At Stepworks we understand that COVID-19 (or coronavirus) has everyone concerned. While information regarding the virus is changing rapidly, we want you to know the steps that Stepworks is taking to minimize the disruption within our facilities and answer a few questions.
First: Are we accepting new patients?
The answer is yes. While coronavirus presents some significant health challenges, the reality is that addiction, or substance use disorder, is a life-threatening disease. In fact, hundreds of people die daily from overdose deaths alone. So, while we are implementing some safeguards for our patients and staff to address COVID-19, we are also committed to providing life-saving treatment services for our patients and families. To put it simply, addiction doesn’t stop because of coronavirus, so neither are we.
Second: What are our prevention methods?
While we are accepting new patients, we are also screening all incoming admissions for the following: recent travel to high-risk areas, known exposure to the virus, and the presence of cold-like symptoms, especially in the elderly.
We will decline any admission or visitor to our facility who has, in our opinion, a higher than normal risk of having the disease.
Within our facilities, we are providing easy-to-understand information about COVID-19, best prevention practices, and proper handwashing techniques. We are providing sanitizer (when we can get it) for use under staff supervision throughout the day. We are ensuring that surfaces are sanitized and masks (also if available) are provided to any patient or employee who has signs and symptoms of respiratory illness. And finally, if a patient develops a respiratory illness, at their request, they may be given the opportunity to seek evaluation at the local emergency room at their own expense.
Third: Are we continuing with visitation and public meetings?
At this time, we are continuing with family visitations as planned. We will be screening visitors with the same criteria being used for new admissions. Anyone who poses a higher than normal risk of having the disease will not be allowed in the facility. As the prevalence of COVID-19 increases, there is a chance that we will discontinue visitation to individual facilities. This decision will be made on a case-by-case basis and communicated through our social media channels and email newsletter.
At this time, we are discontinuing all public AA or NA meetings at all of our facilities until further notice.
In closing, I’ll repeat this fact: our patients have a potentially fatal illness: ADDICTION. This disease can have catastrophic outcomes resulting in overdose or death if effective treatment is delayed or unavailable. For this reason, Stepworks will strive to continue to provide treatment services during this time of national illness.
If you are struggling with addiction, give us a call. We look forward to seeing you soon.