here.  
  • We are developing new daily programming, called “LADD Live,” to help staff, the people we serve and families stay connected virtually. Join us for our first event, “How to Zoom & Puppet Movie Reviews with Marc Fried,” at 2 p.m. on Monday, March 23. Use Zoom to access the event. Directions are below.  
  • We have postponed all in-person events through April 15. Find more information here.  
  • We are continuing our advanced precautions:
    • Using sanitizing techniques, including disinfecting commonly touched surfaces throughout the day. 
    • Monitoring supply levels of necessary supplies such as hand sanitizer, thermometers and disinfectant at each of our locations to ensure we are well stocked in case of shortages. 
    • Daily education with staff on:
      • Performing preventative measures such as CDC-directed hand washing methods and teaching people we serve those same methods. 
      • Identifying symptoms of infection and activating LADD’s quick action protocol if infection is suspected.  
    • Preparing advanced levels of support with nurses and supervisors should it be needed. 
  • Aligning local, county and state resources to be ready if we have a confirmed case. 
  • We are ensuring we have mental health resources available for those we support to prevent, as best we can, feelings of isolation.   

Stay Informed

Sign up for additional communications from LADD, such as text or voice message updates here.  

View our Frequently Asked Questions at laddinc.org/covid-19-faq.   

View past updates at laddinc.org/covid-19-announcement.  

Email staysafe@laddinc.org if you have additional questions or concerns related to LADD’s plans and preparedness for COVID-19.  

Follow us www.facebook.com/LADDInc

Join LADD Live on Zoom  

At 2 p.m. each week day, Monday – Friday, go to: https://zoom.us/j/570364125?pwd=TjdoOTBsUHFtS3ByY3JqY1o5SWtwZz09  

Enter Meeting ID: 570 364 125 

Enter Password: 159711 

Centers for Disease Control and Ohio Department of Health Resources 

Our top priority has been, and will continue to be, the safety, health and well-being of your loved one. Please email staysafe@laddinc.org if you have additional questions or concerns related to LADD’s plans and preparedness for COVID-19. 

Sincerely,  

Susan Brownknight 

CEO, LADD 

All LADD and Over-The-Rhine International Film Festival events postponed through April 15. More information available here

To LADD families and loved ones,

Earlier this week we communicated with you about COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus, and pledged to keep you informed. A cross-department workgroup has been created to manage this evolving challenge and plan accordingly to ensure the health, safety and well-being of our community.

On Wednesday, March 11, Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley declared a state of the emergency to protect against the spread of COVID-19. There are currently only five confirmed cases in Ohio and zero confirmed cases in Cincinnati. However, this remains an unsettling time for our community, especially for those we serve who are uniquely vulnerable to this virus. In an abundance of caution to minimize the risk to our residents, employees and community partners:

  1. We will continue to provide exceptional direct support service to those we support and with increased vigilance. LADD’s main office will close to the general public beginning Monday, March 16. Employees not providing direct services will work remotely whenever possible. We will assess this approach weekly.
  1. All LADD events scheduled through April 1 are postponed.
  1. In light of Gov. Mike DeWine’s order to limit visitors in nursing homes and assisted living facilities, we are asking those we serve to limit their travel to essential travel only and visitors to immediate family members and guardians only. Please do not visit if you are sick, specifically if you are exhibiting symptoms of fever, cough or difficulty breathing. You will be screened and turned away if exhibiting symptoms.
  1. We are taking additional precautions to protect those we serve:
    • We will continue advanced sanitizing techniques, including disinfecting commonly touched surfaces throughout the day.
    • Nurses and supervisors are preparing advanced levels of support should it be needed.
    • We are monitoring supply levels of necessary equipment such as hand sanitizer, thermometers and disinfectant at each of our locations to ensure we are well stocked in case of shortages.
    • Our staff continue to receive 1-on-1 trainings to ensure they are able to:
      • Perform preventative measures such as CDC directed hand washing methods and teach people we serve those same methods.
      • Identify symptoms of infection and know LADD’s quick action protocol if infection is suspected.
  1. We have developed FAQs, available at https://laddinc.org/covid-19-faq/. This page will be updated as we continue to receive information and the situation evolves.

What you can do to help us keep your family members safe:

  • CDC is recommending older people or people with compromised health issues do not travel. Please keep this in mind if you have a family trip planned.
  • Please do not visit your family members living at LADD unless it is essential.
  • Please follow CDC hand washing and sanitizing techniques and help reinforce the importance of proper hand washing and social distancing with your family members.
  • Stay up to date on current information affecting Ohio. The Ohio Health Department has launched a Coronavirus hotline. The call center is staffed with public health officials including licensed nurses and infectious disease experts. The call center will be open 7 days a week from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and can be reached at 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634).
  • Contact staysafe@laddinc.org for questions or concerns related to LADD’s plans and preparedness for COVID-19.

Additional information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is available at the links below:

Program staff will be sending you an email with more specific information regarding program specific plans. Please expect weekly emails from me, as well as additional updates as this issue continues to evolve. If you have questions or concerns related to LADD’s plans and preparedness for COVID-19, please refer to our FAQs or email staysafe@laddinc.org. Updates and other communications will also be posted on LADD’s Facebook account at https://www.facebook.com/LADDInc.

Our top priority is ensuring your loved one is safe, healthy and supported, always. Thank you for your commitment to our work and this community.

Sincerely,

Susan Brownknight

CEO, LADD

Empowering adults with developmental disabilities since 1975

We need your help to accomplish our goals.