To All Families of Children and Adults Living in DDI Residences:
I hope this note finds you well. As widely covered in the news, COVID-19 vaccines are now being distributed across the country and within our own immediate region of Long Island. This is GREAT news for DDI, as the majority of our workforce and individuals of an age appropriate for the vaccine, living in congregate settings, have been identified as high priority for vaccination.
Throughout this grueling process of battling against COVID-19 we have steadfastly pledged to make safety our top priority. Vaccination, along with our continued safety practices is now the most essential way to fulfill that pledge. To that end, as soon as the vaccine is made available to DDI, we will be offering the opportunity to all eligible employees and residents. Moreover, we are strongly encouraging everyone to get vaccinated as soon as they are able, as it is essential to keeping our DDI community as healthy as possible.
While we await additional information from the New York State Department of Health, on when and how the vaccine will be distributed to DDI, you can access information about the New York State COVID-19 Vaccination Program by clicking here; and information relating specifically to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, by clicking here.
Additionally, in the coming weeks you will be receiving COVID-19 information packets in the mail, which will include fact sheets about the vaccinations currently available, and initial consent forms for your loved ones. To facilitate the vaccination process in an expeditious manner, it is imperative that you return these consent forms at your earliest convenience. Note, there may be additional consents required at a later date, depending upon if there is an outside entity giving the injections. Of course, medical practitioners should be consulted for clearance if you have concerns about any underlying personal health factors that your loved ones may have.
As soon as more information becomes available, we will provide you with an update. In the meantime, if you have any questions please feel free to reach out to the DDI Nurse that currently manages your loved ones care, or Shelia Thurman, DDI Director of OPWDD Nursing Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or 631-360-4616.
Thank you for your continued patience and support. The release of these vaccines is a major breakthrough, to what we hope will finally bring this pandemic to an end. We know you have made many sacrifices over the last year to help us protect your loved ones, and your outstanding efforts to follow public health protocols have allowed us to maintain a very low infection rate amongst all of our programs. We continue to appreciate your willingness to go above and beyond in the name of safety.
Wishing you a healthy and bright new year!