3/28/20 OPWDD Update

First, attached and below are a number of important notices from OPWDD on training and health advisories re: return to work, isolation, etc.

On today’s OPWDD call:

1) Reviewed the guidance documents issued this afternoon: on releasing someone from quarantine containing DOH/CDC guidance and changes the quarantine period from 14 days to 72 hours post recovery (plus additional criteria); also return to work guidance for essential personnel and another for health care workers.  Please be sure to read carefully and understand the conditions of both.

2) How would we pay for emergency triage/residential capacity?  Programs would potentially be reimbursed at intensive respite fee – this will require claiming rules to be changed to allow for this limited period of time capability (it’s likely to be a medical leave — allowing providers to bill a retainer day).  The Commissioner clarified that these beds/places would be to take people out of the hospital to free up hospital beds and contribute to the greater good.  The Governor’s office clarified that the plan is for first priority to help people move out of the hospital and secondarily to support needs in the community – both are goals.  Criteria and mission still need to be agreed upon and more work will be done on this.  OPWDD is developing a document that provides information on what the sites need to have; how it will be staffed, etc., which should be out to folks in a few days.   There are two things going on here: relocating for isolation versus emergency housing and they need to be separated in the thinking of how they are approved.

3) Abiba Kindo explained that the crisis support teams will be repurposed to respond to COVID related emergencies, non-housing group and a separate team for housing issues; will be out in the next 48 hours.

4) PPE – heated discussion on the need; State says we have been heard and they are working to ensure all understand where we stand in the priority list with homeland security/NYS.

5) Paperwork issues – state and local DOH have been working on following this:  call the Justice Center with information; OPWDD will not collect contact information upfront, rather providers would call staff and anyone else perhaps being exposed and then follow up after the fact and let OPWDD know who you’ve contacted and if there’s any problem reaching any of those people.  Also, please advise agencies just let them know that they need one contact for reporting.

6) They are hopeful that in a future executive order to have a change in the requirements for criminal background checks in a future executive order.