Girls happily reading their books - at Orchard Place Des Moines

CEO Anne Starr Email Update to Orchard Place Employees

Anne Starr Email Update to Employees

Dear All, Many of you will be logging onto email from home and/or getting ready to see clients via telehealth.

The workplace has transformed over the past week, and you did so with minimal disruption. As you work through the change, I’m sure there will be frustrations and inconveniences. Hang in there. Ask for help. We want everyone to be successful, and with patience and supports, we will get there.

If you are now among the telecommuters, there are some important links further down the body of the email. While we have no reported case of COVID 19 for clients or employees, we remain vigilant, screening, practicing handwashing, social distancing, and monitoring ourselves for signs and symptoms.

The time will no doubt arrive when we have a confirmed case, but we can minimize the chances by all your containment efforts. Our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Stephen Mandler, recorded a message yesterday to reassure and encourage people to reach out for help during these times. We are here and ready to help.

We are here today, tomorrow, and after that.

Sanctuary on!


Organization-wide news: · Late last week, we received a surprise donation of $10,000 to help with the costs of staying connected with children and families through telehealth. A fantastic gift at just the right time.

· The IT department is working to fill everyone’s requests as quickly as possible. Remember that just because they make it look so easy, it often is not, and we have to have patience.

Campus specific: · CGC Psychologist, Beth Schmitz, will be collocated at the campus for the coming weeks.

· The campus is sending youth home at discharge with scripts for up to three months, given the lack of access to their prescribers in their home communities.

· There are now six PACE staff working in the living units at the campus, providing much-needed support and relief to campus staff. For continuity of care, these staff have been assigned to specific units for the duration. PACE specific:

· PACE family communication about telehealth and other changes during this time are located on the OP website on PACE pages. These family letters are also in Spanish.

· The PACE building will be closed and have only administrative staff on-site to answer phones and perform critical duties.

CGC specific:

· The CGC building was closed at 7 pm last night to clients. During this period, there will be only administrative staffing within the building to answer phones and perform critical duties. Staff may return to the building for very select work-related activities, and they are encouraged to maintain social distancing.