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Imagine! COVID-19 Response Plan - Updated August 27

 

September 18

Free COVID-19 Testing in Boulder in Response to Recent Increase in COVID Cases

Boulder, CO - In the last two weeks there has been a significant increase in the number of Boulder County residents testing positive for COVID-19. In response to this increase, Boulder County Public Health, the University of Colorado-Boulder, City of Boulder, and Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment have partnered to bring free testing to the city.

“We want to make sure there are no barriers for residents to learn if they might be spreading this virus,” said Jeff Zayach, Boulder County Public Health executive director. “By having free and easy testing available, we can more quickly and effectively identify and separate those who are infected. We are very pleased that more than 400 people got tested at the walk-up clinic held yesterday.”

Anyone interested in being tested is encouraged to visit the testing sites. An appointment is not required, and there is no cost to receive the test. Residents should bring a form of identification to ensure that test results can be accurately recorded.

Residents do not need to have COVID symptoms to be tested. Anyone feeling severely ill should contact their health care provider or seek medical attention instead of visiting the free testing site. The wait time for testing at the walk-up site has averaged about 30 minutes.

Drive-Thru Test Site: Gerald Stazio Softball Fields, 2445 Stazio Dr, Boulder. Take Arapahoe Road (Valmont Road will be closed) to 63rd Street; turn north onto 63rd Street; and follow to Stazio Drive; turn left on Stazio Drive and follow signs for testing.

Walk-up Test Site: Pleasant Street parking lot at 1205 Pleasant Street, in Boulder.

Anyone attending should wear a mask until they're asked to remove it for the test, stay in their car if they're vising the drive-thru site, and bring photo identification to ensure the test results are correctly recorded.

Hours for both sites are 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., 7 days per week. The walk-up testing site will be available through September 30 and the drive-thru site will be available through October 2, but can be extended depending on case positivity rates.

Test results can be expected within 24-48 hours. Residents who test positive for COVID-19 will be contacted by Boulder County Public Health epidemiology staff for follow-up. Residents who test negative will be contacted by the Colorado Department of Public Health lab staff.

 

September 10

 

“Transitioning to Adult Waivers” presentation by Erika Swanson, Client Services Manager at PASCO. 

 

September 4

Since 1985, the Lifeline program has provided discounted phone service for qualifying individuals enrolled in various public assistance programs including Medicaid, SNAP, and the Free/Reduced Lunch Program.

In the 2016, the Program was expanded to include high-speed internet as a support service in the Lifeline program.

Who might benefit from this program?

  • Clients who use a mobile phone very little or who need an “emergency phone”;
  • Families who have school-aged children and who need low-cost, high-speed internet access (including wi-fi) for school or work;
  • Clients who have a landline at home but are looking for a way to reduce monthly costs.

 

September 2

Below are five new videos produced by Larry Edelman for parents who are new to early intervention home visits provided via video conferencing. In each of these two-to-three minute videos, parents describe how virtual home visits have been working for their families. Providers may find it useful to share selected videos with families who are new to their programs.

·       A Family's Story: Virtual Home Visits with Zander's Family
If you're interested in learning how to make the most of your provider's expertise during and in between virtual visits, listen to five-month-old Zander's family story.

·       A Family's Story: Virtual Home Visits with Grayson's Family
If you're anxious about how virtual visits will work for your family, listen to 18-month-old Grayson's family story.

·       A Family's Story: Virtual Home Visits with Ares' Family
If you're new to EI/ECSE and want to understand how virtual visits work, listen to nine-month-old Ares' family story.

·       A Family's Story: Virtual Home Visits with Liam's Family
If you're familiar with in-person home visits, but unsure of the benefits of virtual visits listen to young Liam's family story. En Español (with English subtitles)

·       A Family's Story: Virtual Home Visits with Sam's Family
If you're wondering what benefits a provider can bring to your child and family through virtual visits, listen to two-year-old Sam's family story.

All five videos can be found on ECTA’s web site at: https://ectacenter.org/topics/disaster/ti-service.asp#familyprep

 

These videos were produced collaboratively with these five delightful and generous families and the teams at the Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities; the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities; the Desired Results Access Project, funded by the California Department of Education, Special Education Division; Florida State University, Communication and Early Childhood Research and Practice Center; Iowa Department of Education Early ACCESS; and the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center at the FPG Child Development Institute, UNC-Chapel Hill.

 

 

September activities for families and individuals of all ages from Arc of Araphoe County

 

  • Superfight
  • Who would win: A jetpack wearing kindergarten class that can breathe fire or A pirate on a Segway that is swinging a shark on a chain? It is your job to make the case! Take turns arguing why your randomly selected fighter would beat your opponents. At the end of each hysterical battle the crowd will vote on a winner and the next battle begins.
  • When: Thursday, September 10 - 3:00PM - 4:30PM
  • Where: Online (Zoom)
  • The Arc ADventures in Fun: Bingo Night!
    • Here comes a Friday full of fun - and bingo is the game-o! Sit back, relax and listen to your numbers be called while you enjoy an evening with friends, fun and bingo. The entire game can be played online via Zoom. All you need is a computer and the pipes to call out BINGO! B-I-N-G-O, B-I-N-G-O, B-I-N-G-O, and bingo night is Friday!
    • When: Friday, September 4 - 4:00PM - 5:30PM
    • Where: Online (Zoom)
  • Virtual Show and Tell
    • Do you have something you have been dying to share with the masses? Join us for Virtual Show & Tell and tell us all about it! Each participant will have a chance to SHOW off their favorite toy, pet, dance move, work of art, or whatever their heart desires and TELL why it is important to them.
    • When: Tuesday, September 22 - 3:00PM - 4:00PM
    • Where: Online (Zoom)
  • Spaceman
    • Spaceman, a variation of the old school favorite hangman, is a word game where the goal is to find the missing words by guessing letters. Be warned, when you guess a letter wrong you lose a life and a new piece of the spaceship appears. Solve the puzzle before the spaceship is fully built and abducting whatever is in sight.
    • When: Wednesday, September 30 - 3:00PM - 4:30PM
    • Where: Online (Zoom)
  • Weekly Trivia Night!
    • WHEN: Every Friday night 6:00pm – 8:00pm
    • WHERE: Online (Zoom)
    • Topics: 
      • Friday, Sep. 4, 2020 Useless Knowledge General trivia
      • Friday, Sep. 11, 2020 Being Luke Wheeland What does Luke think you should know?
      • Friday, Sep. 18, 2020 Music Trivia Songs, Lyrics, Artists and More
      • Friday, Sep. 25, 2020 Back to The 90s From pogs to presidents, everything 90s.

REGISTER IN ADVANCE FOR THIESE GAMES (REQUIRED) AFTER REGISTERING, YOU WILL RECEIVE A CONFIRMATION EMAIL CONTAINING INFORMATION ABOUT JOINING THE MEETING. HTTPS://WWW.EVENTBRITE.COM/O/THE-ARC-ARAPAHOE-AMP-DOUGLAS-COUNTIES-12878478692

 

QUESTIONS? Call Kelly Lawler at 303-220-9228 / EMAIL Kelly@arc-ad.org

 

 

From Meals on Wheels:

At Meals on Wheels of Boulder, we are concerned about our vulnerable folks in the community who are still practicing "stay at home" guidelines and may be challenged to get out of the house to shop for groceries, or prepare and cook meals.

You may be aware, we have moved in to our new facility, so we have a huge new capacity to serve more people.  We would love your help in identifying people who cannot provide at least one nutritious meal per day for him or herself....the elderly, ill, people recovering from hospitalization, etc.  We have no age or income restrictions (fees are based on a sliding scale) and our intake process is very simple...just one phone call to get our Boulder neighbors started.

We’re here to help people stay “safer at home”! We deliver meals five days a week with frozen meals available for weekends to anyone confined to their home. Our no-contact deliveries adhere to social distancing guidelines and ensure public safety.

As we all practice social distancing to protect the most vulnerable in our communities, Meals on Wheels of Boulder is continuing with our most important work—providing nutritious meals and a daily well-being check to Boulder residents.

And, I'm sure you remember, we have a popular program called Project Homecoming: when a patient comes home from the hospital or rehab, we will provide 5 meals FREE to help during recovery. Project Homecoming is available to all patients, regardless of age or income.

 

August 26

This Friday! Imagine! clients can get free cloth masks courtesy of Imagine!’s Case Management department. Details in flyer below. We have masks for kids and adults!

 

August 25

 

 

Any families with school-aged children experiencing food, technology, school supplies, tutors, etc. hardships are encouraged to:

  1. Reach out to their respective schools and/or principals for support and resources (SVVSD schools allow iPad loaners, family may call to inquire about this)
  2. Bring up needs at upcoming virtual home visit with their community liaison (BVSD support finding who is assigned as a community liaison: Lucia Cisneros at the ECE office; 720-561-5075)
  3. Bring up needs at upcoming virtual home visit with the Teacher/Special Educator

 

Schools are doing their best to meet all student’s needs. Other resources:

Impact on Education:

Critical Needs Fund

Serves: Boulder Valley School District (BVSD)

Type of assistance: meals and grocery gift cards, technology, gaps in learning, & school supplies

Contact: info@impactoneducation; 303.524.3865

 

Opportunity Fund

Serves: Boulder Valley School District (BVSD)

Type of assistance: art supplies, musical instrument rentals, sports physicals, class fees, after school tutoring, graphing calculators and more

Contact: info@impactoneducation; 303.524.3865

 

 

Fill a Backpack:

 

Serves: Residents of Broomfield County, Boulder County, Denver, and beyond.

Type of assistance: School supplies

Contact: 303-446-4272; https://apreciouschild.org/contact-us/

For additional resources to meet food needs across counties click here.

 

 

Basics for Babies:

 

Serves: Residents of Broomfield County, Boulder County, Denver, and beyond.

Type of assistance: diapers, wipes, formula, baby supplies, etc.

For additional resources to meet this need click here

 

Jefferson Community Foundation:

Serves: Jefferson County residents

Type of assistance: Emergency food, housing, mental health, and financial assistance.

Contact: https://www.jcfgives.org/community-resources **resources listed here**

 

Adams County Foundation:

Serves: Adams County Residents

Type of assistance: provides aid to needs related to Covid-19 (technology, food, housing, financial assistance, etc.).

Contact: Care Coordinator required to apply on behalf of family/individual

 

 

August 24

FREE FOOD for anyone in need of some support, each 2nd and 4th Tuesday between 2 pm and 7 pm.  Come after 330 for a shorter wait time.

Location: 15th and Hover in NW Longmont; enter from 15th by RIGHT TURN ONLY. No paperwork, all are welcome.

A large variety of food is pre-bagged by volunteers for placement in rear of vehicle (please make room before coming). You may pick up for a second household  so please reach out to neighbor, family, friend who may not be able to come on their own. And please share anything you receive that your family can't or won't use with someone else.

Variety usually includes milk, dairy, produce, bread, protein, cereal, rice/pasta, canned goods, sometimes a special snack. We cannot accommodate special diets at this time, but do offer extra nutrition for those who are pregnant or breast-feeding children. 

STAY IN YOUR VEHICLE PLEASE.  Masks required for safety of all (per state mandate) . Smaller amounts available by walk up/ bicycles to avoid waist but still support those without a vehicle.

ALL ARE WELCOME.

 

August 21

August 20

Parent/Caregiver Zoom Support Group – Dads and Disabilities

 

For families of all ages Tuesday, August 25, 2020 -  7 – 8 PM

This is a free support group

 

Join us for our ongoing “Zoom Support Groups” on Tuesday, August 25, 2020 at 7 PM.

We will be focusing on how having kids with disabilities change what it means to be a dad. Please join us as we support each other with tips and tricks for surviving the pandemic and share stories for what is working and not working. Feel free to just listen in on the conversation. The intent is to reduce isolation, even though we are not able to physically be together, we are not alone in getting through this crisis.

 

REGISTER IN ADVANCE FOR THIS MEETING (REQUIRED) AFTER REGISTERING, YOU WILL RECEIVE A CONFIRMATION EMAIL CONTAINING INFORMATION ABOUT JOINING THE MEETING. https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZ0kcuitrjwvE9BDIzrDoO2FRSz2kLAWS6wf

 

Questions, email Luke@arc-ad.org

 

August 12

Join Developmental Pathways, Alliance, Disability Law Colorado, Arapahoe Libraries, and The Arc of Arapahoe and Douglas Counties for a virtual event that features a presentation, panel, and Q&A event about voting, specifically for people with disabilities. On September 22 and 23, they will be hosting an online presentation, panel, Q&A discussion about voter registration, voting, and accessible tools to help people with disabilities during the election process.

The event is free, but participants must register in advance to receive the meeting details. Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/voting-rights-people-with-disabilities-tickets-115921898519

 

Digital Resources for Students With Autism

 

Boulder County Public Health Warns Residents about Contact Tracing Scam

Boulder County, CO - Boulder County Public Health has received multiple reports of a scam involving phone calls from people who claim to be conducting contact tracing for COVID-19. During the reported phone calls, residents have been asked to provide a credit card number to purchase a test and told they need to get tested for COVID-19 within 72 hours.

“We are disheartened to hear that this health crisis is being used to take advantage of people,” said Carol Helwig, Boulder County Public Health communicable disease program coordinator. “The purpose of contact tracing calls is to understand how COVID-19 is impacting the community and to try to find out how people have been exposed so that we can prevent the spread to others.”

Disease investigators contact residents who have tested positive for the virus to learn and provide guidance on:

  • Who they have had contact with while infectious

  • What their symptoms have been

  • If they need support

  • Demographic details, such as race/ethnicity

In contrast, when contacting someone who has not tested positive, but may have come in close contact with someone who has (e.g. contact tracing), Public Health staff provides guidance about quarantine and testing.

Boulder County Public Health staff will:

  • Never ask for payment of any kind

  • Never ask for a social security number

  • Never ask for proof of residency

  • Never require testing without discussing the individual’s exposures first

“Being open and honest with our staff is vital to slowing the spread of this virus,” said Helwig. “We don’t want these fake calls to deter residents from speaking with us. You can ask the caller who they work for. They should always say Boulder County Public Health or the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.”

Residents are encouraged to contact the Boulder County District Attorney’s Community Protection Division at 303-441-3700 if they are contacted by someone stating they are a contact tracer who asks for financial or personal non-health-related information.

 

July 28

SEX ED CLASS WITH PLANNED PARENTHOOD and the Arc of Arapahoe and Douglas Counties

 

Held online (Zoom) School Ages 16+

4 Week Class (Tuesday/Thursday) Aug 25 – Sept 17, 2020 | 4:30- 6 PM

 

There is a need to teach those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/ DD) comprehensive sexual education. The Arc Arapahoe & Douglas Counties will be partnering with Planned Parenthood for a 4-Week “Sex Positive” education class for people with I/DD. These classes will promote sexually healthy, educated young men and women with I/DD so they are safer, more informed, and more equipped to defend their rights and bodies. Space is limited (10 participants max).

 

RSVP by Aug 21, 2020.

 

ALL CLASSES WILL BE HELD VIA ZOOM. PLEASE REGISTER FOR THE ZOOM DETAILS HTTPS://BIT.LY/3H44NWQ

 

The cost for this 4-week class is FREE.

 

TOPICS

  • PARENT ONLY TALK* * First class is for parents only at 4:30 – 6 PM.  All other classes are for the individual only unless a caregiver is needed.
  • DIFFERENT TYPES OF RELATIONSHIPS Participants will learn who they are and how to talk about “ME”. They will also learn about different relationships, feelings, and touches.
  • MOVING FROM FRIEND TO MORE… Participants will learn what it feels like to be attracted to someone, appropriate ways to show interest in someone, and practice ways to communicate those feelings with others.
  • PUBLIC VS. PRIVATE We will define and explore public vs. private and reinforce public vs. private body parts, places, behaviors, and conversations.
  • ANATOMY Participants will learn about sexual and reproductive body parts and their functions. Participants will learn sexual health and how to keep sexual parts healthy. For more information on content, please contact Luke at (303) 220-9228.
  • UNDERSTANDING AND RESPECTING CONSENT; Consent will be defined, and participants will learn how it relates to boundaries for self and others. Participants will also practice saying and hearing NO.

 

QUESTIONS? Call Luke at (303) 220-9228 or Email Luke@Arc-AD.org / WEBSITE: www.arc-ad.orghat Participants can Expect)

 

July 24

Check out Imagine! CEO Rebecca Novinger’s latest communication to Imagine! stakeholders.  

 

 

Just a reminder that Imagine!’s Early Intervention team is still taking new referrals despite the pandemic. Learn more here: https://imaginecolorado.org/services/early-intervention

 

 

July 22

Early Intervention Colorado will be hosting three Public Meetings to explore cost containment strategies for the Fiscal Year 2020-2021. Sign up here to participate.

July 17

Early Intervention and Colorado Office of Early Childhood COVID-19 Update

 

July 14

Home and Community-Based Settings Regulation – Implementation Timeline Extension and Revised Frequently Asked Questions State Medicaid Director Letter

 

July 13

July 10 Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing Community COVID Updates

 

July 8

Arc Parent/Caregiver Zoom Support Group – How are You Accessing Services in a COVID World.

For families of all ages Tuesday, July 14, 2020 7 – 8 PM

This is a free support group

 

Join the Arc for their ongoing “Zoom Support Groups” on Tuesday, July 14, 2020 at 7 PM. We will be focusing on how you and your family are accessing services in a COVID world. Please join us as we support each other with tips and tricks for surviving the pandemic and share stories for what is working and what is not. Feel free to just listen in on the conversation. The intent is to reduce isolation. Even though we are not able to physically be together, we are not alone in getting through this crisis.

 

REGISTER IN ADVANCE FOR THIS MEETING (REQUIRED) AFTER REGISTERING, YOU WILL RECEIVE A CONFIRMATION EMAIL CONTAINING INFORMATION ABOUT JOINING THE MEETING. https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZErf-yrrjktGNXy_YY-F1p3gBNdVWAbvKfx

Questions email Luke@arc-ad.org

 

July 1st

Individuals with disabilities can receive a 50% fare discount on RTD services. To apply or learn more about eligibility requirements, please visit: https://bit.ly/2FuLYSe

 

June 29th

Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing Community COVID Updates

 

June 25th

Arc Parent/Caregiver Zoom Support Group – Dads and Disability

For families of all ages Tuesday, July 07, 2020

7 – 8 PM

This is a free support group

Join the Arc for their ongoing “Zoom Support Groups” on Tuesday, July 07, 2020 at 7 PM. They will be focusing on how kids with disabilities change what it means to be a dad. Please join as we support each other with tips and tricks for surviving the pandemic and share stories for what is working and what is not. Feel free to just listen in on the conversation. The intent is to reduce isolation. Even though we are not able to physically be together, we are not alone in getting through this crisis.

REGISTER IN ADVANCE FOR THIS MEETING (REQUIRED) AFTER REGISTERING, YOU WILL RECEIVE A CONFIRMATION EMAIL CONTAINING INFORMATION ABOUT JOINING THE MEETING.

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYlf-6gqj4vG9EFfZY5f5eZ_lN3xWcpb_r0

 

Questions email Luke@arc-ad.org

 

June 24th

In an effort to support Colorado’s families during the COVID-19 epidemic, the Colorado Department of Human Services and Department of Education have teamed up to secure USDA approval to issue Pandemic-EBT (P-EBT) benefits to school-age children who would have received free or reduced-price meals during the time that schools have been closed.

 

June 22nd

Early Intervention Colorado Safer At Home Frequently Asked Questions

Mental Health Resources

 

June 11th

Discover What’s Possible When Information and Technology are Accessible

 

For six months, at no cost, JFK Partners are sharing a tool designed to make information and technology more accessible. The tool, an Emergency Response Desktop Suite (ERDS) is available to 500 Colorado adults with developmental disabilities. The ERDS:

  • Provides accessible information about the coronavirus and how to stay well
  • Empowers people with new ways to stay in touch with others
  • Encourages people to connect with the community

The ERDS makes information more accessible and computers easier to use by:

  • Simplifying navigation of a computer
  • Providing pictures or videos to inform, teach tasks, and support independence
  • Making email accessible with a text reader and audio recording feature
  • Including video conferencing through Skype
  • Sharing ways to relax and to have fun from home

The ERDS is available to Colorado adults with developmental disabilities who:

  • Participate in advocacy with Speaking For Ourselves of Colorado, or who
  • Do not live with family, or who
  • Are living with family temporarily because of the coronavirus, and
  • Have an email address and an internet connection, and also
  • Have a desktop, laptop, or tablet computer with Windows 10, or an Apple computer with a Windows compatibility layer

To get the Emergency Response Desktop Suite visit https://www.colemaninstitute.org/covid-19/and complete the engagement form. If you have questions please contact Joelle Brouner at joelle.brouner@state.co.us or Shea Tanis at Shea.Tanis@cu.edu.

 

June 10th

RTD resumes fare collection and front-door boarding July 1

FROM RTD:

Beginning Wednesday, July 1, riders will board at the front of buses and will be asked to pay with a ticket, pass, or cash when riding on the RTD system. EcoPass holders will be asked to tap the validator upon boarding the bus, and prior to boarding light rail.

The agency asks riders to be partners in safety by wearing a face covering and keeping six feet between them and others when riding or waiting to board vehicles. To learn more about the measures RTD continues to take to keep its employees and riders safe, visit RTD's website

Refunds and Credits

RTD will begin to process refunds and disburse via U.S. Mail a few weeks after fare collection resumes on July 1. 

 

Mental Health Partners’ Moving Beyond Trauma program is hosting an encore presentation of their “Collective Trauma and Resourcefulness During COVID-19” webinar next Wednesday, June 17th. They had over 100 people virtually attend this free webinar last month so decided to repeat it – with a few extra slides of information added. Please see below for more info and register here:  www.mhpcolorado.org/about/services/specialty-moving-beyond-trauma/free-webinars.

 

At Home is a virtual gathering every Tuesday evening by Zoom. ACL and Autism Society Boulder County are working together to offer these weekly gatherings designed with parents of people of all ages with intellectual and developmental disabilities and/or autism in mind. The first half hour is spent sharing stories, resources, life at home ‘hacks’, system navigation and advocacy tips, new ways to build community, and ideas about planning for the future. The second half hour is spent playing games like Pictionary, Uno, and Charades, or having a giggle while trying to figure out how to do all that on Zoom. Since we are all at home, you are welcome to ‘stop by’ to say hello for just a few minutes or stay the whole time.

 

 

 

June 5th

Update on Imagine! Direct Services

Friends and partners of Imagine!,

Imagine! is currently working under constantly changing guidelines, expectations and restrictions from the State and other entities. We thank you for your continued patience during this time, and please know that we are working hard to get back to providing the service that you’ve come to rely on and value. We are working to develop both in-person and virtual services that we can offer during this time, but please keep in mind that our ability to provide services is contingent on a variety of factors.

As you know we are currently offering some limited individualized in home supports as well as virtual group and independent services. We are excited about the continued growth of our programing and wanted to send out this communication to inform you of what is on the horizon and gauge your interest.

Due to guidelines from Colorado Health Care Policy and Finance (HCPF) during Colorado’s “Safer at Home” order, Imagine! is currently not able to support individuals in a group setting who fall into the following categories:

  • 65 years and older
  • Who have chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • Who have serious heart conditions
  • Who are immunocompromised
  • Pregnant
  • Determined to be high risk by a licensed healthcare provider

In addition to the categories listed above, all individuals have been given a risk assessment from their Case Manager that could factor into our ability to support in person.

Below are further details on guidelines and requirements for those individuals who are able to receive group services from Imagine!.

Day Program Services (including Community and Employment Services)

Individuals who are interested in attending group day program services must be able to follow the guidelines outlined below.

Guidelines for Attendance in Group Settings

  1. Individuals who attend must be able to follow social distancing guidelines from their peers at all times. Social distancing, also called “physical distancing,” means keeping space between yourself and other people. All individuals must stay at least 6 feet apart from all other individuals in an activity.
    • Social distancing guidelines do not prohibit staff from providing hands-on support, including support in the restroom or during lunch.
  2. Individuals must have the ability and willingness to wear proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at all times. PPE needed for attendance will include a face mask and could include gloves for some employment services.
  3. Transportation will be extremely limited, as we are only able to provide 1:1 transportation at this time. As such, we will request that participants transport themselves to and from program until restrictions are lifted.
  4. We are in the process of developing a catalog of small group meet up opportunities that will be coming out shortly!

Residential Provider Requirements/Responsibilities

Residential provider/family member/guardian will need to agree in writing to the following before their loved one or the individual they support can attend in-person group programming:

  1. Will need to administer temperature and symptom checks before sending an individual to programming. Will be required to have a back and forth log kept in individual’s back pack or lunch pack that records the symptom check each morning. Participants will be asked to stay home if any of the following symptoms are present:
    1. Cough
    2. Shortness of breath
    3. Muscle aches
    4. Sore throat
    5. Chills
    6. A temperature over 100 degrees
  2. If at any time the individual is unable to follow social distancing guidelines or is presenting symptoms of an illness they will need to be sent home from programming and picked up within a 1 hour.
  3. Attendance will not be possible if an individual is presenting any symptoms of illness. If an individual is sent to program and is presenting symptoms they will be sent home and unable to return until 72 hours free of symptoms.
  4. Transportation will be extremely limited, as we are only able to provide 1:1 transportation at this time. As such, we will request that participants transport themselves to and from program until restrictions are lifted.

Other Service Options

The guidelines and restrictions listed above have made it challenging (and sometimes impossible) to provide in-person group day program services. During this time we’ve also been working hard to develop alternative ways to receive quality service. Below are some reminders of the options if in-person group services are not available or are not an option for you. Please reach out to your Day Program Supervisor if any of these options are of interest to you, or if you have questions about what these services entail.

  • Virtual group activities and classes. Our robust services offering is coming out next week. You will also receive a separate email with more details about this.
  • Individual virtual 1:1 time with a staff, to talk, play games, discuss interests, etc.
  • 1:1 activities with a day program staff
    • This service can include in-home and in the community, but there is very limited availability due to staffing
  • Individual employment
    • If you are interested in finding individual employment, please reach out to your individual supervisor to discuss the process and to determine if this is a possibility for you

If you have interest in reviewing the guidelines from HCPF, the May 11th Operational Memo can be found here:

HCPF Day Program Guidelines

Easterseals Colorado’s Disability Inclusion Program (DIP) is hostingDIP into Disability Speaker Series”, FREE online Speaker Series that will help you navigate the disability system and provide education on supports available in the community. 

 

June 4th

A new video, which is in Spanish with English sub-titles, has just been released: InUna visita en el hogar con la familia de Liam(A Home Visit with Liam's Family), Ohio occupational therapist Marta Gonzalez delivers an early intervention home visit during the COVID-19 pandemic. The video illustrates how home visits delivered through video conferencing can continue to support children and their families when in-person visits are not possible. The story is shared through insightful observations offered by Marta and Liam's mother, Yinna.

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June 3rd

Boulder County Area Agency on Aging offers virtual Medicare basics classes

 

June 1st

Colorado SNAP recipients now able to make purchases online. Walmart, Amazon accepting EBT cards for eligible purchases

The Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) has announced the launch of an online purchasing program for families participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and support programs such as Colorado Works and Old Age Pension.

This option will be available for SNAP, also known as Food Assistance, as well as Colorado Works and Old Age Pension participants on Friday, May 29, to make online food delivery purchases on their Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card.

This is possible as a result of a federal waiver from the USDA Food and Nutrition Services that allowed for an emergency request to expand a pilot program permitting SNAP recipients to purchase grocery and food delivery online.

The COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated existing issues around access to food and other basic necessities,” said Food and Energy Assistance Director Karla Maraccini. “This new option will help some individuals and families access food while supporting social distancing, especially for individuals who are more vulnerable to the health impacts of COVID and will, in the long term, be an option for SNAP participants experiencing barriers to conventional shopping to access nutritious foods.”

The authorized SNAP retailers are EBT-enabled for online transactions and participants will see an “EBT” icon on the retailer’s website. They will then be able to add their EBT card in the payment method after selecting an EBT-enabled store.

Currently, there are two approved retailers accepting EBT cards for online purchases — Amazon and Walmart. Both retailers have established accessibility opportunities for SNAP participants to use their service at a very low cost. Delivery fees, tips, and non-eligible purchases such as alcohol or tobacco cannot be paid using SNAP benefits.

"CDHS continues to work alongside the USDA and hopes to bring more retailers, including local grocers, into the program in the future," said Office of Economic Security Director Ki’i Powell. "The opportunity to order groceries online is a huge step up in accessibility for Coloradans using SNAP."

More information on the SNAP program can be found here.

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May 27th

Update from Early Intervention Colorado:

Dear Early Intervention Community,

Early Intervention (EI) Colorado is reaching out to you to share updated information regarding the provision of EI services in the home. In alignment with Governor Polis’ Safer at Home order, guidance provided by the Colorado Department of Health and Environment and CDC, as well as advisement from a planning group, all EI services will continue to take place virtually through at least June 30, 2020. No in-person visits for children with an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) are authorized or funded as an EI service by EI Colorado.

We understand that this decision impacts families, service coordinators and providers in different ways. EI Colorado is striving to meet the needs of everyone concerned and is weighing the risks and benefits to the best of our ability, using the most current information we have. This requires careful thought and planning and the need for flexibility whenever possible.

As more information is available, we will continue to revise plans, evaluate practices and share any updates. To ensure the health and safety of the children, families, and providers engaged in EI services, please know that virtual visits may extend beyond June 30 2020.

EI Colorado has broadened the opportunity for input and advisement on this topic by creating a planning work group that meets weekly. This group includes family members, providers, service coordinators, and administrators to examine what EI Colorado needs to consider in order to safely return to in-person services. As part of this work, we will be providing you an opportunity to share your feedback through a survey in the very near future. Information from this survey will be used to inform our plan for returning to in-person visits.

If you need help with receiving or providing successful virtual visits please contact EI Colorado at www.eicolorado.org

 

 

May 26th

Update on Economic Impact Payments for Social Security and SSI Beneficiaries

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will issue Economic Impact Payments (EIP) to approximately 1.4 million SSI recipients with representative payees and 10.4 million Social Security beneficiaries with representative payees.

The IRS began issuing the EIPs via direct deposit and Direct Express on May 22, to the same direct deposit account or Direct Express card as the recipient’s monthly Social Security or SSI payment. Paper check EIPs will be mailed starting May 27.

Visit www.ssa.gov/coronavirus/#reppayee to learn about EIPs and representative payees. You can find the eligibility requirements and other information about the EIPs at the IRS’ Economic Impact Payment Information Center.

 

Notice From Special Olympics Colorado:

In case you have not already heard, since we were unable to have our traditional Summer Games as planned we have decided to offer a virtual SOCO Summer Games and we would love for you to get your Young Athlete and family involved. See this video for a message from our CEO, Megan Scremin.

The games will take place June 22nd-27th and will include all of our favorite aspects of Summer Games including Opening Ceremonies, a Torch Run, Victory Dance, and of course, competition/Young Athletes exhibition skills activities that you can do from home. There are going to be so many fun activities not just for our athletes but family members and caregivers, too!

We will have much more information available in the next few weeks as well as an official link to sign up to participate virtually. We will be coming out with a schedule of what to expect each day during the week of the virtual summer games, so stay tuned for lots of ways for everyone to get involved!

Additionally, we have launched SOCO @ Home, a resource hub for the entire Special Olympics Colorado community centered around providing all of our virtual resources in one easy to access location. Check out the Young Athletes at Home resources.

 

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May 18th

We are living very different lives from the ones we were used to. The old life wasn’t perfect but it was familiar and we found ways to advocate and make things work. We found comfort and sometimes humor in our shared struggles, and together we built better lives and better communities. It’s time to come together and begin to re-design our lives and our communities, starting with listening, talking, and supporting one another as we adapt to this new life and share new ideas.

The ACL is holding a four-week series called “At Home With The ACL.” These twice a week online conversations cover many aspects of life at home. There will be opportunities to speak about the struggles and the process of acceptance, as well as share practical solutions, survival skills, and useful resources.

For more info contact awonnacott@aclboulder.org

 

 

FREE Webinar Series!

Facing Your Fears - Part 1: Identification and treatment of anxiety in children and adolescents with ASD
May 27, 2020
10:00 AM - 11:15 AM
This webinar provides an overview of the identification and treatment of anxiety in children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). A brief review of Cognitive Behavior Therapy for anxiety in youth with ASD will be included as well as an overview of the Facing Your Fears program.

 

Facing Your Fears - Part 2: Adaptations of Facing Your Fears for other age groups and settings
June 10, 2020
10:00-11:15 AM
Part 2 of this webinar series will provide examples of how Facing Your Fears (FYF) has been adapted for other age groups on the autism spectrum as well as for other settings and treatment modalities. Specifically, we will discuss a school-based version of FYF, considerations for conducting FYF via telehealth, and adaptations for teens with ASD and Intellectual Disabilities.

 

Intended Audience: Family members and interdisciplinary professionals with some knowledge of FYF and/or Cognitive Behavior Therapy for individuals with ASD and anxiety.

Speakers:

  • Judy Reaven, PhD, Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics, University of Colorado School of Medicine, JFK Partners
  • Audrey Blakeley-Smith, PhD, Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics, University of Colorado School of Medicine, JFK Partners

Registration: www.JFKPartners.org  (click on the Events tab)

Questions can be directed to Christine.Cook@cuanschutz.edu

 

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May 16th

During Safer at Home, Imagine! Community & Employment Services will continue to suspend all prior COVID in person operations for group day program, community, and some group employment services. We will continue to provide independent employment for any individuals whose workplaces are still open and providing work and some group employment where all state/local guidance is being followed. We will continue to offer different opportunities for 1:1 supports in the home during our normal operating hours. We will be developing a more robust catalog/schedule of virtual service offerings and will be looking into a limited amount of very small group “meet up,” options in the community that follow all state/local guidance. Please do not hesitate to reach out to a Imagine! Community and Employment Services supervisor to learn more about all our service options during this time.

 

May 15th

This blog publishes information typically sent through the Health Facilities Web Portal to health care entities regulated by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

 

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May 12th

Latest message to families regarding COVID-19 from Imagine! CEO Rebecca Novinger.

 

 

May 6th

The Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Finance (HCPF) has announced that during this time, if an individual ages out of a waiver (i.e. is enrolled in the CES or CHCBS waiver and turns 18), they can stay enrolled in that waiver.

This modification to the LTC-803 requirements applies to any adverse action to the member’s enrollment in their selected program, including but not limited to:

  • Continued stay review functional eligibility denials
  • 30 days without services
  • Aging out of programs or services for defined age groups
  • Any other program discontinuation.

 

May 26 there will be a virtual I/DD focused Behavioral Health Task Force (BHTF) testimony session. Parents, providers, advocates, self-advocates and others are encouraged to sign up to testify.

 

The Arc Arapahoe & Douglas Counties Support Group over Zoom

The Arc Adventures in Learning: Money Safety/Recognizing Exploitation

Age 16+

May 23, 2020, Saturday 12:30 - 4:30 pm

Cost: Free

The class is held over Zoom.

Your money matters so protecting yourself from financial exploitation is important. Young adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities today are facing a perfect storm of personal and social pressures that can compromise their understanding of financial well-being. The Arc ADventures in Learning focuses on financial literacy, so you can make good financial choices when it comes to your money.

RSVP required by May 20, 2020

Class Overview:

  • Identifying and Maintaining Private/Confidential Information
  • Recognizing Financial Exploitation - What to look out for
  • Intuition - That “Uh Oh” Feeling When Something Doesn’t Feel Right
  • Responding to Requests and Exploitation (includes effective verbal/nonverbal skills, requests for info/money and other common scenarios)
  • Saying “No”- Letting Others Know Your Limits
  • Utilizing a “Trusted Support Person” and Other Resources
  • Planning Ahead - Creating an Action Plan

QUESTIONS? Luke Wheeland; (303) 220-9228; Luke@arc-ad.org / REGISTER: http://bit.ly/3admoney

Onwardco.org can help connect Coloradans with services, funds and jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic. This resource is the result of collaboration with the Governor's Office, state agencies, community partners and Bitwise Industries.

 

May 5th

Boulder County Health & Clinica are offering drive thru tests "as long as they last."

In celebration of National Mental Health Awareness (NMHA) Month, a time to honor mental health by raising awareness and reducing stigma about mental illnesses and suicide, educating the public about wellness strategies and expressing appreciation for behavioral health professionals, Mental Health Partners is offering a series of events and programs throughout the month of May.

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May 4th

Early Intervention Stakeholders,

In alignment with the Governor's Safer at Home order, the Colorado Early Intervention (EI) program has issued guidance to Community Centered Board (CCB) early intervention programs and direct service providers that all EI activities will continue through virtual means (telehealth, phone, etc.) until further notice. This includes eligibility evaluations, service coordination, Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) meetings and direct services. We have convened a group of stakeholders, including direct service providers, to plan for reinstating in-person home visits when it becomes safe to do so.  Please note that the Office of Early Childhood does not authorize EI in-person visits at this time and agencies not abiding by this direction will be out of compliance with Colorado's Early Intervention COVID-19 Guidance and out of alignment with Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's guidance for home health and personal care providers, specifically:

Reduce or eliminate exposure through distance

  • Consider what services and support can be delivered remotely.
  • Ask your clients to tell people outside their household to connect with them virtually when possible and not to visit when sick.
  • Whenever possible, have people who are bringing items to your client leave them somewhere the client can access them without coming in contact. Consider if you can deliver your service in this way.  
 

May 1st

Boulder County Basic Needs Resources During COVID-19

Boulder County Resources For Parents During COVID-19

 

Important Deadline for Stimulus Payments for Parents with Disabilities

The Economic Stimulus Checks were approved for people receiving SSI. They will be automatically sent. If you are a parent and your child is under 17 and

  • you have already filed taxes or
  •  used the non filer form

you do not need to do anything.

If you did not do taxes in 2019 or do not plan to do 2019 taxes or have not used the non filer form please do the one of the following by May 5th.

  1. File taxes or
  2. Fill out this non-filer form: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here

Please do not wait to take this action.

 

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April 30th

Imagine!’s Early Intervention, Family Support Services, and Case Management departments are still taking referrals during this time. Click on the department to get started.

FREE ASD Webinar for Parents and Professionals

Autism Society of Boulder County Upcoming Virtual Support Groups


Parent/Caregiver Zoom Support Group – Remote Learning

For families of all ages
Tuesday, May 5, 2020
7 – 8 PM
This is a free support group
REGISTER IN ADVANCE FOR THIS MEETING (REQUIRED)

AFTER REGISTERING, YOU WILL RECEIVE A CONFIRMATION EMAIL CONTAINING INFORMATION ABOUT JOINING THE MEETING.

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYpfumorTwpE9MyDBJLgExxsXkQyUjF6lGl

Our community knows how to deal with adversity, and we know how to make the best of difficult situations. We know you will all be resilient and kind to each other, so let’s get together and talk.

Veronica Crowell began working with individuals with disabilities while still in high school in Wichita, KS in 1978. She worked at The Arc of Sedgwick County in Wichita as a case manager and has 30 years of career experience working with individuals with I/DD. Veronica works primarily with families who have children on special educations plans in Douglas County. Providing advocacy, education and counseling around special education laws. Veronica assists adults with a variety of resources including employment, housing, day and residential programs.

Luke Wheeland is responsible for the administration of all educational offerings and community outreach activities at The Arc Arapahoe & Douglas Counties. Luke has witnessed firsthand the transition and steady progression of the quality of life options for individuals with disabilities, as his parents worked in the I/DD field for over 35 years. Luke grew up around people with disabilities and individuals striving to achieve independence and a meaningful life.

The Arc Arapahoe & Douglas Counties will be hosting a handful of “Zoom Support Groups” meetings supported by our outstanding staff, who have over 140 years of experience with individuals and families with IDD.  Watch for upcoming topics and dates.

QUESTIONS? Call Luke Wheeland at 303-220-9228 / EMAIL Luke@arc-ad.org

 

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April 29th

Imagine! Case Management COVID-19 Quick Guide for Program Approved Service Agencies (PASAs)

 

Parents Ask the Providers: Transition to Home During COVID-19

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

8:00-9:00 PM MST

Parents of children 2-6 years old with developmental disabilities or delays at home during COVID-19 are experiencing unique challenges.

Balancing at-home childcare, work, and activities of daily living puts parents (especially in single-parent homes) in stressful situations. Topics that will be discussed include managing sleep, behavior and social opportunities in a realistic way while in quarantine.

Join our Interdisciplinary Team of providers (Psychology, Speech-Language Pathology & Occupational Therapy) to discuss some easy-to-use strategies and get questions answered about how to help young children during these unpredictable times.

The intended audience for this webinar includes: parents, healthcare providers & students, child care professionals, school personnel, care coordinators, and service coordinators interested in supporting children.

Panel Moderator: Judy Reaven, PhD, Psychologist

Interdisciplinary Panel:

  • Melissa Argenti, MS, OTR/L – Occupational Therapist
  • Terry Hall, MA, CCC-SLP – Speech-Language Pathologist
  • Katherine Pickard, PhD - Psychologist

Registration: www.jfkpartners.org (Click on the Events Tab)

Questions can be directed to Christine.Cook@cuanschutz.edu

 

 

Frankie Pfeiffer is a 12-year-old Colorado 6th grade boy who is on the autism spectrum.  For him and other non-traditional learners, getting educated in an in-person physical classroom setting can be difficult. Like all kids in the spring of 2020, he was forced into distance learning at home during the COVID-19 pandemic creating even greater challenges.

As part of his remote education, Frankie was blessed to receive instruction from Will Day, the acclaimed Boulder contemporary artist, who helped him facilitate the creation of this piece.

“Colorado amidst the panic” is Frankie's abstract painting depicting a whirl-wind of chaos and destruction being experienced during the coronavirus pandemic with a ray of hope emanating from the colors of the Colorado state flag.

Frankie and his family want to share this ray of hope with you and the many families of special needs children with the proceeds (after printing, postage and material costs) going to support the Autism Society of Boulder County and Imagine!.

Those who donate $40 or more will receive a limited edition lithograph of Frankie's painting.  Donations will be accepted through Frankie's 13th birthday on May 31st.  Prints will be produced in June and should be delivered sometime in July.

Thank you Frankie for your support of others during this difficult time!!

Donate here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/colorado-amidst-the-panic

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April 28th

Imagine! has had several questions about the $600 per week additional payment which some of recently-unemployed individuals are anticipating as part of their state Unemployment Insurance (UI) payments.

Below are the two most common questions we are hearing:

  1. Will these additional benefits count as income against the Medicaid income limits?
  2. Will this money still be counted against the $2000 resource limit for individuals on a waiver?

We asked Boulder County HHS for any guidance they have received, and have reviewed the CARES Act itself as well.  Here are the answers:

  1. Are the payments income? NO. The $600 additional payments (technically called FPUC for Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation) ARE NOT counted as income for Medicaid; however:
    1. Only the FPUC portion of the UI payment is ignored; the rest of the UI payment is counted as income;
    2. FPUC payments are counted as unearned income for SNAP;
    3. This pertains to every form of Medicaid, including family programs, waivers, and the buy-in programs;
  2. Will it be included in the resources? MAYBE.  We have asked Boulder County HHS for any guidance they have received—they are ultimately the ones to determine what is and isn’t counted—but have not received anything yet;
    1. Individuals, guardians, rep payees, etc. are advised that the funds may be counted against the $2000 resource limit;
    2. They may need to take appropriate action to ensure their benefits are not placed at risk due to “excess” resources.

If other questions arise, refer to Section 2104 of the CARES Act.

 

 

April 27th

Get the latest information on Imagine!’s COVID-19 Action and Recovery Plan from CEO Rebecca Novinger.

“Masks Keep Us Safe” was created to help children with autism (and others) learn about the importance of wearing masks right now.

VIDEO: Four Tips to Help Your Kids Through the COVID-19 Crisis

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April 24th

Parent/Caregiver Zoom Support Group – High Medical Needs

For families of all ages

When:

Tuesday, April 28, 2020, 7 – 8 PM

This is a free support group

Details:

Join us for our ongoing “Zoom Support Groups” on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 at 7 PM. Our Executive Director, Carol Meredith and Kelly Stahlman will be focusing on coping with caring for loved ones with high medical needs. Please join us as we support each other with tips and tricks for surviving the pandemic and share stories for what is working and not working.  Feel free to just listen in on the conversation. The intent is to reduce isolation, even though we are not able to physically be together, we are not alone in getting through this crisis.

Our community knows how to deal with adversity, and we know how to make the best of difficult situations. We know you will all be resilient and kind to each other, so let’s get together and talk.

Carol has a passion for the civil rights of individuals with disabilities. This derives from her experiences as a parent of a son affected by autism. Carol works to improve federal, state, and local policy so that people with disabilities receive the services and supports they need to live rich, full lives in their communities.

Kelly Stahlman, a mother of twin sons who were born 12 weeks prematurely, and soon after, both were diagnosed with cerebral palsy and other severe health issues that required around-the-clock care. Kelly is also an advocate in both private and public policy arenas, locally, statewide and federally.

The Arc Arapahoe & Douglas Counties will be hosting a handful of “Zoom Support Groups” meetings supported by our outstanding staff, who have over 140 years of experience with individuals and families with IDD.  Watch for upcoming topics and dates.

REGISTER IN ADVANCE FOR THIS MEETING (REQUIRED)

AFTER REGISTERING, YOU WILL RECEIVE A CONFIRMATION EMAIL CONTAINING INFORMATION ABOUT JOINING THE MEETING.

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAsf-utrzkiGNbM9kdq48fQ9yrHxaUwBpxj

QUESTIONS? Call Luke Wheeland at 303-220-9228 / EMAIL Luke@arc-ad.org

 

 

April 23rd

Longmont ROUND PANTRY Drive-up Food Distribution scheduled for April 28

Mask request form for Broomfield residents. In order to distribute masks to as many people as possible, please request only one mask per household member.

 

April 22nd

Updated COVID-19 and Funding Flexibility within Imagine! Programs

Broomfield Health and Human Services COVID-19 Resources

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April 21st

The Social Security Administration announced Monday that Social Security recipients have until noon on Wednesday, April 22, to file taxes or fill out this non-filer form: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here/

 

April 20th

Imagine!’s next Board of Directors meeting is scheduled for April 28 at 7PM. Due to current Shelter in Place restrictions and remote meeting limitations, please email any public comments to csiegfried@imaginecolorado.org so they may be presented during the board meeting. Public comments and any board comments will be reflected in the posted minutes. Thank you.

 

The Department of Health Care Policy & Financing (Department) launched a Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) COVID-19 specific web-page. The web-page includes: 

  • A listing of all Memos related to LTSS and COVID-19
  • Information about past and upcoming webinars regarding LTSS and COVID-19 
  • Frequently Asked Questions, updated regularly

www.colorado.gov/pacific/hcpf/COVID

 

RTD COVID-19 Refunds and Credits for Pass Programs

 

April 17th

Comic Book Helps Those With Autism Understand Changes Brought By Coronavirus

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April 16th

The Colorado Department of Healthcare Policy and Finance (HCPF) has created a weekly update for providers, stakeholders, community partners and staff containing updates from the Department about the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).If you'd like to opt-in to receive this newsletter, please go to the Department's newsletter sign-up webpage.

Additionally, the Department has created a COVID-19 resource center for various audiences, including providers, at colorado.gov/pacific/hcpf/covid.

 

 

April 15th

Questions answered about COVID-19 and individuals with Down syndrome

RTD has suspended fare collection on all buses and trains across the RTD system until further notice. 

Boulder County Bar Association Virtual Legal Clinics will offer limited advice in many areas where people are currently affected including family law, landlord/tenant, employment, estate planning, bankruptcy, criminal, real estate, and civil.  FREE!

Supplemental Security Income Recipients Will Receive Automatic COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments

Comcast is providing free internet service for all low income families during these times
 

Today, the Statewide Feeding Task Force, working through the Unified Coordination Group (UCG), announced Colorado received a $3 million delivery of infant supplies from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The delivery includes:


8,200 cases of formula
23,260 packages of diapers
53,167 packages of diaper wipes


These essential supplies will go to families who are experiencing poverty and not able to find resources to meet their basic needs. The distribution of the supplies will be at 41 locations statewide, including Colorado's food banks and family resource centers. These supplies will also be available to families enrolled in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) and child care providers taking part in the Emergency Child Care Collaborative. 

State agencies and other nonprofit partners across the state have been fielding urgent requests for formula, diapers and wipes from front-line workers and child care providers offering emergency child care. This need arose both because there was difficulty finding supplies in retail stores and because families are facing the economic impacts of being laid off from work and cannot afford supplies even if they are available.

“We are proud to be leading the Statewide Feeding Task Force and are encouraged by the statewide coordination with partners to identify needs and collaborate to meet them,” said Colorado Department of Human Services Executive Director Michelle Barnes. “We are thrilled with the response we’ve received from FEMA and the quick distribution of these much-needed supplies. Together, we will get through this.”

Similar to the situation with toilet paper and hand sanitizer, panic buying has left stores and diaper banks empty of baby essentials. Colorado’s Family Resource Centers (FRCs), Early Childhood Councils and local food pantries have had difficulty purchasing supplies from normal distributors, creating a dire situation for families. Some families may be resorting to changing diapers infrequently, which can cause infections and require medical attention, a situation that must be avoided in light of the medical community’s current focus on COVID-19. Likewise, the inability of parents to feed their babies has a health impact on the child and increases family stress and risk for child neglect. 

The Feeding Task Force is coordinating the delivery of these supplies to food banks and FRCs with support from the UCG. The delivery of supplies will be coordinated by the UCG logistics team to 34 FRCs across the state and subsequently to the emergency child care providers. FRCs are prepared to distribute these supplies directly to families in need utilizing existing local family support staff. 

“Thank you to all the community partners in voicing this need, and to FEMA for working with Colorado and assisting in serving our families,” said Barnes. “In addition to the Emergency Child Care Collaborative and Colorado Crisis Services, this is one more way we are urgently working to support and meet the needs of Coloradans.”

For more information on how to access these resources, please visit the Office of Early Childhood’s website. Below is a list of distribution sites around the state. 
Arapahoe County Early Childhood Council
Bright Futures of Children
A Precious Child
Catholic Charities of Central Colorado
Catholic Charities Diocese of Pueblo
Community Partnership Family Resource Center
Connections 4 Kids
Delta County Family Resource Center
Denver Indian Family Resource Center
Early Childhood Council of Boulder County
Estes Valley Investment in Childhood Success
Families Forward Resource Center
Family & Intercultural Resource Center
Family Resource Center
Family Resource Center Roaring Fork Schools
Focus Points Family Resource Center
Fremont County Family Center - Starpoint
Gunnison-Hinsdale Early Childhood Council
Hilltop Family Community Resources
Huerfano Family Resource Center 
La Plata Family Centers Coalition
Morgan County Family Center
Mountain Family Center
Prairie Family Center
The Pinon Project
Rural Communities Resource Center
Sister Carmen Community Center
Tri-County Family Care Center 
United Way of Weld County
West End Family Link Center
Washington County Connections
Food Bank of the Rockies
Food Bank of the Rockies, Western Slope
Care & Share Food Bank
Weld Food Bank
Lift Up
Durango Food Bank
La Puente's Food Bank Network of the San Luis Valley

Photos of the supply delivery are available upon request. 

The Statewide Feeding Task Force was created on March 9 to respond to COVID-19 feeding needs. Participating organizations in the Statewide Feeding Task Force include, but are not limited to: Colorado Department of Human Services, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Colorado Department of Agriculture, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Colorado Department of Education, Colorado Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters, FEMA, food banks, Blueprint to End Hunger, and other state and local food partners.
 

 

April 10th

Imagine! Community & Employment Services has suspended all group day program, community, and some group employment services for the time being. We are still be providing independent employment for any individuals whose workplaces are still open and providing work. We will only be providing group employment with 1:1 supports if workplaces are still open and allow for social distancing. We continue to offer different opportunities for 1:1 supports in the home during our normal operating hours.

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April 9th

There is new guidance for providers of services to people with developmental disabilities, including Host Home Providers, Residential Providers, and Supportive Living Services around restrictions to families and guardians. These new restrictions and orders mean that families, guardians and/or other natural supports will no longer be able to take members on community outings or visits outside of the residence unless the families, guardians and/or other natural supports choose to keep the person in their home for a fourteen (14) day symptom-free quarantine period prior to returning the residence.

Resources from Boulder County:

The Boulder County Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) has implemented a Provider Emergency COVID-19 Absence Policy. Boulder County CCAP will pay up to 15 absences per month, per child, to all providers, beginning March 1, 2020 through June 30, 2020. CCAP will also reduce parent fees based on request. Parents can email CCAP@BoulderCounty.org and provide a brief explanation of the need for the request.

LEAP (Low-income Energy Assistance Program) has been extended through August.

Connect for Health Colorado is open for a Special Enrollment Period. Uninsured Coloradans can shop and enroll in health insurance thru April 30, 2020.

Boulder County Department of Health and Human Services has opened its TANF Emergency Diversion program. TANF Diversion provides cash assistance to families that meet eligibility criteria and don’t need ongoing case management. TANF criteria includes households with at least one child under age 18, lawful presence, and income at or below $75k annually. This program can assist with one-time rental assistance for up to two months related to lost wages incurred by the COVID-19 crisis. Clients will need to apply through PEAK.

For anyone seeking to apply for supports including food assistance (SNAP), Medicaid (Health First Colorado), Child Care Assistance (CCAP and Emergency Child Care), and LEAP, you can use:

  • Colorado PEAK at Colorado.gov/PEAK the MyCOBenefitsmobile app (search your app store to find this)
  • Complete a paper application in English or Spanish and email to imaging@bouldercounty.org. This can be done either by scanning the application to us or by taking clear pictures of the individual pages and emailing the files to us.
  • Paper applications and forms are located outside each office  
  • All eligibility interviews will be conducted over the phone
  • Food Assistance (SNAP) only: Call Hunger Free Colorado for help applying at (720) 382-2920. Their offices are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

BCDHHS’s Personal Finance Program provides free and confidential individual counseling to households at all income levels. Please call 720-564-2279 or email PersonalFinance@BoulderCounty.org to schedule phone or virtual appointments.

ACL runs support groups for parents of kids with I/DD. They have limited capacity and the meetings are conducted via Zoom at the moment but they are able to take a few more parents. The contact person at ACL is Anna Stewart astewart@aclboulder.org

 

April 8th

Don’t Fall for Stimulus Check Scams - From the Community Protection Division of the Boulder County District Attorney’s Office

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April 7th

Notice to families regarding the use of Zoom:

There has been a lot of information floating around the Internet regarding the use of Zoom.  Imagine! has been using Zoom for teleconferencing and telehealth for almost a year.  Here are the facts regarding Imagine!'s use of Zoom.

If my therapist records a meeting, is it in the public cloud?

No.  Imagine!'s use of Zoom complies with our HIPAA policy and recordings are not in the public cloud.  The meeting will be saved to your therapist's computer.

Is Zoom HIPAA compliant?

Yes.  While there is no such thing as "HIPAA Compliant", vendors and the public refer to this term on a regular basis. The account Imagine! has with Zoom meets our HIPAA policies for the security of protected health information (PHI).

Is my Zoom meeting secure?

Yes.  Imagine!'s Zoom service is encrypted and complies with our HIPAA policy.  This means it can be used for telehealth services and any sessions with clients where protected health information is discussed is secure.

What is Zoom bombing?

Zoom bombing is when an uninvited attendee joins the meeting and disrupts it.  This can occur if the Zoom meeting information is made public or by chance when a person with too much time on their hands randomly guesses the meeting ID.  Imagine! employees have instructions on how to prevent this.  However, should an unwanted participant join a meeting, the meeting host will be able to remove them and prevent them from rejoining.

Is Zoom malware?

No.  With the popularity of the Zoom system there have been cases where the user downloads what they think is a legitimate Zoom application but in fact they are on an unapproved website and the Zoom file contains malware.  If your computer tells you that Zoom is unsafe, you should immediately uninstall it.  Only install Zoom from THIS SITE to ensure Zoom is safe.

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April 6th

We Wear Masks: A Social Story to Help Children Understand (Parents – if your child is under the age of three, please check with their doctor before having them wear/not wear a mask.)

For the safety of employees and passengers, RTD has temporarily suspend fares and institute rear-boarding on buses.

 

We are getting these warnings from Social Security about weekly now, further stressing the importance of ensuring anyone who receives a Social Security payment or is enrolled Medicare must be extra careful to protect their information:

Unfortunately, scammers take advantage of the most vulnerable during times of uncertainty and change. You must protect yourself by making sure you only give your Medicare number to your doctor, pharmacist, hospital, health insurer, or other trusted healthcare provider.

If someone calls you on the phone, saying they’re from Medicare, and asks for your Medicare number or other personal information – just hang up.

Our representatives will never:

  • Call beneficiaries to ask for or to “verify” Medicare numbers.
  • Call to sell you anything.
  • Promise you things if you give them a Medicare number.
  • Visit you at your home.
  • Call you to enroll you in a Medicare program over the phone, unless you called us first.

We removed Social Security numbers from all Medicare cards last year to reduce fraud and protect our beneficiaries from identity theft.

Even with this change, you should guard your Medicare card like you would a credit card. Be sure to check your Medicare claim summaries for errors and questionable bills.

If you suspect Medicare fraud, please report it by calling Medicare’s toll-free customer service center at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227).

You can also visit them online.

 

The Boulder County District Attorney’s Office has received inquiries from community members and immigration advocates about the enforcement of the stay-at-home orders.  The media has reported on some police impersonators, which has heightened the concern for some.  Also, we want to emphasize that victims of domestic violence or abuse are aware that they can leave their homes and call 911 for assistance.

In collaboration with the law enforcement agencies in Boulder County, the DA’s Office produced these flyers in English and Spanish.

Temple Grandin Has Some Great Tips to Help Autistic Kids Cope During the Coronavirus Quarantine

 

Mental Health Partner’s “Mental Health Packet” that features resources, information and tips regarding parenting, suicide prevention, reducing anxiety and more during this public health crisis. Documents in this packet are available in both English and Spanish and include:

  • How to Maintain Mental Wellness During COVID-19
  • List of MHP Locations and Services
  • Tips for Parents and Children During COVID-19
  • Suicide Risk During COVID-19

The packet is now available for download on their website: www.mhpcolorado.org/covid-19-updates.

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April 3rd

Boulder Valley School District Emergency Childcare Update

 

Imagine! Families - There is a mobile app called “Adobe Fill and Sign” and many Imagine! Care Coordinators are using it to get signatures for required documentation remotely. Below are instructions on how to get it for your use.

iPhone E-Signatures:

Android E-Signatures:

 

Association of University Centers on Disabilities COVID-19 Public Health Webinar Series

Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing COVID-19 Updates

 

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April 2nd

Latest communication from Imagine! CEO Rebecca Novinger regarding COVID-19

Staying at Home During COVID-19: Resources for Survivors of Abuse

Quedarse en Casa Durante COVID-19: Recursos para Sobrevivientes del Abuso

Important Update on Evictions: Boulder County Courts will not hear any eviction cases until after May 31, 2020

Actualización Importante sobre Desalojos: Los tribunales del Condado de Boulder no llevarán a cabo ninguna audiencia sobre desalojo hasta después del 31 de mayo de 2020.

Social Security Recipients Will Automatically Receive Economic Impact Payments

Colorado Nonprofit Association’s review on the CARES Act

 

April 1st

National Disability Institute Report: Impact on the Disability Community – Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act and Family First Response Act

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March 31st

Social Security Coronavirus Updates

RTD riders with disabilities can now access grocery delivery service during COVID-19 crisis

 

March 30th

Everything You Need to Know About COVID-19 & Down Syndrome

ALERT: The IRS will not call to request any personal or financial information for you to get an economic impact payment. If you get such a call -- HANG UP. See official updates at www.irs.gov/coronavirus

Wheelchair and Assistive Technology Users Precautions for COVID-19

Notes, resource links, and contact information from Boulder County Housing Supports and Services Community Partners

 

March 28th

Imagine! families – please be advised that Imagine! Case Managers are still conducting Individualized Plan (IP) meetings remotely during this time to ensure the safety of all involved. Postponing those meetings could lead to a break in your benefits. Please work with your Case Manger to arrange remote meetings to ensure you don’t miss out on vital services.

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March 27th

Boulder County COVID-19 Resources

COVID-19 News & Communications for the Colorado IDD Community From Alliance

 

March 26th

Due to the State Wide “Shelter in Place” order, Imagine!’s Family Recruited Employee program will be following State guidance and offering alternative services for Community Connector either in the home or via allowable technology solutions until further notice.

COVID-19 Resources From Mental Health Partners

Mental Health Partners Location List

COVID-19 Tips For Parents

COVID-19 Suicide Prevention Flyer

Mental Wellness During COVID-19

10 consejos para padres e hijos durante la cuarentena COVID-19

Durante la crisis de salud pública de COVI-19, Mental Health Partners está aquí para servirle

How To Talk To People With I/DD About COVID-19

COVID-19 Resources From JFK Partners

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March 25th

COVID-19 and Funding Flexibility within Imagine! Programs

 

March 24th

Colorado Crisis Services

 

March 23rd

Latest update to families from Imagine! CEO Rebecca Novinger

Autism Society of America COVID-19 Toolkit

Rocky Mountain Welcome Center COVID-19 Resources (with lots of options for different languages!)

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March 21st

Boulder County COVID-19 Resources

 

March 20th

Imagine!’s Dixon St. Building will be closed to walk-in visitors starting Monday, March 23.  A receptionist will still be answering phones (9:00ish-3:00ish) and will be available to accept mail and packages, and hand gift cards and other items out the door.  It would be best if visitors call before dropping by, to be sure someone is here (303-665-7789). Since the door will be locked, guests may need to ring the doorbell when they arrive.

Imagine!’s nursing department put together a helpful visual of how a virus spreads and why social distancing is important. Good info for these times.

5 Things To Know About Coronavirus And People With Disabilities

 

Imagine! Foundation Launches COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund

"Alone, we can do so little; together, we can do so much." – Helen Keller

I think about this quote in the context of our current situation. It’s likely we are all practicing social distancing, and yet, we are reminded of how much we need each other. I sincerely hope that you are doing alright.

In addition to my role with the Imagine! Foundation, I am also the parent of a 24 year old daughter who has intellectual and physical disabilities. Emily lives in Imagine!’s Charles Family SmartHome in Longmont. I am beyond impressed with Imagine!’s proactive response to ensure the health and safety of the individuals we serve. Imagine! employees are developing creative ways to provide therapies, day and residential services, while following state and federal guidelines on social distancing and more. They are also dealing with their own personal challenges in the wake of this crisis.

In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, Imagine! is living its values and principles:

  • Our workforce is our number one asset
  • Families are essential to our success
  • We embrace a culture of support and creativity
  • We inspire a positive and inclusive community
  • We honor our tradition of integrity and leadership
  • We believe in the potential of all

It is in this spirit that we have identified two priorities to share with you, and invite you to help support the work you care so much about

1. Support our workforce.

You can help us assist Imagine! employees facing unanticipated financial challenges, as many are juggling childcare due to school closings, loss of spouse’s employment, etc., while working to support people with intellectual disabilities.

Retaining our staff is the same as retaining the ability to fulfill our mission of creating a world of opportunity for all abilities.

2. Support the individuals we serve and their families.

You can help by supporting Imagine!’s Emergency Fund. We will be able to expand our reach for new emergencies that arise as their situations and needs have changed – it could be rental payments, medical costs, meal delivery or grocery gift cards.

People know best what they need. You can help them have the resources to be resourceful.

The Imagine! Foundation is matching all donations up to $60,000!

Donate to Imagine!’s COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions. I’m grateful for your consideration at this time when everyone is dealing with so much and for all the support you've given Imagine! in the past.

With gratitude,

Patti Micklin
Imagine! Foundation Executive Director

Resource where children in Colorado can get meals while schools are closed.

Colorado Cross Disability Coalition COVID-19 Resources and Information

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March 19th

The Imagine! Intake department continues to take referrals. Click here to get started.

Boulder County District Attorney COVID-19 Fraud Alert

COVID-19 Updates From Mental Health Partners

No Caiga en Estafas de Coronavirus División de Protección a la Comunidad Oficina del Fiscal del Distrito de Boulder

Boulder County trails see increase in visitation. Tips for safe visits to open space.

Coal Creek Meals on Wheels is still delivering meals!

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March 18th

The Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing is hosting a COVID-19 informational webinar for the disability community:

Date and Time:

Friday, March 20, 2020

12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. MST

Call-in Information:

Local: 720-279-0026

Toll Free: 1-877-820-7831

Participant Code: 303146#

Webinar Link: https://cohcpf.adobeconnect.com/r3b9fqgetn6z/

Ask Congress to Address Need for Stable Disability Supports During COVID-19 Outbreak

Below is information which may prove helpful, particularly to those who may have difficulty knowing how to maintain some sense of “normal” at this time. 

  1. Lunch and breakfast for families with school-age children:
  2. Other options for food assistance;
  3. Financial assistance or discounts
  4. Relief from fines and penalties:
    • CenturyLink is waiving late fees and will not terminate residential services due to “circumstances associated with COVID-19”
    • Longmont will not be disconnecting electrical services until further notice
    • Nederland will not be discontinuing water/sewer services due to “non-payment”
    • Xcel Energy will not be disconnecting services to residential customers until further notice

In response to COVID-19, Early Intervention Colorado is discontinuing in-person visits for children and families referred to, or enrolled in, early intervention services.

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March 17th

Imagine! Community & Employment Services is suspending all group day program, community, and some group employment services for the time being. We will still be providing independent employment for any individuals whose workplaces are still open and providing work. We are assessing our group employment opportunities and will continue any that allow for work opportunities in environments with less than 10 people in a room. Starting Wednesday March 18 and Thursday March 19 we will be offering different opportunities for 1:1 supports in the home during our normal operating hours. We can either provide this service in person or virtually through our web conferencing platform, which will allow us to provide fun in-home or virtual activities for individuals. Our goal is to assign one staff member to each individual to limit the likelihood of any exposure and continue to enforce/practice social distancing. Supports may be limited but we would like to help where we can. Departmental staff will be reaching out to each person in services and their families to discuss what we can offer and what will work best for you.

Early Intervention Colorado Response to COVID-19 webpage

Coronavirus Fraud Alert

Effective March 17, 2020, Social Security Offices Will Only Offer Phone Service

Effective March 17, 2020, for HCBS Behavioral Therapy, HCBS Bereavement Counseling, HCBS Expressive Therapy, HCBS Mental Health Counseling, HCBS Movement Therapy and HCBS Therapeutic Life Limiting Illness Support Providers may utilize the following service delivery alternatives.

 

  1. Providers may render services in alternative locations and/or utilizing technology to ensure continuity of service to meet the member’s needs.
    1. Services may be provided via technology solutions.
    2. Services may be provided in alternative locations and/or in smaller settings.
    3. Any change to the delivery of service must be in accordance with the member’s needs and preferences and documented.
    4. Professionals must use their professional judgement to determine whether virtual service delivery aligns with positive therapeutic outcomes and treatment goals while maintaining service integrity.
  2. Providers that determine virtual visits can meet the needs of the participant must document in the participant’s treatment plan how therapeutic outcomes will continue. Providers must inform case managers of any changes in the delivery of services.

PDC Pharmacy COVID-19 Response

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March 16th

Starting this Wednesday, 3/18, Imagine!’s Coal Creek building will be closed to visitors until further notice.

Imagine!’s Dixon building will be open for visitors between 10:00am and 2:00pm, though this could change at any time.

Phone calls will be monitored outside of these times and the phone system can walk callers through to the person they are calling when no one is able to answer.


Updates on upcoming Imagine! events:

March 17 - John Nevins Retirement Party: CANCELLED

March 31 - Imagine! Community Forum: Accessible via Zoom meeting only https://zoom.us/s/569166954

March 31 - Imagine! Board of Directors meeting: Accessible via Zoom meeting only: https://zoom.us/j/4924256027

April 1 - Imagine! Employee Town Hall: Accessible via Zoom meeting only https://zoom.us/j/843916368

April 6 - Colorado Initiative for Higher Education Informational Meeting: POSTPONED until June 22.

April 9 - Building Cooperative Behaviors class CANCELLED


Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing Operational Memo to inform home and community-based services (HCBS) Day Program Service Providers and Case Management Agencies of temporary and optional changes to the provision and reimbursement of day services during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

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March 15th

COVID-19 Information By and For People with Disabilities

Información de COVID-19 Por y Para Personas con Discapacidades

 

March 13th

Due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the Imagine! Community Forum scheduled for March 31 from 6-7PM will only be available online: https://zoom.us/s/569166954

All Imagine! Dayspring Early Intervention therapies will be delivered via telehealth options for the time being. We are also sharing our online meeting platform with contracted therapists and encouraging them to use telehealth as well.

March 13 communication from Imagine! CEO Rebecca Novinger to Imagine! stakeholders

March 13 communication from Imagine!’s Community and Employment Services to families and clients.

COVID-19 updates from Emergency Family Assistance Association, OUR Center, Sister Carmen Community Center

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March 12th

Below are the latest updates on plans for Imagine!’s various service departments.

Imagine!’s Dayspring Early Intervention Services

  • All Dayspring Community Calendar Activities are cancelled until further notice.
  • Hanen classes will be delivered online only.
  • If therapists are sick, or the family is sick, therapy will be delivered via telehealth.

Imagine!’s Community, Employment, and School Age Services

  • If either the Boulder Valley or St. Vrain Valley School Districts close all of their schools, we will close the main sites for our Community, Employment, and School Age services. To every extent possible, Imagine! staff members will be reassigned to provide these services in smaller group settings where we are able to practice social distancing. These services may be delivered in Imagine! group homes or out in the community, depending on availability, and only if the services can be delivered safely.
  • For individual and crew supported employment assignments, Imagine! will coordinate with the businesses, assess the environment, and make decisions regarding continued active employment activities on a case-by-case basis.

Imagine!'s Family Recruited Employee Services

  • If service delivery in the home is provided by family member who lives in the home, services may continue, unless signs/symptoms/travel history pose a risk, in which case service would be discontinued. If the FRE provider is sick, Imagine! will attempt to backfill services with other FREs or Imagine! Community and Employment Services employees.

Imagine!'s Mental Health Services

  • Services will be delivered via telehealth if signs/symptoms/travel history pose a risk, or appointments will be rescheduled.

Imagine!'s Residential Services

  • Imagine! will restrict all non-essential visitors to our group homes. Day services may be delivered in Imagine! group homes depending on availability, and only if the services can be delivered safely.
  • If we suspect a case of coronavirus at a staffed site, we will follow the direction of public health officials regarding quarantine.

Imagine!'s Community Centered Board Services

  • Case Management
    • Imagine! Case Management has been instructed by the Colorado Department of Healthcare Policy and Financing to complete ALL 100.2s, IPs, IDTs, and monitoring visits by phone or online.

       

  • Early Intervention

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March 11th

Imagine! COVID-19 Response Plan

Drive-up coronavirus testing center opening in Denver

 

March 10th

Gov. Jared Polis declares state of emergency in response to coronavirus outbreak

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19): What do Older Adults and People with Disabilities Need to Know? - Via Federal Administration for Community Living

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March 9th

Consumer Advisory: Division of Insurance Directs Insurers on COVID-19 Coverage

 

March 6th

 

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
Benjamin Franklin

 

 

Hello Imagine! stakeholders –

 

As you are no doubt aware, there is rising concern across the nation about COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus.

While there’s no reason to panic right now, Imagine! is actively preparing in case our services are effected by the arrival of the virus in Colorado. We believe now is the time to plan, so we can limit any potential negative impact on the health and safety of our employees and the people we serve.

Fortunately, Imagine! has had a Disaster Preparedness Plan in place for many years. The plan proved extremely effective when Boulder County was hit by massive flooding in 2013, and we’re confident that our diligent efforts to keep the plan updated since that time has us well ahead of the planning game already.

We aren’t just resting on our laurels, however. Right now, team members at Imagine! are currently hard at work making sure we are ready in case of an outbreak, including:

  • Assessing all facilities and staffed environments to ensure there are enough supplies to meet the needs of individuals we support for the immediate future.
  • Reviewing current policies to identify areas of increased flexibility to minimize disruption to services.
  • Identifying high-risk individuals and ensuring that contingencies are in place to ensure their safety.

If COVID-19 does spread in our community, Imagine! will:

  1. Follow the county and state’s public health instructions for containment and share those directives with you promptly.
  2. Adopt flexibility in certain policies to support those directives, protect the health and support needs of the individuals we support, and the health of our workforce.

We will make more detailed plans available to you if the need arises, but for now we wanted to let you know that we’re doing everything we can to prepare.

We promise to regularly communicate with all of you about how we will continue to support the 4,000 people who rely on Imagine! every day, while at the same time, ensuring that our employees are able to tend to their own needs and the needs of their family.

To facilitate that communication, we have created a page on our website (https://imaginecolorado.org/covid-19) which will act as the central hub for all Imagine!/COVID-19 information we have available to share. You are also encouraged to check out our Facebook page for updated information.

In the meantime, the best response (and best way to contain this virus), are basic personal hygienic practices. Click here for tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Our fervent hope is that all of this preparation will be for naught. But we can’t rely solely on hope when it comes to protecting individuals with I/DD and the compassionate and caring people who support them, so we are moving forward full steam ahead with our preparations.

RESOURCES

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment COVID-19 Monitoring

Colorado Plans Its Own Testing Network to Detect Coronavirus