COVID-19 Precautions

 

Updated January 25, 2022

 

The following guidelines refer to the provision of care on-site during the COVID-19 crisis. As guidelines for the country, state and county continue to develop, these policies will change to reflect current standards. We monitor the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and information from the Harris County Public Health Department for updates. The Carruth Center provides this information so families will be aware of precautions we are taking and are aware of the risk of their child receiving face-to-face therapy.

Self-Screening

Parents are asked to complete a self-screen at home before coming to The Carruth Center. Please do not come to The Carruth Center if your child has any of the symptoms below:

  • Sore throat
  • New, uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (for clients with chronic allergic/asthmatic cough, a change in their cough from baseline)
  • Diarrhea, vomiting or abdominal pain
  • New onset of severe headache, especially with a fever
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Fever over 100.4 or a fever that you have given fever reducing medications
  • Runny nose/congestion outside of the client’s normal baseline

If your child cannot attend therapy because they cannot pass the self-screen, please contact your therapist to alert them to their absence.  A child who cannot pass the self-screen may return to The Carruth Center when one of the three conditions below are met:

The child has received a negative COVID-19 test result from a healthcare facility.  Home tests are not accepted at this time.

-OR-

The child has a doctor's release form and has been fever free for 24 hours without use of fever reducing medications.

-OR-

The family has chosen not to have the child tested for COVID-19 and it has been at least 10 days after symptoms began.

Diagnosis

If your child has been diagnosed with COVID-19 they may return to the clinic when all three of the following conditions have been met:

  1. Your child has been fever-free without the use of fever-reducing medications for 24 hours.
  2. Your child’s respiratory and COVID-19 symptoms have improved.
  3. It has been at least 10 days after your child’s symptoms first appeared, if symptomatic.

If your child is diagnosed with COVID-19 please notify us.  If your child’s therapist is diagnosed with COVID-19 during a time your child had close contact with them, you will be alerted.  If your child’s therapist has close contact with someone with COVID-19 they will alert you about their ability to work and so you can decide if your child should attend their therapy session, be seen by telehealth or reschedule. 

Close Contact

Close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of an individual diagnosed with COVID-19 for an accumulative time of 15 minutes in 24 hours, masked or unmasked. 

If your child is 2 weeks post their second COVID-19 vaccine and has had close contact with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19 they may attend their therapy session if they can pass our self-screening protocol and are not exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.

If your child is not fully vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine and has had close contact with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19, regardless of the presence or absence of symptoms, they may return to therapyten (10) days after the last day of exposure to that person if they are asymptomatic at that time. Please contact Mimi Branham, Clinic Director, for a timeline for return at mbranham@carruthcenter.org. 

If your child has had COVID-19 within the last 90 days and you are willing to share proof of this through a test performed at a medical facility they may attend their therapy session if they can pass our self-screening protocol and are not exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.

COVID Precautions

  • Clients and staff will wash their hands before starting their therapy session and at the end of their therapy session.
  • Social distancing will be used when possible, however, it is very likely that your child’s therapist, and possibly other children, will be within 6 feet of your child during their therapy session.
  • Masks are available to our therapy staff to wear during sessions. However, due to the nature of some therapies, they may be removed for part or all of your child’s session to facilitate strategies needed to help your child in therapy. Face shields are provided to staff to use in instances when face masks cannot be worn.
  • Children over the age of 6 must wear a facial covering to therapy sessions. A facial covering may be a mask or a face shield.  If the facial covering interferes with therapeutic intervention, your child’s therapist may ask them to remove it for part or all of their therapy session.  Please contact your child’s individual therapy team if you have questions about facial coverings interfering with your child’s therapy plan.
  • Employees are not required to wear masks outside but do wear masks or face shields while in the building.
  • Gloves may be worn if a therapist is at risk of exposure to bodily fluids.
  • Tissues, alcohol-based hand sanitizer, soap, gloves, disposable masks and face shields are readily available to staff and children if needed.
  • Cleaning protocols with our maintenance staff and clinic staff have been increased to help decrease the spread of COVID-19 as well as other illnesses. If you have questions about our cleaning protocols, please contact the Clinic Director, Mimi Branham, at mbranham@carruthcenter.org.

Client Pick-Up and Drop-Off

When arriving to The Carruth Center, clients may be picked up from their vehicles, from our front porch or may wait in our waiting room for their therapy session to begin. Please note that while our waiting room is open, we ask that no more than 4 families congregate in the waiting room at one time and that all adults in the waiting room wear masks. We ask all parents not waiting in our waiting room to return 5–10 minutes before the end of their child’s therapy time. We do not have staff who can watch your child if you arrive late for pick-up.

Thank you for your patience while we navigate these unprecedented times together.  Please reach out to us with any comments, questions, or concerns.

Any questions about these policies may be directed to Mimi Branham, Carruth Center Clinic Director at mbranham@carruthcenter.org.