CEO Anne Starr's Employee Email Update for April 21

CEO Update

Dear Everyone,

Tuesday is a great day to talk about self-care. Are you doing some? Do you speak with your colleagues about what you and they are doing for self-care? Does your self-care include inspiration? Perspiration? Humor? OP has partnered with NAMI to bring an eight week series of inspirational speakers offered each Wednesday at noon. This week we have Holly Hoffman, the last woman standing on CBS’ hit show “Survivor: Nicaragua,” Holly shares her tips on overcoming seemingly insurmountable challenges. A professional motivational speaker and the author of ‘Your Winner Within’ and ‘Write Yourself a Note’, Holly recognizes within each of us is an ability to focus our thoughts, emotions, and energy to succeed—if only we have the knowledge, tools, and discipline to do so.

The event is free! Register now to reserve your (virtual) seat:

Be kind to yourself and allow yourself to be inspired. Inspiration is essential to hope. Hope brings courage. Courage is necessary for living.      

Sanctuary on! Anne 




· Although OP has not had anyone test positive for COVID as yet. We have all taken precautions to contain COVID spread. We firmly believe that another critical piece of containment and being able to reopen anything is federal and state testing resources and data. Today, at the Governor’s press conference, she introduced a new plan for Iowa and COVID testing patterned after an innovative program launched in Utah. As we become aware of more details, we will share it with all of you. If you would like to check it out go to

· If you have families that need food, please let their BHIS or IHP staff know. If the family does not have BHIS or IHP, contact Tiana Crandall about a possible referral to IHP or BHIS and get them assistance for those needs.    

· As you saw earlier today, all necessary parties have signed off on the PPP federal grant of $3.1 million, and these funds should arrive in the next few days. Thanks for Val’s work on this and to Banker’s Trust for their assistance. PPP is a game-changer for businesses. Congress is preparing to appropriate another $4 billion in aid to businesses that missed out on the first round of PPP.  



· Today, Tuesday the 21st, is the first day that Orchard Place IHP staff will be co-located at the new UnityPointHealth Behavioral Health Urgent Care. This clinic is adjacent to the Iowa Lutheran campus located at 1250 East 9th Street. UnityPoint Health – Des Moines, along with Eyerly Ball Community Mental Health Services and Orchard Place/Child Guidance Center, will work to provide mental health, psychiatric evaluation and assessment, addiction medicine, crisis services, and community resources to patients of all ages, both pediatric and adult. The clinic will be open to patients from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m., seven days a week. 


The goals of the new UnityPointHealth – Behavioral Health Urgent Care are to:

· Decrease the number of patients going to our Emergency Departments, especially Iowa Lutheran

· Decrease the time behavioral health patients (who will not be admitted) spend in our Emergency Departments

· Have a non-Emergency Department location for UPH-DM/Blank/UPC clinic providers to refer patients to in a crisis

· Expand days and hours of service to the community (than our current psych clinics)





· Child Guidance Center still has emergency intakes as well as regular intakes for therapy. Referrals can go through Nancy Boggess and Nicole Byrd by calling CGC or by emailing either of them.  

· The psychiatric services waiting list has decreased substantially as we continue to add psychiatric service providers to CGC. We are accepting referrals for psychiatric evaluation.  

· CCR &R Is still working with daycare providers in our 21 county catchment area and committed to working with families who may be seeing child care in those counties. Their website is, and the phone number is 855-244-5301.  




· This week, the youth at the campus started online classes/instruction through Des Moines Public Schools. There is school time in the mornings and afternoons. Everyone is hopeful that this will return a sense of normalcy to their lives. The past six weeks have been 

· The campus is decreasing the frequency of campus-wide and parent communication this week. As the campus has put essential processes in place, and these have been consistently implemented, it is not as necessary to push out daily communication.  

· The campus is still admitting youth, and all necessary infection control practices are being followed to minimize the risk of COVID spread.