Dated as of April 15, 2020

Latest News on PPE

During this unprecedented time, we want to keep our clients, employees, and community partners updated on our aggressive efforts to secure personal protective equipment (PPE) and keep our employees and our clients safe. There are many constraints on PPE supply including distribution bottlenecks, supply shortages, and an alarming amount of scams. Despite these headwinds, our team is working as fast as possible to arm our employees and protect our clients with PPE and ultimately meet our new company standard for protective equipment: EVERY CARE MANAGER, EVERY VISIT.

If you’re having trouble coordinating a time to pick up PPE from your local office, please call and we will find a way to get it to you ASAP.

Current PPE Status:

  • Masks
    • Surgical masks are available at every branch office.
    • An additional large supply of surgical masks are in route to our offices based on new CDC guidelines for healthcare workers. The current delivery status is 2-10 business days.
  • Gloves
    • Gloves are available at every branch office with more in route. We’re providing a set number of gloves to ensure the protection of as many employees as possible. We’re evaluating the current supply and distributing more as needed.
      • 20,00 pairs of gloves in Houston
      • 12,000 pairs of gloves in San Antonio
      • 5,500 pairs of gloves in Denver
      • 200 pairs of gloves in Austin
  • Hand Sanitizer
    • We’ve purchased over 6 gallons of hand sanitizer and packaged them into ½ oz bottles. They’re being distributing to each office. Current supply is as follows:
      • 160 bottles in Houston
      • 140 bottles in San Antonio by Thursday
      • Supply to Denver and Austin is in route
  • Thermometers
    • We’ve purchased thermometers for all employees who do not currently have their own personal thermometers. Thermometers are used to check the temperature before every client visit.
    • Current delivery status is 7-15 business days.
  • Goggles
    • 1,000 are in route to our Houston office. The original ETA was April 11th, but that’s been pushed and we’re awaiting a status update.
  • Gowns
    • 1,000 gowns are in route to our Austin office with an unknown ETA at this time, but we are in close communication with the supplier.

*For the most up-to-date availability of PPE and access to our supply, please call your local office.

**In addition to PPE, our experienced team of clinicians reviewed several training options on infection control and selected a training specific to COVID-19 that every employee in the company is required to complete and pass before accessing our PPE supply. We’re proud to say that hundreds of employees have completed this test with 90% scores or greater. Those that scored less than 100% are provided additional training and a chance to retake the test before getting their PPE.

“Shelter in Place” Guidelines

Effective Tuesday March 24, a “Shelter-In-Place” Order has been instituted in Austin, so we wanted to keep you informed of how these protective measures impact your family. Many of you may have growing concerns about whether your care manager is able to work under these circumstances. Thankfully, there are many creative solutions that we are able to use in order to best monitor and coordinate care for our clients. For necessary in-person visits, we are thankful that every “Shelter-In-Place” ordinance has protected the work of caregivers, nurses, and care managers as “Essential Workers” for care in the home. As such, we wanted to reassure you that:

Our care management team continues to work hard for you. While always opting for the safest way to assist you, care managers will continue to make in-person visits on a case-by-case basis when they deem their visits essential to their client’s care.

We continue to provide remote monitoring options, especially for our clients in facilities where access may be limited. We will monitor the situation closely and update you as circumstances change. More importantly, we continue our strict employee safety protocols including regular heath screening, access to available personal protective equipment, and client safety screening during each visit.

We are grateful that Federal (including the President’s National Emergency Order), State and local law and policy makers have recognized that our care managers are employed in an essential capacity, providing care services to vulnerable individuals, the elderly and people living with disabilities.  In response to the “Shelter-In-Place” order, we have provided formal letters to all care managers for them to carry just in case they are questioned by a law enforcement officer.

If you have any questions at all, please feel free to call our office. In order to help foresee any issues we could be facing due to COVID-19, we have been consulting every day with highly reputable agencies in Washington, California, and New York who are all under “Shelter-In-Place” orders and who are experiencing COVID-19 in a more pronounced way than we are. Fortunately, they have all been able to continue their work and do what we do best – care for those who need it most.

Accountable Aging Care Management is actively monitoring developments and guidance around the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Currently, we are conducting business as usual whenever possible though we’ve added additional safety precautions which we’ve outlined below. Additionally, we continue to prepare diligently for all other precautionary measures as needed.

The COVID-19 situation is evolving, and we want you to be fully aware of and confident in the ways we have been preparing our teams to work within this higher-risk environment. Our COVID-19 preparedness is coordinated as part of our company-wide continuity efforts and is intended to allow us to support our clients’ needs while keeping clients, care managers, and all other team members safe.

Keeping People Safe

Our top priority is the health and welfare of our clients and employees. As a result, we have enacted the following precautionary measures, among others:

Regular Employee Screenings. Your health and safety are our primary concern, so we will be conducting screenings of all of our team members 2x per week indefinitely during this crisis. We will continue to re-evaluate the ongoing frequency and necessity of these screenings. Every employee will be screened for the following risk factors, and all screenings will be documented:

  • Fever or signs or symptoms of a respiratory infection, such as cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat;
  • Contact in the last 14 days with someone who has a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19,
  • Traveled within the previous 14 days to a country with sustained community transmission per the CDC guidelines: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html
  • Close contact in the last 14 days with someone who has a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, is under investigation for COVID-19, or is ill with respiratory illness. “Close contact” is defined by the CDC Guidelines as:
    • being within approximately 6 feet (2 meters) of a COVID-19 case for a prolonged period of time; close contact can occur while caring for, living with, visiting, or sharing a healthcare waiting area or room with a COVID-19 case; or
    • having direct contact with infectious secretions of a COVID-19 case (e.g., being coughed on)

Care Manager Quarantining. Any team member who does not pass the above-mentioned screening will be immediately removed from all in-person client visits as a safety precaution and asked to self-quarantine for a 14-day period. An employee cannot pass the screening if they have (1) recently travelled to a banned country, (2) exhibited flu-like symptoms, or (3) been in contact with someone believed to have COVID-10 per the CDC guidelines above. If this impacts client care in any way, we will immediately work to provide backup. An employee may only make in-person client visits if they are determined to no longer pose a risk to any client or other employee. For any care manager who reports symptoms of COVID-19, we will strongly recommend they follow the CDC guidelines for What To Do If You Are Sick, and immediately contact their doctor for further instruction.

Protecting Clients in Their Homes. Every care manager will be required to follow safety precautions for every visit in a client’s home, including:

  • Hand washing upon entry and exit;
  • Wiping down all hard surfaces with disinfectant at the beginning and end of each visit;
  • Reminding the clients and any care providers of regular and rigorous hand washing with anti-bacterial soap during the visit;
  • Reminding the clients and any care providers of the importance of adequate hydration of the client.
  • For any client who reports symptoms of COVID-19, we will strongly recommend they
    follow the CDC guidelines for What To Do If You Are Sick, and immediately contact their
    doctor for further instruction.

Working with Clients in Facilities. Facilities are implementing protocols that may affect our
access to some of our clients.

  • Depending on the state of the client and our role with them, we may be considered
    essential visitors and have access to visit inside facilities.
  • The above COVID-19 protocol is to be followed
  • We will stay up to date regarding any change to facility protocol
  • Depending on the state of the client and our role with them, we may be considered
    non-essential visitors and be restricted from entering certain facilities.
  • We will identify point people to make regular check-ins to in order to remotely
    monitor
  • We will communicate the plan to appropriate client contacts
  • We will stay up to date regarding our access restrictions

Preparing Care Managers. The last few weeks, we have provided our team with regular updates on best practices and other updates related to COVID-19, including hand washing techniques and other safety measures. Besides ongoing education, we are currently stocking up on items in each office that will be made available to you for their use in the field. These include all available personal protective equipment suggested by the CDC. Based on the client’s condition, guidance for PPE will change.

Travel Bans. As of last week, we are eliminated all domestic business air travel and all nonessential
work-related travel. In place of travel, we are working to add telephonic and personal
video conference technology for several team members to maintain client communication and
meetings.

Office Staff Working from Home. Like many of you, the recent school district and day care
closures will affect some of our team members. With regards to those affected team members
who regularly work in the office, we’re making immediate arrangements to accommodate their
ability to work remotely. We continue to actively monitor the COVID-19 situation and we’re
pursuing ways to implement a remote workforce across the organization that will continue to
fully support our clients and care managers.
As always, thank you for trusting Accountable Aging with all your care management needs. It
is an honor to serve your family, and we don’t take that responsibility lightly.

Be well,

Alex Bonetti, Founder & CEO
Claire Montgomery, Director of Operations

Questions?
Please contact your care manager or our office directly.
Austin: (512) 342-9800
Dallas: (214) 206-1696
San Antonio: (210) 568-7934