Mental Health Facility Precautions & Actions During COVID

Hillside is taking immediate actions to protect our clients and staff. Using the guidelines from the Center for Disease Control and the Georgia Department of Public Health, the Coronavirus Task Force, comprised of Hillside’s leadership staff, meets several times per month to discuss and implement changes to programming, staffing and clinical care of our clients. Our campus access has been limited to only essential employees to reduce the risk of exposure at this time. We appreciate our families, visitors, referral sources and staff complying with the updated, and ever-adapting, policies and regulations as we protect our campus. 

Below are some changes and updates to our campus and programming:

On-Campus Actions

Admissions

Hillside continues to admit clients to our Residential, Day Treatment, and Community Programs. All new residential clients will receive a COVID test upon admission. You will be notified of your child’s COVID test results and if positive, how we will care for your child.

Tours and Visitors

At this time, we are not allowing visitors or tours of our campus in order to limit the risk of exposure to clients and staff.  Please inform and orient yourself to campus thru our website, social media and video tours. Admissions will be happy to explain our campus and programming via phone.

Residential Treatment

Currently, we are not allowing family members on campus for our residential program post-admission, with the exception of scheduled visitation time. This restriction will directly affect weekly family sessions, which continue to occur via telehealth. Therapeutic passes have been canceled at this time. Our education program is now operating in person.

All staff providing services on campus are required to wear KN95 mask in all buildings and when within 6 feet of any person, child or staff. All staff are also expected to practice physical distancing, wear masks in public, and avoid gathering in large groups when they are not on duty or off-campus. All staff and their families are offered the Moderna vaccine and we have provided campus wide training around the impact of having the vaccine. 

All indoor community space has been treated with Enviroshield for greater surface protection, the indoors Gym, dining hall, and school building. We have added specialized filters to our A/C systems. Everyone will sanitize their hands upon entry and exit from these spaces.

Family Visitation

Family Visitation at Hillside will resume on Saturday, June 5, 2021 and be offered each Saturday and Sunday through the summer. Families wishing to visit their child on campus will be provided a designated visitation time. A visitation appointment must be requested by Wednesday of each week by contacting the assigned Family Therapist. Visits will be scheduled in one-hour increments followed by 15 minutes of no visits to allow for disinfecting between visitors. Timely arrival is important to maximize the visit. Visitors will be limited to 2 individuals per family.  No children under the age of 5 will be permitted to visit.  Temperatures will be taken upon arrival to the Dining Hall. Any visitor with a fever or exhibiting symptoms including coughing, shortness of breath, or body aches will be sent home immediately. Visitors are encouraged to take their own temperatures prior to leaving home.

Families needing to cancel a visit due to unavoidable circumstances should call the Manager-On-Campus phone at 404-375-3423 and notify the assigned Family Therapist.

Location: Hillside Dining Hall

Procedures:

  1. Assign each Cottage a visitation day and time
  2. Family sign up for visitation through the Family Therapist by Wednesday prior to the weekend
  3. Arrive only at the designated time; early arrival will not increase visitation time
  4. Stand outside the Dining Hall maintaining 6 feet of distance from others until invited in
  5. Temperatures will be taken and recorded upon arrival
  6. Hands must be washed or hand sanitizer used upon arrival
  7. There will be one set of visitors per table
  8. All participants must wear masks, including kids
  9. Families are allowed to bring food and snacks to share with client in the dining hall. Nothing will be allowed to return to the Cottage with the child.
  10. Families should only bring additional items to their child after the items are approved by the assigned Program Manager
  11. Hillside staff will notify visitors when their designated visitation time ends
  12. Visitors will promptly exit the campus, visiting no other buildings

COVID Outpatient Treatment Protocol

Experience DBT Day Program

Our Day Program participants and staff are required to wear masks on campus and maintain social distance. All admissions will be tested at admission and when a negative test is received they will begin programming. Our Day Program clients will not enter the main residential campus and the ancillary experiential therapeutic services (art, recreational therapy, horticulture therapy) will be provided in the Day Programming space instead.

Community Program

At this time, Hillside’s community program has returned to offer in-person services as well as continued option of telehealth sessions via Zoom. For in-person services, the therapists, the clients, and the clients’ families must follow a strict infection control procedure which includes health screening, physical distancing, and wearing of KN95 masks.

Infection Control Procedures

Hillside is monitoring daily our procedures for Infection Control and maintaining a safe and clean campus. We have additional housekeeping staff to increase the frequency of cleaning practices on campus. Staff and clients are provided hand sanitizer and wipes to assist with wiping down surfaces.  Dietary staff are ensuring the dining hall surfaces are disinfected throughout the day and updates to food service are made in response to infection control risks. Nursing is checking staff and clients daily for temperatures.

How You Can Help

As we all move through daily disruptions and many unknowns, please consider a financial gift to Hillside. Your support helps us sustain vital services for children and families during this especially challenging time of need.

Contact Hillside with Questions

Please contact our admissions office if you have further questions or concerns.  We appreciate all families, referral sources, and friends accommodating and adjusting with us as we navigate through the coronavirus outbreak.

 

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