Girls happily reading their books - at Orchard Place Des Moines

March 18 Communication to Orchard Place Staff

Orchard Place Update

Dear All,

Thank you so much for all your continued efforts to contain this emerging infectious outbreak. OP and Iowa communities are taking extraordinary actions that may seem extreme today, but, will make sense as the outbreak progresses.

All of your questions and concerns are important.  Please know that everyone is taking these seriously and working through the most urgent matters first. 

Children need caring, nurturing adults in their lives just as much as they need air to breathe. OP shows that care and nurturing in our relationships with our youth and families.  For now we are challenged to find ways to care and nature from a distance.  I know we can be very creative about how to do that. 

Glad you’re all here and we in this together.     

Sanctuary on! Anne



·          Attached is an updated list of cancelled/postponed meetings and trainings. This will also be posted on the website and on SharePoint. Right now I’m planning on updating this weekly.

·          Great job keeping social distance! I’ve noticed people making a concerted effort to keep the 6-foot distance

·          Don’t gather in groups of more than 10- this was new guidance this week.

·          OP is getting positive indications from the State that there is going to be an expansion of the use of telehealth and possible phone use to provide therapies. Val Saltsgaver is managing this.

·          There is now a COVID 19 pop-up box on the OP website that you can click on for general information. For branch-specific communication to families, go to the branch pages of the website.

·          The COVID 19 folder on SharePoint is updated daily to include all the notifications being sent out and other resources for OP staff.

 CGC specific:

·          We are asking clients to limit the number of family members who attend clinic services so we do not have more than ten people in the lobby at a time. Signage is up at CGC to reinforce this.

·          OP is hopeful we will be able to use telehealth and phones to connect with clients who are displaced from their schools at this time. We are waiting for direction from the state. 

PACE specific:

·          IHP has received permission from the state during this time to use telephonic means to contact, assess, and perform care coordination with IHP families.

·          As concerns about home visiting rise around the community, OP is researching whether BHIS can be provided telephonically during this time. More to come.

Campus specific:

·          OP has made a hard decision to end family visitation to the Campus at this time. This comes with consultation from DHS and the Iowa Department of Public Health. 

Youth will still be able to go on home passes and will receive instruction about how to practice social distancing at home. The parent letter is on the Campus webpage and SharePoint.