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UDS Continuing to Serve
United Disabilities Services and our sister companies Independent Living Services and Adult Enrichment, would like to assure you that despite growing concerns related to the Coronavirus, we’re here to support you as much as ever. Our management team has been meeting regularly on this topic and are responding to this crisis with timeliness, insight and the agility required to overcome the challenges we are all facing. We’ve taken decisive steps to follow sound guidance from the CDC and other public health authorities, and we are doing all we can to minimize service interruptions by finding other means to keep everyone protected. Some of the steps we are taking include:
- Using the technology we have in place to allow many of our employees to continue to work remotely from home
- In-office employees are asked to limit group gatherings, participate in social distancing, and use good hygiene practices
- Our Care Managers will not be making field visits to client’s homes at this time but will continue to communicate by phone and check-up on their well-being and needs.
- Employees who need to make visits to clients homes, such as personal care attendants, and accessible home modification contractors, will call participants prior to visiting to ensure that no one at the resident’s home is currently feeling ill or is quarantined
- Our Service Dog trainers will be working from home and will continue to work with our dogs, respond to emails and offer one-on-one training opportunities with volunteers who have puppies
- Clients are being asked to make sure they have their back-up care plans in order in case the individuals that normally attend to them are not available
- Our Adult Enrichment program has been temporarily suspended based on Pennsylvania’s recommendations and will remain so until further guidance from the Commonwealth
Please be assured that we are still here to respond to your questions and concerns via email or phone. If you do not know who to talk to, please contact our Resource Center at 888-837-4235 or ResourceCenter@udsfoundation.org
Covid-19 Symptoms Checker
It is important to know the symptoms of Covid-19. Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases. These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.
- Shortness of breath
For more information and to view the CDC’s symptom checker, visit the CDC’s website.
Super Easy Micro-Moments of Self-Care
As many of us face changes in our everyday routine, it is important to remember to take care of yourself. Here are some easy things you can do…
- Transition Routines: Give yourself pause to move from one set of work to another. For example, from work to home you might change clothes, wash your face and take a few deep breaths. Now if you’re working from home you lost that commute. You may need to be more intentional about moving from one set of work to the next. From your work command center in your home to making lunch/dinner, pause, walk to a quiet room and listen to one of your favorite songs.
- Mindfulness: We will all be multi-tasking way more than usual. Your kids could be a few feet away watching Frozen Two and occasionally interrupting for drinks and snacks and sibling arguments. As often as possible, create time to do just one thing. For example close out your email while working on another project so that you don’t have that dinging or popup in the back ground.
- Stretching: Being closed in our houses can make us feel cramped. Stretching can take a few minutes and make our bodies feel more expansive.
- 5-4-3-2-1: When your anxiety sends you down a rabbit hole, which can easily happen right now, take a moment to notice five things you can see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste. This practice ban bring you back into the present moment and into your body.
- Gratitude: I keep finding myself thinking about all the things wellness experts have been suggesting we do for years, now in the midst of a pandemic, we are doing them. More time with our families, less commuting, work from home, access to virtual work outs, emphasis on community and connection. What things can you pause and notice your gratitude for?
Self-care right now does not have to look like it did before. It can be just as nourishing to take small, frequent moments to take good care of your whole self.
As stated above, the UDS Service Dogs team is taking extra steps to ensure the health and wellbeing of our employees, volunteers and dogs during this uncertain time.
We also recognize that many individuals have pets in their homes and wanted to share some helpful information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to pet-parents regarding this topic.
- In the United States, there is no evidence to suggest that any animals, including pets, livestock, or wildlife, might be a source of COVID-19 infection at this time. However, because all animals can carry germs that can make people sick, it’s always a good idea to practice healthy habits around pets and other animals: Wash your hands after handling animals, their food, waste, or supplies; Practice good pet hygiene and clean up after pets properly; Take pets to the veterinarian regularly and talk to your veterinarian if you have questions about your pet’s health.
- CDC has not received any reports of pets or other animals becoming sick with COVID-19. Further studies are needed to understand if and how different animals could be affected by COVID-19.
- Although there have not been reports of pets or other animals becoming sick with COVID-19, it is still recommended that people sick with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus. This can help ensure both you and your animals stay healthy.
- When possible, have another member of your household care for your animals while you are sick. Avoid contact with your pet including, petting, snuggling, being kissed or licked, and sharing food. If you must care for your pet or be around animals while you are sick, wash your hands before and after you interact with them.
- It is always a good idea to have a back-up care plan for your pet in case you become ill and are unable to care for them. Think about who can help you care for your pet and make sure that you have enough food and fresh water. Make sure your pet has all of its vaccinations up to date at all times.
For more information visit: CDC Website
There are many places to find help and resources on the web. Here are a few links to help you learn more and navigate this landscape as it continues to change…
- Information for Caregivers: Family Caregiver Alliance and nonprofitready.org
- A one-stop resource for individulals and providers on Covid Information: Institute For Community Inclusion
- Information on how the Coronavirus is affecting Pennsylvania : PA Department of Health
- Learn about what to look for in a hand sanitizer and how to use it: Center for Disease Control (CDC)
- Talking to children about the Coronavirus: National Association of School Psychologists
- Activities to keep children busy: Scholastic
- Help for those with anxiety and depression: Anxiety and Depression Association of America
- Resources for the U.S. Government response to the virus: USA.gov
- Looking for activities to help keep you busy? Check out this activity book from our LINK partners.