Report symptoms, travel flagged by the CDC/exposure at (585)340-2050. LEARN MORE

Updates from HCS

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We have set up an HCS Coronavirus Hotline – (585) 340-2050 – to give everyone a place to get more information and make it easier for our staff to communicate about symptoms, travel and exposure to an infected person.

CDC Links  |  County Links   |  Cleaning and Hygiene Tips   |   Ways to Minimize Exposure   |   More Links  |  For Expressive Beginnings Families

 

A Message from Marisa Geitner, President & C.E.O.

As we learn more about the spread of the coronavirus, we’re all thinking about how to protect ourselves, our families, our work environment and the people we support at Heritage Christian Services.

We have a civic responsibility to contain and prevent the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and we are activating procedures around that.

We’re reminding our staff that it’s everybody’s responsibility to minimize the risk to the people we support and to each other. The most important things to keep in mind are the basics:

  • Stay home if you’re not feeling well.
  • Wash your hands, and encourage others to do the same.
  • Help keep things clean.

We’re telling our staff that if they don’t feel well, self-reporting is essential. If they have symptoms (a fever of 100 or higher, cough, sore throat, body aches or shortness of breath, according to the CDC), they should stay home. We’re also asking them to let their supervisors know if they have had any close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

This next announcement is difficult, but it comes with the well-being of the people we support in mind:
We can no longer allow any visitors to enter Heritage Christian sites.

We understand if parents choose to pick up loved ones. However, they cannot return until visitation restrictions change. Following these measures is the only way to minimize the exposure and spread of COVID-19.

If you’ve recently visited with someone at Heritage Christian Services, and you’ve been asked by your health-care provider to self-quarantine OR you know you’ve had close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19, please call our hotline to let us know. If you call (585) 340-2050, you can listen to our updates and share the requested information.

Hand washing is key. Our expectation now is that all staff members wash their hands right away when they report to work. We’re reminding them to be sure to give the people they are supporting ample opportunity to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer.

When it comes to cleaning, we’re increasing the frequency with which we do it. We’re asking all staff at all locations to be diligent about cleaning throughout the day, focusing on all hard surfaces (tables, counters, keyboards, handles, doorknobs, phones, cell phones, etc.), with a thorough cleaning at night.

There will also be no company-sponsored travel for any Heritage Christian Services staff member until further notice. We will also not be holding unnecessary trainings or gatherings and we are using increasing use of teleconferencing.

To limit exposure, and ultimately save lives, consider taking this to a personal level. We want people to understand that their susceptibility in the community could actually elevate risk in agency places where our space intersects with that of the people we serve. Please consider ways you can limit your exposure to the coronavirus in your personal life by:

  • limiting your experiences outside of home and work to the essential, such as shopping for necessary supplies and essential activity for family
  • operate out of an abundance of caution by practicing social distancing – which means limiting opportunities for exposure to COVID-19; consider postponing any extracurricular activities.
  • We will also be asking all we serve to limit their visitors during this difficult time.

So far, we are seeing that proactive measures are helping to decrease the speed of the spread. We also know that our work involves people. We all must take responsibility for public health and for the well-being of those we support. Those we support will be additionally challenged in combating the symptoms of COVID-19. We thank you for taking every action possible to prevent or delay the spread of the coronavirus.

The health of the people who choose our services and of our staff is vitally important to us. Heritage Christian Services is prepared to follow CDC guidelines to handle any possible suspected coronavirus infection among the people who choose our services.

Right now, we’re actively monitoring the developments of this situation and focusing on ways to prevent the spread of the virus and prepare for the possibility of one. We’re urging people who are sick to stay home, and encouraging those who are well to come to work.

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CDC Links

CDC’s national contact center

CDC – COVID-19 page  

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County Links

Monroe County Department of Public Health

Erie County Department of Public Health

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Cleaning and Hygiene

In light of the coronavirus pandemic, keeping electronic devices clean is key to helping stop or slow the spread of COVID-19.  To clean your desktop monitors, laptop screens, smartphone, smartwatch and tablet screens use isopropyl alcohol.

  1. Shut down the computer; phones can remain on.
  2. For laptops, disconnect power to the laptop or monitor.
  3. Apply the cleaning solution (isopropyl alcohol) to the microfiber cloth (Do not pour the cleaning solution directly on the screen).
  4. Gently wipe the screen with the cloth containing the applied solution.
  5. For laptops, hold the center of the back of the laptop screen with your opposite hand so as not to bend and damage the screen while cleaning.
  6. Gently wipe the screen with a dry cloth.
  7. If any marks remain, moisten the cloth with your cleaning solution, and then gently wipe the cloth across the display in one direction, moving from the top of the display to the bottom.
  8. Be sure the LCD screen is completely dry before closing the laptop lid or powering the laptop or desktop monitor on.

To clean your keyboard and mouse:

  1. Shut down the computer.
  2. Apply the cleaning solution to the microfiber cloth (Do not pour the cleaning solution directly on the keyboard or mouse).
  3. Gently wipe the keyboard and mouse with the cloth containing the applied solution.
    1. Be sure to not catch the edges of the individual keys on your cloth. Doing so will pull the key caps off of the keyboard. Move slowly and take your time.
    2. If your laptop has one, be careful not to pop the point stick cover off while cleaning your laptop keyboard. Should this pop off during cleaning, turn it over to visualize the its shape and return it to the point stick by gently pressing it down on the point stick.
  1. Gently wipe the keyboard and mouse with a dry cloth.
  2. If any marks remain, moisten the cloth with your cleaning solution and wipe again.
  3. Be sure the keyboard and mouse is completely dry before closing the laptop lid or powering the laptop or desktop on.

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The way to avoid the coronavirus is the same as avoiding colds and flu:

  • Stay as healthy as you can. Get a flu shot, if you haven’t already.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw the tissue in the trash. If you can’t, sneeze or cough into your elbow, not your hand.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, particularly after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. Or, use a greater-than 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Consider greeting others with a friendly wave, fist or elbow bump instead of shaking hands or hugging.

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More Links

COVID-19 Information By and For People with Disabilities 

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Expressive Beginnings Families

Area schools have closed until further notice as a proactive measure to slow the spread of COVID-19. We understand families need child care coverage while parents have employment responsibilities. While we are evaluating this on a minute by minute basis, at this time, our centers are open for those who have no immediate solution. We ask that you maintain close contact with our center directors related to your attendance. Please notify us immediately if you do not plan for your child to attend.

As a reminder, call the hotline at (585) 340-2050 if parents or children have:

  • a fever of 100 degrees or higher, cough, sore throat, body aches or shortness of breath;
  • been to China, Iran, Italy, South Korea, Japan or Venezuela in the last three weeks;
  • or know that you’ve been in contact with a person confirmed to have COVID-19 Coronavirus.

When experiencing any of the aforementioned, stay home with your children and contact your health care provider or the county health department before reaching out to us on the hotline. Should we discover any exposure to COVID-19 within our staff or the families we support, we are prepared to follow any guidelines from the CDC or Department of Health.

As for additional proactive measures, please note the following:

  • Families should limit visits to our child care.
  • We are postponing all building tours for prospective families who want to enroll.
  • We are not starting new families at Expressive Beginnings during this time.
  • Full day school age attendance will be limited to children who attend before or after school.
  • We are constantly reminding our staff and families to report symptoms and exposure; help to keep things sanitized; and to wash hands frequently with soap and water for 20 seconds.

If you have questions, please reach out to your child care director.

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