DDI's recruitment team

COVID-19

March 27, 2020

Dear DDI Family & Friends:

I want to assure all members of the DDI Family that we are remaining vigilant in our efforts to keep all of the children and adults who have been entrusted to our care by their families healthy and safe to the absolute best of our abilities.

The DDI workforce has been exemplary in the way they have responded!  Almost without exception, they have accepted to need for redeployment or working remotely. They are adhering to recommendations from our nursing team to practice enhanced infection control and surveillance.  We are especially grateful to our Direct Support Professionals working on the front lines within our residences during these difficult times.

We know that implementing visitation restrictions at all of our residences upon the direction of the State was difficult for many to accept.  We are, however, making greater efforts to help families remain connected with their loved ones by offering virtual contact through Face Time, Skype, Zoom and other methods.  There is also an opportunity for healthy, immediate family members to schedule on-premises, but out of doors visits.

Each day the Executive Team of DDI is engaged in conference call updates from our provider associations who are reporting to us on their latest discussions with State officials, including those from OPWDD, SED, the Health Department and the Governor’s office.  These daily briefings are serving to keep our understanding of the current status of COVID-19 in our areas up to date and the actions we must undertake to help keep our residents and our workers safe. 

To date, no resident has been determined to be COVID-19 positive.  Should one be identified, DDI has developed plans for isolation within DDI until such time as that person is able to safely resume their normal activities. 

The principle challenge for DDI and other providers like us is Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).  Masks are our number one need.  With hospitals unable to secure their necessary PPEs, one can only imagine how much more difficult it has been for providers like DDI whose needs are not being perceived as high a priority as those of hospitals.  We are grateful for the assistance that we have received from our friends, and we are presently awaiting the supplies we will need to help to see us through.

At any time you feel it is necessary, because of your questions or concerns, you are encouraged to communicate directly with any member of our programs’ leadership, or with me personally (631-366-2950; john.lessard@ddiny.org).

Please rest assured that this challenge has our complete focus and attention, and we will continue to act in the best interests of those who are served and our employees, all of whom we are obliged to protect.

John Lessard

john lessard signature

Executive Director

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