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COVID-19 update for families, 03/24/20

To all families,

Below is the latest information that may be of interest or importance to you regarding COVID-19 impacts across our area and services.

Governor Holcomb’s Executive Order

  • We have reviewed the stay at home order in its entirety and determined that we indeed qualify as an Essential Activity and thus will be allowed to continue providing services where feasible and safe.

  • This does not mean we should provide services in all cases. We will continue to check in with all of you routinely to review preferences and concerns to ensure we are all practicing in accordance with appropriate and required preventive/protective measures.

  • We also reserve the right to refrain from providing services or to provide them only under specific conditions if we determine the risk to your child, your family, our staff, and/or the general public is too great.

  • As such we will make sure you are informed if any of your staff develop symptoms or make contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. We ask that you make sure to do the same in return.

Personnel Matters

  • We are presently unable to complete the credentialing process for some new employees and any new hires to the level of Registered Behavior Technician.

  • This is due to the temporary closing of all testing sites used to complete the final step in the credentialing process. Testing is presently expected to resume in late April.

  • Depending on what insurance is involved, this will limit the availability of some personnel to provide ABA therapy. Medicaid and Tricare for example require RBT credentialing, private insurance companies such as Anthem and UMR do not.

  • We typically require a trainee to have attained RBT status before allowing them to work independently in the field. However, in order to ensure coverage options where needed, since the test is the last step in the credentialing process, and our pass rate for trainees is ~98% or better; we may allow some of the affected personnel to provide therapy if they have successfully completed all of the other training requirements and if the insurance involved allows.

  • We are continuing to interview applicants for various positions, but we will not be able to hire many, if any new technicians until the pandemic subsides. We do appear to have a sufficient number of technicians for most, if not all settings at this time.

  • We have also put a hold on any new service referrals for the time being, but will continue to move forward with referrals currently moving through our intake process.

  • We continue to monitor guidance from various authoritative bodies to ensure recommended and required protection and prevention practices are maintained.

  • We have begun to implement some telehealth measures where they are allowable and feasible. We are in the initial stages of implementing these measures so you may hear more about this in the coming days as we ramp up further.

  • You should continue to hear from various SCI personnel to check in on how you’re feeling about how and whether to continue services as we move forward.

  • Following is some guidance from the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) that addresses how we are expected to approach these decision making processes. BACB ethics guidance

  • In case you aren’t already aware, any family that decides to suspend services in order to prevent risk of exposure will not lose their services with us when they are ready to return. Please do not let this or any concern prevail over the health and welfare of you and your family when deciding what’s best for you and your family.

That’s all we have this round. We will continue to update you all as events play out. Thank you as always for your support and understanding.

In good health, Fritz

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